An off season Antibes There seems to be a dearth of Russians in town. Many of the yachts over at Port Vauban have headed off to less blustery climes or are staying put, manned by a skeleton crew. The market is less clogged, dinner reservations at the places still open are easier to come by. The pace has slowed. Much of the bling has gone, allowing this lovely town by the sea’s true colours to shine through…. They all came here you know. The Greeks knew they were on to a good thing in the 5th Century. The Fitzgeralds as well. Picasso, Hemingway, Churchill came to paint, the Duke and Duchess of Windsor, even Taylor and Burton laid low over at the Hotel Du Cap for one of their many affairs. The Fitzgeralds Burton & Taylor The town and environs are still place holder for a world that has since passed, a jet set culture immortalized by the work of Slim Aarons, The hotel Du Cap seeming to be the heart and soul. The recent incarnation of celebrity a tacky bauble of a thing trudging down the same streets as true icons. Hoping for style by osmosis I suppose. We come here with no such pretensions. Shelter is sought from the biting and moaning Mistral that sees the beaches scoured bare. Simple and authentic food is bought at the market, a fire in the hearth a steady companion as are deliveries from the wine shop. We lounge and tear through books, listen to jazz, venturing outside for short strolls when storm clouds abate, enjoying the stillness of the picturesque Port De L’Olivette. Trading super yachts for the simple watercraft of the local fishermen. A favorite spot on the Cote D’Azur Picasso came here seeking sanctuary and found it at the Chateau Grimaldi and perhaps that’s what we have come here seeking. A place to lay low as the season descends upon us. A respite where we can find solace in simple yet elegant things. Some notes written in a journal, a walk down the quay, a drink with old friends talking about the upcoming season in Chamonix. A willingness to do nothing yet t0 allow ourselves a much needed recharge in preparation for the winter to come. E.M.M.