30 June 2011

The Wedding - Putting on a Show

Everyone is getting ready for the big day. This lady is putting on a show at the entrance to the Winter Sporting on Casino Square.

Tonight in the football stadium in Fontvieille there's a concert by The Eagles. 15,00 tickets have been given away - a gift from Prince Albert and Charlene Wittstock to Monegasques, residents and workers in the Principality. Unfortunately some unscrupulous ticket holders have been selling them on the black market. Naughty, naughty...

More events tomorrow...

29 June 2011

The Wedding - Flags

Everywhere you look in Monaco you see flags. The Monaco flag, the South African flag and one that simply says 'Marriage Princier.'

A few more days and Prince Albert marries South African Olympic swimmer, Charlene Wittstock. The civil ceremony will be on Friday and the religious ceremony on Saturday.

28 June 2011

Show Jumping on Port Hercule

Just before we get into THE wedding preparations, here are a couple of shots of the show jumping on Port Hercule taken from le rocher. The setting by the yachts is spectacular.

For close-ups, see HERE and HERE from last year's show.

And to see a photo of the soon to be married couple - the wedding takes place this coming weekend - here are Prince Albert and Charlene Wittstock at the show jumping a few days ago.

27 June 2011

Looking up - On Aura Tout Vu - Clouds

This will be the last day - we'll be back - at this marvellous exhibition at the National Museum Villa Sauber.

And why? Because this coming weekend sees the marriage of Prince Albert to Charlene Wittstock and I want to show you how Monaco is preparing for the biggest event to hit Monaco since Prince Albert's mother, American actress Grace Kelly wed Prince Rainier in 1956.

This exhibit of clouds behind muslin is not easy to photograph but absolutely beautiful to look at.

To lead us nicely into wedding fever, take a look at the smaller photo - you can see in the foreground and to the left of the lady, dolls representing Princess Grace and Prince Rainier on their wedding day.

26 June 2011

Looking up - On Aura Tout Vu - the Vernissage

We are looking at the terrace of the National Museum Villa Sauber where invited guests enjoy champagne served in gold, silver and black goblets - all great fun.

25 June 2011

Looking up - On Aura Tout Vu - Smile!

This exhibition at the Villa Sauber is such fun. For instance, you can get your photo taken like this and then collect it a few minutes later.

Rather like one of those passport booths (except a good deal more stylish...), or remember the same sort of thing at the end of the pier?

24 June 2011

Looking up - On Aura Tout Vu - Clubbing: 19th Century

This is the contrasting half of yesterday's 'clubbing.' Here we see a 19th century scene - a Second Empire 'rout' as it was known in those days. Take a look at yesterday's post - it illustrates so well the difference two centuries can make.

Apart from the beautiful old dolls and their clothes, don't you just love those miniscule but perfect chandeliers?

23 June 2011

Looking up - On Aura Tout Vu - Clubbing

At the foot of the beautiful staircase in Villa Sauber (we'll see that another day) is a fascinating display comparing nightlife in the 19th and 21st century. Two egg-shaped structures, standing side by side, house the dolls - here you see the clubbing scene of our time. Tomorrow, we go back to the 19th century and Mme. Galéa's dolls, dressed for a Second Empire 'rout'.

If you'd like to read a more detailed account of this stunning exhibition, the designers and Villa Sauber, do click on Alex's excellent article on City Out Monaco.

22 June 2011

Looking up - On Aura Tout Vu

There is an amazing new exhibition at the National Museum Villa Sauber on Avenue Princesse Grace. Last night I was invited to the vernissage with le tout Monaco and I loved it all - including the champagne served in gold, black or silver goblets...

Villa Sauber used to be known as the Doll Museum and housed one of the world's great collections of antique dolls and automatons originally owned by Mme. Galéa. The museum closed for renovation and has opened with this crazy, wonderful, clever, beautifully mounted exhibition which is an hommage to Mme. Galéa's collection by edgy Parisien couturiers - On Aura Tout Vu.

Come with me over the next few days and see some of the exhibits. Here are a few demons - all great fun.

More tomorrow...

21 June 2011

Checking the Jellyfish Net

This little boat is checking the edges of the protective net on Larvotto Beach. The net protects swimmers against jellyfish.

20 June 2011


A pretty roof garden tucked away behind Port Hercule. (Taken from le rocher)

19 June 2011

Folon's Birds plus One

Wonder if the gull knows he's become part of Jean-Michel Folon's fabulous Fountain of the Birds on le rocher.

18 June 2011

Sheep, goats and rabbits...in Monaco

No, you are not at the wrong place... there really are sheep, goats and rabbits in Monaco. This is a small area in the Parc Princesse Antoinette - the children's garden.

I believe part of the late Prince Rainier's infamous zoo below le rocher has been turned into a petting zoo for children and happily some of the wild animals sent to Africa - a couple or so years ago two leopards, Pitou and Sirius, were released into the wilds of Africa by by conservationist Virginia McKenna. Sadly, Pitou was killed by a puff adder in January this year.

17 June 2011


Plastic bottles into flowers...

Here's another 'tree' created by children from one of the kindergartens in Monaco and on display in the Parc Princesse Antoinette.

16 June 2011

Ladies who Lunch...

...at La Note Bleue on Larvotto Beach.

15 June 2011

Emma's Dream

We're back at the Princess Antoinette Park which is a children's garden and where today its paths are lined with mysterious trees.

Each 'tree' has been decorated by children from the various kindergartens around the Principality.

This tree addresses children's life and dreams - you see Emma's in the last photo:

'Life is when I run with my brothers below where I live. It's super! I would like to drive a beautiful black Ferrari such as you often see in Monaco.'

And she probably will...

14 June 2011

A Roof Garden

This roof garden overlooks le rocher - you can see - in the distance - the Oceanographic Museum on the left and the cathedral on the right. In the middle ground you see the crenellations of the Palace.

The photo foreshortens everything - in fact there is a big space between this garden and le rocher. I took it on a long zoom from just below the Jardin Exotique which is even further away.

13 June 2011

The Old Bell

This bell hangs outside the Cathedral on le rocher. It came from the old church of Saint Nicolas which was built in 1484 and was rung in celebration in 1641 when Prince Honoré II expelled the Spanish garrison and so liberated Monaco.

12 June 2011


If you don't want to wear glittery high heels on your feet, you can always wear them on the t-shirt.

11 June 2011

The Carabinier's Smart Car

A Smart car belonging to the Prince's Carabiniers - as you can see it's electric and is 'charging' at a docking station opposite the Palace.

10 June 2011

Monaco Grand Prix - the Big Clean-Up

Immediately the Monaco Grand Prix is over, work begins to dismantle the stands.

The main photo shows the Pit Lane on the far left. In both photos you can see the outside tables of restaurants that are facing the port although no one can see the boats with all the steel in the way.

These photos were taken a week ago so probably the majority has already been cleared away by now.

09 June 2011

Fooling the Eye...

Trompe l'oeil on le rocher. False window, false bougainvillea...

At the base of this wall is a restaurant's outdoor seating.
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