Cannes, the summer venue for the international jet set, certainly no longer resembles the commercial fishing port of its past. It only became a meeting place for wealthy English and European society from 1834.
Now, more than ever, Cannes is reputed for being a luxury location, rich in events such as the Cannes Film Festival. The trademark of Cannes is the Promenade La Croisette with its designer boutiques, renowned restaurants, beach, and famous hotels. In the cosmopolitan centre of the city, luxurious roof-terraced properties provide fabulous views over the sea. Properties with more space and privacy are available in the districts of Cannes Californie and Super Cannes. Here, it is possible to find homes in quite locations: villas in the belle-époque style as well as modern villas with pools and views of the sea, which attract many prospective international purchasers.
Antibes, a colourful coastal town, enjoys a perfect location in the bay of von Salis and Saint-Roch. The star-shaped Fort Carré boasts views over the luxury yachts in the harbour of Port Vauban; only the forested peninsular Cap d’Antibes with its imposing villas separates Antibes from the elegant seaside resort of Juan-les-Pins, where the night is celebrated into the early morning and the annual Jazz-à-Juan music festival takes place. Thanks to its characteristic historic centre and its surroundings that resemble the bordering Provence, Antibes is certainly an exciting city, even in the winter months, with great artists including Picasso, Monet, and Sidney Bechet all having had properties here. The number of luxury properties is high: expensive apartments in the city centre and magnificent luxury villas in fantastic coastal locations are always on the market. The most famous district remains the elite Cap d’Antibes, where exclusive summer residences featuring breathtaking views out over the sea steal the show from one another.
Saint-Jean-Cap-Ferrat, originally a small fishing village, is today one of the most famous places in the South of France. A peaceful town boasting inspiring views over mountains, sea, and its picturesque harbour, it has always been a favourite with wealthy purchasers. Accordingly, Saint-Jean-Cap-Ferrat is home to many captivating villas offering all of the latest creature comforts. The town started to experience fame and prestige at the end of the 19th century with the arrival of members of royal families from all over Europe including the Baroness Ephrussi de Rothschild, who owned a grandiose residence built in the renaissance style and featuring delightful gardens. The estate is open for viewing today to an enthusiastic public. Most of the luxury villas on the market are surrounded by immense gardens that guarantee residents the desired privacy. The rarest and most in-demand luxury houses have access to their own beach.
Nice is the fifth most densely populated city in France and is the capital of the Maritime Alps on the legendary Côte d'Azur. It gained its luxurious atmosphere and international sparkle in the 19th century under the influence of the European aristocracy. Although the city and its cultural offerings have grown enormously, it has retained its elegant character. This can be seen in the residential buildings from the belle époque, the Baie des Anges and the Promenade des Anglais, known as La Prom, where walkers, joggers, skateboarders and in-line skaters can be spotted at all times of the day. Along with the many events such as the annual carnival that take place here, Nice is renowned for its iconic blue chairs, les chaises bleues, which line the Promenade des Anglais. The carefully renovated old city, the busy inner city, the chic Carré d'Or around the Piazza Garibaldi, and the harbour are also very popular, especially with people seeking apartments. The most luxurious properties are to be found, however, outside the centre in the residential area of Cimiez, for example, which boasts beautiful views over the Bay of Angels from its location on a hill. Another popular area, and surely Nice’s most exclusive, is Mont Boron. The most luxurious villas and expensive houses can be found here, nestled within a green, private environment.
Saint-Tropez, a sunny peninsular in the southeast of France, attracted ever more writers, painters, fashion designers and film directors in the middle of the 20th century, and the international jet-set in the sixties. The cobblestones in the La Ponche district are a reminder of its past as a fishing village, although today there are more yachts than fishing boats in the Vieux Port. You can relax wonderfully under the sycamores of the Place des Lices after checking out some of the most elegant boutiques in town.
Saint-Tropez is still a sought-after location. Many are attracted to the luxury apartments in the exciting historic centre, only a few steps away from the Place aux Herbes, the Musée de l’Annonciade, or Tour Guillaume and Tour di Portalet. Just as exciting is the proximity to the world-famous beaches in the bay of Pampelonne south of Saint-Tropez and east of Ramatuelle. Most properties are surrounded by Mediterranean-style gardens boasting swimming pools, tennis courts, and magnificent sea views; some also offer direct access to the beach.
Monaco, a principality on the rocky coast of the French Riviera, is the smallest sovereign state in the world after the Vatican and always manages to upstage the latter with its history and scandals. Due to its prestige, tax-haven reputation, and high security standards, Monaco is a highly attractive location. With its famous casino, in front of which fur-clad women climb out of limousines with blacked-out windows, the Café de la Paix, where being seen is more important than seeing, the extravagant residential houses dating from the belle époque, and the famous Formula 1 Grand Prix that races through the middle of the city, the Monte Carlo area is incomparable. To meet the strong demand, Monaco has also seen the construction of high-standard residential buildings in recent decades. The most luxurious apartments are found in the Carré d’Or, which is home to a wealth of fashion boutiques and top-class jewellers. These penthouse apartments offer panoramic views over the entire principality. The greatest demand amongst international purchasers is, however, for properties on the harbour and the sea.