May is an exciting time of year on the Cote d’Azur, and since it’s just around the corner, what better time to make plans? There’s an influx of celebrities, billionaires, charter guests and of course, superyacht crew in the area, with the infamous Cannes Film Festival happening from May 16th to 27th and the magical Monaco Formula 1 Grand Prix taking place May 28th. If you’re lucky enough to have an evening off from the yacht during these events and fancy living the jet-setter lifestyle, even if just for a night, then you’re in the right place
If you’re down to spend some of your hard-earned cash and fancy rubbing shoulders with the rich and famous, then read on for our rundown of the best celebrity hangouts, exclusive clubs, and unmissable venues on the French Riviera during this summer.
Jimmy’z has been a hot spot for the world’s Glitterati for over 40 years. Famous for its legendary parties with the world’s most renowned DJs and performers entertaining the high-class crowds, it’s a Monegasque nightlife temple. It’s the place to be seen in the Monaco nightlife scene. Usually, Jimmy’z is the afterparty. It’s the place to dance till you drop at the end of the night since it’s open till 5 am.
After its complete redesign in 2017, the club now features a lush Japanese garden and a beautiful open-air floating summer bar on top of a lagoon with outdoor tables giving a direct view of the dancefloor below. Be prepared to spend as drink prices are higher than the norm. There may also be an entrance fee, usually including a drink or two. To get in, it’s recommended to reserve a spot and ensure you’re dressed to impress, as they are very strict about that.
Twiga – Monaco
As one of the most exclusive Monaco clubs, Twiga has a lot to offer. During the day, its beautiful lounge area boasts a sea view terrace with unparalleled views of the Mediterranean, where you can sit and enjoy cocktails and shisha with your crew and friends. For dinner, the restaurant serves a blend of new Asian and Italian alongside a live show. After 1 am, the space transforms into a lively nightclub with some of the best international DJs playing mostly EDM, Techno, House and Dance music.
Visit Thursdays to Saturdays and expect to rub shoulders with footballers, F1 drivers, business people, and celebrities. Understandably, the dress code is dressy, so make sure you’re dressed to impress.
Sass Café – Monaco
Sass Café at its prime location of 11 Av. Princesse Grace is another hotspot for the rich and famous, especially during events like the Grand Prix. Start the night by enjoying an exquisite Mediterranean and Italian-style dinner, and then once dinner is over, see the space transform into a sprawling nightclub. Live musicians and entertainers merge with DJs to seamlessly blend from its earlier restaurant vibe to the club. Revellers dance the night away to the thumping sounds of Sass’s resident DJs and don’t be surprised when you bump into a famous face whilst here as celebs like Will Smith, Mike Tyson, Lady Gaga and Elton John have all been spotted & photographed here.
Buddha Bar – Monaco
Another of Monaco’s legendary nightlife venues, Buddha Bar, is both a gourmet restaurant and nightclub. Occupying the former cabaret and concert hall located in the heart of Monte Carlo, Buddha Bar transports its guests to the far east with its luxurious Asian-inspired décor and its Eastern fusion restaurant menu. Upstairs dinners can experience the mouth-watering flavours of Japan, Thailand, China, and South-East Asia, with exciting dishes such as roasted black cod with miso and yuzu sauce, Peking-style duck with exotic fruits, and Wagyu Rib Eye steak in Chimikucho sauce.
After dinner, the party begins with the legendary DJ Papa overlooking the lounge spinning his subtle blend of lounge, world music, and electro beats. Enjoy a signature cocktail in the ground floor Lounge Bar, or head out onto one of the two open-air terraces and enjoy the sweet summer night.
Le Bar Americain – Monaco
Transport yourself to a time of class and sophistication and live out your wildest Great Gatsby fantasies at Le Bar Americain. Found inside the Hôtel de Paris, its evening entertainment consists of live jazz music, great cocktails, and a lively atmosphere. The 1920s style décor, with its shiny wood, leather armchairs, stylish lighting, and art deco aesthetics, exude glamour and sophistication, giving you a feel for life in a more glamourous era.
It’s the perfect place to enjoy a cocktail after dinner before heading to the club. Try their signature cocktail, La Roseraie, rose-infused vodka with rhubarb syrup, egg white, cranberry juice, lemon juice, and champagne. The dress code can be pretty strict. Think cocktail or evening dresses for the ladies and shirts and jackets for men.
La Guerite – Cannes – Île Sainte-Marguerite
Nestled on the island of Île Sainte-Marguerite with a magnificent view of the bay of Cannes, La Guerite is the perfect place to escape the crowds and enjoy the island’s pleasures. As an elegant beach club and world-class atmospheric restaurant, La Guerite never fails to draw the elite crowds. Rub shoulders with celebrities such as the likes of Elton John, The Beckhams, Beyonce, Jay Z, and Leonardo DiCaprio as you dine on fresh Mediterranean cuisine cooked by Greek chef Yiannis Kioroglou. End the afternoon with live music, dancing, and bottles of sparkling champagne.
The rich and famous arrive by tender from their yacht anchored nearby, but for those without such means, there are other ways of arriving at La Guerite. The easiest way is to take the round shuttle, which picks you up in Cannes and drops you off at the restaurant’s pontoon and back again for around €20pp. Alternatively, the main ferries visiting the islands usually run every hour or so from the Cannes ferry terminal.
Baoli – Cannes
Baoli has recently become the go-to hotspot in Cannes for A-listers looking to dine, drink, and dance the night away. Located at Port Canto, the double Maitre-award-winning restaurant serves a fusion of Mediterranean and Asian cuisine. Its panoramic rooftop terrace, Cloud 9, invites you to sip a cocktail as the sun sets over the bay of Cannes before heading to Baoli Club after midnight for a wild night where the DJs will keep you dancing till dawn.
Palm Club – Cannes
Palm Club, formally known as Gotha, is a glamourous club which boasts regular performances from some of the world’s biggest stars, from hip-hop stars to dance DJs. With such big names performing, it’s pretty common to spot Hollywood’s glitterati dancing on one of the VIP tables. As this year’s opening night coincides with the first night of the Film Festival, you can be sure they have some big acts planned. Keep an eye on their socials for all the info on this summer’s big headliners.
We hope you get the chance to ditch the uniform and head out for a night of glamorous fun in the south of France at least once this season. We’d love to hear about your experiences in any of our recommended venues or if you have any of your own to add to the list get in touch at [email protected] or find us on socials. If you’re looking for more destination guides like this one, visit our FunAir Blog and if you’re stuck in the Caribbean for the winter season, we’ve got you covered with our guide to the most Unique Getaways for Yacht Crew in the Caribbean.