Cannes Film Fest 2021: Nightlife to Return as France Lifts Curfew

Cannes Nightlife will Return as France Lifts Curfew

French authorities lifted an 11 p.m. curfew earlier than expected, allowing bars and clubs in Cannes to reopen ahead of the 2021 film festival.

Cannes Party 2018


Visitors traveling to the 2021 Cannes Film Fest should be able to enjoy late-night drinks some clubbing now that France has lifted an eight-month nightly curfew.

The 11 p.m. curfew was set to remain in place until June 30, but French Prime Minister Jean Castex decided to end it earlier, citing better-than-expected data on infection rates.

This is the first time since Oct. 30 that the French are able to enjoy their country’s legendary nightlife. The country is one of the last in Europe to have maintained a nightly curfew in its battle to contain COVID-19 infection. At its strictest —at the height of its second COVID wave in mid-January, France had a 6 p.m. curfew, but that was pushed back to 7 p.m. in March, to 9 p.m. in May, and to 11 p.m. from June 9.

The French government has also dropped mandatory mask-wearing outdoors, though masks will still be required inside hotels, restaurants, bars and cinemas.

All that is good news for the service industry in Cannes, which is counting on the next month’s film festival to kick-start the summer season and mark a return to normal after nearly a year in lockdown.

Several of Cannes’ best-known festival hotspots, including the Bâoli club and the Bisous Bisous nightclub atop the Palais de Festival, will re-open in time for this year’s event.

Béatrice Gagnaire, the front of the house manager of Cannes’ Majestic Hotel, told The Hollywood Reporter that while bookings were down from the pre-COVID festival in 2019, she was confident “we will be full” when the 2021 festival takes place, from July 6 until July 17.

While Gagnaire welcomed the loosening of COVID-19 restrictions, she noted that “we all have to be very careful to show the world that Cannes still respects these safety measures. … When our guests come back it’s important that they feel secure and comfortable.”