Luxury Hotels

CANNES – 4

Everyone is exhausted by Wednesday morning, the second of three days’ one-to-one meetings between sellers, exhibitors, and buyers – one industry leader says he dreams of waking up on a beach and thinking ‘ILTM is going on without me’. It’s not only the ‘commercials’ who are already tired. The organisers, led by RX’ Portfolio Director Alison Gilmore – she of the alluring black sequinned dress at the opening Forum – and the two Spotl!ghters in charge of media, must be, too.

It’s not fair asking anyone to be photographed at 0730 – especially a chef. But Jean Imbert, centre above, is an exception. He returned to France from THE BRANDO in French Polynesia, where he’s Executive Chef, a couple of days ago. He’s also Executive Chef of HOTEL PLAZA-ATHENEE, Paris, and – same owner – of HOTEL MARTINEZ in Cannes, its Beach Club. That is where he, and the hotel’s GM, Michel Cottray, were, early yesterday.

Breakfast was sensational.  As you walked around the Martinez Beach Club you were tempted by a succession of flower-bedecked displays, of fruits, or cheeses, and waffles made to order. There were healthy options eveerywhere, complementing Hyatt’s well-being breakfast entertainment. Two gongers played eight, metre-diameter gongs to spine-chilling effect. Then, after eating, people could choose alternative-medicine offerings, including migraine theerapy.  That’s something everyone will remember, and that’s actually what it’s all about.  As with a hotel stay, one wants one thing, or more, to remember.

Media lunches vary. Belmond hosted two splendid welcome lunches Monday, which now seems so far back. Yesterday, by contrast, it was, for most hacks, trying to gobble or nibble a bagged lunch while simultaneously learning, within a few minutes, about MAS D’EN BRUNO, the Relais property in Priorat. Girlahead was one of those who had to skip the bap in a bag as HOTEL HASSLER ROMA was holding lunchtime court on Carlton Beach. The message there. incidentally, was that the next generation of Wirths, Roberto on ops and his twin Verushka on commerce, are breathing fresh air into this very traditional historic hotel (a two-floor wellness facility, with interior pool and spa, opens next year – and the serious fifth floor Wine Cellar sounds very appealing).