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August 2010

Kitesurf Sensations: European Cup in Fréjus

KiteSurfFlag This weekend (May 28, 29, 30), the bay of Fréjus, St Ayguyf and St Raphael on the French Riviera is going to lighten up with hundreds of colorful wings. They'll zip, they'll tack, they'll zoom across the waters during the Coupe d'Europe de KiteSurf.

It's the third such kitesurf event organized in Fréjus. This year, it's also the third leg in the French national long distance kitesurf championship (AlpEnergie par GDF SUEZ Kite Tour).

KiteSurfFrejus2009The organizers expect around 80 participants, with lots more admiring the race on the St Aygulf beach.

The sun plans to shine so if you're around, drop by the beach. It's going to be gorgeous.


Cannes Film Festival 2010: A Regal in Razzmatazz


Today, May 12 marks the launch of the 63rd annual Cannes Film Festival.

To local residents, it's a mildly amusing parade of movie stars on the Croisette, rolling of red carpets on the Palais des Festivals and a swelling of the town as it turns into a luxurious beehive.

Yet to most, it remains the greatest film fest extravaganza.

This year promises to be eventful.

It has barely started and Italy's culture minister has already refused to attend after finding out that the film "Draquila" made it on the festival's list of films. Draquila portrays Italy's prime minister as he reacts to his country's serious earthquake in April 2009 that killed over 300. The film shows how many folks remain homeless a year after the quake, thereby criticizing Italy's prime minister.

The weather last week also sent Cannes topsy-turvy. Strong winds left the Croisette a little shattered.

But all is calm now, I just tested a couple of little food kiosques by the sea - they were in dire shape with waves rolling over them last week but you wouldn't know it now. They make great paninis and pan bagnats sandwiches!  And this afternoon, the sun is out with a vengeance.

Cannes Film Festival 2010 runs until May 23.


Cap Ferrat: Passable Bliss


The current nasty weather on the French Riviera has us dreaming of warmer days...

And the next weekend when the sun is out, I plan on visiting the inappropriately named Plage de Passable on the St Jean Cap Ferrat peninsula.

No need to spend a fortune here to enjoy a picture-perfect view of Villefranche-sur-Mer, soak in the sun on a plush lounge chair. I'm going to just sip on a refreshing drink and enjoy the beach. It's a private beach with a single restaurant-bar on the beach. The water is turquoise blue. Kids love it for its lagoon feel and the freedom of splashing at will while grown-ups relax. Only down-side are the little pebbles, but horizontal on your transat chair, you quickly forget.

Soleil, where are you?

Eurofestival rolls into Port-Grimaud

Starting tomorrow, Thursday May 6th 2010, and running for four days, thousands of Harley Davidsons will roar on down the coastal road by Sainte-Maxime and Grimaud in South-Eastern France to gather at Port-Grimaud's Prairie de la Mer campground.

Why? It's the famous annual HOG (Harley Owners Group) Eurofest meeting.

Every night from around 9PM, the Port-Grimaud "rock beach" will feature a rock'n roll band to dance the night away. Some of the bands planned: The Road Kings and Katy Shotter on Thursday, May 6; Johnny Gallagher and Mods Band on Friday, May 7; 4 Bills and a Ben and Gotthard on Saturday.
Tickets aren't cheap; they're 50€ for HOG members and 70€ for non-members for the three days

Club_Canopy Favorite hang-out? The restaurant "Le Sun" at Prairie de la Mer (phone: 04 94 56 24 53), and the discotheque "Canopy" (Phone: 06 01 05 16 77) that are also sure to fill up with party goers.

Other than rock-and-roll, the French Riviera village of Grimaud hosts a "Custom Bike Show" that starts at 1PM on Friday, May 7.

And the whole event culminates on Sunday morning with a parade of Harleys riding down the coast in great fanfare. Quite impressive, unless you're driving a car.

Which reminds me: by all means, if you're not on a Harley, use your feet or public transport if visiting this weekend. The roads around Sainte-Maxime, Port-Grimaud, Grimaud will be grid-locked all weekend long.