During the month of May, Cannes dresses up to welcome the Film Festival, one of the most important cultural and social events in France.
But this event is not only a stage for those who live for cinema and those who dream of becoming a part of it, but also an opportunity to enjoy a unique atmosphere for travellers, cinephiles, professionals and the curious from all over the world, who for ten days can live a little dream and see the stars of the big screen live.
With five auditoriums ranging from 150 to 2,300 seats, including the grand Louis Lumière auditorium and the Claude Debussy théâtre, 40 theatres, 35,000 square metres of exhibition space and splendid terraces overlooking the Bay of Cannes, it is the centrepiece of the festival.
More animated than ever these days, they become the heart of social life, especially rue d’Antibes, the main shopping street.
This is the most famous promenade in Cannes, one of the most elegant boulevards in the world: here at festival time you will find all kinds of people, from film buffs looking for autographs to exhibitionists, from rich bejewelled ladies to the merely curious.
Have you decided on a trip to Cannes during the festival and want to take the opportunity to see some celebrities up close? Then the easiest way is to line up in front of the steps of the Palais du Festival. In fact, all the celebrities do not miss the ascent of the red-covered steps, the most important ritual of the festival, which takes place at 7.30 p.m. and 10.30 p.m. each evening. This ceremony has been repeated without variation for more than sixty years and the protocol is that the director, the producer and the two main actors of the film climb the steps together, greeted by the Republican Guard or the gendarmes in full uniform.
You can meet the stars around the Palais, on the private beach or in the many bars and restaurants. La Palme d’Or, the restaurant of chef Christian Sinicropi (two Michelin stars) is one of the favourite tables of the Festival stars who frequent the terrace above the restaurant. Or on the other side of the Croisette, by the sea, at ZPlage, a renowned bar offering cocktails and exclusive parties from 6pm. Another destination frequented by film stars is the Palais Stéphanie, at number 50 on the Croisette. With its terrace offering unparalleled views, it organises memorable parties. Otherwise you can opt for the Blue Bar (opposite Christian Dior on the corner of the Croisette and rue André, Pavillon Croisette at number 42) or Planet Hollywood.