One was a hotspot in the 1960s and the other has been Monaco’s best-kept secret since 1952, but both Maona and Club La Vigie have been cleverly reimagined for the Principality’s 2023 summer season. Here’s what to expect.
Maona, the portmanteau of two of Monaco’s most famous denizens, Maria Callas and Aristotle Onassis, harks back to the heady days of Monaco in the 1960s and 1970s when the Principality’s reputation as the most glamourous place on Earth was at its zenith. Famous residents Onassis, the wildly wealthy Greek shipping magnate, and his long-time mistress, Callas, the famed opera singer, opened the joint venture in 1962: Ma for Maria and Ona for Onassis. Carefree and irreverent, the nightclub embodied the times.
Now, in 2023, near the very site of the original and overlooking the Mediterranean, a modern version of the club is about to hit the scene in the form of a Monaco first: a cabaret under the stars.
The food will be a collection of past and present, featuring family recipes culled from SBM staffers, their parents and even their grandparents. Dishes include favourites such as gambas with pastis, tagliatelle with capon and marjoram-lemon sauce and classic summery desserts like peach melba.
The cocktail menu is inspired with vintage vermouths, Monaco orange-infused drinks and other interesting combinations.
Entertainment will run from 7pm to 2am with a pianist, a DJ and a diva taking it in turns to amuse and delight the crowds. A VIP space will be available, seating 12 guests, and designed with a nod to Josephine Baker.
CLUB LA VIGIE
From 2nd June, La Pointe de la Vigie will be turned into a private club every day from noon to 8pm.
In an unspoilt natural setting on the seafront, Club La Vigie will be “the” place for festive afternoons and sunsets. The space will combine, say SBM, “a beach club feel at the water’s edge with Mediterranean food, creative cocktails and cutting-edge musical programming”.
It will also feature the best-kept secret at Monte-Carlo Beach since 1952: five bungalows tucked away among the pines, rechristened ‘Love Nests’ for those who like a bit of privacy. Access will be by boat, with a shuttle offering easy access to Maona to continue the evening in style.
Photos courtesy of Société des Bains de Mer