Sarkozy lashed for lux vacation

9th May 2007, Comments 0 comments

PARIS, May 9, 2007 (AFP) - President-elect Nicolas Sarkozy may have been seeking some relaxation, but his Mediterranean getaway has instead sailed him straight into his first storm as French newspapers slammed Wednesday his luxury yacht cruise as ostentatious.

PARIS, May 9, 2007 (AFP) - President-elect Nicolas Sarkozy may have been seeking some relaxation, but his Mediterranean getaway has instead sailed him straight into his first storm as French newspapers slammed Wednesday his luxury yacht cruise as ostentatious.

The Depeche du Midi slapped Sarkozy for "an immoderate taste for super luxury" over the trip on a 60-metre (200-foot) yacht belonging to his billionaire friend Vincent Bollore.

The newspaper compared his behaviour to a "nouveau riche who has just hit the jackpot. But the Elysee is not the national lottery."

Sarkozy boarded the vessel in Malta with his wife Cecilia and their 10-year-old son Louis on Monday at the start of a three-day break to relax after the right-winger's emphatic weekend election victory.

The rental price for the yacht which can accommodate 12 people would normally be up to 200,000 euros (270,000 dollars) per week in the high season.

"A way of showing-off money that recalls Silvio Berlusconi," the billionaire former Italian prime minister who never let office hinder his high-flying lifestyle, concluded La Republique des Pyrenees.

The conservative Le Figaro was bewildered by the change in plans from a vacation on the French Mediterranean island of Corsica to the luxury cruise which has caused "concern among a number of friends of Nicolas Sarkozy."

La Republique du Centre noted that the "monastic retreat turned into a luxury cruise. That change of direction alters the image of Nicolas Sarkozy as an appealing, humble leader that was projected Sunday night."

Sarkozy "will be our first American-style president," wrote L'Independant du Midi. He is a "great admirer of the country where money and luxury are considered as mandatory symbols of success."

"Go for it!" jeered the left-wing L'Humanite. "Enough of the stirring speeches about forgotten workers or the France that gets up early," it added.


Copyright AFP

Subject: French news

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