Nestled in La Napoule bay on the eastern shores of the Cote d’Azur is Cannes. Famous for its annual international film festival, mild Mediterranean climate and spectacular situation, Cannes is the glittering jewel in the crown of the French Riviera – an extremely popular region for overseas property investors keen to get a piece of the real estate action and imbibe the jetset lifestyle that this area of France epitomises.
This part of southern France truly embodies luxurious living, with its casinos, yacht-filled harbours, fine hotels, stylish boutiques and upmarket restaurants, making it an extremely desirable location in which to own a second home or investment property.
A host of international regattas and festivals take place in Cannes. These not only attract the crème de la crème of society from around the world, but also create a stable and lucrative rental market for upscale properties, especially between the months of May and October when hotels are usually over-subscribed.
Unlike the pebbled shorelines of its neighbours, Cannes is in the unique position of possessing sandy beaches, making it prime beach holiday territory. Its well-known tree-lined promenade, the Croisette, is excellent for walking, shopping and people-spotting. Indeed, tourism and conventions are Cannes’ main source of income, along with a burgeoning technology and research sector, thanks to the nearby Sophia Antipolis industrial park – the local equivalent of America’s Silicon Valley.
Thanks to its excellent costal position, glamorous inhabitants, year-round good weather and constant stream of visitors, the price of property for sale in Cannes remains higher than the French national average, with a buoyant rental and resale market, despite the worldwide economic downturn. Centrally-located property in Cannes, from seafront pied-à-terres to luxury villas in the elegant tree-lined suburbs, continue to sell for a premium.
However, there is also more affordable housing stock available within the surrounding area, including homes in several new residential developments – extremely popular with the French due to their high building standards, energy efficiency, minimal maintenance requirements and excellent market value. In 2010, price performance for newbuilds outstripped those of ‘older’ properties by 1.7% according to the Indice PAP*.
With a permanent population numbering approximately 70,400, the town is extremely well-serviced in terms of local amenities. Transport links are good, with an international airport in nearby Nice, as well as a local train station with high-speed rail (TGV) connections in Marseilles. In addition to fine dining and sun worshipping, residents also enjoy access to museums and art galleries, boating trips, spa visits, a range of water sports, horseback riding, as well as a number of first-rate golfing greens.