Cuisine and restaurants of Monte Carlo
The concentration of restaurants, cafes, pizzerias and other catering establishments in Monte Carlo is the highest in the entire Principality. The basis of their menu is French and Italian cuisine with an emphasis on refined tastes. Among the most original are fried pigeon breasts with cherries and celery, Parisian-style lobster, lobster with mayonnaise sauce, French-style beef with eggplant.
The fish omelet la poutine, popular in Monte Carlo, has nothing to do with the Russian president.
The cheapest – pizzerias, cafes and small restaurants on the periphery of Monte Carlo, are popular among budget tourists. During the day you can dine here according to a special menu for 25 EUR. Restaurants in the center are aimed at guests with means. For those who are lucky, there is a direct road to Le Train Bleu, located directly in the casino. You can join the local beau monde and chef Jean-Claude Brugella’s signature dishes at the glamorous Cafe de Paris on Place du Casino. However, be prepared that dinner with wine will cost 100 EUR per person.
And finally, on the gastronomic Olympus, gourmet restaurants and millionaires. First and foremost, owned by celebrity French chef Alain Ducasse, the “three-star” Michelin-starred Le Louis XV at the Hotel de Paris. To get acquainted with his cuisine in one visit, it is worth ordering the Gourmet Menu set, which includes 4 mini-courses of the chef’s choice, cheese and dessert – and all this for some 330 EUR.
Entertainment and attractions
Everything on this tiny piece of land revolves around its main attraction – a luxurious Mediterranean palace that houses the famous Monte Carlo casino and the no less legendary Opera House under its roof. Its City Façade overlooks a square with an ever-blooming flower bed and Anish Kapoor’s Sky Mirror installation in the middle. A bold stainless steel sculpture donated by Monegasque billionaire Lily Safra brings a touch of modernity to the place, while two other Belle Epoque architectural masterpieces, the Hotel de Paris and the Café de Paris casino located on the opposite side of the square, add a touch of modernity to the place.
The current casino building, the second in a row, was designed by Charles Garnier, the creator of the Paris Grand Opera and the favorite architect of Emperor Napoleon III. The huge atrium-lobby is shared by the casino and the theatre. Performances at the Opera are infrequent, but every day you can see its magnificent hall and stage, on which Anna Pavlova and Nizhinsky shone, Chaliapin and Pavarotti sang.
The brightly decorated, futuristic rooms of the Café de Paris are open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. More than half of Monaco’s slot machines are concentrated here, but there are also quieter roulette and blackjack parlors.
The Mediterranean façade of the Monte-Carlo Casino opens onto a garden terrace with vibrant flower beds, palm trees, original public art and stunning coastal views. It is located quite high above the sea, and from the promenade that runs along the edge of the terrace, the hexagonal installation “Hexa Grace” by the famous artist Victor Vasarelli, made of multi-colored tiles, is clearly visible on the roof of the Rainier III Auditorium, going down several floors. The Auditorium Concert Hall is the home stage for the Monte-Carlo Philharmonic Orchestra. Classical music concerts are regularly held here and the world’s best performers perform.
Another green oasis of Monte Carlo is the Little Africa Garden, west of the Café de Paris, with exotic plants, ponds and fountains. It was founded in the 19th century by the French botanist Edouard André; some especially rare species were planted in it personally by Prince Albert II.
On the border of the Monte Carlo and Larvotto districts, above the underground parking, there is a Japanese garden with artificial waterfalls and bamboo thickets. It was laid by Prince Rainier III in memory of Princess Grace, who died in a car accident and did not have time to realize her dream of creating a small corner of the Land of the Rising Sun in Monaco. Japanese landscape designer Yasou Beppu designed the garden in accordance with the philosophy and symbolism of the Zen teachings. Signs placed everywhere explain the meaning of seemingly random elements. The red humpbacked bridge thrown over the lake symbolizes the difficult path to happiness. The lake itself personifies wealth, the bamboo fence – the conventionality of borders. As in any classic Japanese garden, there is a tea house and a “dry” rock garden, conducive to contemplation and meditation.
According to citypopulationreview, the climate in Monte Carlo is determined by its location in the subtropical latitudes between the Mediterranean Sea and the Alpes-Maritimes approaching close to the coast. The weather gives the Principality at least 300 fine days a year. The main discomfort is caused by “marinas” – strong east or south winds that bring clouds with drizzling rain, as well as a dry and cold “mistral” blowing from the coastal mountains, accompanied by a sharp drop in temperature.
Winters are warm and humid. April and May are the peak periods for orchards to bloom, making Monte Carlo especially attractive. From mid-May, the beaches begin to fill up, although the sea becomes warm only by June. In summer, the scorching heat is softened by a gentle sea breeze that fills the air with moisture. The swimming season continues until October. November is the record for the number of rains, which reduce the number of tourists to a minimum.