5 OF THE BEST – ROOFTOP ESCAPES IN NICE

Les 5 meilleures bars sur les toits à Nice! The 5 best rooftops in Nice!

While you are hard at work or busy basking in the sun during the day, come sunset, there is definitely no better place to spend your evening than a nice rooftop terrace!

The rooftop season is most surely upon us, so why not treat yourself to some jaw-dropping views while sipping a cocktail, sharing a bite with friends and listening to some music.

To help you make up the most of your summer evenings in Nice, here is our pick of our 5 favourite rooftops in the city.

Hôtel Aston La Scala : the Best View in Town

Located just 5 minutes away from the beach and the promenade des Anglais, this four-star hotel is nothing short of an institution in Nice, which its amazing 360 degree panoramic view of the city, from the Colline du Château and its illuminated waterfall to the Old Town and Promenade du Paillon.

Its rooftop is open from June to September, allowing you to enjoy poolside cocktails during the warm summer days, while its swanky terrace bar is open all year round.

aston-terrasse

For a romantic evening at sunset or a lazy afternoon by the pool, this is definitely the place to be! And if you love music, you will enjoy the live music on Thursdays and the DJ nights on Saturdays.

For a similar experience, minus the pool, the nearby Boscolo hotel is also always a safe bet, thanks to its great atmosphere, its incredible views over the Jardins Albert Ier and the Baie des Anges, and its delicious tapas platters and cocktails.

Hôtel Aston La Scala
12, avenue Felix Faure
06000 Nice

Tel: +33 (0)4 92 17 53 00

Boscolo Hotel, B4 Park Nice
12, avenue de Verdun
06000 Nice

Tel: +33 (0)4 93 16 75 92

Le Méridien : Fun under the stars!

As if its location right on the Promenade des Anglais, its beautiful swimming pool and its signature cocktails were not enough, the Méridien Nice is putting on a show this summer with the screening of four iconic movies every Wednesday evening: Goldeneye, Mamma Mia!, Et Dieu créa la femme, and Plein Soleil, which were all shot in the Mediterranean region.

A good excuse to relax under the stars and sip a Lady in Red (a mixture of cranberry juice, jasmin syrup, lemonade, and fresh mint leaves) or an Indigo Splash (a mixture of Bacardi Gold Rum, Blue Curaçao, vanilla liqueur, lime juice, cane sugar syrup).

Le Méridien Nice
1, Promenade des Anglais
06046 Nice

Tel: +33 (0)4 97 03 44 44

Le Radisson Blu : Chill out by the sea

Looking for a sundowner after a day on the beach? Look no further than the Radisson Blu on the Promenade des Anglais. Aside from a magical view over both the blue waters and the nearby mountains, the huge 700 square metre roof terrace, open all year round, boasts a swimming pool and comfortable lounge furniture.

The dining area is not bad either, with a restaurant/bar that offers a Mediterranean cuisine of the highest quality and mouthwatering cocktails.

Away from all the hustle and bustle of the Old Town, there is no better spot to have a pre-dinner aperitif and soak up the late sun in a chilled atmosphere.

Le Radisson Blu
223, Promenade des Anglais
06000 Nice

Tel: +33 (0)4 97 17 71 77

Splendid Hotel & Spa : A lounge over the roofs

With its Fitness Centre, sauna, solar-heated swimming pool, Jacuzzi and bar with panoramic views of the city, the 8th floor of the Splendid Hotel is a little paradise unto itself.

First opened in 1883 for the winter season to target British tourists, the hotel counted among its first clients the King of Wurtemberg whose coat of arms has been transformed into the Splendid’s present logo.

splendid-rooftop

Ideally located on Boulevard Victor Hugo, it is a peaceful location that also knows how to have fun, transforming itself into an outdoor lounge overlooking the roofs of the city, with great food, delicious drinks, and music throughout the summer.

Splendid Hotel & Spa
50, boulevard Victor Hugo
06000 Nice

Tel: +33 (0)4 93 87 02 46

The Monsigny Hotel: The New Kid in Town

For the last few years, the Libération district has been getting trendier by the minute, so it is no surprise it now also has its own rooftop terrace that will give the most famous ones on the Promenade des Anglais a run for their money.

Located on the 7th floor of the hotel, the Monsigny rooftop is probably still one of Nice’s best-kept secrets. Overlooking the Malaussena pedestrian area and the roofs of the city, it offers everything you need to spend a perfect afternoon in the sun, or a relaxed evening with friends. The Jacuzzi is available to all (for just 5€ for hotel clients and 10€ for guests) and the deckchairs are welcoming. With unobtrusive music playing in the background, the selection of tapas and cocktails is as delicious as it is affordable.

monsigny-rooftop

Less touristy maybe, the Monsigny has nonetheless a more authentic feel that most of its counterparts.

The Hotel Monsigny
17, avenue Malaussena, 
06000 Nice

Tel: +33 (0)4 93 88 27 35

All photos courtesy each hotel

 

PUSHING BOUNDARIES WITH PHILIPPE PASQUA IN MONACO

Dernier article en date pour Riviera buzz. Latest article to date for Riviera Buzz.

Local artist and sculptor Philippe Pasqua takes centre-stage in the Musée Océanographique in Monaco this summer with a monumental exhibition.

philippe-pasqua-banner

For the past few years, the Oceanographic Museum in Monaco has been inviting numerous renowned contemporary creators, from Damien Hirst and Huang Yong Ping to Mark Dion and Marc Quinn, to establish a welcome dialogue between poetry and environmental commitment.

This summer is proving to be no different with the display of 12 gigantic custom-made works and sculptures by Grasse-born artist, Philippe Pasqua.

Entitled “Borderline”, this truly monumental exhibition consists of 12 monographic pieces, 7 of which have never been shown in public before, standing alongside the museum’s permanent collection on the square in front of the building and the panoramic terrace perched on the cliff.

Inspired by artists such as Francis Bacon as well as voodoo and fetishes, Pasqua thrives on provoking emotions rather than producing aesthetically pleasing pieces. His images are violent and powerful, always flirting with the notion of limits. They are made with materials that symbolize solidity and strength, such as bronze and onyx, but also eternity and purity, such as marble and silver, to create an œuvre as disturbing as it is fascinating.

Pasqua questions, raises concerns and unsettles his audience, but never leaves them unmoved”, explains Robert Calcagno, the Museum’s director, noting that the artist’s “work provides the ideal trigger for raising awareness about marine and terrestrial life”.

This philosophy is probably best summarized in the work ‘Wheel of Time’, which impresses not only with its dimensions (weighing in at 7 tons, with a diameter of 7 metres and a height of 6 metres), but also by its multiple components (Tyrannosaurus Rex carcasses, rats, an electric chair, a parasol…), representing a time that seems to have stopped.

 

My commitment to protecting the environment is partly tied to my personal journey. As a father of three, I am forced to think of my children and of their future and to be proactive through my art,” Pasqua says of his work. “It seems that we now have reached a breaking point and this fear of rupture was a source of inspiration for the title of the exhibition, Borderline”.

The exhibition, Borderline, runs until the 30th of September; 2017 at the Oceanographic Museum in Monaco. The museum is open every day from 9:30 am to 8 pm until the end of August and from 10 am to 7 pm in September. Tickets cost 11 € for adults, 7 € for teenagers aged 13 to 18 and for students with an ID card, and 5 € for children aged 4 to 12.

CONTACT DETAILS
Musée Océanographique
ave. St-Martin
MC 98000 Monaco

Tel : + 377 93 15 36 00

 

Image courtesy Musée Océanographique

FROM RUSSIA WITH LOVE

Bons baisers de Russie! From Russia with love!

When it comes to must-see destinations, one name that always comes to mind is that of beautiful Saint Petersburg.

SB-winter-palace

Nicknamed the Venice of the North or the Paris of the East (depending on your preference), the city, established by Peter the Great in 1703 to replace Moscow as the Tsarist capital, is considered one of the most beautiful cities in the world, if not the most beautiful.

With its baroque and classical palaces, its numerous canals and bridges, its world-class museums and colourful churches, it is a spellbinding spot worth visiting any time of year. One reason alone to discover the city is the Winter Palace, the former state residence of the Russian emperors and now home to The Hermitage. Famous for its green facade, grandiose staircases and gilded state rooms,  it is well worth the detour. Its collection of more than 3 million works of art and artefact, including gems such as Leonard da Vinci’s Madonna, Caravaggio’s The Lute Player, Claude Monet’s Woman in a Garden, Pablo Picasso’s Absinthe Drinker, and Henri Matisse’s The Dance, could keep you busy for days, maybe even weeks.

The Hermitage is just one among many recommended stops. The nearby Russian Museum, for instance, pays tribute to local artists past and present, while the new Fabergé Museum in the Stuvalov Palace displays more than 4,000 pieces of art, including a dozen or so of the famous Easter Eggs made for the imperial family by legendary Carl Fabergé. They are each individually designed with diamonds, gold, rhinestones and silver, and open up to reveal a surprise within.

sb-peter-and-paul-fortress

Across the Neva, the Peter and Paul Fortress with its imposing bell tower, is one of the main symbols of the city. A former prison for high-ranking or political opponents, it is now the burial vault of the Romanovs. However, the most impressive religious landmarks may just be the Church of the Savior on the Spilled Blood that dominates Saint Petersburg with its whimsical onion domes. Built on the very spot where Emperor Alexander II was assassinated, it is decorated with incredibly detailed mosaics created by the most important Russian artists of the time.

Cruising the city’s canals is always a pleasant experience, except maybe when the temperatures drop below zero, which can happen even in May, but strolling down Nevsky Prospekt, Saint Petersburg’s main avenue, is probably the best way to appreciate the sumptuous architecture. And if one wants to venture out into the countryside, Peterhof, the Romanov’s answer to Versailles, proves to be a fascinating place with its palace, Grand Cascade, dozens of water-spouting gilded statues, and royal gardens.

SB-peterhof-statues

Centuries after Tchaikovsky and Tolstoy, Saint Petersburg definitely remains Russia’s most progressive metropolis and a cultural hub with a European vibe. Meanwhile, just four hours away by train, Moscow is by contrast as Russian as can be.

Welcome to Москва́

Full of contradictions, the political and economic capital is a huge city filled with historical landmarks standing alongside modern architecture, marked both by the Tsarist regime and its many decades under communist rule, at the same time unruly and business-driven. It certainly will not leave you feeling indifferent!

Moscou-red-square

Any visit should of course start with the (in)famous Red Square. Located right in the heart of the city on the site of the old market place, it has been the focal point over the years for military parades, concerts, or just hanging out with friends. Originally meaning beautiful in old Russian, the place is now only referred as the Red Square, despite not being a square…or red!

Its most notable site is, without doubt, St. Basil’s Cathedral, the ultimate architectural symbol of Russia which, with its colourful cupolas, domes and towers, seems straight out of a fairy tale.

Moscou-basils

Another church on the square, that of the Cathedral of Our Lady of Kazan is worth a visit, just for the golden icon above the door. Not far from there, the State Historical Museum built during the 19th century, holds interesting exhibitions year-round, while the ceiling of its parade hall has the family tree of Russian tsars painted on it.

History buffs will probably want to stop by the Mausoleum where Lenin is frozen for eternity, but shopping addicts may just prefer to spend some time in the impressive GUM Department store to check some of the 200 upscale boutiques and have lunch at the Soviet-style cantine Stolovaya N10.

Another not-to-be-missed landmark is, of course, the Kremlin, the grandiose fortress that over its 800 year history has successively been the residence of the tsars, the communist leaders, and now the President. A self-contained village within the city, it includes the Presidential Palace along with many beautiful cathedrals, the Tsar Bell (the Broken Bell), the Tsar Cannon, a spacious garden, as well as the wonderful Kremlin’s Armoury museum and its vast collection of State Regalia, coronation dresses, carriages, Russian gold and silver artwork, Fabergé eggs, and ambassadorial gifts from all over the world.

moscow-metro

There is a wealth of fascinating buildings in Moscow, from the Bolshoi Theatre to the old headquarters of the KGB, but it may be underground that the city is at its most beautiful. Opened in May, the city’s metro is indeed a real art museum with its chandeliers, marble, mosaics and statutes that will blow you away.

Aeroflot offers direct flights from Nice to Moscow on a daily basis, and every day but Tuesday to Saint Petersburg.

SIMONE VEIL PASSES AGED 89

«Puisse son exemple inspirer longtemps nos compatriotes, qui y trouveront le meilleur de la France» – Emmanuel Macron . “ May her example inspire our fellow citizens, as the best of what France can achieve” – Emmanuel Macron.

Simone Weil

Nice-born political icon and Auschwitz survivor, Simone Veil, most definitely represented “the best of France” throughout her life.

Very few politicians can command support and admiration across the political spectrum. This, however, was the case with Simone Veil, France’s universally loved and respected former health minister who has just passed away at age 89.

Expressing his condolences, French President Emmanuel Macron tweeted: “May her example inspire our fellow citizens, as the best of what France can achieve”, while his predecessor Francois Hollande said she “embodied dignity, courage and moral rectitude.”

Veil’s life and political career were admirable in many ways. In her autobiography, A Life, which was released in France in 2008 and the following year in the UK, she recounted all aspects of this extraordinary destiny that saw her successively become a survivor of Auschwitz and Bergen-Belsen, a mother of three boys, a health minister, an abortion pioneer, the first president of the directly elected European Parliament, and a member of France’s Constitutional Council, before being enthroned in 2010 as one of the French immortals, becoming only the sixth woman in 375 years to join the Académie Française (the French Academy).

Simone weil-2

Veil’s nomination to the prestigious French Academy which is the organization that regulates the French language and whose members are nicknamed “eternals” after the inscription on the seal of the academy “to immortality”, was a beautiful conclusion to a remarkable life.

Born Simone Jacob in Nice, she was arrested in the streets of her hometown on 29th March 1944, the day after taking her baccalaureat examinations and nearly two months before D-Day, and was sent to Auschwitz with most of her family. She and a sister survived, but her father, mother and brother never came back from the death camps.

Upon her return to France, Veil married another secular French Jew, Antoine Veil, a diplomat, civil servant and senior aviation executive, and went on to become a judge. In 1974, she became Minister for Health (1974 – 1979) under President Giscard d’Estaing, where she successively fought to legalize abortion.

She later served as the first President of the European Parliament from 1979 to 1982 before returning to domestic government as Minister for Social Affairs, in Jacques Chirac’s government from 1993 to 1995. Three years later, Simone Veil was appointed to the Constitutional Council, an institution principally tasked with ensuring the constitutionality of French law. She also presided over the Foundation for the Memory of Shoah and provided multiple patronages all throughout the country.

simone-veil

No less than three French presidents, Nicolas Sarkozy, Jacques Chirac and Valéry Giscard d’Estaing, all political allies, attended her induction ceremony to the Académie Française, which was broadcast live on French television.

Wearing a green uniform designed by Karl Lagerfeld and a sword engraved with her Auschwitz camp number, 78651, which was still tattooed on her wrist, Weil declared in her inaugural speech: ” I think of my mother every day, two-thirds of a century after she died in the hell of the Bergen-Belsen camp,” (…) “And it is also my father, who was deported and died in the Baltic countries, who is with me here.”