Xiamen has struck a deal with its sister city Nice to bring the French city's world-famous carnival to Southeast China. Representatives from the two cities signed a cooperation agreement confirming the deal in Nice on Feb 27.
The Xiamen-Nice International Carnival 2017 will land on the Fujian province coast on April 29 and run for three days, with the organizers promising the event will offer an authentic experience of the Nice Carnival with a local twist.
The event has been titled A Moveable Feast, after Ernest Hemingway's famous portrait of Paris in the 1920s, and Xiamen plans to serve up a sumptuous mix of art and culture comparable to Jazz Age France.
Revelers in Xiamen's Jimei district will be able to gorge on a combination of fashion events, street art, opera, dancing and music, with most of the action concentrated in Citizens' Square near the Tan Kah Kee Theater.
There will also be places to taste Mediterranean and Asian cuisines and to discover more about international carnival cultures.
The carnival is one large event on which Xiamen and Nice have collaborated since the two cities established a sister city relationship in 2014, and both sides hope to use this event as a springboard for further cooperation over the next three to five years.
Xiamen shares many similarities with the city on France's Côte d'Azur. Like Nice, Xiamen's warm climate and beautiful coastal setting in the Taiwan Strait make it one of the most sought-after tourism destinations in the region.
The city also boasts a vibrant cultural scene, being host to some important fashion, art and sports events, including the annual Xiamen Fashion Week, which launched in 2013, and the Xiamen Marathon, which has been held each year since 2003.
Xiamen's cultural and art exchanges with France have been growing rapidly in recent years, one of the latest examples being the Jimei Arles photography festivals in 2015 and 2016.
Staged in Jimei district, the festivals were co-organized by prominent Fujian photographer Rong Rong and Sam Stourdze, director of Rencontres d'Arles, a summer photography festival based in Arles, France, and have served as a springboard for a huge range of photographers and contemporary artists.
The city is looking to heighten its French ties ever further in the coming years, including in tourism, education, culture and business.