LWSY The Fairmont Monte-Carlo Hotel, Monaco

What are your first thoughts when I say Monte-Carlo? The James Bond Casino scene in Goldeneye, the Grand Prix? Or perhaps images of Grace Kelly marrying her Prince 1956? I was whisked to Monte Carlo in early May to discover the delights of this famous location and it’s most iconic hotel, The Fairmont Monte-Carlo Hotel.

Stretched over 4km of densely populated Mediterranean coastline on the French Riviera, Monaco is the second smallest country in the World (the first being the Vatican). A pocket of the world home to the rich and famous. Flamboyance and decadence are indulged on a daily basis.

I shared my Monacair helicopter transfer with a racing car driver who courteously offered me his seat next to the pilot. 7 minutes of pure joy from Nice Airport, and you’ll find yourself in the heart of Monte Carlo. I checked into the iconic Fairmont Monte-Carlo Hotel, which zig zags along the bright blue coastline with panoramic sea views from Monaco to Italy.

Built on 15 metre pillars above the sea, boasting a surface area of 60,000 m2 spread over 7 floors with 602 bedrooms, three restaurants including a Nobu, a 24-hour bar, a spa, a fitness club, a panoramic pool-side terrace hosted by Nikki Beach, luxury boutiques on the ground floor and a casino.

The restaurant scene is taken very seriously at the Fairmont Monte-Carlo. Nikki Beach by the pool is modelled in the same style to all Nikki Beach’s worldwide, all-white sun beds, a DJ, and a menu offering pool side dishes such as salads, rotisserie chicken and club sandwiches. The perfect weekend staycation for locals who flock to the hotel during the weekends.

Saphir24 is as the name suggests, open 24/7. Located on the ground level of the hotel offering the same sweeping views, perfectly positioned to the horizon ahead. Even the most demanding guests will be comfortable with the first class service, classic dishes and comfortable environment.

Horizon restaurant below, hosts Sunday brunch and lunch and dinner daily.

With 9 categories of rooms, each with it’s own private terrace, some with views of the gardens, or city, the iconic GP Fairmont Hairpin corner, sea views or views to the Opera House and Casino. Ranging between 35 m2 – 90m2 for the connecting Suites. The Sir Stirling Moss and Jean Alesi Suites boast 3 balconies, one with a view over the F1 circuit and two overlooking the sea. The Suites are known to triple in price during the Grand Prix.

Each room is elegantly decorated in a nautical style, the doors to each room with a port hole mirror so you feel like you’re in a ship as you walk along the corridors. My Sea View Suite reflected the cool colours of the sea, and was stocked with everything I needed. A lovely touch was the personalised Le Labo amenities in the bathroom.

Fairmont Hotels & Resorts first partnered with Le Labo in 2011 to launch a distinctive in-room personalised amenity line featuring Rose 31, a hallmark scent of Le Labo Fragrances.

Shampoo, conditioner, body wash, body lotion and soap are lightly fragranced with the Rose 31 scent and are exclusive to Fairmont Hotels & Resorts. The 60gm bottles in the hotels suites are personalised with the hotel guests name for you to take home.

Extra points to Fairmont for their gym kit service. I forgot mine, and with a quick call  to the concierge, a Reebok care package was sent to my room in my size so I could head to the gym in the morning before my room service on the terrace.

For dinner, take an aperitif at Saphir24 before choosing Horizon or Nobu above, for dinner. I was at the hotel for 3 days so had the chance to try all the restaurants. Nobu was delicious, a very modern crowd, and the perfect setting when people watching. Below Horizon restaurant with its wrap around terrace on the 7th floor (same as Nikki Beach) offers a more Italian style menu, with a Veuve Clicquot champagne bar at the entrance.

Be sure to take time to walk around Monte Carlo. There are some striking artworks along the coast such as Hexa Grace, le ceil la mère la terre, Vasarely, 1979.

Below, a bronze sculpture of Adam and Eve (1981) by Colombian figurative artist and sculptor Fernando Botero, are located in gardens behind the Casino and Opera House. Or head to the Casino square for an espresso for some more people watching. Monte-Carlo is a destination to be explored.

For further information on the hotel or to book your stay click here.

With thanks to the Monegasque Tourist Board for the Monacair hili-transfer from Nice Airport.

With thanks to the FRHI Hotels & Resorts, Le Labo and the Monegasque Tourist Board.

All images taken with a Leica T

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