Cannes’ moment of glory takes place in May, with the International Film Festival, when images of the stars descending the red-carpeted steps of the Palais des Festivals are flashed on television screens worldwide. Cannes is also France’s second most important city – after Paris – for business tourism. The chameleon city takes on an identity to suit the temper of each major congress, festival or season. The city is personified by the long, curvaceous, sandy beaches of La Croisette, its expanding Old Port, its palatial hotels, the designer shops lining the famous promenade and the luminosity and gastronomy of the Côte d’Azur.
This modern city grew up from a small fishing town on the south coast of France. Le Suquet, Cannes’ old town, was built on the site of a Roman military camp. The fishing tradition lives on and fish caught at the Vieux Port – to the west of the Palais des Festivals – are brought daily by the fishermen to the covered Forville Market, and sold on to the many fine restaurants. With its hot and dry Mediterranean climate, this city deserves its international fame, and the feeling of being in a very glamorous grandiose village!