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Despite its reputation as a playground for the “Rich and Famous”, Monte Carlo in Monaco has much to offer with activities like a visit to the Royal residence of Monaco, the Monaco Grand Prix, Monaco Yacht Show and, of course, many Casinos.
I arrive in style at the Fairmont Hotel, Monte Carlo which is located right next to the alluring blue Mediterranean Sea with the backdrop of the Alps nestled between Italy and France, a short distance away from the Principality of Monaco.
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The hotel itself gives the impression of a cruise, with a panoramic view of the sea from the room’s balcony. In the distance, you can see many yachts and sailboats. I’ll need to change into my nautical beach attire, along with a spray of Givenchy Only Fraîche. A scent inspired by the citrus notes with the addition of Nepal mint and sage, giving a boost to the atmosphere. It’s time for some cocktails and little retreat, so I head towards the swimming pool on the 7th floor.
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After a long swim, it’s dinner-time. Time to change into my dinner outfit and a bright pair of brogues by Manolo Blahnik. Often, you feel the need to add some colours with an accessory to complete your look. I am looking out of the large window of Saphir 24 Bistro Lounge & Bar with a view of the glowing sun fading into the sea and a glass of bubbly in my hand. A waiter offered me a ‘bistro-chic’ menu along with a few of his personal recommendations. I trusted his choice. The room is filled with soft music, adding to the already relaxed atmosphere The whole experience was finalised with immaculate food.
Few activities to visit around Monte Carlo, Monaco
During my two-day visit, I went sightseeing around Monte Carlo and saw some very interesting places.
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Built on the side of the mythical Rock of Monaco, the Oceanographic Museum has been watching over the oceans for over a century. Founded by Prince Albert I, great grandfather of H.S.H. Prince Albert II, it was designed as a Palace entirely dedicated to Art and Science. This picturesque building filled with so many treasures, more than 6000 specimens of fish and numerous of different exhibitions throughout the year.
the Casino de Monte-Carlo offers the European Roulette, Trente et Quarante, Black Jack, English Roulette and Ultimate Texas Hold’em Poker tables. And if you’re torn between tables and slot machines, the machines in the Salle Renaissance and the Salle des Amériques will satisfy your every desire. Here you can move from room to room, weaving your way between the players and trying your luck, enjoy a meal at Le Train Bleu or the Le Salon Rose Brasserie, sip a glass of champagne at the Bar Salle Blanche and, if the weather is good, take in the view from the terrace of the Salle Blanche or the veranda of the Salons Super Privés.
Head towards Carré d’Or for boutiques such as Gucci, Hermes, Yves Saint Laurent, Dior, and Prada. Metropole shopping centre is situated nearby.
The original fortress and ramparts were built by the Genoese in 1215 and throughout the centuries was transformed into one of the most luxurious residences in the style of Louis XIV. Prince Honore II was responsible for re-assembling the rich collections of art, which had been auctioned off during the French Revolution when the Palace was turned into a hospital for the Italian Army.
However, Prince Rainier III is credited restoring the Palace to its former glory and the magnificent state in which it can be seen today.
Monte Carlo Market
More of a farmer’s market selling fruit, vegetables, meats, dairy produce and local bread. Situated in avenue Saint-Charles since 2003 this market offers visitors a fantastic array of aromas, colours and choice of produce. Containing a market garden, bar, grocery store, a bakery plus a butcher shop, this market is a one-stop shop for all your culinary needs whilst in Monaco.
Explore the French Riviera, with haute couture fashion, a la carte dining experiences, operas, casinos and much more in Monte Carlo. It’s time to pack your bags and move on to the next adventure. There are some pretty drives offering spectacular views over the Coastline so why not spoil yourself with a convertible sports car and take in the French Riviera in style. Bon Voyage!
Photos by Diana Martin Photography