Between Cannes and Mykonos: Where in Europe Will You Summer?
Pro tip for your next English vacation? These places are all just a couple of hours from London!
After a decade of advising people from around the world on buying houses and apartments in London, we’ve come to understand that the city’s appeal to international buyers is much more than financial. Our clients love London for its heritage, its world-leading cultural offerings, and its convenient position in Europe.
Last week we asked our partners in the luxury lifestyle sector to help put together a guide about the quintessentially British series of events in and around the city which make up ‘the Season’.
This week we asked our luxury hospitality partners to talk about some of the top European getaways within easy reach of London.
Sardinia: A Beach to Yourself and Some Quality Shopping
Sardinia is our first stop, with several direct flights every day from London to Olbia. Olbia is just a stone’s throw from the heart of the spectacular Costa Smeralda – the Emerald Coast. Honey-coloured cliffs tumble into some of the brightest and clearest waters of the Mediterranean. Try the Spiaggia del Principe (Prince’s Beach), La Celvia and Cala Goloritze. Or take a yacht to the Maddalena archipelago, where you are likely to find a gorgeous white-sand beach – all to yourself!
Then, there’s the top-class shopping in Porto Cervo.
This lovely town is the unofficial capital of the Emerald Coast, and among its little squares, streets and passageways, you can find almost any top-end Italian designer you can imagine, from Cavalli to Versace, as well as many international luxury brands. And, if you need some extra bags to carry all that shopping, Louis Vuitton – the ultimate luggage-maker – is conveniently close to the charming Hotel Cervo!
Some of the best and most exclusive places to eat on the Emerald Coast are its famous nightclubs, where you can dance the night away after dinner. Some to try are Phi Beach, Pepero, Sottovento, and of course, the ‘daddy’ of them of all – the Billionaire Club.
The French Riviera: Concert Nights and the Iconic Cannes
The French Riviera, the grande dame of European glamour, is even easier to get to – with numerous daily flights from various London airports to Nice. From there, you can take a scheduled helicopter ride to Monaco, perhaps trying your luck at the most famous casino in the world.
Or, enjoy a concert at the ever-so-chic Salle des Etoiles, which over the years has played host to the likes of Stevie Wonder, Whitney Houston and Frank Sinatra. This summer the concert hall has a distinctly Italian feel, with Andrea Bocelli and Zucchero among the world-renowned artists booked to perform.
If you're more of a beach person, then you can head in the other direction – to St Tropez. Try some star-spotting at beaches like the legendary Club 55 or the newer Palmier. At dusk, you can stroll down to the port to have a drink at Sénéquier – where Brigitte Bardot came to fame – before heading over to the ever-exciting Caves des Royes to dance till dawn among the jet set.
For luxury shopping on the French Riviera, it’s hard to beat the Rue d’Antibes at Cannes, where you should also leave time to take a promenade along the iconic Croisette. And at the end of a long day of shopping and walking you’ll certainly deserve some pampering at the Hotel Majestic’s wonderful spa!
Mykonos: Best Late Night Shopping in the Mediterranean
Our final destination today is marvellous Mykonos in Greece – easy to get to with many daily direct flights from London. This island has it all, from the ancient ruins of Delos (where Cleopatra and Apollo once strolled) to a cosmopolitan and glamorous nightlife (first made famous by Jackie Kennedy and Aristotle Onassis).
Spend your days at one of the glamorous beaches like Psarou and Elia, or head into the island to explore the traditional ‘Cycladic’ architecture and picturesque windmills. And with some of the best late night shopping in the Mediterranean you can get all your shopping done without wasting a moment of sunshine!
For dinner choose one of the world-class eateries, such as Matsuhisa or Katrin’s. Alternatively, dine alfresco at Kiki’s, a favourite spot with local and international artists – and even the restaurateur responsible for Matsuhisa – Nobu himself!
For sun downers head to Scorpios, where international DJs will take you on a sonic journey as the sun sets over an azure sea. Or head into town – maybe to the iconic Caprice in Little Venice for a cocktail by the waves. Or to Astra, popular with visiting celebs and glamorous holiday-makers, and open from late afternoon to the wee-hours.
Every one of these European locations is just a couple of hours from London. So if the weather in the capital gets a bit chilly this summer, the only question is – which of these exclusive destinations to go to first?
(Eirini Nousia is the Managing Director of Golden Venn, a London based property consultancy firm – www.golden-venn.com)
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