Monaco: A Name that Rhymes with Luxury
Now that we have all been brought back to the world of royalty, as King Charles III is reigning over the United Kingdom, its territories and the Commonwealth, it is time to continue our discovery of the world of Kings and Princes, by visiting the Principality of Monaco.
There, one will uncover a world of luxury, that starts with the Prince’s Palace, and that melts into everything else, starting with hotels. Here is a deeper look at the Principality of Monaco and its glorious beauty.
Accommodations offering Exclusive Services and Equipment in an Enchanting Setting
As the French call it, there is a “savoir faire” in Monaco, that is rare to find, anywhere else in the world. Certainly, the size of the Principality has something to do with it. It is much easier to create a small paradise than a large one. We can definitely call this location, and its less than 40,000 citizens, a heaven on earth.
Everything was thought of, and created, for a luxurious lifestyle, whether you live there or only spend a few days a year. It all starts with the hotels that are part of the Monte-Carlo Société des Bains de Mer.
When you think of a luxury hotel, what do you imagine in your head? Monaco has the ability to translate this image into reality. It starts with the quality of services that are offered. In the four hotels that are owned and managed by the group Monte-Carlo Société des Bains de Mer, you will find luxury in various forms, starting with Michelin-starred restaurants.
The most prestigious of them all, is located inside the legendary Hôtel de Paris. Le Louis XV – Alain Ducasse has 3 Michelin stars standing by its name. Its Mediterranean cuisine is known all over the world. Businessmen and head of states all want to dine at least once in this establishment, to taste the Riviera terroir.
It is supplied by small farmers located close to the Principality, as well as fishermen and stockbreeders that bring in fresh products, daily. It is said that when you eat at Le Louis XV, you can actually taste the sweet life of the Riviera, in the meals that they serve.
You will find the Blue Bay restaurant, a 2 Michelin stars, at the Monte-Carlo Bay Hotel & Resort. Tourists are attracted by the amazing view of the sea that the outside terrace provides.
As they delight themselves in the fusion of Caribbean and Mediterranean flavours, guests enjoy the beautiful breeze coming in from the sea, as they sip on the wine of a bottle from the hotel’s cellars. Chef Marcel Ravin is in command and creates meals full of passion. He is known in the industry for its flair and creativity.
Get ready to be transported into other worlds, from one service to the next.
Let’s not forget the restaurant Le Grill, at the Hôtel de Paris Monte-Carlo. It also boasts a star beside its name. And like the Blue Bay, the panorama offered on its terrace is breathtaking. But it is in the plates that you will find the most pleasure.
Especially if you try one of its signature dishes, which are king prawns that have been taken from the Gulf of Genoa, a free-range herbed young chicken, or the one and only Grand Marnier soufflé; a delight to all those customers that keep coming back, just for it.
Finally, let’s not forget Le Pavyllon at Hôtel l’Hermitage. This Yannick Alléno restaurant holds one Michelin star and is known for rewriting the rulebook of fine dining. Those that know gastronomy will keep coming back to discover new plates on the menu.
Let’s face it, what we appreciate most, when we go on holidays to recuperate from the harshness of our daily lives at work, are the moments when we get pampered at the spa. But in Monaco, these establishments located inside the hotels, are far above the norm. Since it is located on the sea, it is also possible to complete the day, by a swim near the beach, or in one of the pools.
One should start with the Thermes Marins Monte-Carlo. This spa was conceived in order to respond to beauty, health and relaxation. It is reflected in the facility, through the services provided through the care of multidisciplinary experts, that create personalized treatments and protocols for each of their guests. But it is also the equipment that makes a large difference.
The Thermes Marins are up to date on all the latest technologies in the various fields that they operate, which includes slimming, anti-ageing, and health at every level. Outside, guests get to relax with a view of the Mediterranean Sea, right at their feet, below. It is also a great place to get your future in shape.
During your stay, a nutritionist can plan your diet for the weeks and months to come, while a sports trainer can prepare your exercise schedule, for the next few months. The Thermes Marins are an establishment that can be reached either through the Hôtel de Paris Monte-Carlo or the Hôtel Hermitage Monte-Carlo.
The Spa Cinq Mondes is located at the Monte Carlo Bay Hotel & Resort. In a traditional ancestral approach, it offers beauty treatments that aim to restore the body’s energy and beauty. With its 900m2 facility, guests are welcomed into a relaxing world, entirely directed toward their wellness. It is one of the most recognized spas in the region.
Finally, the Monte-Carlo Beach spa is located in a haven, nearby Monaco. In the back, the center is inside a forest of pine cones, while in the front, it finds itself at the tip of a cliff, overlooking the sea. It is the perfect place to escape and to benefit from luxury skincare. If you enjoy yoga, meditation and Pilates, this is the spa you will want to choose.
Once you are done with your session, head to the Olympic-sized pool of the hotel, to complete your relaxation for the day, by swimming a few laps, or head directly to the beach.
Casinos, Bars & Nightlife
The Monte-Carlo Société des Bains de Mer doesn’t only own two casinos; it is home to the most famous European casino in the world. The Casino de Monte-Carlo is indeed legendary. It is featured in various films, such as a James Bond movie. It is known for its elegance and class. Luxury is certainly a term that you can affix to the Casino de Monte-Carlo.
It holds all the table games you would expect to find in such establishments, like the roulette, craps and blackjack, but also a large variety of slot machines. However, it may be their second casino (The Casino Café de Paris) that attracts the most gamblers that like to spend time at the slot machines. That is because they offer the most innovative ones on the market.
To complete these casinos, the group offer eleven different bars and nightclubs. One of the most famous names is certainly the Buddha-Bar. You can find one in Paris as well, as in other major cities of the world. Everywhere you find one, this bar is a synonym of elegance and high standards.
There, one can have a drink under the supervision of a colossal Buddha, which comes straight from Asia, or on one of the two open-air terraces. You can also dine on the premises. The cuisine is a mix of Thai and Japanese.
Let’s also note La Salle Blanche, an exclusive bar which is located inside the private salons, at the Casino de Monte-Carlo. This is where luxury hits its highest stride. In fact, it is only available to card holders of My Monte-Carlo Gold, Platinum and Private Monte-Carlo. Its sumptuous décor is unforgettable.
It features a mosaic bar and chandeliers. There are gaming tables located inside the Salle Blanche. Be prepared to meet la crème de la crème, when you enter into this other world.
Luxury Shopping in Monaco
Of course, as you would expect, you will find some of the most exclusive boutiques on the streets of Monaco. But if you want to visit the very high end, you can start your shopping day at One Monte-Carlo and continue on the Monte-Carlo shopping promenade.
It is filled with everything you may need, including women and men ready to wear clothes, leather goods, jewellery, as well as arts and antiques. As an example, if you are looking for a watch, you will be able to find one in the 21 boutiques that offer them. You are looking at such important names as Rolex, Audemars Piguet as well as Chopard.
In the world of ultra luxury jewellery, Cartier, Bulgari and Balenciaga will cater to all of your needs. You can complete your task in the open-air, and you can call upon the service of a personal shopper, if you so desire.
One thing is certain, at the end of the day, you will be happy to reach your room in one of the four luxury hotels of the Monte-Carlo Société des Bains de Mer, either to relax by the pool, enjoy a drink at one of the bar with your friends, or to get ready for one of the greatest meals of your life, in a Michelin-starred restaurant.
What to visit during Your Stay in Monaco?
If you book your hotel room way in advance, you may be able to spend Formula One racing week-end in the Principality. But let’s be honest: The popularity of this event makes it almost impossible to find tickets or accommodations to the city.
Your best solution might be to call upon a Clefs d’Or concierge (if you know one), who might be able to make a miracle happen, just for you. Otherwise, here are other sites that you should not miss, while in Monaco.
The Oceanographic Museum of Monaco
The moment you see its architecture, from the outside, you will want to walk through its various rooms. Not just to discover the sea fauna, but also to marvel at the beauty of this historical building. The mission statement of the museum is that the ocean unites us all. It aims to help us discover the links between humans and the various species that live inside the water.
Through various aquariums, visitors discover various parts of the world. One will show you the species that live inside the Mediterranean Sea, while another will take you to tropical seas.
Don’t miss out on the sharks’ aquarium, to see up-close the rulers of the water world. You will also get to know more about sea turtles, a species that needs help for their protection, if we want to make sure that they can survive and thrive.
The Prince’s Palace
It would be a miss, if one was to spend time in Monaco and not visit the Palace of the Prince. It has been the home of the Grimaldi family since 1297, although it was built a few years before, in 1215. It is located on what is called the Rock of Monaco, where it stands in all its grandeur, in front of the Mediterranean Sea.
It was actually conquered by François Grimaldi, where he initiated his reign over Monaco. As in other places, you will be able to discover parts of the building, including the room of the throne. It is a visit that lasts about 45 minutes, which will certainly make you want to read more upon the story of the family and the palace.
The only way to understand a city is to walk though its streets. Old Monaco is where the heart of the city beats. You will find many coloured houses on your path, which contrast starkly with the towers from the new section. Many of the streets are closed to cars, which renders the course more family friendly.
For those who would like to know about the history of the town, in a fun way, you should hop on the small train that goes around Old Monaco. It will take you to all the important sites, and you can go back by foot, to the ones that you want to know more about, once the tour is done.
Yes, Monaco is one of the most luxurious locations in the world. But most of all, you get to forget life for a few days and enjoy the best that it has to offer.