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Cannes Do Tips for enjoying yourself at the Cannes Film Festival
Article and Photo’s By Susan Helfrich

Star-Studded, Glamorous, Yacht crammed, and Sexy is what Cannes in the South of France offers, packing in celebrities and flaunting some of the most exclusive beaches parties along the French Riviera. It’s not just for the jet set and other travelers who like their $100 night cap with a side of caviar, you too can enjoy one of the most expensive places in the French Riviera, with a few of the tips below.

Getting there is part of the Euro happy journey: from Nice, the closest international airport, a cab will cost around $90 to 110 Euro (approx. $160.00 USD) each way, unless you opt for the private helicopter ride for 935 Euro. Or when in France, do as the French… and rent a Ferrari for 2400 Euro (3500.00 USD) for 1 to 3 days plus 25% insurance and cost of miles.

Cannes Do Tip for less… take the airport bus shuttle, a 45 minute ride for 17 Euro each way, (approx. $25.00 USD).

For 12 days in May, you can party like a “rock star” as Cannes is transformed from a quiet seaside resort in the Mediterranean into a hub for the international film industry.
A trip to Cannes during the Festival is a whirlwind of premieres, and late night partying all on the famed La Croisette. People watching is a must as anywhere you look, flash bulbs pop, trying to capture scantily clad starlets, famed filmmakers and of the moment socialites. You will be photographed so dress accordingly.

Each year, an endlessy growing group of people head to the South of France, to gather and meet, dine and wine, party and have fun. To host the more than 10,000 badged film industry people, the city of Cannes is transformed. They literally push the walls backwards towards the sea building tented restaurants and night clubs on to the beach to host everyone.

Even snow was added one year to promote the Christmas Carol film which is interesting when it’s 85 degrees and full of palm trees.

Cannes is not always that way. Once the festival is over the crowded la Croisette becomes an empty boulevard as do the hotels and the tents on the beaches are dismantled and put away until next year.

WHO were you hoping to meet in Cannes this year?
Everyone! I was fortunate enough to spend time with Lenny Kravitz after the premier of his film, Precious and Will I AM from the Black eyed Peas and enjoy the evening on P Diddy’s yacht.

WHAT did you shop for? I did lots of window shopping… Channel, Dior, LV, and many other expensive designer stores line the Croisette. It’s fabulous to see the upcoming styles. I did see a stylish cream colored python leather jacket, but the 4950 Euro price tag ($7300.00 USD) kept me away.

Cannes Do Tip for less… We did find an outlet… Show room femme (women) 18 Boulevard de la republique,   Tel 04 93 39 38 92 06 09 52 22 00  – Show room home (men), 1 etage, 37 rue de antibes

WHEN do you usually go to bed on a typical night during the festival?
Too late, but I have to admit it was earlier than last year.

WHERE are your favorite spots in Cannes to dine? Party?
Casanova on Rue d Antibes, on yachts and Villa’s of new friends met at earlier parties and events.

Dinner’s at Pierrotte on the Promenade de La Pantiero and small outdoor/indoor restaurants in the old city of Le Suquet.

Cannes Do Tip for finding the parties: After the Red Carpet films, (7:30 or 10:30 pm showings) there are many nightly parties. To find them walk down the La Croisette stripe and visit: The terrace at the Grand hotel, the outdoor bar at the Carlton and the Martinez. You can dance the night away at Niki Beach in the large cabana with dance floor set up on the beach (and torn down once the festival is over). Drinks begin at 20 Euro each (approximately $30.00 USD). Every year is different, one year Club VIP hosted an indoor/outdoor dance party featuring WIL I AM from the Black Eyed Peas, as the guest DJ. Inside the VIP club, the two tiered dance floor slowly turned in a 360 degree circle watching all of the beautiful people while dancing to the hottest music on the Riviera. Outside under the stars you were entertained by a Lion with his tamer, a camel, and a white horse with black poke a dots.

Hotel Du Cap is also a favorite hot spot, approx. 30 minutes away from Cannes, it hosts the famous AMFAR fund raiser, hosted this year by Sharon Stone and Bill Clinton. Donation to attend… $5,000.00 a person. Cannes Do Tip: Sit in the bar and watch as the beautiful people enter for the event.

HOW to enjoy the festival? Cannes Do Tips for less

Accommodations: Reserve an apartment with kitchenette on la Croisette overlooking the Med. The small markets are filled with fabulous foods to enjoy at a third of the price of dining out.

Making Calls: Cell Phone rates are outrageous! My discount plan was $1.15 per minute, however I found a way to make international calls for .10 cents a minute. Purchase a phone at Wal-Mart for $39.99 and 1000 minutes costs $100.00, that’s right! .10 cents USD a minute for international calls!

Calling from your computer on SKYPE is free, but there are times when you are out and about and want to use your cell phone and at .10 cents a minute you won’t hesitate.

Pack: Get red carpet ready with a tired cocktail dress, or flowing silk gown, bow booties and a spritz of French perfume.

Day: Colorful long flowing cotton dresses graced the Croisette, designer sun glasses, or hat to avoid the scorching sun. Simple sandals take you from day to night in this anything goes town.

Want more Cannes Do Tips…Contact me, Susan and I’ll personally give you all of the details.