Nice, Monaco, Cannes
Na ilustre Côte d'Azur, respira-se um ar raro despoluído de notícias recessivas e desmotivantes. O requinte material das baías, que acolhem o Mar Mediterrâneo, proporciona uma atmosfera pouco acessível ao comum mortal.
Nice toca a água salgada na Promenade des Anglais que, nos seus cerca de 7 quilómetros, é percorrida por automóveis elegantemente caros. As urbanas scooters primam descomplexadas pela quantidade ao lado dos super desportivos de quatro rodas. Na praia a areia está extinta mas proliferam as dispendiosas espreguiçadeiras que mimam a paisagem rochosa.
Pelas ruas estreitas da histórica Vieille Ville, junto à Colline du Château, deambulam apenas os turistas. No topo da colina ergueu-se, em tempos passados, um castelo. Actualmente sobram umas pedras em sua homenagem e o espaço é ocupado por um parque recheado de crianças com uma fabulosa vista sobre a cidade.
A central Place Masséna ganha à noite uma iluminada vida que durante o dia não é devidamente notada.
O primeiro contacto com o Principado do Mónaco revelou um Grande Prémio de Fórmula 1 acabado de terminar. A ligação entre o orgulho monegasco na sua competição automobilística e o galhardete da Scuderia Ferrari é um amor perfeito entre “querer” e “poder” com relevantes motivações comerciais.
O espaço é partilhado por dez bairros que no terreno não se distinguem. Os contos de fadas poderiam todos ocorrer naqueles jardins e ruas cuidadas, ordenadas e simpaticamente povoadas. Se as pessoas precisam de sonhar, e se objectivos materiais ajudam, as páginas das revistas cor-de-rosa deveriam impor visitas de estudo ao terreno.
O expoente máximo está atracado nas marinas onde os iates competem em tamanho. Parece não haver limite além da imaginação humana e o pecado da luxuria há muito que perdeu crentes. O Musée Océanographique é publicitado em letras gordas mas não consegue surpreender.
O fulgor da cinematográfica Cannes será mais brilhante quando as passadeiras vermelhas estão estendidas para as quentes horas do festival anual. Quando os flashes cessam a cidade não perde as suas lojas de alta costura onde copos de champagne são passeados à porta fechada enquanto modelos profissionais se exibem em apresentações particulares.
O melhor de Cannes obriga a navegar até às Îles de Lérins. Sem autorização dos ponteiros do relógio para visitar ambas as ilhas rumei à Île Sainte-Marguerite onde a água do mar parece ganhar transparência com a calma envolvente. Nos seus 3 quilómetros de comprimento é possível caminhar sem ver água salgada como se em tão pequeno espaço houvesse possibilidade de vaguear sem norte. Longe dos prazeres mundanos cultivados na cidade o arquipélago é um oásis que não consegue cansar.
Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur (wikipedia.org)
Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur is one of the 27 regions of France. It encompasses six departments in south-eastern France, bounded to the east by the Italian border, to the south by the Mediterranean Sea and by the principality of Monaco, to the north by Rhône-Alpes, and to the west by Languedoc-Roussillon, with the Rhône river marking its westernmost border.
Monaco is a sovereign city-state, located on the French Riviera in Western Europe. Bordered by France on three sides, one side borders the Mediterranean Sea. It has an area of 2.02 km2, and a population of 36,371, making Monaco the second smallest, and the most densely populated country in the world. Monaco has a land border of only 4.4 km, a coastline of 4.1 km, and a width that varies between 1,700 and 349 m. The highest point in the country is a narrow pathway named Chemin des Révoires on the slopes of Mont Agel, in the Les Révoires district, which is 161 metres above sea level. Monaco's most populous Quartier is Monte Carlo, and the most populous Ward is Larvotto/Bas Moulins. Monaco is known for its land reclamation, which has increased its size by an estimated 20%. Monaco is a principality governed under a form of constitutional monarchy, with Prince Albert II as head of state. Even though Prince Albert II is a constitutional monarch, he still has immense political power. Economic development was spurred in the late 19th century with a railway to France, and the opening of the first casino, Monte Carlo. Since then, the principality's mild climate, splendid scenery, and gambling facilities have made Monaco world-famous as a tourist, and recreation centre for the rich and famous. However, in more recent years Monaco has become a major banking center and has successfully sought to diversify its economy into the services and small, high-value-added, non-polluting industries. The state has no income tax, low business taxes, and is well known for being a tax haven.
História do Mónaco (wikipedia.org)
The Grimaldis, descended from Otto Canella and taking their name from his son Grimaldo, were an ancient and prominent Guelphic Genoese family. Members of this family, in the course of the civil strife in Genoa between the Guelphs and Ghibellines, took refuge in Monaco, accompanied by various other Guelphic families, most notably the Fieschis. Francesco Grimaldi seized the Rock of Monaco in 1297, starting the Grimaldi dynasty, under the sovereignty of the Republic of Genoa. The Grimaldis acquired Menton in 1346 and Roquebrune in 1355, enlarging their possessions. Honoré II, Prince of Monaco secured recognition of his independent sovereignty from Spain in 1633, and then from Louis XIII of France by the Treaty of Péronne (1641). Since then the area has remained under the control of the Grimaldi family to the present day, except when under French control during the French revolution from 1793 to May 17, 1814. The principality was re-established in 1814, only to be designated a protectorate of the Kingdom of Sardinia by the Congress of Vienna in 1815. Monaco remained in this position until 1860, when by the Treaty of Turin, Sardinia ceded to France the surrounding county of Nice (as well as Savoy). The towns of Menton and Roquebrune, declared independence, hoping for annexation by Sardinia and participation in the Italian Risorgimento. The unrest continued until the ruling prince gave up his claim to the two towns (some 95% of the country), and they were ceded to France in return for four million francs. This transfer and Monaco's sovereignty was recognised by the Franco-Monegasque Treaty of 1861. The Prince of Monaco was an absolute ruler until the Monegasque Revolution of 1910 forced him to proclaim a constitution in 1911. In November 1942, the Italian Army invaded and occupied Monaco, setting up a fascist puppet government. Soon after in September 1943, following Mussolini's fall in Italy, the German Army occupied Monaco.
Musée Océanographique (wikipedia.org)
The Oceanographic Museum was inaugurated in 1910 by Monaco's modernist reformer, Prince Albert I. Jacques-Yves Cousteau was director from 1957 to 1988. The Museum celebrated its centenary in March 2010, after extensive renovations. This monumental architectural work of art has an impressive façade above the sea, towering over the sheer cliff face to a height of 85.04 m. It took 11 years to build, using 100,000 tons of stone. The museum is home to exhibitions and collections of various species of sea fauna (starfish, seahorses, turtles, jellyfish, crabs, lobsters, rays, sharks, sea urchins, sea cucumbers, eels, cuttlefish etc.) both stuffed and in skeletal form. The permanent exhibition, A Sailor’s Career showcases the work of Prince Albert I. It includes the laboratory from L’Hirondelle, the first of Prince Albert's research yachts.
Festival de Cannes (wikipedia.org)
The Cannes International Film Festival (Le Festival International du Film de Cannes or just Festival de Cannes), is an annual film festival held in Cannes, France, which previews new films of all genres, including documentaries, from around the world. Founded in 1946, it is one of the most prestigious and publicised film festivals in the world. The invitation-only festival is held annually (usually in May) at the Palais des Festivals et des Congrès . The 2013 Cannes Film Festival took place between 15 May - 26 May 2013. The President of the Jury was American film director Steven Spielberg.