The Côte d’Azur has attracted international visitors since the 18th Century, when it gained international stature as a resort location. In the 19th Century it established its reputation as the destination of choice of aristocrats including Queen Victoria of Great Britain. In the 20th Century it attracted artists and writers including Picasso and Matisse. The English name “French Riviera” became popular for designating Côte d’Azur.
Here, we highlight a selection of the elements that attract people to Nice and the Côte d’Azur. We are convinced that these attractions will ensure that ACM Multimedia attendees will enjoy delight and inspiration also outside of the conference hours.
History: Nice was originally founded by the Greeks, and later occupied by the Romans, whose ruins can still be found in the area. Located close to the Italian border, understanding the history of Nice, means understanding both its French and Italian roots. The Old City of Nice features palaces and churches, wide spaces as well as narrow streets reflecting in styles that reflect the diversity of its cultural heritage.
Food: Cuisine Niçoise is the traditional food of Nice and has inspired countless cookbooks with titles such as “Cuisine Niçoise: Sun-kissed cooking from the French Riviera” and “Niçoise: A Cuisine and A Way of Life”. Visitors to Nice do not need a cookbook, since they will taste the food directly for themselves. The key to Niçoise food is the combination of Mediterranean ingredients, which leverages freshness and a mingling of tastes and textures.
Salade Nicoise is certainly well known, but many other specialties remain to be discovered. The proximity to the sea delivers an amazing variety of delicious seafood.
Art and Nature: Nice has no less than 15 different museums including the National Museum of Marc Chagall and the Matisse Museum, which is housed in a Genoese villa. Parc Phoenix is a botanical garden in zoo, which includes a tropical zone and a Mediterranean garden. Nearby, the seaside town of Antibes offers breathtaking sea views as well as a Picasso Museum.
Grasse: The town of Grasse is considered to be the world capital of perfume and is located a 45 minute drive from Nice, just inland from Cannes. Although the famous lavender fields are not in bloom in October, the trip is well worth making in order to gain insight into the perfume industry and how scents, soaps and perfumes are produced.
Monaco: Researchers using Monte Carlo methods will not want to miss the original Monte Carlo Casino in near-by Monaco (25 minute by car or train). Monaco is the site of the world-famous Grand Prix. Its stunning aquarium is worth a visit.