Cannes ships in sand for film festival
CANNES - Reuters
The Mediterranean resort is shipping in 80,000 cubic meters of white sand - enough to fill 32 Olympic swimming pools - to widen the beach along a 1.4 kilometer stretch of seafront beside the famed "Croisette" promenade.
From Brigitte Bardot in the 1950s to Nicole Kidman and Leonardo DiCaprio in more recent years, the Croisette's fine sands, glitzy hotels and gourmet restaurants have hosted film's biggest stars during the annual festival.
"We had a strip of sand which was about 20 meters wide, now we'll get an extra 10 to 12 meters," said Bruno Richard, manager of the privately owned Long Beach, where a sun lounger costs 25 euros for the day.
More than half the sand is arriving by boat from a quarry in the neighboring Var region. Mixed with sea water, the sand is pumped via a floating pipe onto the beach, where bulldozers shape the new waterfront.
Locals are divided over the development. While some applaud a bigger public beach, others fret it may be a waste of tax payers' money.
"What worries me is whether the sea will just take it all back. It cost the town a lot of money," said resident Gerard Rollandin.