Concierge.com's insider take:
A fashionable resort town since the 19th century, Cannes is one of the coast's primary shopping and party destinations. The Croisette is the big see-and-be-seen thoroughfare. Walk along this broad avenue under palm shade, with rows of hotel-owned beach chairs on one side and glorious 1920s hotel facades on the other, their names reminiscent of Lost Generation romance: Miramar, Carlton, Martinez. If you're not in town for a conference or the Film Festival, skip the concrete shell of the Palais des Festivals et des Congrès, except for a possible dip into Casino Croisette for a late-night pull at the slots. A few blocks inland, shopping happens along the Rue d'Antibes, home to the usual posh Italian and French boutiques; there are also a few high-end one-off stores that share space with the city's constantly shifting nightclub scene on the Rue du Commandant d'André. Geographically, Cannes makes an ideal jumping-off point for the western Riviera, including the Massif de l'Estérel and its trails and parks.