New Year’s Eve in Cannes can only be sparkling, worldly and elegant, the hallmarks of this city off the beaten track at any time of the year.
Located in the heart of the Côte d’Azur, Cannes is in fact considered one of the most chic and glamorous cities in France: it hosts the Film Festival, its harbour welcomes VIP boats from all over the world and its boutiques are inevitably upmarket, as are its restaurants and clubs.
Thanks to its mild climate, lively social life and concentration of casinos, restaurants and nightclubs, Cannes is a favourite destination for spending New Year’s Eve on the French Riviera.
If you are not in the mood for the obviously very expensive New Year’s Eve parties and dinners, you can opt for an old custom of the locals.
If you have rented a flat, you can buy fresh fish at the market, prepare a delicious dinner yourself and then stroll along the Croisette waiting for the unfailing fireworks that light up the sea and the city at midnight on 31 December.
An alternative that is certainly more expensive, but also more fascinating, is to take advantage of the parties organised in the luxurious hotels in Cannes.
In fact, many establishments offer dinner-plus-accommodation packages at advantageous prices. You will thus be able to enjoy yourself without leaving the hotel and experience this festivity in exclusive settings. For a magical evening.
Another trend very much in vogue in recent years to celebrate New Year’s Eve in Cannes is to dine in a trendy restaurant.
Of course, Cannes is spoilt for choice: there are dozens of top restaurants offering original menus created by internationally renowned chefs who revisit dishes from every corner of the world.
If you want to treat yourself to a truly unique and unforgettable taste experience, the choice is almost obvious: make a reservation at La Palma d’Oro, the Michelin-starred restaurant at the Hotel Martinez. The dinner menu changes every year but the excellence of its dishes and the magnificent view directly over the Croisette and the midnight fireworks remain unchanged.
In second place on the podium of the best restaurants for New Year’s Eve dinner is undoubtedly Le Royal Gray, whose cuisine is inspired by local flavours and products of excellence.
Finally, also on the Croisette, we find Felix, a brasserie without the starry pretensions of the first two but with fabulous traditional dishes such as bouillabaisse, the magnificent Provençal fish soup.
If your lifelong dream is to spend a New Year’s Eve of a thousand and one nights, then all you have to do is book a table well in advance for the gala evening at the Palais des Festivals de Cannes.
You can choose from several menus for the dinner, which will be accompanied by dance performances, live music and top-class entertainment.
One of the latest trends for New Year’s Eve in Cannes are clubs where you can combine the two classic elements of a New Year’s Eve party, dinner and entertainment, without moving and staying in one place.
One of the best-loved is the Bar à vin, a cosy bistro where you can sample up to 65 types of wine and enjoy cold meats, cheeses and canapés.
Of course, most tourists prefer to end their New Year’s Eve evening in one of Cannes’ many glamorous venues such as Le Queen’s, formerly Studio Circus, where you can dance until the crack of dawn, or La Chunga, to the rhythm of Latin music, or Jimmy’z, the twin disco of its namesake in Monte Carlo.
If you plan to stay for a couple of days, you can drop by the Christmas Village, open until Epiphany: it is a real pleasure to wander around the sixty or so decorated chalets offering handicrafts and gastronomic products from all over the world.
Or you can carve out a relaxing afternoon between a stroll and a stop at the Cannes Marine Spa or one of the many thalassotherapy spas.