Riviera tourism saved the furniture this summer, once again thanks to the French clientele. Despite the health context linked to the Covid-19 pandemic, “the results were ultimately better than the initial forecasts”, noted this Monday Christian Estrosi, drawing up a “positive assessment”.
In August, the hotels in Nice even did (slightly) better than in 2019, when the Covid-19 had not yet turned the planet upside down. “The average occupancy rate was 91.1%, or 1% below,” said the president of the Nice Côte d’Azur metropolis.
Prices may have increased again after the 2020 promotions
Across the entire Côte d’Azur, hotel occupancy in the urban area even reached 92.5% in the first half of August, with a record peak in attendance over the weekend of 6 to August 8 (96% fill), according to the local regional tourism committee. And professionals were able to review their prices upwards after a 2020 season marked by many promotions. The revenue per available room increased by 27% compared to last year, however remaining down -5% compared to August 2019.
For July, the elected official notes a filling rate of 68%, “with peaks of 85 or even 90% in the last ten days, when sanitary conditions were more favorable”. And with, again, a largely dominant share of French travelers (52%).
Visitors from the UK and Asia missed the call. Those from Russia, for their part, were much less numerous. But “again mobile neighboring markets have reappeared,” said Christian Estrosi. In particular Belgium, the Netherlands, Germany, Italy, Scandinavia, or even Switzerland.
In Cannes, the festival boosted the season
Nice airport – whose terminal 1 reopened for the summer before falling back to sleep on September 12 – has seen a return of customers, particularly Americans. “Even if their level of attendance remains much lower than 2019”, according to the mayor.
Cannes, whose film festival organized for the first time in July this year, was also able to benefit from it. Jean-Michel Arnaud, the president of the Palais des Festivals, which manages the tourist promotion of the destination, recorded a “much better season” than in 2020. “With attendance up 10% in August”. “The festival drew a lot of people at the start of the summer and the off-season is looking good too,” he explains.