Founded by seafaring Greeks, colonized by Romans, and transformed by spoiled English aristocrats into an elegant stop on the Grand Tour, the city of Nice has beguiled travelers for two millennia. Once the winter playground for Russian royalty and an inspiration for Matisse, Isadora Duncan, and Picasso, Nice is now one of the capitals of mass tourism, overrun each summer with a motley international crowd of pleasure seekers. In High Season, acclaimed writer Robert Kanigel recounts how and why Nice came to define the nature of vacation itself-liberation, exoticism, sun, sex, and sensuality.
For centuries Nice slumbered beside the Mediterranean in beautiful serenity-an amalgam of French, Italian, and Provençal cultures built over tantalizing classical ruins. Then, in the mideighteenth century, English traveler Tobias Smollett exalted the splendors of Nice in a bestselling travel chronicle-and overnight, high society descended. Jefferson visited, F. Scott Fitzgerald partied in its seaside villas, and both Nazis and Jews took refuge there during World War II. Though the rich and famous now often turn elsewhere, Nice remains the queen of the Riviera: seductive, complex, stylish, dazzling in its light and loveliness.
Written with wit, verve, and originality, High Season is a tour de force of contemporary nonfiction-and a must read for anyone captivated by the beauty of the Mediterranean.
About Robert Kanigel
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Published June 3, 2002
by Viking Adult.