EAT in Nice:
A smart restaurant may make you think: Big plate, nothing on it, and a hefty bill. Not in the 11e Art, because here everything is smart, even the presentation: Modern interior, with bar stools made of steel outside and sofas inside, this restaurant is a refreshing newcomer to the trendy, young scene of Nice. And then the food: For a menu with six courses you pay 36 euros, and they are well worth it. The duck breast with polenta may look small, but it fills the stomach and is absolutely divine. Just as the fois gras, the sorbet and just about anything that you order here.Despite the stylish ambiance, the 11e Art has maintained its relaxed ways and convinces with its magnificent food and incredible service: If you are a vegetarian, the waiters fiddle with their menu until it's suitable for you. And if you don't know what things mean, they take your hand and explain everything. Finally, if you like Japanese food, you can get that, too, because one of the chefs happens to come from Japan. The tourist trap Promenade des Anglais is close by, but the restaurant is situated in a calm side street. Instead of the common French fries, it only serves French best.
Some enthuse about the traditional coffee house atmosphere, others love the location at the Cours Saleya - and still others love the clientele. The brasserie L'F has reached a cult status long ago. One sits in the first row next to the rich and beautiful people sipping a café au lait and watching the sea. In the brasserie L'F, seeing and being seen is as important as the good food on the plate. The clientele is young, the ambience modern. You should hurry if you want a table at lunch time. Here, it's more than crowded. It almost seems as if all locals are trying to snatch a seat on the terrace or the winter garden. The home-cooked bruschetta is an insider tip! The prices are steady: an espresso costs two, a beer three euro. Another tip: Tuesdays to Sundays, there is a flower, fruit and vegetable market right in front of the door - and on Mondays, during the the summer months, you can buy antiquities on the art market.
Michel Devillers is utterly inflexible, at least when it comes to the quality of his ingredients. That's why the chef de cuisine of L'ane Rouge in Nice only works with seasonal products and selected suppliers. You have Gilbert, for example, who bets on real handicraft when it comes to fishing - making him one of the final few of his kind. Or Serge who breeds his chicken in traditional ways. The olive oil comes from Cantaron and Michel loves it for its unique flavour. Being the son of a butcher, grandson of a vegetable farmer and cousin of a restaurant owner he was confronted with gourmet sophistry early on. When he was 13 he was gravely fascinated by the salmon served at his own First Communion which let to his decision to become a cook. Every day after school he ran into the Hotel du Nord in Roye and glimpsed over the experts' shoulders. Today he's being watched in the restaurant by young boys in turn.
STAY in Nice:
The road to success is often bumpy, thought designer Michel Wilmotte and made the stone his main topic at the Beau Rivage. The result is anything but rough, with its round forms and the perfect combination between modern comfort and selected natural materials. Gentle earthen colours in the rooms, a lot of wood: All in all the hotel makes a cosy, close to nature impression, which is only topped by the airy sun beds at the private beach.No wonder that the guest list reads like the who-is-who of the arts: Matisse, Fitzgerald and Nietzsche took a drink at the bar and a stroll on the world famous Promenade des Anglais, which is only a stroke of the brush away. The guests then got even more inspired by the nearby flower market, and today the Acropolis Convention Centre gives businessmen good ideas. Doubles starting at 250,- euros a night.
Did you ever want to spend a night in the Schönbrunn castle? Then you should come to the Côte D'Azur: The Negresco offers classy bedrooms to all the Sissis and Franzls out there. Even Salvador Dali once said: "In the heart of the lights and pomp of the Bay of Angels, a star-palace: the Negresco". Since then not much has changed in the museum hotel, which, because of its inestimable artwork, was classified a historic landmark in 2003. It covers five decades of history and a few hundred decades of art history: Here a wall-sized king's portrait, there contemporary pictures by Dali, Moretti and Gruau.Golden sinks and canopy beds in the rooms, like at the times of the Sun King. On top of that an award-winning menu in the Chantecler, one of the best and - with 130,- euros per menu - most expensive restaurants in Nice. It's obvious that the guests pay for the centuries. After all you can admire art from the Renaissance up until today, finest Belle-Époque, glass domes, Baccarat chandeliers and a lot of charm from the time of formal curtsies and scrapes. Doubles starting at 257,- euros a night.
HI says Hi! and that's it. If you look for the stiff concierge with the lifted eyebrow, you are definitely at the wrong address. If you need help, you are as well. In the HI hotel the young but inexperienced personnel welcomes you in the pink light of the design hotel.The advantage: You are at eye level and don't need to deal with odd arrogant glances so common in other luxury hotels. The disadvantage: It doesn't go much beyond the casual Hi! You are expected to develop a lot of your own initiative. The champagne dispenser is self service, and you can decide between whole food and whole food breakfast buffet. You may take your food to your room or into the garden, which, with its coconut palm trees and bamboo, makes a very nice impression. Matali Crasset, a student of the unavoidable master Philippe Starck, is responsible for this design wonder and she thought up quite a storm for her first project: For example the stand-alone bathtubs, that are separated from the bed only with a screen, which simultaneously works as a video beamer. Doubles starting at 269,- euros per night.
SIGHTS in Nice:
Saint Paul de Vence is two attractions in one and thus clearly worth a day trip: The medieval mountain village is located only 25 km away from Nice. Today it counts about 3000 inhabitants, of whom many continue to earn their living with arts and handicrafts.Attraction no.1: The location, architecture, ambiance and food. Romantic mountains, fantastic view, medieval alleys and buildings, wonderful small restaurants (Tip: La Colombes d´Or, hotel, gourmet temple and Picasso museum in one), everything in the category absolutely worth seeing and experiencing.Attraction no. 2: The Fondation Maeght, one of the most unusual museums of contemporary art in the world. The treasures on exhibit exist thanks to Marguerite and Aimé Maeght, gallery owners from Paris. Their idea: Optically amalgamate the works of the artists with the building and the garden. The result is an architecturally intoxicating building, which, aside from the exhibition spaces, includes a cinema and concert hall, studios, a documentation centre and a library. All of it is surrounded by a sculpture garden. The collection with more over 12,000 pieces of art attracts more than 200,000 visitors from all over the world each year.
At the Ironman in Nice the athletes sweat and rave: The location is so beautiful that that it's almost a shame they have to hurry through it. At 6.30 a.m. it starts with the 3.8 km swimming contest in the turquoise coloured waters of the Côte d'Azur. 50 minutes later: Get on bikes and peddle 180 kilometres (in words: one hundred and eighty) up and down the Maritime Alps. If they are still able to move their legs they have to get onto the streets and run 42 kilometres. The first one to reach the Promenade des Anglais after these trials has made it, winning one of the most difficult contests of all, in one of the most beautiful settings. The best athletes reach the magical finishing line around 3 p.m., while the last iron men and women arrive around 10.30 p.m. You can't begrudge them some time to party! At the Place Masséna the Ironman Village awaits spectators and athletes with a gigantic firework display and many events for all the senses.
The Russian Cathedral, which became a listed monument in 1987, is one of the most beautiful orthodox churches in Western Europe and the most frequently visited historical building in the city.The members of the Tsarist family spent their winters in Nice since the middle of the 19th century. Its prestige was so far-reaching that the Russian government spent three years to sue for the right of ownership. It was granted ownership in 2010, because the Cathedral stands on a piece of land that Tsar Nicolas II. had provided.
SHOPPING in Nice:
La Maison de l´Ol
Pickled olives in all the variations possible, the rarest kinds of pepper, elaborate salts, finest dried vegetables, hand-made soaps, exquisite oils: In the Maison de l'Olive all senses are caressed.Above all, of course, the sense of taste, because Marie Louise Guignard and her husband Bruno do everything they can to excite it. Of course, you can also buy the best olive oil here and take it as a small present. The spices from the Provence are another great gift, since they represent the essence of Nice: Great taste!
French women are known for their seductiveness. An essential part of their secret is for sale: At Etam you find beach wear and lingerie that will drive up your sexy factor into unprecedented heights. When you think of Brigitte Bardot, or the Hollywood goddesses of the 60s, of Cannes and Saint Tropez, you think of Etam beach fashion.You'll find the most elegant bikinis and bathing suits in the small boutique of this luxury lingerie brand in Nice. And of course, there are also many fine laces for the goddesses of the night! Our tip: Leave your Bikini at home and just get a new beach outfit at Etam. You can be sure that you find something there that will turn you into a beach siren that will draw all the attention!
Sephora products are regulars in international fashion magazines and prominent among the beauty weapons of make-up artists and stars. In German-speaking countries they are not available, in Nice they are. If you want to buy Sephora products in Austria or Germany you have to arm world travelling girl friends with shopping lists or deal with the international shipping conditions of online shops.Blessed be thus the Sephora shop in Nice: Here you can get all the smart beauty helpers and make-up products that make sure that the stars on the covers of fashion magazines always look so incredibly perfect and au naturel. Of course the shop also carries all the miracle crèmes and scents that everybody raves about who has experienced them personally.