Since arriving at the French Riviera, the 29-year-old ‘Bumble Bee’ has caused quite the buzz: joining exclusive swimming clubs and socialising with the rich and famous. But has he made the right choice?
Here, we explore the luxurious lifestyle – and if he really is the “real deal”.
The Beach Clubs And Socialising
In the beginning, Pattinson was attracted to the French Riviera by its celebrity population and beach clubs. Before setting up home in this gorgeous destination, he would spend his days playing in the water or hanging out at the beach. He even considered moving there full-time. But since then, he has fallen in love with the French Riviera all over again:
- visiting the museums
- walking along the beach
- taking pictures
- joining exclusive golf clubs
- partying with friends
After working for several years in London, Pattinson has embraced his inner Californian and now calls Deauville and the surrounding area home. A year ago, he bought an 18th century villa in the fashionable destination, which he then promptly renovated. He also owns a summer house in the area.
“I love being in the countryside but also love the pace of life in a big city. I went for a romantic weekend in Paris with my girlfriend a few months ago. We went to see the Chagall exhibition and then took a walk along the Seine. It was stunning,” he tells Hello! magazine. “I don’t really get the appeal of the countryside. I’d be much happier in a large town or on holiday in a small town. I’ve always found it quite lonely going to the countryside. You’re on your own, there’s no one around, it’s cold and it rains a lot. So I like staying in the centre of cities.”
A Paddington Bear With An Edward Scissorhands Feeling
While he hasn’t completely given up on the idea of living in the country, Pattinson has gradually introduced a country ‘vibe’ into his lifestyle. He jokes that since moving to the French Riviera, he has ‘paddingtonised’ – a phenomenon whereby celebrities adopt a British accent and mannerisms. He regularly shops at Harrods, goes to the pub, buys shoes and dresses fashionably. In fact, he even cuts his own grass with a fair isle whisky in hand.
“I don’t really feel like a countryman at all,” he admits. “This is the kind of life I’ve always dreamed of having. Even when I was a kid, I always thought I’d live in a big city and be successful. And here I am. I’m having a great life.”
While it’s wonderful to have achieved everything he has, Pattinson is quick to point out that it’s not all good news:
- he hates London, and he’s never felt more like a fish out of water
- he hasn’t been on a proper date since he moved to the French Riviera
- he spends most of his time hanging out with his friends, going to the movies and drinking wine
- his work ethic is severely lacking
The Rich And Famous As Friend And Foe
Pattinson has had friendships with some of the most wealthy and famous people in the world. One of his closest friends is Tom Cruise, with whom he regularly partied in the early 2000s. The pair became even more intertwined while filming the racing car drama Cocktail – in which they both play characters – and remained close even after the completion of the filming. (They even have a tattoo together, the name ‘Jinx’ inscribed on Tom’s arm.)
But it’s not only friends that Pattinson has kept – he has also maintained relationships with a number of his former adversaries. He famously dated one of his school’s biggest bullies and has been close friends with several other teenagers who have gone on to achieve fame. He often invites them to his villa in the hills outside of Deauville. He even calls them “the brothers”. (In one of the most photographed celebrity splits in history, Pattinson left his pregnant mistress Katy Perry for her friend, the singer.)
“I’m not going to lie and say that having famous friends hasn’t changed my life. Because it has,” he says. “I have friends in America now who I’ve never even met before but who know me so well because they’ve watched my career from the very beginning. It’s weird and quite humbling.”
A Passion For Dressing The Part
Pattinson is known for his fashion choices, and since moving to the French Riviera he has been seen in a variety of designer gear. He was first photographed wearing Marni in 2016, and has since been spotted in a variety of designer outfits.
His style has also been the subject of much media attention. While most of the photographers who covered his debut on the red carpet have showcased his fashionable good looks, numerous outlets have also focused on his personal style. For example, Vogue wrote an entire feature on his ever-changing closet. (On one of the most famous fashion Instagrams of all time, he is seen wearing a Marni dress with a white fur coat and black stilettos.)
The attention may be flattering, but it’s also pressure: Pattinson admits that before he moved to the French Riviera, he was never confident enough to choose his own fashion choices. But now that he is, he fears making a mistake:
- he doesn’t want to appear like a fashion zombie
- he wants to keep his audience interested
- he wants to shock
- he wants to stay true to himself
A Self-confessed Drama Queen
Pattinson doesn’t shy away from the spotlight and admits to being quite the drama queen. He took to social media to share a number of embarrassing stories from his modelling days, many of which are now considered ‘web classics’. (While he was never considered a bad actor, he was obsessed with mimicking people’s accents and would often practice with his work colleagues. This led to many funny situations — including a prank call to an embassy in which he played President George W. Bush.)
In one particularly embarrassing episode, he was caught on camera mimicking a disabled person. When the video went viral, he lost all his commercial work. This was followed by a period of unemployment and near-penury. It was during this low point that he decided to put his talents to good use and launch a one-man show about his life.
“I’m not going to lie and say that my life hasn’t been stressful. Before I moved to the French Riviera, I was working hard to establish my career,” he says. “I had a lot of trials and errors. I also found myself in a bit of a rut. I decided that I needed a change and a challenge and took the plunge.”
Pattinson spent a year working on his one-man show, Deauville, which is now available to watch on Netflix. In it, he explores life in the spotlight, from the pressure to look a certain way to constantly having to entertain others. While he still gets overwhelmed with pressure, he feels that now he has more freedom in terms of fashion, he can look to express himself more creatively. And indeed, his unique fashion choices have garnered him a devoted following on social media.
While it’s been a tough road, Pattinson is happy with his decision to live in the French Riviera. He feels that the spotlight firmly shined on his every move and that his life has become much more exciting in the process.
“I have a bit of an Edward Scissorhands feeling,” he admits. “I feel like I’ve become two different people. When I was growing up, I always dreamt of living in a big city. And here I am. I’ve got my own little Hollywood now.”