As the May sunshine sizzles the south of France, the eyes of the celebrity-watching world turn to Cannes. Metro guides you down the red carpet.
Not only is the seaside town of Cannes a culture clash between über laid back cool and hyper cosmopolitan chic, it’s also home to one of Europe’s most famous film festivals.
Every May, the sleepy town comes out of its winter hibernation to become the most stylish and extravagant spot on the Med.
Along beaches of glittering white sand the celebrities come out to play — a holiday in Cannes will genuinely leave you staring at the stars.
WAKE UP IN THE GARDEN OF EDEN
Perched on the cliff sides of Cap d’Antibes, is the sumptuous Eden Roc (www.hotel-du-cap-eden-roc.com).
It’s one of the finest hotels on the planet, all private piers and paparazzi-proof terraces, and the venue for the most extravagant post-award parties. By day guests (A-listers like Mick Jagger, Jude Law and Madonna) can be found poolside.
Join the crowd of camera-wielding star-gazers at the legendary Palais des Festival which, by night, makes a Cinderella-like transformation as celebrities sashay down one of the world’s most glamorous red carpets — the Montée des Marches.
Cross over to Square Mériméé and the Caffé Roma, a relaxed brasserie where you can people watch over a cup of espresso.
On the Rue d’Antibes is where you will get the best shopping in town.
SUN ON THE BEACH
The opulent Carlton Hotel, whose terraces overlooking the yacht-studded sea are a favorite among festival celebrities.
This sun-kissed stretch of shore is a perfect spot for tanning.
Open from April to October, the Carlton Beach Restaurant serves Provencal dishes, best enjoyed with a glass of local rosé wine.
Follow this with a paddle on a pédalo, the perfect way to soak up yet more Mediterranean sunshine.
MOVIES, MILLS AND MICHELIN STARS
If you’ve had enough of in-your-face wealth then Mougins, a hilltop village a few km inland from Cannes is for you.
Where Cannes is all about displays of wealth, glamour and youth, Mougins is quaint, bohemian and peaceful.
A favorite retreat for many artists including Picasso, Mougins is also a mine of antique stores, art galleries and Michelin-starred restaurants.
After a short walk hrough the narrow alleyways, head over to the Moulin de Mougins (www.moulindemougins.com). This 16th century mill is now where head chef Sébastien Chambru serves food worthy of two Michelin stars. Stick to an aperitif of champagne and nibbles or indulge in the entire dining experience. Start with the pan-fried foie gras followed by an anchovy and ratatouille tartlet and end on a high as you bite into soft chocolate and caramel fingers sprinkled with salted peanuts.