Central Nice, the area to the east of Avenue Jean Medecin and north of the Old Town, is a typical French area mostly off the tourist radar. Here, one may find authentic Nicoise buildings and be almost certain that your neighbours are all French.
Avenue Jean Medecin is a shopper’s dream with Galeries Lafayette, the world famous department store, the Nicetoile shopping centre and a plethora of other shops offering bargains galore. The street is made up of mostly commercial and ‘profession liberale’ (doctors, lawyers, etc) properties, which translates into a short supply of residential apartments on this street.
Nice’s new tramway system runs from the northern suburbs and goes straight through Avenue Jean Medecin to Place Massena, the heart of Nice. Other tramway projects in France and around the world, such as the LUAS tram in Dublin, have resulted in a marked increase in capital appreciation in the cities concerned and particularly for properties within a short walking distance of a tramway stop.
Boulevard Debouchage, the continuation of Boulevard Victor Hugo, is another grand, tree lined boulevard with some fabulous Art-Deco and Bourgeois buildings. The area between Debouchage and Avenue Felix Faures is undergoing some development at the moment with developers flocking in to renovate old apartments and construct new-builds. This area has a multitude of furniture shops and bookstores, while there are also French language schools and a private business school.
The Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art, located close to Place Garibaldi, offers numerous exhibitions throughout the year from such luminaries as Yves Klein. Across the road, the Acropolis is a large conference and exhibition centre which draws many businessmen to the Riviera. The Treaty of Nice was signed here on the 26th of February 2001. The museum and conference centre are built on the site of the former river which ran through Nice and historically divided the old, medieval town from the newer 19th and early 20th century ‘Belle Epoque’ areas.
The Nicoise style of architecture is prominent in central Nice and this is characterised by green window shutters and ample balconies. Prices in central Nice are slightly lower than areas like the Musicians Quarter but are very popular with local French and foreign expatriate buyers.