Dallas Voice (Dallas, Tex.), Vol. 28, No. 17, Ed. 1 Friday, September 9, 2011

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A Nice getaway
The tres gay town of Nice along the French Riviera is a chic playground
The French Riviera, or
Cote d'Azur, ranks among
Europe's most enduring —
and alluring — gay play-
grounds. While this stretch
of rugged Mediterranean
coastline at the southeastern
tip of France doesn't gener-
ate quite as much buzz with
LGBT travelers as Sitges^.
Ibiza or Mykonos, the sunny
and sophisticated French
Riviera is ideal for a roman-
tic getaway and the most
gay-popular communities —
we're covering Nice this
month, Cannes next —
abound with beautiful
beaches, chic shopping, ex-
ceptional art museums and
atmospheric cafes and open-
air markets.
The largest city in the re-
gion, with about 350,000 resi-
dents and an international
airport with direct flights
from North America, Nice
supports an active gay or-
ganization, AGLAE, which
sponsors Gay Pride each
July and produces a gay
guide that's distributed free
at many businesses. The city is also home to sev-
eral fine museums, including the Museum of
Modern and Contemporary Art and the Matisse
Museum of Nice. This is also a fine town for
shopping, with dozens of upscale boutiques, Set
along Rue Pastorelli and Rue du Marechal Joffre,
including the famous Galeries Lafayette depart-
ment store.
For great views of the city and harbor, climb
the stairs to Castle Hill and stroll among the
botanical gardens and medieval ramparts, soak-
ing up the views of the bustling port neighbor-
hood — you can seefor miles up and down the
coast. At the base of the hill, bustling Old Town's
narrow streets, classic architecture, esteemed gal-
leries and open-air flower and food markets con-
tain a number of the city's gay-frequented
businesses.
Old Town fringes the city's shoreline, where
you can stroll along the broad, palm-shaded
Promenade des Anglais, which lines the miles of
pretty (but pebbly) beaches. A couple of the
many beachside restaurants along here fly rain-
bow flags to welcome their sizable gay clienteles!:
the beach at Castel Club, which lies in the shad-
ows of Castle Hill, and the beach club run by the
trendy HI Hotel, a favorite see-and-sun spot of
the Nice A-listers. The clothing-optional section
of rocky shoreline right below Restaurant Coco
Beach, a short walk beyond the Port of Nice, is
SUMMER COTE | Nice, along France's Cote d'Azur, provides breathtak-
ing views of the Riviera — and lots of gay nightlife.
another favorite gay hangout.
Continue east around Cap de \iiv to reach the
exclusive village of Villefranche-sur-Mer, immor-
talized in the Bond movie Never Say Never Again.
It's also home to St-Pierre Chapel, whose re-
stored interior contains murals painted by famed
gay novelist Jean Cocteau. Across the bay is one
of the world's wealthiest enclaves, Saint Jean Cap
Ferrat — everybody from Tina Turner to Bill
Gates have homes around here. Head farther to-
ward the Italian border, and you'll reach the an-
cient cliff-top village of Eze and beyond that the
Principality of Monaco, with its exclusive casinos
and ritzy shopping.
The French Riviera enjoys a fabled culinary
reputation — you'll find no shortage of superb
restaurants in every town, plus markets and
gourmet shops specializing in local olives, oils,
cheeses, pastries and ever}7 other imaginable
treat.
In Nice's pedestrianized Cours Saleya district
in Old Town, you'll find dozens of sidewalk
cafes/ most of them specializing in local seafood
and pizzas, among the flower and food markets.
If you make it around the Cape to Villefrance, do
not miss the wonderful seafood restaurant La
Mere Germaine, which has tables right on the
bay. If you're seeking a lunch spot in Vallauris,
try cozy, gay-owned Le Clos Cosette, which
■ Continued on Page 29
26 dallasvoice.com
09.09.11

Nash, Tammye. Dallas Voice (Dallas, Tex.), Vol. 28, No. 17, Ed. 1 Friday, September 9, 2011. Dallas, Texas. UNT Digital Library. http://digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth239184/. Accessed December 20, 2014.