If the maxim “don't mix business with pleasure” rings hollow anywhere, it's Cannes. With mobile phone in one hand and champagne glass in the other, every wheeler-dealer makes sure big bucks business and hardcore partying go hand-in-hand at the world's most famous film bonanza. True deal spinners do business down at the yacht harbor, where super-slick boats such as the Palma-based “Lady Moura” and many others of which will head for the Balearics once the festival is over, compete for size. “There's plenty of serious entertainment, but there's a lot of serious business going on, too,” Guy Russell, a London-based executive with Matrix Film Finance, said yesterday, standing on the deck of a luxury ocean-going cruiser. “Every day we'll have a lunch, some cocktails in the evening, and then a couple of parties at night, but all the while we're thinking business,” he said in a hoarse voice, evidently still groggy from the night before. All along the harbour-side at Cannes are monster yachts chartered by producers, distributors, financiers and any others who want a tie-in to the movie industry. Registered in the likes of Cape Town, the Cayman Islands and Bermuda, the yacht is the business accessory par excellence at Cannes, not to mention a great place to have a party. “There's no more beautiful place to do business than Cannes, and if you're here you might as well do it on a yacht,” Cindy Rakowitz, head of RaknRoll entertainment, said as she lay on a 150-foot (50 meter) gin palace called “Perfect Persuasion.” ”We'll hold 11 parties in as many days on here and it will cost us a fair amount, but it's an investment, like in any business.” While the biggest yachts complete with jacuzzis, multi-gyms, speedboats and a deck with space for hundreds - can cost upwards of £250'000 for two weeks, others go for a more modest £40'000 a week ocean cruiser. Of course, some don't even have to think about renting. Microsoft billionaire Paul Allen is in town with his hulking white floating palace “Charade” where Giorgio Armani hosted a star-studded party for Martin Scorsese, Leonardo DiCaprio and Cameron Diaz during the festival. And it's not just Hollywood millions or technology billions that buy a place on the coveted harbor - adult entertainment is a growing business with a big presence at Cannes. High–class pornographic film company Private has at least one super-yacht - “El Harem” moored along the dock. As more champagne was being loaded onboard “Perfect Persuasion” yesterday afternoon, Rakowitz was keen to point out that business was still the point. “I promise you that the only people here tonight having too good a time are the ones not doing business.”

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