Enjoy the Cote d’Azur

Choose the Cote d’Azur – choose the art of living

With over 120km of coastline, 19 golf courses, 15 ski stations, 125 sports activities and around 6000 cultural and sporting events each and every year, the Côte d’Azur is an exceptional region in which to live, work and play, for locals and visitors alike.

The region is home to over 100,000 foreign nationals accounting for around 160 nationalities, 21 international schools, 1700 foreign-owned establishments and just under twenty international media organisations, combining to create a rich, vibrant international community with a resolutely cosmopolitan feel.

Nice airport is an international hub so travel becomes fast and easy.

Other aspects which so many love – the fresh markets each day; the glorious local wines; marvellous fresh foods; incredible weather year round with blue skies and azure seas; the proximity to Italy and Monaco.

Here newcomers, long-term residents, tourists and business visitors alike will all find information and numerous links with which to begin exploring and making the most out of their stay in the Côte d’Azur.

So contact me, Jackie Pressman of French Riviera Property Search to find you your dream home or your rental apartment for a convention or your rental villa for a vacation.  Also I am a font of information on local aspects!   Most importantly I am here to assist you.  I await your contact.

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If you want to buy you should do so NOW


In very recent years, I have been telling clients that it is a buyers’ market.  But suddenly here on the cote d’Azur prices are increasing again.  If you want to buy you should do so NOW.

The French Riviera is a highly desirable place to live and now that the beautiful hot    weather is here again, what better way to drink your glass of Rose and relax.

Within the year prices will have hardened and it will be more difficult to find any good bargains.

Contact me, Jackie Pressman of French Riviera Property Search SARL, and I will find you your ideal property in your ideal location.  www.FrenchRivieraPropertySearch.com

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Re French taxes – Don’t believe what you read in the Newspapers!

Foreign newspapers have been quick to announce President Hollande’s proposed new taxes on second home owners, despite that these taxes are only ‘proposed’ and not ‘fait accompli’.  Very few are agreed but even if they go into effect they are then struck down by Courts, leading to a claim for refund from any who have already paid.  Here are 3 examples:

1.  75% tax to anyone earning over 1M or assessed to the company paying it – this is now advised to be quietly dropped.  We all remember when Gerard Depardieu hurriedly moved his residence to Russia!!

2.  15.5% contribution to social services for any non-resident with property in France.  Not fair as ruled by the Court.  So we await to hear if a rebate is due to any who have paid it on their rental income declaration of last year.

3.  Increase of 20% on Taxes d’Habitation for owners of second properties to be agreed by the local Mayor.  I read that the Cannes and Nice mayors have since refused to allow.

Also please note that for those with children from a previous relationship, where the inheritance rules of France are not as suitable as those in the property-owner’s country of tax-residence, it is advised that this may well be dropped.  In the Will, the property-owner can then elect to use the country of tax-residence rather than the country in which the property (fixed asset) is situated.  More on this when we get a definitive ruling.

So, contact me, Jackie Pressman of French Riviera Property Search, to advise you about the way to structure your purchase when we have found you your perfect property here on the French Riviera. www.FrenchRivieraPropertySearch.com 

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It’s festival time on the French Riviera

…and in the months of February and early March there are many to choose from: lemons, violets, all the fun of Mardi Gras in Nice and of course the glorious scent and colour of the Mimosa Festival. The skies are blue, it’s still warm enough to eat lunch outside and of course we are only a little over an hours drive from the ski slopes. This is a great time to visit the French Riviera.

all made from lemons and oranges!

The Lemon (and Orange) festival in Menton is one of the most amazing spectacles of the winter months. Many 1000′s of fruits are transformed into sculptures and works of art and of course there are always the parades to look forward to. 14th February – 4th March.


Carnival time in Nice

Nice is alive with Mardi Gras and this year’s theme is the King of Music. Parades night and day, dancing in the streets, spectacular floats and hundreds of performers will be contributing to the party atmosphere. 13th February – 1st March.


The lovely smell of violets fills the air

The Violet Festival in Tourettes sur Loup is one of the prettiest events of the season. The villagers can be seen in their traditional Provencal costumes and there is of course a parade through the streets. The Festival takes place on the 21st and 22nd February.


bright yellow against the deep blue sky

The glorious Mimosa is already showing it’s beautiful bright yellow fronds which can only mean that it’s time for the Mimosa Festival in Mandelieu-La Nalpoule. The scent of the flowers & glorious colours are enough to brighten the heaviest of winter spirits.   18th – 27th February.

AND you can contact me, Jackie Pressman, of French Riviera Property Search, to find your perfect home whilst you’re here – see my website to find out everything I can do for you.

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Definitely a buyer’s market here in France

After the Swiss change of rates, it is now easier than ever to buy here.  Three reasons:

1.  Your currency buys more Euros (today UK£ to Euro is 1.34 and US$ to Euro is 0.89).  If you use a currency company (and we recommend FCA approved Currencies Direct) you do not pay bank transfer charges; you do not pay bank commission; you get a better rate; your money is absolutely safe; AND you can fix the rate for 6 months in advance so whatever happens to the exchange rate your proceeds are guaranteed.

2.  Several new President Hollande pronouncements about second-home tax will never be approved but, nevertheless, they have had a definite effect on prices and today it is possible to make good discount offers when you find the place you want.

3.  Agency sharing of properties is not done here and you would have to visit many different agents to find everything.  Fortunately I, Jackie Pressman of French Riviera Property Search SARL, am here to help you.  Once I am sure of your specification and budget – and what you are prepared to compromise on – I will scour all the agencies to give you a schedule of all properties for our viewing together.  Also remember that agents are instructed legally and in writing by the seller – and I represent you, the buyer, so no conflict.

Call me.

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Cannes Film Festival May 2015

Joel & Ethan Coen

The organisers announced today that Joel and Ethan Coen have been selected as Presidents of the Jury for the 68th Cannes Film Festival.

The selection of the brothers, longtime Cannes favourites, marks the first time the Jury has been presided over by two people. The organisers have marked 2015 as a year to celebrate the work of ‘cinema brothers’, to coincide with the 120th anniversary of the Lumiere cinematograph invented by the Lumiere brothers, Louis and Auguste.

Speaking from the set of their current film Hail Caesar!, starring George Clooney, Josh Brolin and Channing Tatum, the Coens said: “We look forward to returning to Cannes this year. We welcome as always the opportunity to watch movies there from all over the world. Cannes is a festival that has been important to us since the very beginning of our career. Presiding over the Jury is a special honour, since we have never heretofore been president of anything. We will issue further proclamations at the appropriate time.”

For film information lovers: Beginning with their second film, 1987′s Raising Arizona, the Coens have presented nine of their films at Cannes. They won the Palme d’Or in 1991 for Barton Fink; the best director award in 1996 for Fargo and again in 2001 for The Man Who Wasn’t There; and, most recently, the Grand Prix in 2013 for Inside Llewyn Davis.

For lovers of private film information: Joel Cohen is married to the well-known actress Frances McDormand and she has appeared in some of their films, e.g. Fargo, for which she received the US Oscar for best actress.

The Cannes Film Festival this year takes place from Wednesday May 13 until Sunday May 24. The lineup for the Official film selection and the other members of the Jury will be unveiled in mid-April.

Many of my clients buy an apartment in Cannes which can be rented out for all the International conventions – we have about one a month in Cannes – and then use the apartment themselves when they wish, free of charge.

Contact me, Jackie Pressman, of French Riviera Property Search, and I will find you the perfect apartment and arrange your viewings.  See www.FrenchRivieraPropertySearch.com


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A wet November on the French Riviera but now it’s beautiful

Just after the hottest October since records began, the Riviera had its wettest November on record. According to Météo France, the city of Nice received half of November’s average rainfall in just two hours at the beginning of the month!

The heavy rainfall, strong winds and thunderstorms have affected various roads in the Alpes Maritimes and Var departments. Nice saw flooding on the Promenade des Anglais and in Place Masséna, and the entrance to the A8 in western Nice was also heavily flooded.  In Cannes the coast road was closed for 2 days as the strong waves washed over the road depositing sand and sea water – and damaging some of the beach restaurants.

But what beautiful weather now, in December.  Clear bright sunshine and glistening sea and the amazing sunsets – red in the winter and a sight to behold!

winter sunset reflected on the Mediterranean sea

I often tell visitors: Yes, we do get rain – but 2 days of rain is followed by a month of beautiful weather and blue skies.  In other European Northern countries, 2 days of rain is followed by a month of rain and grey skies!!

Jackie Pressman of French Riviera Property Search says “living here is wonderful – so join us and let me help you choose your home – whether it be for permanent living, vacations, or investment for rentals until you’re ready to use full-time”.

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English theatre is alive and well on the French Riviera

We went to the English language theatre 4 times recently:

1.  Peer Gynt – at the National Theatre of Nice – a very professional performance and directed by Irina Brook (daughter of Peter Brook).  The team had just performed this play at the Barbican theatre in London.  We noticed that the entire large theatre in Nice was totally full so obviously the local French loved this too (and spoke English!)

2.  Dial M for Murder – in Valbonne by SET (South of France English Theatre).  A very fine performance by the actress and actors from the UK and enjoyed by all.

3.  The Return of the Ghost Train – in Mougins.  Also a very accomplished and enjoyable performance by the Riviera Amateur Dramatic Association – and a full house.

4.  Sylvia Syms in Cap d’Antibes.  This highly accomplished English actress spoke about her life and acting career in films and TV for over half-a-century and showed several filmed examples.  She is now approaching 80 and has a fabulous sense of humour.  Perhaps you remember her as the Queen Mother in Stephen Frear’s “The Queen” with Helen Mirren.  She has played against many well-known leading men and women in her long career and we thoroughly enjoyed the film extracts she showed.  We were reminded that she has played Margaret Thatcher several times on stage and screen.  We also loved her recent appearance in the TV film “Timeless” with supermodel Cara Delevingne for Sky Arts.

One of the benefits of being here on the Cote d’Azure is that one gets to speak to the actors and director after the performance.  

So contact me, Jackie Pressman of French Riviera Property Search, and come and join in the life on the French Riviera.


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Christmas across the Cote d’Azur

There are Christmas villages all across the Cote d’Azur and it is truly a wonderful time for old and young – and everyone inbetween.

As we live in Cannes, we are looking forward to the happenings here – the Cannes Christmas village opened this weekend, with stands of all Provence goodies and, of course, mulled wine. Plenty of attractions for children too.

And we are looking forward to being in Cannes for the New Year:  There is a fantastic firework display in the bay opposite the Croisette.  To welcome in the New Year Cannes will be hosting one of the most impressive firework displays on the Riviera. The spectacle has been created by Fabrice Chouillier who is one of the most renowned pyrotechnic designers and this display is sure to live long in the memory of onlookers.  We are looking forward to it.

Contact me, Jackie Pressman of French Riviera Property Search, to find you a wonderful property of your dreams, and you could be here too to celebrate the wonderful forthcoming season.

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Nice and Cannes refuse second home tax increase

There’s good news for second-home owners in Nice and Cannes, with the mayors of both cities declaring they will not implement a hefty tax increase as part of the new national budget. Opponents say the controversial bill won’t free up housing, as the government intends, but rather may hurt the struggling property market.  

The increase will be 20% and charged on the annual Tax d’habitation.

Due to the large numbers of second homes in the Côte d’Azur, cities such as Nice and Cannes would be significantly affected by the new property tax. However, as the application of the tax is down to the municipal authorities, some are choosing to opt out.

“I have not applied this measure to Cannes; I think it would be extremely detrimental,” said Mayor of Cannes David Lisnard.  And, it appears that Nice is following suit. A spokesperson for Mayor of Nice, Christian Estrosi, today said: “The City of Nice is categorically opposed to this tax.”

Both announcements came after Finance Minister Michael Sapin confirmed yesterday that affected communities are allowed to simply refuse to apply the tax if they wish. “The principle is simple, the tax goes into the funds of the community; if they do not want the tax then a simple vote will be sufficient to ensure that it is not applicable in that area,” said the finance minister, adding, “the State is not forcing this upon anyone.”

The bill was included in amendments to the supplementary budget for 2014. Communities have the option to enforce the tax increase of 20% upon owners of furnished accommodation which is not their principal residence. The aim is to encourage the huge numbers of predominantly empty second homes to be “freed up” for others, in areas of housing shortage.

The taxe d’habitation increase concerns 105 areas, which comprises 1,150 towns – if the respective authorities don’t reject it.

There are some exceptions to the tax for second-home owners in certain circumstances. For example, those who are forced to own a second home near where they work, as well as those of “modest means” who settle permanently in a nursing home or institution of long-term care, will be eligible for a rebate, according to a local newspaper. This will also be the case for those who can prove that unpreventable reasons are stopping them from using their second home.

Opinion has been divided on the tax, with many doubting whether it will impact the housing shortage. “Do you think for one moment that this measure will help to free up some of the stock [of empty housing]? … Do you think that people, for 300 to 400 euros per month, will even temporarily rent out their apartment?” the vice president said.

The most severe effects are expected to be felt in the real estate industry, with concerns that fewer people will consider purchasing property in France.

So, contact me, Jackie Pressman of French Riviera Property Search, and I will arrange viewings for you in areas where this tax has been rejected.


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