Prince congratulates environmentally-focussed King Charles on ascension to the throne

Prince Albert II has officially congratulated King Charles III on his ascension to the British throne. He inherits the title following the recent death of Queen Elizabeth II.  

In an official dispatch from the Palace, Prince Albert evoked King Charles’ devotion to sustainability, a paramount issue on the Principality’s agenda, as an ideologically binding topic between the Princely and the Royal Family.

King Charles has long been an advocate of environmental politics and in 2020 he spoke at the World Economic Forum in Davos, where he detailed the environmental crises that threaten the world.

The Palace statement released on Friday 16th September reads:

“It is a true pleasure to offer you our warmest congratulations on the occasion of your ascension to the throne.

The Princess and I wish you every success in leading the people of the United Kingdom and the many great nations of the Commonwealth. I am confident that under your reign, peace and stability will continue to prosper.

I look forward to seeing the important work you have achieved throughout your life further flourish in the years to come. Notably, the great weight you place on sustainability, the fight against climate change and ocean conservation issues that I know we both feel are paramount for the future of our planet.

On behalf of the citizens of the Principality of Monaco, it is my honour to share our best wishes of good health and prosperity.”

The Palace also released photographs of Prince Albert and Prince Charles together.

Prince Charles at the Hôtel de Paris with Prince Albert and Princess Caroline in April 1977. Photo courtesy Archives du Palais Princier

Following the death of Queen Elizabeth II last Thursday, the Princely family has paid tribute to the longest-serving British monarch. As well as releasing a public letter of condolence, the Prince’s Palace flew the Monégasque flag at half mast.

Upon the death of his mother, Prince Charles immediately ascended to the throne, and the funeral of his mother, Queen Elizabeth, will take place in London on Monday 19th.

Prince Albert and Prince Charles in the bay of Monaco in April 1977. Photo courtesy G. Lukomski Archives Palais princier




Photo above of Prince Albert II and King Charles III during Prince Haakon of Norway’s marriage in 2001, credit NIVIERE SIPA








Monte Carlo Opera season 2023 unveiled by new director, Cecilia Bartoli

It was a packed house at the Opera Garnier on Friday 16th September as opera singer Cecilia Bartoli presented the upcoming schedule for the Opera de Monte-Carlo, her first as director.

“It is with great joy that I present you my first season as director of the Monte Carlo Opera,” said Cecilia Bartoli during the presentation at the Salle Garnier. “I would like to think that it reflects the soul of this prestigious theatre, as I see it: a careful look at history but turned towards the future, a variety of styles and genres, glamour, grandeur, but also proximity; and of course the highest standards in the quality of performance, guaranteed in particular by the presence of some of the greatest names in our profession.”

Bartoli said that it was important for her to create “continuity”, and to build on the foundations of success laid by her predecessor Jean-Louis Grinda, who was also part of the 2023 season presentation.

The director, a renowned opera singer herself, then presented the 2023 programme, a journey from Monteverdi to Giordano, from 1607 to the late 19th century.

“In many ways, the passage also reflects my personal voyage, and I am proud that many of the artists I have had the pleasure of working with over the years are joining and supporting me in this new adventure, a major step in my life.”

Cecilia Bartoli, Opera de Monte Carlo, photo credit: Fabrice Demessence

Cecilia Bartoli will kick of the season starring in Alcina for four shows from 20th January, a musical drama in three acts with music by George Frideric Handel.

This will be followed by a “concert of the heart” of Stabat Mater for one night only on 25th January, featuring tenor Celso Albelo and soprano Maria Agresta.

In February, the Opera Andrea Chénier will be performed over four nights, an historic drama with Jonas Kaufman performing the role of Chénier.

Daniel Barenboim will take to the stage for a piano concert on 10th March. Born in Buenos Aires, Barenboim is described as a true citizen of the world whose artistic ventures are as varied as his cultural influences.

The melodramatic opera La Traviata, a Jean-Louis Grinda production created in 2013, returns for four nights in March as “a symbol of harmonious handover of power and a sign of true understanding”, according to the opera. These performances will also be an opportunity to celebrate the return of Placido Domingo to a stage he last walked on as a singer in 1980.

On 20th March, the Vienna Philharmonic will give a unique performance of Mozart’s Marriage of Figaro, conducted by Phillip Jordan.

By April, the Il Barbiere di Siviglia opera will feature on the Monegasque stage, a production by the Festival of Salzbourg. On 20th February 1816, just as Carnival week was approaching its climax, Giachino Rossini’s Il Barberie di Siviglia had its (eventful) premiere at Teatro Argentina in Rome. Delighting in masks and disguise, parody and the grotesque, it is permeated through and through with the spirit of carnival.

Ending the season on 17th April is the marionette opera L’Orfeo, going back to the beginnings of the history of opera. Thanks to the 200-year-old puppet company Carlo Colla & Figli, L’Orfeo, created in 1607, will appear for the first time in Monte Carlo in a form that will appeal to the most demanding music lovers, as well as the youngest spectators.

Season subscription and individual ticket pre-booking is now open by internet at and mail. Former subscribers have priority on 30th September.

From Wednesday 2nd November 2022, ticket bookings will be open by telephone, at the box office and on

Photo above credit: Marco Borrelli, OMC




Partnered Monaco-Dolceacqua team win Riviera Electric Challenge

Monaco’s deputy mayor, Jacques Pastor, and Dolceacqua mayor Fulvio Gazzola won the eighth edition of the Riviera Electric Challenge after an intense 48 hours of racing on the Riviera.

41 cars, 250km covered, 10 different brands and 48 hours of compelling racing. The Riviera Electric Challenge returned for its eighth edition this week, finishing with a prize-giving ceremony in the Place du Palais Princier in the presence of Prince Albert II.

This year’s ‘Prince’s Cup’ was won by Pastor and Gazzola, representing the Principality of Monaco, as well as the small Italian village of Dolceacqua, on board a KIA Niro EV.

Having begun in the driving rain in Cagnes-Sur-Mer on Wednesday, the teams headed towards the vast hills behind Nice in difficult meteorological conditions, before crossing the border into neighbouring Italy, and finishing the day’s racing in Dolceacqua. The teams then headed to Airole before re-entering France, and ultimately completing the challenge in the Principality of Monaco.

As well as becoming an increasingly competitive sporting event, the Riviera Electric Challenge, which began in 2015, also promotes the use of electric vehicles, and forms part of the wider ‘soft mobility’ campaign, a key part of the Principality’s agenda.

With 10 different brands of cars on display during this year’s edition, it is a clear sign of progress within the field of electric cars, with a more varied and technologically diverse set of vehicles on display.

Monaco earned a one-two with the Principality’s Energy Transition Mission team coming in second on board a Peugeot e-208. The racing series will return for its ninth edition in September 2023.


Photo by Riviera Electric Challenge

The Princess Grace Irish Library’s book collection goes online

The Princess Grace Irish Library is taking its book collection catalogue online, including treasures such as the late Princess’s personal anthology of rare books.

Inaugurated in 1982, the Princess Grace Irish Library has spent the past four decades gathering a compilation of books worthy of Ireland’s heritage and literary achievements as well as being a centre for learning about Irish culture and history.

Now the library is able to spread its reach farther than ever with the launch of an online catalogue of all its books, both the contemporary and the rarer offerings, including Princess Grace’s own collection, which were gathered during her lifetime and allow a glimpse into her deep love and appreciation of Ireland’s literary and dramatic history.

The digital library was facilitated by The Irish Craft Whiskey Co, an award-winning company “which has reimagined the whiskey experience” and is their partner in this endeavour.

“I’m honoured that The Craft Irish Whiskey Co. can support the work of the Princess Grace Irish Library in Monaco,’ said Managing Director Ian Duignan. “We share a vision to respect and preserve the legacy of our forebearers. Similar to the books lining the beautiful library walls, our ultra-rare premium whiskeys draw on Ireland’s illustrious past and traditions, while offering a unique experience as one of unrivalled luxury and perfection. In the same way that we bring an innovative approach to an age-old art, I’m proud that we can contribute to the library’s next step in the digital age.”

The the Grace O’Malley tall ship, photo supplied 

The launch is happening at the same time as the collaboration between the Princess Grace Irish Library and the Atlantic Youth Trust, which hosted a fundraising event recently to form a new Monaco branch. The trust is a youth charity that purchased the Grace O’Malley tall ship to train young people in personal skills such as teamwork, leadership and resilience.

Grace O’Malley was a Tudor-era pirate and the queen of her people at the same time as Elizabeth I. Despite her disreputable metier, she was a true leader and fought against the oppression of her people, going so far as to travel to London to speak directly to Queen Elizabeth I herself. Her grit and determination have made her a legend to generations of young women.

“We’re delighted to be involved in this wonderful initiative for Ireland and thank Enda O’Coineen, Chairman of the Atlantic Youth Trust and the team for this opportunity,” said Paula Farquharson, Director of the Princess Grace Irish Library. “The rule for each sea voyage – to leave mobile phones on land – frees up time onboard to read books by Irish writers, borrowed from the library. The aim is to foster an appreciation of Ireland’s literature and history, which includes two exceptional women, Princess Grace and Grace O’Malley. With our new online book listing, we meet the needs of young people today. We wish the ship safe voyages in the future and look forward to hearing stories of its adventures.”



Photo about source: Princess Grace Irish Library





Princess Caroline pushes to protect schools from violence

Monaco’s Caroline, Princess of Hanover has leant her weight to a United-Nations movement to protect the right of all children to an education in the face of violence, conflict and destruction.

Many do not even know that there is an International Day for the Protection of Education against Attacks, but this fledgling United Nations-led event is hugely important for children, particularly in war-torn or developing countries.

Conflicts are disruptive by nature, but some of the biggest victims are children, whose lives are unsettled in countless ways, including being unable to attend school. With no access to a proper education, these children of war grow up without skills needed to contribute to their nations and their economies, turning an already desperate situation into an even worse one.

Children who aren’t attending school become targets for exploitation and abuses, including being forcibly recruited to serve in the armed forces.

On 9th September, Princess Caroline was invited by Sheikha Moza Bint Nasser of Qatar, the UNESCO Special Envoy for Basic and Higher Education, in her capacity as Goodwill Ambassador for Education of Girls and Women, to a meeting held at the UNESCO Headquarters in Paris for the 3rd International Day for the Protection of Education against Attacks. The meetings centred around protecting children from losing their rights to an education in places where war is raging.

School attacks increased in 2020 and 2021 by a third over 2019, showing that the problem is worsening worldwide.

Other participants at the conference included Maria Teresa, Grand Duchess of Luxembourg, Catherine Russell, Executive Director of UNICEF, Stefania Giannini, UNESCO, Deputy Director for Education, Journalist Yalda Hakim, and Rosario Diaz Garavito, Youth Advisory Board member and CEO of The Millennials Movement.

Additionally, Virginia Gamba, Special Representative for Children and Armed Conflict of the United Nations Secretary-General, made a point of highlighting the important work carried out by Monaco-based association AMADE, for the defence of children’s rights and particularly praised its programme A civil status for all.

This programme aims to register the identity of a child with the authorities, in order to allow them to be recognised as a subject by right, to benefit from a legal personality and to guarantee them the protection of their civil, political, economic, social and cultural rights.


Photo credit: UNESCO, Fabrice Gentille