Monte Carlo

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Monaco immediately conjures images of ostentatious yachts, the Casino de Monte-Carlo, crystal blue waters, tanned playboys and Formula One race cars. Let’s make one thing clear: all that is still very much alive in this idyllic tax haven. But the city is gaining a certain youthful and hip culture, balancing its traditional symbols of wealth with new hotels and innovative restaurants. Sure, you can still throw on your best eveningwear and wager away your gambling chips. But while you’re here, check out one of the newer boutiques and restaurants for some unexpected shopping and dining delights.

Activities Dining Shopping Resources Nightlife  

Le Casino de Monte-Carlo
Place du Casino
Tel. +377 (0) 92.162.000
François Blanc envisioned this legendary icon of high rolling out of a rugged wasteland in the mid 19th century, and it was built by the famous architect Charles Garnier. Along with the Hotel du Paris and Cafés Divan and Paris, the Casino complex also hosts the Monte-Carlo Opera. Gambling aficionados play Les Jeux Europeens (Trente et quarante, Chemin de fer, Banque à deux tables, English roulette) and Les Jeux Americains (Punto-banco, Craps, American Roulette and Blackjack 21) with aplomb. If you're not a gamble, the casion is always good for fantastic people watching as well. Proper attire required.

Musée Océanographique de Monaco
Avenue St.-Martin
Tel. +377 (0) 93.153.600

Perched on top of the Rock, the Edwardian-style structure Musée Océanographique is the beautiful vision of Prince Albert I, who was an amateur ocean explorer. The museum and its research facility were run by Jacques Cousteau in the mid 20th century. While skeletons of unusual sea life and a model of the Titanic sinking are nice, the main attraction is the aquarium, with various species of the sea within the backlit tanks. Be sure to check out the piranha pond.

Larvotto’s Beaches
These crescent-shaped beaches are the best place to sunbathe and swim. Located on the east side of the tiny principality, Larvotto has both public and private facilities. Rent cozy lounge chairs and umbrellas here. A Champagne service will set the mood.

This beautiful medieval village, perched high atop a hill and overlooking the Mediterranean, is just several kilometers from Monaco on the Moyenne Corniche (RN7), the main road connecting Nice and Monaco. Catch a whiff of the fresh herbs for sale.Visit the little squares and clock towers or dine at one of the classy little terrace cafes.

Jardin Exotique du Monaco
62 Boulevard du Jardin Exotique
Tel. +377 (0) 93.152.980
Approximately 7000 species of plants on more than 11,000 square meters of beautiful hillside vistas make this garden a savory experience. Various exotic cacti and other plants bloom year round.

Louis XV
Place du Casino
Tel. +377 (0) 98.068.864
Louis XV is the quintessential Monte Carlo dining experience, straight out of a fairy tale. Everyone should experience it at least once. Located in the Hotel de Paris, this “essential” Riviera cuisine consists of an ever-changing array of specialties like warm lobster surrounded by tiny squid and crabs, or pasta with vegetables and curdled ewe milk.  Sparkling gold adds to the allure of the 17th century Versailles ambience.

Maya Bay
24, Avenue Princesse GRACE à Monaco
Tel. +377 (0) 97.707.467
Maya Bay may be the absolute opposite of Louis the XV. The simple elegance of the Zen interior complements the haute Asian-Mediterranean cuisine it serves. Blissful Buddha statues perched in the dining room look upon a changing cuisine that has included glazed black cod, stir-fried lobster with noodles and a scrumptious mango pudding.

42, quai Jean-Charles Rey
Tel. +377 (0) 97.770.929
No irony here: this brasserie caters to the meat eater. Within the space of sharp lines and understated elegance, diners enjoy Argentine steaks, Dutch veal, and other meats from Ireland and the U.S. The universe of wine comes mainly from Bordeaux.

La Rose des Verts
Plage du Larvotto
Tel. +377 (0) 97.70.4696
This beach restaurant is a must during the summer.  Wonderful food and wonderful scenery (people watching Monte Carlo style). 

Zebra Square
10 Avenue Princesse Grace
Tel. +377 (0) 97.99.2550
On the top floor of the Grimaldi Forum the views are to die for.  That is if you like looking at mega yachts and the Med!! Expect a mega bill also! It's all worth it at this very chic Monte Carlo outpost.   Yes, they are related to the Zebrasquare in Moscow and Paris.

3. Avenue des Spelugues
Tel. +377 (0) 93.30.7065
This Italian brasserie has been around since the 50's. Everyone goes here at least once and almost all say the food is excellent. 


29, rue de Millo
Tel. +377 (0) 97.775.454
This offbeat boutique carries lines like Raf Simons, LEFLESH and Vivienne Westwood, a line of colorful clothing emphasizing stripes and bold shapes.

Yves Saint Laurent
Avenue des Beaux-Arts
Tel. +377 (0) 93.250.132
Perhaps in no other place does this chic, high-class boutique seem more in its element than in Monaco. Accented black and white clothing is the norm here, not to mention the latest and greatest in eyewear and handbags.

Karen Millen
39, Avenue Princesse-Grace
Tel. +377 (0) 97.704.400
Famous for its unique accessories, Karen Millen is a leading British women’s fashion line. Their tradition of having some of the finest retail ambience is not lost in Monaco. Look for their new cosmetics soon.

Grimaldi Forum
Many a trade show is held at this multi-use convention and display center.

Monaco Government Tourist Office and Convention Authority
The official voice of Monaco tourism.

Aéroport Nice Côte d'Azur
The closest airport to Monaco (about 25 km). Check on the arrival and departure status of the day’s flights and get all your ground transportation solved.

Le Sporting Club avenue Princesse Grace
Tel. +377 (0) 92.162.000
For the quintessential Monaco/perfectly chic experience, head to Jimmy’z. Models and millionaires of all kinds are ubiquitous here. The drinks cost a mint, and the dance floor is hopping with flawlessly mixed music, but the atmosphere is surprisingly casual. Part of the Sporting Club complex, which includes the restaurants Fuji and Bar & Beouf, Jimmy’z has two entrances – through the sporting club and on the street.

11, rue de Portier
Tel. +377 (0) 97.770.304
Opened in the spring of 2006, Moda is a bit less heavy on the glamour than Jimmy’z. Nevertheless, this Japanese underground themed club is still very fun. Scantily clad girls dance around stripper poles and DJs play electro-soul mixes while people dance their champagne buzzes away.

10, avenue Princesse Grace
Tel. +377 (0) 99.992.020
Located in the Grimaldi Forum, a cultural and convention center, Kare(ment) specializes in tapas in the early evening hours before turning into a nightclub with a stunning white interior. Top international DJs like David Guetta and Joachim Garraud play here.