French riviera

How Monte Carlo went to hell

I now find resorts more fun out of season. Civilised tourists are as rare as an intelligent Hollywood movie, so local talent will do nicely, and to hell with the vulgar jet set. Gstaad is perfect in June and July, March and April, as are St Moritz, the Ionian Islands, and Patmos, my next destination. Once upon a time the French Riviera was a must, but now it’s a sweaty hellhole, a shabby place for not so sunny people. Although I spent my youth on the Riviera, I was two going on three in 1939, the time I would have chosen to be an adult had I been given the

The lost magic of Palm Beach

Gstaad Good old Helvetia. I’m quitting her for the rainy but pleasant land of England. The cows are beginning to resemble chorus girls and the village an Alpine Colditz. Too much of a good thing said a wise man to a friend of mine who wanted to live on the French Riviera all year round. That was long ago. The South of France is a shithole these days — and a very expensive one at that. The real Riviera now lies far away from the coast, up in the hills: Saint-Paul-de-Vence and its environs. The rest of the Côte d’Azur, where Russian and Arab gangsters have bought all the great