The cathartic, clear light of France’s Cote d’Azur has attracted arty types like F. Scott Fitzgerald, Claude Monet and Henri Matisse over the years.
And the annual Cannes Film Festival adds splash of silver screen glamour to an already heady mix.
If you’re a stateside traveller seeking savvy advice, here are six Cote d’Azur travel tips.
1. Saint-Paul de Vence
This charming castellated commune perches on a hilltop just 15 minutes form the coast and every nook and cranny is crammed with creativity.
When you visit Saint-Paul de Vence, bijou art galleries and beautiful craft shops abound and there’s a choice of cafes offering delicious food.
Tip: have lunch at La Colombe d’Or — this rustic restaurant is packed with masterpieces from some of the greatest names in modern art.
2. Picasso Museum
Pablo Picasso lived and worked at Chateau Grimaldi in Antibes in 1946 and the building became a museum dedicated to his work and that of other prominent artists like Hartung, Bergman and Miro 20 years later.
If you want to see everything from postmodernist paintings to striking ceramics, it’s a must-visit.
Tip: Visit en.frenchriviera.com to pick up a pass that unlocks discounts at museums and attractions across the region.
3. Hotel Belles Rives
In 1925, literary legend F. Scott Fitzgerald and his wife Zelda moved into Villa St Louis in a cosy cove where the Cap d’ Antibes caresses the crystal clear Mediterranean.
Now the well-appointed Art Deco Hotel Belles Rives, it’s here that he penned masterpiece Tender Is the Night and led the lavish party lifestyle that inspired The Great Gatsby.
Tip: sip a Kir Royale at La Plage restaurant and savour the same view that Fitzgerald adored.
4. Pam Pam
If you’re yearning for an evening that’s a little less sedate, the Pam Pam cocktail bar is a stone’s throw from Belles Rives in Juan-les-Pins and is a hotspot on the town’s hip strip.
Anyone who appreciates exotic Brazilian dancing and an eclectic range of cocktails will love whiling away a few hours here.
Tip: be prepared to bust some dance moves yourself — revellers are encouraged to join in the fun.
Glam Cannes hosts the iconic film gathering as well as an annual yacht festival and is home to high-end hotels like the Intercontinental Carlton Cannes — where many a film star has flopped out after quaffing too much champagne and caviar.
If you’re spellbound by supercars, you’ll spot many a Maserati and Bugatti cruising around town.
Tip: Grab a coffee at the Hotel Martinez and you might spot some stars strolling down La Croisette.
One stop flights to Nice are available from US hubs like LA, NYC and Boston for a few hundred dollars, so check out sites like Kayak and Skyscanner to bag bargains as early as possible.
You’ll reach your accommodation swiftly by pre-booking an airport transfer or hopping on board the reliable public bus service that’s in operation year-round.
Tip: whether you’re flying from New York or Newark, find airport parking at Looking4.com — it’s cheap and convenient.