Stuck for small talk? Elaine Knutt lists 20 things you always wanted to know about MIPIM (if only you’d realised it before)


Stands for Marché International des Professionels de l’Immobilier, and is now a teenager in its 16th year.

2. Last year’s Cannes Film Festival was almost twice the size of MIPIM, with 30,000 registered participants. There is no foundation to the rumour that MIPIM delegates consume the same amount of alcohol as the massed ranks of movie luvvies and liggers. However, those late night screenings do cut into available drinking time, so…

3. Taking a taxi from Nice airport to Cannes will cost around EUR 68, according to

4. But for some reason, leaving Cannes by cab at the end of your stay will be cheaper – just EUR 63

5. Last year, MIPIM delegates came from 67 countries, with 1,903 companies taking stands and 5,501 organisations sending registered participants.

6. If you pick up new clients at MIPIM 2005, you might want to hire a yacht to entertain them at MIPIM 2006. Here’s an idea of the cost, courtesy of Cannes broker MS Yachts. For an 18m craft, prices start at EUR 2,000 to 2,500 a day. For a 24m boat, allow EUR 5,000-6,000, rising to EUR 20,000-30,000 for a 50m cruiser. “The price includes a full crew,” says MD Robert Hoegen. “The only extra you pay is for food and drink.”

7. In an average day during MIPIM, the Amiral bar at the Hôtel Martinez expects to get through 50 bottles of champagne, 30 bottles of gin and 2,000 bottles of beer.

8. If you’re tired of drinking foreign brew, head for the Liverpool@MIPIM stand, where organisers have imported several cases of Cains Brewery’s finest. It’s all part of its “sights, sounds and tastes of Liverpool” theme.

9. During MIPIM week, Cannes’ population of 69,800 will be swollen by an influx of 16,000 developers, consultants, contractors and public sector delegates (and around 500 impeccably behaved journalists).

10. Alcohol might assist your fluency in French, but here’s a tip when trying out your new-found language skills in cafés and restaurants. Calling out “garçon!” at the top of your voice is a sure-fire way not to get served. Raise your arm and say “s’il vous plait” instead.

11. If you want to get away from it all, the Ile de Sainte Marguerite is only a 15-minute boat ride away and comes highly recommended by the Man in the Iron Mask. He spent 1661-1672 locked up in a cell here in what’s now the Musée de la Mer.

12.Thirsty? A bottle of Taittinger champagne in the Martinez’s Amiral bar will set you back EUR 82.

13. This year, tickets to the four-day event cost EUR 1,180. In a controversial move, organiser Reed MIDEM has barred non-ticket-holders from the quayside and the meeting rooms of the Carlton, Majestic and Gray d’Albion hotels between the 9am to 7pm opening hours of the Palais des Festivals.

14. The Palais des Festivals and the 24,000 sq m Espace Riviera make Cannes the third biggest exhibition centre in Europe. The town’s website claims only Hong Kong has a larger conference industry.

15. Look out for the handprints on the pavement near the Palais des Festivals. Movie stars from Sophia Loren to Clint Eastwood and Sharon Stone have left their mark here.

16. MIPIM 2005 will see an Olympian rivalry between the five cities bidding to hold the Games in 2012. Some of the plans being considered by the Olympic Committee will be showcased in an exhibition.

17. The London stand at MIPIM 2005 has been moved from within the Palais des Festivals to a pavilion on the roof, previously occupied by the City of Paris. The area, complete with terrace bar overlooking the harbour, almost doubles the size of last year’s stand, and participation – at 112 companies and around 600 delegates – is also higher than last year.

18. Cannes owes its fortune to an English property developer. In 1834, Lord Brougham, a former Lord Chancellor of England, “discovered” the tiny fishing village and decided to turn it into a booming tourist resort. The Hôtel Gonnet de la Reine, the first luxury hotel on the Croisette, was built in 1858.

19. Thinking of hiring a yacht in a prime berth in the marina for MIPIM 2006? Then you’ll need to look smart about it as all 70 berths will be snapped up well before the event. MIPIM participants are obviously enthusiastic sailors – it’s apparently easier to get a late booking during the Film Festival.

20. Fancy a late-night sing-song? Jimmy McKissic, resident pianist at the Amiral bar, expects to receive more requests for “New York, New York” than for any other song.