With all the trappings of wealth, glamour, history and exclusivity, Monaco is the place to be and be seen.
Host of the popular Formula 1 Grand Prix and Casino de Monte-Carlo, Monaco is high-octane, dispersed with luxury cars, superyachts and Michelin starred restaurants overlooking the Mediterranean Sea.
Enness believes the Monaco property market is the place to buy in 2017. Why not take a weekend trip to the country and see for yourself? Indulge in our luxurious recommendations for a long weekend in Monaco, and you will soon want to purchase a piece of paradise.
Get your bearings
Monaco is divided into four main areas: Monaco-Ville, home to the Prince’s Palace of Monaco; the glamorous Monte Carlo, the port quarter of Condamine; and Fontvieille, a small man-made harbour claimed from the sea.
The second smallest country in the world after Vatican City, Monaco caters for a select, high net worth few. The second smallest independent state (after Vatican City) Monaco occupies just 0.75 square miles, and its old glamour and modern opulence is easily explored in a weekend, whether that be by foot or Ferrari.
Leave your luggage with the immaculately turned out bellboy ready to greet you at the stylish Hotel de Paris Monte-Carlo, situated nicely in between Casino Square and the nearby Mediterranean Sea.
The Diamond Suite at the hotel were once frequented by Winston Churchill and can be your weekend hideaway for €12,500 per night. This presidential suite is on the 8th floor with private access, which only enhances the privilege of owning the keys for your 48 hours in Monaco. The contemporary design of these rooms are only made more spectacular by artworks left by Winston Churchill himself. How better to experience the exceptional luxury and gourmet cuisine of one of the world’s most famous hotels.
Day One: Live like Monaco royalty
Enjoy a light, yet luxurious breakfast at Le Louis XV – Alain Ducasse á l’Hôtel de Paris, the haute couture of Riviera cuisine. The restaurant décor is delectably classical and chefs Dominique Lory and Alain Ducasse have truly earned each one of their three Michelin stars. Ducasse himself is currently showcasing his culinary skill at the Dorchester in London, but it is clear that he learnt his trade and flair at Le Louis XV.
Take a leisurely stroll to the Palais Princier de Monaco for the traditional ritual of the Changing of the Guard at 11:55am. Located high up in the old-town, the Palace is the perfect place to start your adventure in Monaco with an elaborate display of pageantry at the helm of a clifftop overlooking the glittering harbours of Monaco below.
After the display, take a tour of the State Apartments. As the private residence of the Grimaldi family the Palace is only to be admired from the outside, the State Apartments Italian-style gallery and 15th century frescoes inside are simply breath-taking. Each room is themed by colour; the yellow and gold of the Louis XVth lounge; the Mazarin room covered with multi-coloured wood-panelling; the impressive and intricate Renaissance fireplace of the Throne Room; the Palatine Chapel built in the 17th century; and the awe-inspiring and inescapable white of St Mary’s Tower, which is built completely from the white stones of the nearby town of La Turbie.
No visit to the palace is complete without a tour of Prince Rainier III’s exclusive race cars. Here you’ll find everything from the glass top Lexus used by son Prince Albert II for his royal wedding in 2011, to Formula 1 cars from previous Monaco Grand Prix’s.
After a morning of exploring royal homes and luxury cars, it’s time to refuel. Head to Fontvieille through La Condamine making sure to admire the multi-million dollar yachts on the way to Beefbar Monaco for elegant architecture, a relaxed atmosphere and the best beef in town (you can trust us – we have it on good authority from our Managing Director, Hugh Wade-Jones).
A morning of palaces and luxury cars calls for an afternoon of material excess. Walk the marble floors of Monaco’s La Metropole shopping centre beneath period chandeliers. Nearby at The Monte-Carlo Pavilions you’ll witness a truly unique Monaco shopping experience from Chanel to Saint Laurent, where inside five futuristic pebble-shaped domes you will find the most distinguished designer houses of Monaco fashion.
After shopping, stop by the world-famous Café de Paris in Casino Square for a deliciously rich coffee, and the best car watching in the world.
Begin your evening with an aperitif at Le Bar Américain located within the Hotel de Paris. It’s a great place for drinks, live jazz and relaxing.
Complete your first day with dinner at the Italian, nautically themed restaurant, The Cipriani where you’ll find Cipriani’s signature rich mahogany walls, marble floors and brown leather chairs. After dinner, head to the casino.
The Casino de Monte-Carlo is an architectural dream. Inaugurated in 1863, and reimagined by Charles Garnier in 1878, it has an atrium paved in marble and surrounded by 28 columns in onyx. The Opera Hall is a sight to behold with its red and gold décor and delicate sculptures. The Casino itself, where you do not have to play, leads into the newly renovated Salle Blanche, and opens out into the sea. The view is unrivalled anywhere in the world.
If you are feeling lucky however, try your hand at poker, roulette or Chemin de Fer for a true bonne soirée.
Day Two: Wellness and Relaxation
Start the day off with another of Hugh Wade Jones’ favourites, a workout at the 39 Monte Carlo – a private member’s fitness and lifestyle club which is beyond this world and rooted with a unique British sporting heritage. The owner, an ex-professional rugby player, is a close friend of Hugh and has utilised his experience to redefine the benchmarks for fitness, nutrition and wellness.
Hit your post gym protein breakfast fix at Bouchon, and take advantage of Monaco’s 300 days of sunshine by eating on their stunning roof terrace. The traditional French bistro has undergone a healthy eating makeover and is the perfect place for a post-workout meal with an array of gluten free options, where you can add a shot of protein to your matcha, mango and mint smoothie.
Venture up to northern Monaco where you will find an array of stunning beaches including the notable Larvotto Beach.
Or, if you’re staying at Hotel de Paris, spend the rest of your morning at their private beach with a relaxing cocktail in the knowledge you’ll be well looked after. If you choose Larvotto, don’t forget to visit Pierre Geronomi, a local favourite for ice cream where you’ll find a selection of unique flavours including chestnut, beetroot, green tea and honey.
To continue the theme of relaxation, spend your afternoon at the luxurious spa, the Thermes Marins Monte-Carlo. No ordinary spa, the Thermes Marins Monte-Carlo is part of the Hotel de Paris and combines 7,000 square metres of serenity and wellness over four floors with a heated seawater pool and breath-taking views of the Mediterranean. With relaxation like this, it is no wonder Monaco has the highest life expectancy in the world.
If you would prefer to continue exploring rather than relaxing, a trip to Monaco’s old town to visit the Cathedrale de Monaco is the perfect afternoon escapade. The Cathedral holds the final resting place of Princess Grace Kelly and Prince Rainier III. The Cathedral is decorated in a Roman-Byzantine style, with white marble, byzantine mosaics, and elaborate oil paintings of religious figures.
The story of Grace Kelly is truly at the heart of Monaco’s history; she defines the epochal glamour and elegance which is the material that the country is so famed for. So many elements have been attributed to her; an avenue, and even a rose garden all take her name. You can learn more about the Princess who embodies Monaco in the Princess Grace Irish Library which contains her personal collection of Irish books. The library also contains newspaper clippings about the princess’ life, as well as other items from her private collection such as sheet music and floral napkins, as well as her mother’s treasured sewing box.
After the Cathedral visit Jardin Exotique, a beautifully landscaped cliff-side garden with spectacular views over Monaco. It’s a steep climb but the view is better than any you will have ever seen before.
For a final evening of indulgence, we recommend at Quai des Artistes in La Condamine. The quality of the artwork which hangs on the wall, reflects the sheer excellence of the strictly French menu – you will not want to leave this endearing brasserie until you have enjoyed a full three-course meal complete with aperitif.
Jimmy’z, Monte Carlo’s self-proclaimed ‘temple of dancing’ set to a backdrop of a Japanese lagoon, has been legendary in Monaco since the early 1970’s. This is not a night to be missed, the venue playing host to some of Europe’s most celebrated DJs, and located in the Sporting Monte Carlo complex, the dancefloor jutting out over the sparkling ocean lit by the evening lights of Monaco.
There is no doubt you feel 48 hours was too little, so make sure your driver takes you to an appointment at Enness International’s Monaco office before you depart. Our multilingual team, fluent in English, French, Russian, Italian, German and Spanish, offers impartial guidance from our offices overlooking the Port of Fontvieille in Monaco and in the heart of Mayfair, London.
This country is a small piece of heaven, and Enness International can help you claim a part of it for yourself. Enness will make sure that you live in the lap of luxury for a lifetime, not just a weekend.