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Real Estate

18 November 2013

Côte d'Azur top for second homes 

Buyers of high-end luxury homes cannot resist the Côte d'Azur. The rugged, breathtaking southeastern coast of France has been a playground for people of means for centuries, although in recent years the Côte d'Azur has also become a popular destination for less well-heeled tourists.

Their arrival does not seem to have diminished the region's allure among those in the market for top-tier residences, according to a study that placed the Côte d'Azur as the first choice of ultra-wealthy people buying second homes. The typical home there with five or more bedrooms now costs more than $28.5 million. 

Well-to-do Russians are among the top buyers of premium homes along the coast, echoing the dacha culture of Russia’s elite, which prizes a second home in the country.

The Côte d'Azur is not a precisely defined geographical entity but is generally understood to begin at the Italian border and continue southwest along the Mediterranean to Toulon.

The 300 days of sunshine, yacht moorings in Monaco and elsewhere, and easy access to the nightlife of Nice and Cannes all add to the area's appeal. Monaco itself is fourth on the list of favored second home locations.

Prices for top-end homes in the Côte d'Azur have declined somewhat this year, following a significant fall in 2012 amid concerns over the tax plans of the French government. Analysts say would-be buyers are now more sanguine about the fiscal outlook, bringing stability back to the market.