Par Alexandre Arditti

To evoke Monaco is to summon a thousand and one images of chic, glamor and elegance. But however close and familiar it may be, do we really know the most famous of the Principalities? Beyond the clichés, the Rock is alive all year round and puts on its best clothes in the summer, when the light is so beautiful in this little corner of paradise on the Riviera which proudly claims more than 300 days of sunshine a year! An enchanting coastline dotted with beautiful beaches, a particularly rich cultural life, dream hotels galore and a host of gourmet restaurants to die for: so many reasons to be tempted by the Monegasque dolce vita, the time of a charm between sky and sea…

With its Palace, its architecture, its coastline, its countless gardens and its always lively city centre, Monaco is discovered and rediscovered with each visit. Between tradition and modernity, the city has always been able to look to the future, without ever forgetting its prestigious past. But one thing is certain, you are on the Côte d’Azur, and here, the Big Blue is omnipresent. Wherever your steps take you, this decor and this special atmosphere that reigns on the French Riviera – as it is nicknamed by visitors from all over the world – will accompany you constantly during your stay.

Discover the city from the beach side or the garden side…

From the Larvotto seaside resort to the private beaches of the Monte-Carlo Beach and Méridien hotels, Monaco has some pretty, heavenly sandspits, bathed in intensely turquoise water typical of the Mediterranean. Easily accessible and secure, they are particularly pleasant for cooling off with the family during the summer months. For lovers of fresh water, many establishments have imagined sumptuous swimming pools facing the sea, such as the lagoon of Monte-Carlo Bay, the private pools of the Métropole and Méridien hotels, without forgetting the “infinity pool” of the Nikki Beach and its breathtaking view of the bay. After swimming, make way for greenery since Monaco, as we know little, devotes more than 20% of its territory to parks and green spaces. At a time of unavoidable ecological issues, this resolutely eco-responsible approach aims more than ever to preserve a superb but fragile environment. To discover the city from the garden side, head for the beautiful Rose Garden, the Fontvieille Landscape Park, the Casino Gardens, the Saint-Martin Gardens or the sublime Japanese Garden for particularly delightful bucolic walks.

A large choice of awesome hotels

From the mythical palaces of the Carré d’Or to the beautiful addresses on the seafront, Monaco offers an impressive collection of dream hotels for all tastes, which have been able to attract decade after decade all that the planet has crowned heads. , movie stars and other happy few from all over the world. All you have to do is choose between all these exceptional establishments, of which here is a small sample:

Hôtel de Paris Monte-Carlo : The flagship of the Monegasque hotel industry immerses you in a waking dream, with its palace service, its sublime panoramas and as a bonus its two suites that could not be more glamorous: the Diamond Suite Princess Grace and the Diamond Suite Prince Rainier III.

Hôtel Métropole Monte-Carlo : Enthroned just a stone’s throw from the Place du Casino, one of the jewels of luxury hotels in the Principality whose decoration was signed by the famous interior designer Jacques Garcia and the swimming pool area by the maestro Karl Lagerfeld.

Hôtel Hermitage Monte-Carlo : A haven of peace, an inimitable, resolutely Belle Époque decor, both refined and romantic, and a breathtaking view for one of the most beautiful hotels in the Principality.

Monte-Carlo Bay Hotel & Resort : Nestled in the middle of 4 hectares of pretty Mediterranean gardens where waterfalls, swimming pools and turquoise lagoon mingle, where it is good to laze with your feet in the sand, this establishment is an invitation to relaxation and cocooning.

Méridien Beach Plaza : An ideal location thanks to its private beach, two swimming pools, one of which is indoor, and even a Balinese bar with thatched roof for one of the most pleasant seaside atmospheres on the Riviera.

Monte-Carlo Beach : A glamorous and contemporary hotel located by the sea. Elegance and architecture signed India Mahdavi like an ode to the Mediterranean with its private beach, its Olympic swimming pool and Elsa, its gourmet restaurant.

Fairmont Monte-Carlo : One of the largest luxury hotels in Europe offering 596 rooms, suites and residences, as well as a famous Nobu restaurant and the unmissable Nikki Beach on its rooftop.

Enjoying high gastronomy facing the Medierranean sea 

Feet in the sand, on the terrace, by the water or in sumptuous starred houses, there are a thousand and one ways of looking at gastronomy in Monaco. Among the pretty tables that are reaching out to you this summer, we can cite for example :

Les Ambassadeurs : the new gourmet restaurant at the Hôtel Métropole Monte-Carlo under the leadership of Chef Christophe Cussac.

Club La Vigie Monte-Carlo : In an elegant and effervescent atmosphere, this new place will combine the beach club spirit with its feet in the water, Mediterranean cuisine, creative cocktails and cutting-edge musical programming.

Amazonico : Brand new 1000 m2 rooftop nestled on the roof of the new Café de Paris, Amazonico is an ultra-festive and gourmet concept created by Sandro Silva and Marta Seco which celebrates the cultural and gastronomic diversity of Brazil in Peru, in a breathtaking setting. inspired by the Amazonian forest, combining lush plant decor and creative cuisine with tropical and Latin American influences (opening soon).

Elsa : As part of the Monte-Carlo Beach hotel, facing the sea, an intimate address and a menu signed by the talented Chef Mélanie Serre, an ode to plant-based cuisine that gives pride of place to short circuits.

Maona Monte-Carlo : An open-air summer cabaret celebrating in a lounge spirit the great festive hours in the Principality and Monegasque cuisine.

Coya : a trendy, festive and arty place for a journey to discover mixed fusion cuisine with South American accents signed by Chef Valentina Vallenilla, with evening music and resident DJs.

Horizon Rooftop : Overlooking the sea, this is a little well-kept secret in the Principality. On the roof of the Fairmont hotel, you can enjoy a 360° view and enjoy a resolutely Mediterranean menu in a chic and relaxed setting.

Muse : Nestled under the pines, between the sea and the swimming pool, the Muse restaurant at the Méridien Beach Plaza hotel is a trendy address, ideal for chic and festive lunches or dinners, with a private pontoon for guests arriving by the sea. You can taste seasonal cuisine, grilled fish and other Mediterranean specialities.

Em Sherif : In the exceptional setting of the Hôtel de Paris, the Em Sharif is a beautiful encounter between Lebanon and the Mediterranean. In the kitchen, Chef Yasmina Hayek who interprets an inspired and delicate cuisine between East and West.

A great cultural program during Summer 2023 

This summer, Monaco is multiplying the events. At the Grimaldi Forum, place at the exhibition “Monet in full light” where no less than a hundred paintings by the artist will be exhibited. The Polar Mission exhibition takes over the unmissable Oceanographic Museum, the pride of the Principality and attracts tens of thousands of curious visitors every year. Finally, music lovers will head to the Cour d’honneur of the Prince’s Palace for a series of concerts by the Philharmonic Orchestra. Last but not least, head to the Summer Sporting Festival in the prestigious setting of Sporting, the Opéra Garnier and the new Place du Casino, with big international stars such as Sting, Mika and Tarkan on the program this year.

As for shopping fans, they will find themselves near the shopping center near the Hotel Metropole, One Monte-Carlo or Boulevard des Moulins, since Monaco remains more than ever “the place to be” in this area. Finally, for those who would like to discover the Principality at their own pace, by strolling and making the most of the landscapes, why not opt – not for a Formula 1 – but for a tour of Monaco on a Monabike electric bike? An original way to end your stay in style and let yourself be caught up in the Monegasque dolce vita…

3 unavoidable visits :

– Monaco-Ville and the “Rocher” : visit of the Prince’s Palace and changing of the Guard every day at 11:55 a.m.

– SAS Le Prince de Monaco Automobile Collection : to be admired in its new setting (Port Hercule)

– The Place du Casino and “One Monte-Carlo” : a recently renovated district, beating heart of the Principality