EAT in Nice:
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.
Nice Garden Hotel
In the middle of the busy city, in the middle of boutiques, pedestrian zone and 200 meters away from the beach, in the middle of the old town. What can you expect? We take a look behind the heavy iron gates of the townhouse from the 19th century and marvel: Absolute peace! A wild garden with plants that are climbing up the facade. Flowers that can compete with any English garden. An orange tree that branches out to the breakfast table and makes you want to grab your fruit plate.And nine rooms with a view onto the green oasis. Some even have elegant swing doors leading outside. Never come in the winter here, or you would certainly miss something! For example a few idle hours on the wooden benches with a good book in the hand. If you don't care about green stuff, you can stare at the high ceilings, admire the stucco at the walls or just fall asleep with the gentle colours around you. Doubles starting at 65 euros a night.
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.
SIGHTS in Nice:
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.
To experience Nice by car is a challenge in itself. It's more than certain that there will be major traffic jams on the main connections. Thus it's best to leave the city every now and then: for example for the beach in Cagnes sur Mer which is only a few kilometres away. What you'll find there is a turquoise blue sea and hip venues along the Promenade de la Plage. Ideally you spend the whole day at Le Cigalon and begin with a giant tuna salad for lunch - try to avoid the Beef Tartar in extreme heat! Afterwards you make yourself comfortable for a couple of hours on the restaurant's beach chairs and enjoy the infrastructural advantages that's missing in the hidden beach bays. Good souls will come and bring you refreshing drinks while an oversized buddha head watches over the goings-on. Then it's time to get back on the wooden veranda again where you'll be served exotic specialities - which matches the lounge music and the Asian sculpture.
Directly by the beach promenade in Nice, the Promenade des Anglais, you find the hip High Club with club boutique. It's the party hub for those who demand for exclusiveness! The motto: to see and to be seen. Directly in the High Club there's also the shrouded Club 47. Here the jet set of Nice throw their parties. From the turntables you hear electronic music by the hottest DJs like the French Martin Solveig who is currently celebrated by the scene. Other known DJs who have been standing behind the turntables include Benny Benassi, Bob Sinclar or Dennis Ferrer.
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.
STAY in Nice:
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.
Le Saint Paul
And once again Saint-Paul-de-Vence, because it was so beautiful: The medieval town has quite a few things to offer, especially galleries for the numerous artists that have settled in the tight alleys.The Le Saint Paul is located in one of those alleys with the old cobblestone and the flowerpots, in a house from the 16th century that is just as romantic inside as it is outside: Small rooms full of French country house style par excellence, plus an open fireplace, silk fabrics and canopy beds. Here life is not art, but pure luxury.On the cosy terrace they serve Provencal cuisine in a personal atmosphere, the tea is served in front of the crackling fire, and you can read a good book or have an interesting conversation. If you still prefer to go out, you can go to the small art galleries in the perhaps most beautiful place in Provence. Doubles starting at 250,- euros per night.
A stylish manor for everyone who can afford it: The mixed guests not only come for shopping and meeting, but also for splashing around. In fact, the pool might be the main attraction. The indoor/outdoor pool has Greek mosaics in the water, a Buddhist bar and an Asian restaurant right near the water - it doesn't get more international than that. And the view onto the sea tops it all.If you also want to enjoy that from your rooms, you should absolutely book one in the upper floors: The massive columns of the Art Deco facade often inhibit the view to the blue. Still, it doesn't really matter, since the furnishing of the rooms make up for a lot: Saffron, ochre, and blue make you feel like cosy. The room service is great, and you have W-Lan and beauty products from Annick Goutal. Doubles starting at 290,- euros a night.