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This is the context:

D’autres régions sont propices aux loyers onéreux : les destinations de vacances. Et les Grisons remportent la palme, loin devant le Valais et le Jura. Les 2000 francs de loyer y sont fréquents en de nombreux endroits.

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Winning, achieving the most success, literally, gaining the symbol of victory is what dictionnaries tell me. Here 3. or there 3. –  Nikana Reklawyks Nov 12 '12 at 20:33
    
@LeVieux: You seem to imply the meaning could easily be found in a dictionary, it is not obvious at all in this sentence what is the "success". –  Stéphane Gimenez Nov 12 '12 at 23:02
    
@StéphaneGimenez: Right, downvote removed. I'll make the comment a more constructive answer later on maybe. –  Nikana Reklawyks Nov 12 '12 at 23:09
    
Palme as in "Palme d'Or" (Golden Palm) for Cannes Film Festival. –  mins Jan 28 at 23:50
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2 Answers 2

up vote 7 down vote accepted

Literally, remporter la palme is to win a trophy.

It is also an idiom to designate a “winner” (quotation marks included). Very often it's used sarcastically, then it would of course mean “the worse”.

In your sentence it is not completely clear whether having high-priced rents is considered good or bad, it depends on the context. However it is clear that Les Grisons have the highest rates.

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It definitively sounds sarcastic to me... (the worst) –  Alexis Wilke Nov 24 '12 at 6:10
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In that sentence "remporter la palme" is used to emphasize the fact that the rent rates are high in "Les Grisons". It was probably in an article talking about the places where the rent rates are high.

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In fact, not only high, but the highest. Welcome to french.stackexchange :·) To answer that question, explaining the expression would be useful, not merely the sentence is which it occurs. (And, well, I suppose he's well aware of what the article he's reading is talking about, to be honest.) –  Nikana Reklawyks Nov 13 '12 at 23:04
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