For the better part of the past decade I’ve visited Cannes on an annual basis save missing a year to Covid and another to a medical issue.
My trips are typically in the beginning of December for a conference, although once for the Film Festival, which takes place in May.
The hotels harken back to the grandeur of early-to-mid last century, although the more modern JW Marriott is probably my favorite.
The beach clubs are what you would imagine life in the south of France should be. If you can swing it, the suites are beyond spectacular, and well worth the euros. The best suites of Cannes are the subject of this week’s feature story, so read on s’il vous plaît.
1. Hôtel Martinez
Forbes Travel Guide writes, “Designer Pierre-Yves Rochon updated the spacious rooms with the blue, yellow, and white hues just outside and a modern art deco feel. All have large windows providing glimpses of the city, its rolling hills, or the Mediterranean. La Palme d’Or just might be the pièce de resistance at the Martinez — it’s also a favorite among stars like Leonardo DiCaprio and Brad Pitt. Martinez Bar is an ideal place to start the evening, with live music and barmen whipping up craft cocktails with showman-like skill. Open seasonally, La Plage du Martinez serves fresh-pressed juices, cocktails, local fish, and international cuisine, but the beach club really comes to life at nightfall with fireworks and a DJ and concerts on weekends.”
The Telegraph adds, “Film stars, royalty and tourists on a summer jaunt: everyone loves the Martinez’ Art Deco glamour. This beachfront hotel is back on top form after a makeover by interior-design genius Pierre-Yves Rochon. Not only does it boast the only two-star Michelin restaurant in town, but there’s a beach club and a spa too…The concierge team seek to please: they’ll even prepare diet-specific pet food and walk your dog. It’s all change for the hotel facilities. The pool has been replaced by a landscaped garden. Instead, you can swim at the hotel’s new private beach that’s a two-minute walk away. There’s a sauna and a well-equipped gym, while the sumptuous spa uses the Swiss brand, L Raphael.”
On the Seventh Floor, the 13,454-sq.ft. Penthouse Apartments each include expansive 5,000-sq.ft. panoramic terraces with views of the Bay of Cannes and La Croisette. One is dedicated to famous French actress Isabelle Huppert, famous French actress and the other to Thierry Frémaux, General Delegate of the Cannes Film Festival. Each have two bedrooms with the same layout, but different décor.
Suite des Oliviers
This 1,400-sq.ft. one-bedroom suite offers an additional 2,700-sq.ft. terrace in addition to a separate living room and dining room.
More suites at Hotel Martinez Cannes.
2. Hôtel Barrière Le Majestic
Forbes Travel Guide inspectors write, “Cannes Film Festival insiders know there’s no need to line up with the masses to catch a glimpse of stars walking the red carpet — one of the best places to perch up on Boulevard de la Croisette is from the balcony of the glamorous Hôtel Barrière Le Majestic, across from the famous staircase leading up to the Palais des Festivals. You’re sure to spot celebrities wafting in and out of the over-the-top gilded lobby (as well as a few fancy cars parked out front). Just glance around and you’ll see 2,500 black-and-white photographs of Cannes’ most celebrated visitors lining the hotel walls. The Art Deco hotel has maintained its sumptuous style. The scenic pool is made with Murano glass mosaics and there is a private beach just across the boulevard.”
U.S. News reports, “Fantastic, brilliant, and perfection are just a few words that previous guests used to describe the Hôtel Barrière Le Majestic. Overlooking the main La Croisette promenade, this hotel enjoys a prime location in central Cannes location, another major highlight, according to visitors. When it comes to accommodations, Hôtel Barrière Le Majestic’s rooms and suites are decorated in sleek white, dark chocolate, warm copper, and gold tones.”
On the top floor of the hotel is the 6,450-sq.ft. Suite Majestic, with a 1,615-sq.ft. private terrace, including a 36-ft. long swimming pool. In the suite is a cinema, white oak and mahogany dining room, exercise room with experience shower. You also have a dedicated butler.
More suites at Hotel Barriere Le Majestic.
3. JW Marriott Cannes
According to Forbes Travel Guide, “Set on the same spot that was once home to the first Palais des Festivals, JW Marriott Cannes not only has a historic location — it’s also smack-dab in the middle of Boulevard de la Croisette. From the rooftop pool, you can look out and see yachts dotting the Mediterranean and the Cannes Film Festival’s new home tucked away at the other end of La Croisette. One of the youngest hotels lining the famous boulevard, the 263-room JW was built in 1992 after knocking down the former Palais. Built on one condition — that it would house an 825-seat theater to keep the festival spirit alive. The hotel changed hands and décor before taking on its present-day appearance as the JW Marriott. The Cannes hotel still captures some of the former Palais’ 1950s elegance, but also takes a bold, splashy modern spin on luxury lodgings.”
The Telegraph adds, “While this is a chain hotel, it’s got personality, too, with its modern style markedly different from many other hotels on the Croisette. The large lobby is dominated by a gigantic chandelier, whose thousands of dancing glass leaves never fail to catch the attention of those walking in for the first time.”
The 1,829-sq.ft. Presidential Suite includes two bedroom, a separate living and dining room and expansive balcony overlooking the Bay of Cannes.
More suites at JW Marriott Cannes.
4. Five Seas Hotel
The Telegraph writes, “Five Seasons Hotel is a 45-room boutique hotel in the center of Cannes, two steps from La Croisette and the beach beyond. VIP access to a private stretch of sand, a serene and well-furnished spa, and a stunning rooftop terrace – with bar and pool – complete the hedonistic concoction. The hotel that describes itself as ‘the best kept secret in Cannes’ is just that: guests enter through a rather anonymous sliding door that leads to stylish room, a lively rooftop bar, pool terrace and a luxurious spa. The color scheme of cool stone, muted browns and shocking red leather is cooler than La Croisette itself.”
The 1,410-sq.ft. Presidential Suite has a 400-sq.ft. balcony, including Jacuzzi. There is a separate living room and bedroom.
For more suites at Five Seas Hotel.
5. Carlton Cannes, a Regent Hotel
Carlton Cannes reopened last month as a Regent Hotel. It has 332 rooms and suites, many with views of the Mediterranean.
The seventh floor of the hotel has four signature suites, named to celebrate the legacy of the property. These include The Katara Suite which pays tribute to the hotel’s owner, in addition to The Grace Kelly Suite, The Cary Grant Suite, and The Kirk Douglas Suite.
On the sixth floor is The Alfred Hitchcock Suite, which is the exact room where the famous kiss scene between Grace Kelly and Cary Grant in “To Catch a Thief was filmed.
In the other tower on the same floor, The Suzanne Lenglen Suite, pays tribute to the tennis legend, who played the Match of the Century at the hotel in 1926.
We expect to be visiting towards the end of the year, although for now, there are not any images of the suites.