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Press Release No.8 - 31st December 2010 - Summary of 2010 

The first half of 2010 was extremely weak again in the conference market in Cannes. Clients were happy to wait until the last minute to make bookings and saw rental prices tumble from rather optimistic asking prices in line with 2009 down by as much as 40% in some cases in the days before conferences began. MIPIM prices were down an average of about 20-25% from last year. The Film Festival was stronger, possibly even unchanged from 2009 rates, with a stronger US dollar bringing higher demand from US clients. Summer demand was largely unaffected - in some ways the global recession brings new clients to the rental market seeing it as a cheaper alternative to hotel stays. If you analyse it, 6 people staying 2 weeks in a 3-bedroom apartment pay just €250 per week per person which when combined with a low cost flight makes for a cheap summer holiday in the French Riviera. 

The last big conference of the year, MIPCOM, saw late but stronger demand, suggesting the worst of the recession may now be over. We are already seeing reservations for the first few conferences of 2011 which suggests it should be a significantly stronger year than the last 2. The larger apartments continue to outperform the studios with supply of centrally located 3-bedroom apartments remaining low. For this reason we purchased a second twin 3-bedroom apartment at 17 Rue Meynadier which has just finished its renovations and is ready to open its doors for 2011 with already a strong calendar building. 

Overall property prices in Cannes followed the same trend as the rental market - remaining slow for the first half of the year before showing signs of recovery in the second half. Buyers have been returning to the market and the number of transactions is certainly going up. As we suspected, the weakness in prices brought more buyers than sellers to the market so it feels as if we have now seen the bottom of the market and would expect a slow, steady climb from here. Prices are not yet back to the highs of late 2008 but I would be surprised if we hadn't reached that level by the end of 2011.