March 20, 2010 2:00 am

Cannes-do crowd

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The lavish parties that are the backdrop for the Mipim annual property festival in the south of France are yet to return to boomtime heights, but there were still plenty of bleary eyed travellers on flights from Cannes to London at the end of the week.

After several days, and nights, of toasting the industry's recovery in the beachfront restaurants of Cannes. the week ended with the annual party hosted by Coutts and Harvey Soning 's James Andrew International at the Majestic hotel.

Among the guests, developer Gerald Ronson was bullish on the prospects of his Heron office tower in the City, while John Richards , the former chief executive of Hammerson, tucked into smoked salmon and champagne.

Mr Richards said he was still weighing up his options on a return to the property sector, although given the widespread optimism in the room about the sustainability of the recovery he may not have to consider too hard.

UK-listed industry figures were thin on the ground, although British Land chief Chris Grigg made the most of his first Mipim with successive late nights, supported by new board recruit and head of retail, Charlie Maudsley .

Mr Grigg was also at the midweek cocktail party held by law firm Lovells for the UK-listed sector, with Quintain finance director Becky Worthington , who bravely stayed on after her chief executive Adrian Wyatt left earlier in the week.

people@ft.com

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