Tiny Antibes on the Cote d’Azur is dwarfed by the forest of yacht masts in the harbor. Sandwiched between star-studded Cannes on one side and sprawling Nice on the other, Antibes has a niche: marina to the super-luxurious super-yachts.
Each year Antibes hosts the owners, buyers and jealous on-lookers, of the finest imaginable yachts, as well as the crews of more than a thousand vessels. Antibes started as a secure port under the Romans, an idea built on in the 1960s when Antibes built Europe’s largest yacht marina.
Today Antibes’s harbor contains 1600 moorings and hosts one of the most magnificent collections of floating luxury palaces you will find anywhere. A super-yacht of around 50m will cost you around $20 million while mega-yachts, over 80m are priced in the hundreds of millions. Though you never know in the current economic climate you may find a flexible seller?
However all is not lost if you are not quite in the league to afford one of the mega-yachts. Some vessels are available for hire: though its still going to cost a minimum of $300,000 for the week. A cool $1 million will see you set up with a 12-passenger super-yacht. That is all inclusive floating hotel: including state-of-the-art sound system, pool, probably a separate cinema,and staff – up to 20 or so depending on your requirements.
Back on land though the old town – Vieil Antibes, is just off the harbor and well worth exploring. Through the city wall you will find pedestrian-friendly streets which offer pure French shopping, with boulangeries and patisseries and interesting boutiques.
For night life you need to head immediately south of Antibes to Juan-les-Pins which has a wide range of nightclubs, late-night restaurants. This area is also host to a top Jazz festival in July called Jazz a Juan. Though if you are going to be town then, or during the Cannes film festival, you will need to book far in advance.