Marketing in Old Town Nice: Cours Saleya and More

 

 

The Curious Rambler

Cours Saleya market, Nice FranceBy Margo Lestz

Cours Saleya is the heart of Old Town Nice and it’s always pulsating with life. Striped awnings cover its centre and shelter the products on offer in the daily market. Crowds of locals and tourists come here to do their shopping or sometimes just to look and snap photos of the colourful displays. The scents of fresh produce and flowers seem to put everyone in a good mood and the atmosphere is friendly.

Cours Saleya flower market, Nice France

Cours Saleya hosts four different markets. The most well known is the Marché aux Fleurs, or Flower Market, held Tuesday through Sunday. It’s actually a combination of the flower market and the fruit and vegetable market but the name, Marché aux Fleurs is commonly applied to the whole thing. The fruit and vegetable stands pack up by 1.30 in the afternoon but the flower stalls stay open until about 5.30.

Cours Saleya flower market, Nice France

The flower sellers…

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Tourrettes-sur-Loup & Les Violettes

The medieval town of Tourrettes-sur-Loup is known as the “City of Violets.”  The city celebrates the end of the flower harvest in March, with the “Fete de la Violette,” an event that was started by Victor Linton, a jeweller who came to the village in 1947.   The “Victoria” violet, characterized its five petals, long stem, and deep violet color, is a fragrant, winter flower used to make ice cream, jam, candy, beauty products, perfume, cosmetics, & more.  The leaves are cultivated later to make the essence used in many famous perfumes.

Food stalls and violet-themed products were front and center with crowds mingling throughout the town’s cobblestone streets and enjoying the weekend festival – taking time to smell the roses violets!

violets

Shopping at “Cap 3000” for Sales (Les Soldes)

To take advantage of the (government regulated) twice-a-year sales (les soldes) in France, I recently went shopping (window and otherwise) at Cap 3000 shopping mall, located just west of the Nice airport in St. Laurent-du-Var.

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There were a lot of shoppers, IMG_0001and it was interesting taking in all the various  window displays.

And of course, lunch was on the day’s menu (see below).

Galeries Lafayette:

Galeries Lafayette windowGL window

Sephora:

There isn’t an American-style food court, but rather, a few restaurants in the mall – popular, as indicated by the line of people waiting for a table. One even provided a nice bench for customers and, withbench efficiency in mind, passed out some menus to look at while waiting in line. I got one of the two last available “plat du jour“: veal with mushrooms, served with melt-in-your-mouth potatoes and courgette flan – delicieux!

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So, what did I buy?  A few pairs of earrings, a small red handbag, a pair of leggings, and this tote to carry my laptop.  Happy Shopping!IMG_0031

Noël 2013

Some holiday photos taken while shopping and strolling through Place Massena in Nice – festive, fun & nice!  Sunny days and warm temperatures have been a nice holiday present, to boot!

JOYEUSES FÊTES!

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 festive champagne glass

Salon du Palais Gourmand (Culinary Expo)

Similar to the Salon des Vignerons, this annual exposition was equally impressive, with winemakers, artisans, and culinary specialists all enticing visitors to taste and sample their wares. Held over a five-day period at the l’Hippodrome/racetrack in Cagnes-sur-Mer, the event hosts regional productors from all over France.

Of course, my first stop was at one of the champagne stands, where I sampled their Brut Rosé – it was miam-miam!  Foie gras, super-size cheeses, meats and sausages of every kind, olives, nougat, macaroons, oysters, and cassoulet were on display in the pavillon – a feast for the eyes, as well as for the tastebuds – Bon Appétit!

Antibes Market & the Quest for a Tomato

Maybe our memories are exagerrated and tastier than the reality, but one thing I really miss is the lusciously red, ripe, meaty beefsteak tomato found in the U.S. at the farmer’s market.  Oui, France has its version, bien sûr, but does the IMG_0034“coeur de boeuf” in France equal the garden variety “beefsteak” tomato?  I was on a quest!

I went to the marché en plein air in Antibes and scouted the vendors’ stands for tomatoes: all shapes and sizes were available – I bought two different varieties that looked similar to beefsteak – one was priced at a hefty 9,50€ per kilo (about $6 per pound) but it looked like the real thing.  I have tried “coeur de boeuf” and found them a little bland tasting, comparatively speaking, so maybe this would be ‘it’!

After slicing the tomatoes, I realized they weren’t the same red or as meaty, but it would be the taste that counts, right!?  IMG_0037IMG_0036
So, what was the verdict? Well, it tasted like a tomato and was good, but it still lacked that deep, rich, full flavor I was craving.

So, my quest continues during the current tomato season, but maybe, just maybe, I’ll have to smuggle one from the US! 🙂

Photos from the town of Antibes & its market (hover over photo for caption)