Saturday, May 5, 2012

Monaco: Playground of the Rich

Bonjour mes amis!  I just finished my devoir sur table for my European 20th Century History Class and it wasn't too bad!  I'm going to try to finish the rest of my work this weekend so that I can enjoy Paris for my last 3 weeks....
And now for my Monaco post!  After a hour long, but stunningly beautiful bus ride along the coast, Eric and I arrived in the Principality of Monaco, and the city of Monte-Carlo.  We grabbed some maps from the tourist office and started to explore.  The architecture was quite different from Nice!  And the license plates on all the fancy cars were different too.  We were in another country after all.....

Everyone is setting up for the Grand Prix!
Lizard Fountain behind the tourist center
Monte Carlo Casino!
Hot Ride.  Eric thought this was a Mustang "because of the horse logo".  I corrected him.  It is a Ferrari.

And another Ferrari
Eric and I paid 10 euro to go into the game rooms at the Casino.  We had to leave our cameras at the coat room, so no pictures of inside sadly!  They were renovating some of the rooms anyway.  The decor is so ornate, I felt like I was back at Versailles.  We were probably the most dressed up people there, I had a sundress on and Eric had a button down on.  I think that you have to be in black tie apparel for the evenings at the Casino however.  It probably balanced out because we looked nice but were not gambling away hundreds of euros and the other people were not as nicely dressed and were throwing down some serious cash.  I thought about playing a hand of blackjack, but the minimum bet was 25 euro.  So Eric and I went for the cheaper route and pooled our money to play the 10 euro slot machine instead.  When I am the CEO of a major cooperation I will come back and play as much blackjack as I want!
Hotel de Paris
The chic-est hotel in Monte-Carlo.  We tried to go in and look around, but because we were not guests, we had to turn around and go right back out the door.  Ah well. 

Casino Square
The scaffolding is for the Grand Prix.  There are barriers being set up along the roads too.
Ah Monaco...
More sweet rides.
The Yacht Club of Monaco
Fredy's Bar!
I wonder if Dad came here when he was in Monte Carlo...
Francois Grimaldi, founder of the ruling family of Monaco.  He seized the throne of the Principality in 1297 and his descendants have been ruling ever since.
Prince's Palace
Guards in fancy uniforms
Not a bad place to call home...
Monaco's Palais de Justice
So many beautiful views!
Cathedral of Monaco
This is where Prince Ranier and Princess Grace got married!
Inside the Cathedral
Crest of the Principality of Monaco
Tomb of Princess Grace
Oceanography Museum
We didn't have time to go inside.  Next time!

 The Museum is literally on a cliff.

 Ah Monaco....

but not really.

Phew!  It was quite the trip.  I had a wonderful time, but it was also nice to come home to Paris!  Tonight my friends and I are going to a wine tasting!  Il faut que nous profitions de Paris :)


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