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holiday rental in nice


Why We Love Bonaparte…

We offer a range of holiday rental in Nice, and here we discuss the beautiful Bonaparte area of Nice. The area around the Place du Pin/rue Bonaparte, referred to also as the ‘Petit Marais Niçois’, has become the trendy area of Nice with its collection of stylish bars, restaurants and boutiques nestled in amongst the local boulangeries and corner shops. Bonaparte is the centre of what Nice has to offer, with the Old Town only a few minutes walk away and also a cross over to Place Garibaldi. The port is also walking distance to have beautiful evening walks watching the sun go down. Beautiful!

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If you are looking at holiday rental in Nice, a beautiful place to visit is the Bonaparte area of Nice. Here the locals, young and old, rub shoulders with visitors and there truly is a sense of neighbourhood and camaraderie as you buy your morning baguette, sit in a café to contemplate life or take a stroll around the port. There are no end of eating establishments to try: from the local speciality socca at Chez Pipo, to the fine dining of Jan and the heavenly patisseries from Deli Bo. The tram in Place Garibaldi will take you conveniently into the centre of town and up to the railway station, although the beautiful 15-minute walk down the newly renovated Promenade de Paillon should not be missed.

There is plenty of bars and restaurants around the local area which offer beautiful dishes, amazing ice-cold drinks and cocktails to quench your thirst on the beautiful sunny days.
We have some personal favourites here at STAY YNA, See below;

Le Dandy Restaurant

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La Chaise Bleue Gourmande

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Great News! We have luxury apartments in Bonaparte area available for your visit to Nice!

BOOK ONLINE at https://www.stayyna.com/

Olympia – A Slice of Heaven! 2 Bed apartment, From €85 per night

01. 1st Floor Bedroom 2

10. Living Area 5

La Fleur – Location, Location, Location! 1 Bed, From €70 per night

4. lounge

10. bedroom 1

Dahlia – Balcony for soaking up the sun! 2 Bed, From €111 per night

17. Balcony 2

19. Living Area 3

For a personalised quote, please enquire below; [email protected] – 0203 397 7903 (UK)


Top 7 Things to Do While Staying in Nice

Nice is one of the most famous spots on the French Riviera, the area of the south coast of France along the Mediterranean.  Close to the principality of Monaco, the city is a tourist centre with a gentle Mediterranean climate.  There are many stunning luxury apartments in Nice that you can book through Stay YNA that are ideal to use as a base for your stay. Stay YNA offer luxury apartments that have a real home-from-home feel so you can completely relax and enjoy your visit  – but what are the top things to see and do while staying in Nice?

Areas of the city

Nice is a city which has evolved and grown over time, different areas have their own character as well as different features and things to see.

Vieux Nice

Vieux Nice is the old town, an area of the city which is largely unchanged for the last 300 years.  The centrepiece is the Cours Saleya, the market square that is home to a hive of shopping activity throughout the summer.  If you are a foodie, this is a must-see spot with many stalls selling local fresh foods and food souvenirs.  The flower market is also a stunning experience and there is a flea market every Monday.

Promenade des Anglais

The name of this famous area of the seafront of Nice comes from the English ex-pat patrons who paid for it in the early 1800s.  The 4km long promenade is home to several of the city’s landmarks including the Calais de la Mediterranean.  You can hire scooters or bikes to travel the length or hop on an electric Segway for a modern way to tour it.

Places to visit

Nice has plenty of museums and other interesting spots to visit while you are staying in the city.  Here are a few ideas to help you plan your itinerary.

Fusee Massenet

The Fusee Massenet is housed in a building created for Prince Victor d’Estaing, grandson of Napoleon’s general Matriarchal Massenet.  The building is a cultural landmark and is also a museum that documents the history of the city and the larger French Riviera.  It is a classic belle toque style building that is worth seeing for its architecture alone.

Muse d’art Modern et d’art Contemporariness

If you are a fan of modern art rather than the classics, then this is your kind of museum. Featuring pieces by Andy Warhol and Roy Lichtenstein as well as newer artists such as Yves Klein, the museum is three stories complete with a rooftop exhibition area that has amazing views out across the city.

Fusee Matisse

The Fusee Matisse is a little outside the centre of Nice in the Commie area.  It is home to a range of works by the artist Henri Matisse including oil painting, tapestries and even some of the paper cut-outs that he was famous for creating.  Matisse himself is buried in the Monastery Notre Dame de Commie, the cemetery opposite the museum.

Russian Cathedral

Nice’s Russian Cathedral is the most beautiful orthodox church outside Russia and is the city’s most visited monument.  The cathedral has an amazing array of cupolas, turrets and polychrome tiles on its roofs that make viewing it a pleasure.  You can also pay the small charge and tour the inside of it with its very ornate and opulent style of design.  There are some 300 icons within the cathedral!

See the city

One of the best ways to see the city is via the open top bus tours called Le Open Tour. While many cities have these, and some can be of questionable quality, the one in Nice is very impressive.  It is a hop-on, hop-off service so you can use it to get around the city and see some of the most important sites in between.

You can find out more about our luxury apartments in Nice here. If you are looking for a French holiday that is a little different to the bustling city of Nice, we also have beautiful accommodation in Villefranche Sur Mer and Antibes.


Top 3 Seafood Dinners in Dingle

Dingle-dweller Deanna O’Connor on where to go in search of Dingle’s finest fish dishes.

Every time I think of the phrase ‘seafood dinner’ I have a little laugh to myself because it reminds me of the fight scene in Anchorman, where Champ goads Ron Burgundy saying, “I will smash your face into a car windshield, and then take your mother, Dorothy Mantooth, out for a nice seafood dinner and never call her again.”

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I do love a nice seafood dinner—partly because it’s not something I don’t often cook at home because I hate when the house smells fishy, and partly because when you’re eating out, a light seafood course leaves plenty of room for dessert! 

Ireland’s Atlantic coast provides a wealth of wonderful seafood and the restaurants in Dingle are serving up the freshest catch daily from local fishing trawlers and Kerry fishermen, so it really is a seafood lover’s paradise.

Sheehy’s Anchor Down

For the best value, I’m a big fan of Sheehy’s Anchor Down (3 The Colony, Dingle, Phone: +353 66 915 1545). Before getting into the restaurant business the Sheehy family were already running a fish shop, so you know they’ve got the best supply in town!

Of course the menu may vary depending on the catch but to give you an idea of the treats in store, recent mouth-watering specials have included John Dory in almond butter served with asparagus, potatoes and salad, and my personal drool-inducing favourite, a seafood platter featuring monkfish, salmon, plaice and scallops.

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The food in Dingle was innnnnncredible omg

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Local Sea Fresh Oysters #sheehysanchordown

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Doyles

Ask any Dingle native what their favourite restaurant is, and there is a strong chance they will say Doyles on John Street. Run by chef and proprietor Sean Roche, Doyles is a must-visit for the seafood lover, and while there are a few main course options for those who aren’t fish fans, seafood is really a strong focus of the menu here. From Black Sole on the bone to seafood linguine and Spanish-style fish stew, all the classic favourites are there. For something a little different, I love the flavour combination of the Duo of Scallops & Organic Pork, a delicious take on the surf ’n’ turf concept with seared Atlantic scallops, crispy pork belly and black pudding. I’m getting hungry just thinking about it!

Out of the Blue

Ask me what my favourite seafood dinner in Dingle is, and it’s probably Out of the Blue. It might look a bit like a shack from the outside, but all the foodies (and a few celebs) that pass through town flock here. It has a strict ‘No chips, and nothing frozen’ policy and serves up delicious and innovative dishes. I love the zing of home-cured & smoked salmon with pickled ginger and grapefruit for a refreshing starter, to get my taste buds’ attention and gear up for the gluttony ahead!

But we can’t just leave it there…

Those might be the best when it comes to sit down dinners and slap up grub, but there’s a new kid on the block which is perfect if you want to grab a quick bite. Newly opened, The Fish Box, on Green Street, serves up the freshest of fish from their very own fishing trawler Cú Na Mara.

For an all-out treat try their eponymous ‘The Fish Box’—deep-fried prawns, monkfish, fish of the day and calamari with homemade chips, tartar sauce and sweet chilli jam; priced at €14 takeaway or €16 to eat in, it’s a classy take on takeaway.

TAKE THE MEMORIES HOME

If you’ve loved your dinners out in Dingle, famed as Ireland’s No 1 foodie town, then make sure you pick up the Dingle Dinners cookbook before you leave, so you can recreate some of the favourite food of Dingle chefs at home.

Here, Stella Doyle, founder of Doyle’s, shares one of her favourite seafood dishes to cook:

Pasta with Dingle Bay Prawns in White Wine and Saffron Sauce

Serves 6

600g / 1lb 5oz linguine


200ml / 7fl oz / ¾ cup + 4 tsp white wine


pinch of saffron


75g / 2 ½ oz / 5 tbsp butter


600g / 1lb 5oz Dingle Bay prawns


2 garlic cloves, crushed


60ml / 2fl oz / ¼ cup cream (optional)


squeeze of lemon juice


salt and freshly ground black pepper


2 tbsp chopped fresh parsley

METHOD

Cook the pasta in a large pot of boiling water until al dente.

Steep saffron in white wine.

Heat a knob of butter in a large pan, let sizzle, add prawns and fry until they change colour, 1–2 minutes. Take prawns out and set aside.

Add the garlic, sizzle but do not brown – about 30 seconds. Add the wine with saffron, bring to the boil and let reduce by half. Add the rest of the butter and cream, if using, a squeeze of lemon, salt and pepper to taste. Add back the prawns and reheat, add the parsley, toss into the pasta.

Dingle Dinners – From the Chefs of Ireland’s #1 Foodie Town compiled and edited by Trevis L. Gleason, published by The Collins Press, price €24.99. It is available from all good bookshops and online from www.collinspress.ie

Follow me on Instagram @deannadublin for more Dingle sights and sounds.

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If you fancy a slap up Seafood supper in Dingle, take a look at some of the super properties we have available to rent. 

 

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Dime On Festival, Nice 2018.

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Now in it's fourth year, Dime on Fest was started in 2015 by Producer and Co founder of Dime On Records, Medi. 

DIME ON FEST is a unique musical experience.

During a non-stop show, the singers join each other on stage, one after the other, and are all backed up by the one and only house band.

Here's a round up of this year's headliners!

Charlie Winston

Charlie Winston (born September 14, 1978) is an English indie and folk singer, songwriter and musician.

Charlie Winston played bass guitar for his brother Tom Baxter, appearing on Baxter’s Feather and Stone album. As well as touring with Tom, much of Charlie’s early career saw him composing music for, and performing in, London-based contemporary theatre productions. Charlie then moved to France where he had come to the attention of record label Atmosphériques who introduced him to Mark Plati (David Bowie, The Cure, Louise Attaque) with whom Charlie recorded his second album ‘Hobo’.

The first single from Charlie's upcoming fifth album was released on 8 June 2018. It's called The Weekend. The album, entitled Square 1, is set for release on 28 September 2018.

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Madame Monsieur

Madame Monsieur, husband-and-wife vocalist Émilie Satt and producer Jean-Karl Lucas, were selected to represent France in Euorvision 2018 following their national selection process “Destination Eurovision”.
In April 2018 their released their debut studio album ”Vu d’ici” a French pop album that borders on urban music. The album features 14 tracks, including the full version of their Eurovision song “Mercy”. Madame Monsieur are currently touring France.

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Joyce Jonathan

Singer Songwriter, Joyce Jonathan, was one of France's first major internet successes. In 2007, at the age of just 16 she began posting her songs on MySpace. After being launched on the website, My Major Company, Joyce Jonathan was able to fund her first album, "Sur mes gardes". Less than a year after, the album was certified platinum. On 23 January 2011 she received the NRJ Music Awards of the Francophone Breakthrough of the Year. On 4 May 2018, Joyce Jonathan released her single On, which will be a track of an album set to be released soon in 2018.

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Dime On Fest is held on Aug 04th in the exceptional setting of the Théâtre de Verdure in Nice. If you're thinking of joining the party take a look at the properties we have available.

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Jazz Festival Nice 2018 – STAYYNA Interview Singer Julie Follis

Here at [email protected] we’re Jazz hands at the ready for the Nice Jazz Festival, 16th - 21st July 2018.

 

Nice Jazz Festival

The first festival back in 1948, was the first Jazz festival of its kind in the world and it started right here in Nice! The inaugural festival was headlined by Louis Armstrong along with other big names, Claude Lutter, Stéphane Grappelli, Django Reinhardt.

 

The Nice jazz Festival continues attracts big names with this year’s line up including Kimberose, Aloe Blacc, Gregory Porter and the Kyle Eastwood Quintet. The festival is held in the Theatre De Verdure in Place Massena where there are two stages. Last year’s festival attracted around 43,000 people over the duration, an all time high.

 

Ahead of the festival [email protected] interviewed jazz singer and Nice resident, Julie Follis.

Tell us about your musical career? How did it all start?

I came to Nice in my mid twenties working on boats. I started singing with a street band, Contreband and soon after gave up my day job! I then got involved with The Lost Wandering Blues and Jazz Band. Danny Fitzgerald became my mentor and I spent a long time travelling around the States and Paris with them. It was through Danny that I struck up a relationship with Madeleine Peyroux - she’d joined The Lost Wandering as a run away teenager. I joined Madeleine on her UK tour as her support act.

Julie Follis

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How did you get involved with the Jazz festival

 

While I was singing with Contreband we were invited by the Mayor of Nice to participate in the Jazz Off. The Jazz Off is held in conjunction with The Nice Jazz Festival and aims to showcase the best of local bands.

 

How did it feel to be part of such a historic festival?

 

It was a huge honour to be asked by the Mayor and to be a part of what is an amazing event. It was also absolutely crazy - we did 15 gigs in 9 days!

Who are you most looking forward to seeing at the festival?

On Monday 16th Gregory Porter is performing a tribute to Nat King Cole accompanied by the Orchestre Philharmonique of the Opéra Nice Côte d’Azur, which will be amazing. I’m also really looking forward to seeing Kyle Eastwood, son of Clint Eastwood, who is an incredible Bass player.

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If you're thinking of heading to Nice Jazz festival, check out the fantastic properties we have available to rent!

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IRONMAN Triathlon, Nice!

Getty Images pour IRONMAN

Getty Images pour IRONMAN

It’s that time of the year again where Nice becomes host to the IRONMAN Triathlon! The athletes begin on the beach with a two loop 3.8km swim in the glorious blue waters of the Mediterranean sea. This is followed by a 180km bike ride through villages and mountains. Finally the athletes set off for a 42.2km marathon supported by the thousands of spectators who line the course.

We spoke with athlete and IRONMAN competitor Robert Desbarbieux ahead of this years competition

I decided to enter the Ironman competition a few years ago. Biking is my former sport, since I was 30 years old. I changed my job and wasn't able to ride my bike as often as I should. So I started running and entered the marathon competition in 2004. Swimming is my last sport, I started it by chance. One, plus one, plus one got me turned into a triathlete. As anyone, I started by short and long distance triathlons. Then, I joined my club Nice Cavigal Triathlon 10 years ago, and with a bunch of friends, we decided to participate to our first Ironman in Nice, as a challenge. We are all from Nice and love our city and the French Riviera area. Nice is such a great place for Ironman ! The bike course is amazing, within a few miles from the seaside you join the beautiful surrounding mountains. The landscape is breathtaking and the route is a real hard challenge.

 

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 Getty Images pour IRONMAN

How long before the event do you start to train and what’s your training routine like?

In fact, I never start training for Ironman. I'm used to train all year long. For Ironman I only increase my training in matter of time and make it harder. In winter my average training time is 08 hours per week and it turns into 15 to 20 hours weekly within 4 months before the race. Nothing specific, my main goal is to be ready for the D day and be able to suffer and enjoy my Ironman competition at the same time.

Which part of the competition do you find the most difficult and why?

The most difficult for me is the marathon. I'm not such a great runner. When the bike is over, it's hard to find the mental and physical strength to run. The Promenade des Anglais is beautiful, but the weather is so hot ! Thankfully all my friends and family will be there to cheer me up ! And I'll hope for a few clouds in the afternoon!

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Getty Images pour IRONMAN

How many times have you competed in IRONMAN?

This year will my fourth distance Ironman . My second in Nice. The two others were in Vichy France and in Vitoria Gasteiz Spain.

What’s your most memorable memory of IRONMAN?

The most memorable memory is when I became an Ironman for the first time in Nice, my hometown where I'm born and where I live. It was incredible for me. The year before I was in the audience wishing to be one of the athlete and it was my turn ! Amazing !

 

How does it feel when you get to the finish?

Every race is different, but it's always such a relief to be a finisher. And try to enjoy this particular moment . I'm each time overwhelmed by so many feelings, suddenly my brain and my body reconnect. I can feel joy and pain. The very first minutes after the finish line I've no more energy, even for walking!

What do you do straight after the event?

I kiss my wife waiting for me right after the line with my medal. Stay with my friends and family. Join and/or wait for other competitors I know. And when I'm able to walk again, take my bags and bike and go home to rest.

How do you prepare yourself mentally?

I do not prepare me mentally precisely. I'm not stressed before, this is my wife's part. Lucky me! Living in Nice, I try to run and ride the courses as many times as I can. Knowing them perfectly makes me feel more relax and ready mentally.

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We'd like to wish Robert and all of this year's competitors a fantastic race!

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Have a look at our fabulous properties available to rent!

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The Fete de la Musique

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The Fete de la Musique is a a free music event which spans the whole of France. Every year on Summer Solstice French towns are transformed into festivals, with bands and singers performing in concerts, town Squares on even on the pavements. The festival is one of France’s favourites and government figures say that 10 million people have been taking to the streets to celebrate in recent years.

In Nice the main event takes place in Place Massena, where there is a huge, free star studded concert. Tickets for this usually sell out very quickly but many people crowd into the surrounding locals parks to hear the music and dance the night away.

The Fete de la Musique is one of the few nights of the year where the government relaxes the licensing laws so the party really can go on until late!

If your music tastes are a little more eclectic, why not head down to Vieux Nice (The Old Town) where you’ll find a huge range of performers singing and dancing in the narrow streets. Vieux Nice does get very busy so if you’d prefer to enjoy the Fete de la Musique in quieter surroundings head out into the surrounding neighbourhoods.

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Riviera Ready with Annina!

Its nearly that time of the year, The French Riviera rolls out the red carpet once again and welcomes the industry’s hottest celebrities. The annual Cannes Film Festival is set it return May the 9th – May 18th, where show stopping dresses, red bottom shoes and glitzy jewels will take over the carpet.

To get this year’s fashion inside, we Interviewed Annina Kraft, a model and Cannes Boutique dress shop owner of Annika Dress

1.What is the inspiration behind Annika? 

Annika is a clothing boutique that offers fashionable, sexy and luxurious party and evening dresses without the hefty price tag most other fashion stores charge their clients. It offers the opportunity to buy a stunning dress without breaking the bank.

2. What kind of style epitomises Annika? 

 Our dresses are all glam with a hint of sexy...or a lot of sexy

3.Can you describe the kind of woman wears Annika? 

Our clientele are women from all ages and backgrounds, locals and tourists alike, who love to be on trend and enjoy dressing up.

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4. Why did you choose the French Riviera to start Annika Dresses? 

I chose the French Riviera as I have been based here for the past 14 years and I saw a gap in the market for what we offer.

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5. What is the atmosphere like while Cannes Film Festival is here?

The atmosphere is electric. Everything and everyone is just ready to be fab and party away....it’s truly unique and a must on every bodies bucket list.

6. What trends can we expect to see on the Cannes red carpet this year? 

The past years the gowns were "barely there dresses" with ultra-high side splits and see through materials. I think this trend will continue.

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7.What's your best celebrity moment at the Cannes film festival? 

A few years ago, I went to some high-profile parties during the Festival, that was before I was busy with the boutique. I got to party with some A list celebs till the early morning hours. Of course, I cannot mention their names...that would not be professional!

8.Do you have any advice for tourists hoping to spot some celebrities? 

Best celeb spotting points are the exclusive parties that are hosted during the festival such as Elton John’s amfar gala at Eden Rock, the Chopard party or the Vanity Fair party. That said, its pricey to get tickets to those events but not impossible. Everyone who has the necessary cash can go. And I have in the past years helped many of my tourist clients and local clients to get their hands on those rare and exclusive tickets. Apart from that, the red carpet is a great spotting place, or any of the hotel bars and lobbies, and the beach clubs.

9.Where are the best places to hang out during the Cannes film festival? 

The private parties are the best. But it’s also fab just to walk around and enjoy a coffee or a drink anywhere in the centre of Cannes especially alongside the Croisette. People watching is just amazing during this time of the year.

10. Which celebrity do you feel epitomises Annika style and you would love to dress? 

I think J.Lo represents our style well. Always classy yet always sexy but sophisticated.

11.Where is the best place you have spotted someone wearing an Annika dress? 

On the red carpet. I had a Russian model purchase a few of our dresses last year during her stay in Cannes and she posted the most glam Video of her walking down the red carpet in her ANNIKA dress while paparazzi went crazy to get a picture of her.

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You can purchase Annina's beautiful red carpet ready dresses here -

www.myannika.com

Don't Forget to book your Cannes Film Festival accommodation with STAY YNA! 

https://www.stayyna.com/country/france/nice/

EMAIL [email protected]

CALL 02033977903 (UK)


Carnival Countdown!

 

We are offering 20% off all remaining accommodation! 

Win 2 tickets to The Carnival de Nice!

https://www.stayyna.com/specials/carnival-countdown-18506/

 

As the carnival draws closer (this Saturday!), we interviewed Anastasia, an artist performing on the flower float and Kristen, a local designer who has imagined 3 of this year’s floats…

 

  1. What is the atmosphere like when you are performing?

Anastasia - It's like to live a fairy-tale, as the Nice flower carnival is a special event full of happiness and magic moments. Moreover, it is just so precious to see, child, adult, senior smiling. 

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  1. What materials are used to make the floats? How long does it take to build a tank from beginning to end? How many people work on each tank?

Kristen - The tanks are built by maskers, designers do that imagine and draw, this drawing then serving for the masker for its realization. They use new materials such as polystyrene which allows you to make better finished personages and great cartoons. But they also still use the traditional method of paste board must combine tradition and Design Style for our carnival retained its identity. Generally, they begin construction towards October to finish ... just before the first cycle! The number of revellers to work on changes all the time depending on the stage of construction, these are teams of ten people. Before they there were almost only men, today there are also many women.

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  1. Tell us about your costume? How long does it take to put on?!

Anastasia - Each costume is a handmade piece of art, designed accordingly to our personalities. Mine is full of colourful gloss and glitter and I am not able to let you know more than that as all the costumes will be revealed on February 17th! 

It doesn't take long to put the costume on, approximately 15 minutes, but each of 18 artists need to have their hair and the make-up done. So, we gather at 7 a.m. while the carnival starts at 2 30 p.m.!  

  1. You’ve been creating floats for Carnival of Nice since 2002, what makes the Nice Carnival special for you?

Kristen - Being in the region, I have always heard of the Carnival of Nice and child I went sometimes. Today to see my chariots scroll's magic, it's a kind of return to the world of childhood world that one should never leave if and responsible adult! Thanks to the carnival I also travelled extensively to present exhibitions of my drawings for Carnival or give lectures, conduct training courses in Japan, China, Italy, Colombia ... like drawing, carnival is an international language.

 

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Credit - Nice Carnival

  1. What are your responsibilities in the flower parade?

Anastasia - I am one of 18 artists animating the carnival and performing on the flowered floats. During the parade, we share our festive mood with the spectators and launch flowers. Each float as well as each costume is inspired by this year’s Space theme!

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6.All the floats you have created, which was your favourite? and why?

Kristen - My King in 2002, first because it 'was my first king, it was over 15 meters high was fully motorized, could asseoir on his throne which was behind him. It was an old king of the Franks, in 2002 we were Abandoner our historic monarchy (Franc) to go to the Euro. This tank represents the last fight Pardu ahead of the old king who rebelled against his disapriton and its replacement by a new monarchy. Symbolically we did end on 22 February 2002 Carnival Official Date money of changed, we like each whole year to the end of the carnival is burning the king (actually we burn a copy of the King). This old Frankish king went up in flames like our old. The Franks timing and symbol were perfect!

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7.Describe the Nice Carnival for you in just 3 words?

Kristen - Crowd, laughing tradition.

Anastasia - Magic. Happiness. Blossom. 

 

Don’t forget to book with STAY YNA! 20% off all remaining accommodation!  Going fast!

https://www.stayyna.com/specials/carnival-countdown-18506/

And enter our CARNVIAL COMPETITION! Win 2 tickets to The Carnival de Nice!

TO ENTER –

Email KING OF SPACE to [email protected]

Winner will be announced will be announced 15/02/18

Terms and conditions apply. GOOD LUCK!


The King of Carnivals

We are offering 20% off all remaining accommodation!
Win 2 tickets to The Carnival de Nice!
https://www.stayyna.com/specials/carnival-countdown-18506/

Finally, the longest month EVER is over! Bye January, see you next year! Welcome fun February!

Now I know what you’re thinking, what’s February got to offer?  Well I have the remedy to cure those blues… It involves awash of colours, big heads, fireworks, countless amounts of flowers and an unforgettable atmosphere, I could go on but I know you’re already sold.

 

It’s The Carnival de Nice! An annual festival taking place 17th of February – 3rd of March on the French Rivera that brings in a million visitors from across the globe!

The Nice Carnival is 6 carnival parades, by day or by night, made up of 17 floats and more than 1000 dancers and musicians from all over the world to make you live this authentic and magical event!

Each year the carnival holds a theme and this year it’s the King of Space! Past themes have been, King of Music, King of Energy and King of Gastronomy.

To celebrate this epic event we held a series of interviews with The creatives who make it all happen!

 

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Photo credit - Nice Carnaval

Meet Chad Crowe, an illustrator, cartoonist and designer of floats for The Carnival de Nice. Since 2005 Chad has designed over 20 floats!

  1. The theme for this year’s Carnival is King of Space. How do you start your creative journey when given a subject? How long does it take to form an idea and design a float? 

A good, and difficult, question to answer, as the process tends to vary, depending if I’m struck by an inspiring idea or have to go dig one up. It usually starts with cramming your mind with input about the particular theme: researching all the individuals, discoveries, events, etc. that are connected. The second step is to actively brainstorm all the possible ideas you might have from the research you’ve done, and see what connections you can make, how it might relate to modern life or contemporary politics, etc. and not be too self-editing. Then, take a break and let it sit for a week or so, as your mind tends to start filtering out the ideas and symbols that seem to matter (without stress of an immediate deadline). Then it’s time for the actual drawing and creation, and during the process you might find new props, perspectives or humorous elements to add as your pencil is actually working on the page. Then, you mail them out and have to forget all about them for a few months until you learn if any have been chosen - but of course you can’t forget them because you really want them to be turned into amazing floats and have yet another justifiable excuse to return to Nice

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Regarding the contest, there is usually about a month in which to work on the ideas for submission. The first two I usually spend researching/contemplating, and the last two weeks drawing. For the creation of the floats, I think they manage to do them within 3-5 months. Impressive given the amount of floats, size and incredible detail. The Carnavaliers are amazing craftsmen.

  1. We are loving the Rocket Brexit float designed by you Chad. It really reflects how many of us feel in the UK at the moment! Do you feel the carnival floats can be more than just a bit of fun and can really be a great platform to put some interesting views out there? 

 So glad you enjoy the Brexit rocket! I think the carnival floats are a really wonderful vehicle for expressing opinion, and releasing some tension, on the political and social issues we are all faced with. In the middle ages it was an accepted steam valve for the lower classes to express their anger and frustrations with the King and monarchy for a short period of time- and identities hidden behind masks and costumes (and of course also fitting with the Catholic tradition of Lent). Even though things have changed a great deal since the middle ages, this tradition is still mocking the powers and policies that affect us in an increasingly globalized world - whether those structures are Trump, Brexit and the EU, or the fast food industry, climate change or human rights. And it’s all done in a spirit of humour. Of course, the floats could just be non-political, for light-hearted entertainment too, which is a worthy goal in itself. France, and many democracies, show a strong toleration, and support, for satire, intellectual freedom and individual expression. The carnival is another way of showing they culturally uphold these values - and they also want to have a good time.

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Photo credit - Nice Carnaval

  1. 1873 was when Carnival de Nice started, if you could choose one theme to go back and design, which one would it be and why? 

What a great opportunity that would be! I can’t seem to find a list of all the carnival themes since 1873, so have no idea. I would have enjoyed working with the artist G.A. Mossa, as his drawings and creations were outstanding. And designing a float that might have been seen by Queen Victoria would have been incredible (possibly a giant caricature of her secret lover, John Brown, dressed up in Highland gear and playing the bagpipes?). I’ve noticed that the theme “The King of Madness” tends to be cursed, but that theme would be perfect for contemporary times.

  1. You’ve been designing floats for the Carnival de Nice since 2005, what makes The Nice carnival special to you? 

It’s hard to put into words, and perhaps more of a feeling. Although I can’t speak French, in art history classes my favourite artists tended to be French: Honore Daumier, Tolouse Lautrec, Gustav Dore - they put their traditional artistic skills in the service of drawing the real life in the streets, and to the comic and the absurd. Nice seems to represent this devotion to the arts, by the numerous artists naturally drawn to the area for the climate, but also for the freedom and lightheartedness - it is dedicated to the arts, but also to playfulness, humour and the good things in life - not taking itself too seriously. And it’s located in a jaw-dropping landscape, surrounded by a beautiful bay and filled with amazing architecture, history, cafes, restaurants and markets - I wonder how it’s possible for anyone to not enjoy this city. For the good luck to have been included in the contest and have a connection to such a unique place that celebrates art, satire and the good life is a dream come true.

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  1. What is your favourite float you have ever created? And why? 

 This is a difficult one - they all feel like children.  Perhaps the float of Gerard Depardieu as Gargantua sitting on a pile of gold coins as Putin feeds him from a silver spoon. Mr. Depardieu actually happened to show up at the carnival that year, and had no idea that there was a float of him parading around - an absolute shock for him and me! He was a great sport about it, and visited the carnival warehouse to autograph the spoon the next day. I also like the King of Greek Loans, and the giant cyclops begging for Euros from a German banker.

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  1. What happens to the floats at the end of each carnival? We have visions of them being stored away like the Ark in Raiders of the Lost Ark! Or are they preserved? 

 Great vision! Perhaps thousands of years from now they will discover the giant lost ark of carnival floats? I have no idea what happens to them. Would love to get one for our house or backyard one day!

  1. Describe the atmosphere of the Nice Carnival for you in 3 words? 

Festive. Artistic. Playfully Rebellious.

 

Don’t forget to book with STAY YNA! 20% off all remaining accommodation!  Going fast!

https://www.stayyna.com/specials/carnival-countdown-18506/

And enter our CARNVIAL COMPETITION! Win 2 tickets to The Carnival de Nice!

TO ENTER –

Email KING OF SPACE to [email protected]

Winner will be announced will be announced 15/02/18

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