Cannes is one of the busiest, liveliest, and most beautiful towns on the French Riviera. Cannes is always hosting some sort of conference or congress. Seriously, this town is non-stop with events. However, this time of year it’s nice to shine a light on the town of congresses that doesn’t reflect business (at least not directly). We were curious to see what this town famous for MIPIM and MAPIC transforms into during Christmas season. We’re happy to present what a Cannes Christmas looks like to all of you Cannes event-goers!
Provence as a region is distinct from France in more ways than one. It has a different language (Occitan, Provençal or Languedoc), some of the best wine in all of France due to its average 2900 hours of sunlight yearly, and is heavily influenced architecturally by ancient Roman influence. Provence also has its own Christmas traditions, like live nativity plays (called pastorales), gorgeous Christmas markets, and even sailing races! The festivals officially start on December 4th and last until February 2nd!
Traditionally there is a large Christmas Eve dinner before attending the special Christmas Eve mass. The evening is finished by eating 13 desserts (don’t you wish you were French?) that represent the 12 disciples and Jesus. The desserts range from dried figs, almonds, dates, walnuts, raisins (sounds healthy) nougat, and fougasse.
A Cannes Christmas is as magical as it sounds. The plaza Des Allees turns into a little Christmas village, complete with magical lights, Christmas carols, a 400m2 ice skating right in front of the Grand Cafe and stalls to buy artisanal gifts. Of course, there is wine, it’s France. This year according to Cannes Tourist Information, there is a special exhibition of a Private Collection from Albert II of Monaco.
-On the 21st, there will be the annual Christmas concert from the Cannes Orchestra at the famous Notre Dame de Bonne Esperance in the Suquet.
-On December 23d “Père Noël” arrives at Cannes and there is a party to celebrate his arrival.
-The famous shopping street Rue d’Antibes converts into a pedestrian-only street on Sunday’s, and this Sunday, December 24th they will have their annual Christmas parade starting at 3pm.
In essence, Cannes magically turns into a French winter wonderland filled with sweets, mulled wine, parades, and Christmas cheer. Even though the hustle and bustle never stops in this French Riviera village, Cannes Christmas is all about tradition and celebrating with friends and family.
Although Akommo doesn’t celebrate in France, our team is combining traditions from our international team. See our behind the scenes, as well as the final result of our annual Christmas photo! Leave a comment below about your office holiday celebrations, spread the cheer, and have a good laugh at our expense.
Merry Christmas, Feliz Navidad, Joyeux Noël, Bon Nadal, to all, and to all a good night!
-The Akommo Team