The French Riviera, particularly St Tropez, is the ultimate holiday destination for the rich and famous. However, the origins of the wealthy visitors vary from year to year depending on the world financial climate and fluctuations in exchange rates.
The latest financial data and hands-on experience of the St Tropez House team suggest that 2015 will be the year of the Americans in the South of France.
For the last half a year, the USD/EUR exchange rate has been gradually rising, and in mid-January, it achieved its 10-year peak: 0.85. In other words, one American dollar buys as much as 0.85 EUR. If we compare this data to a similar period last year, American renters and buyers "save" up to 15% on properties rented or purchased in the region.
Emilia Jedamska, St Tropez House manager commented, "Over the last few months we have received a relative increase in enquiries from Americans willing to spend their summer holiday in St Tropez. This trend overlaps with faster decisions and payment orders. At first we did not know where to look for the reason of this new wave of interest. Over time we realised that we were benefitting from the favourable USD/EUR currency trend."
The new trend brings back memories of the inter-war period when American "high society" chose the French Riviera as their dream holiday retreat. With them arrived the artists F. Scott Fitzgerald, Isadora Duncan, Henry James, and legendary socialites Sara and Gerald Murphy, who left behind a rich legacy of villas, as well as French Riviera inspired paintings and novels.
Back then, the Americans could lesser afford French Riviera holidays due to the strength of the dollar against the French franc, but, in 2015, St Tropez has once again become more accessible to American guests.