Pension reform: dates for next round of strikes announced

A fifth round of strikes are planned for next week, and more in March, as unions continue to put pressure on the French government to fall back on pension reforms.

The eight main unions announced on Wednesday that a new day of strikes and demonstrations against the pension reform will take place on Thursday 16th February.

Just hours later, they announced that March also promises to be marked by strong strike movements, starting on Tuesday 7th March.

The third day of mobilisation, Tuesday, brought together 757,000 people according to the Ministry of the Interior, or “nearly two million” according to the organisers, figures below the previous protest days on 19th and 31st January.

A fourth day of action is also scheduled for Saturday 11th February across France.

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Photo source: CGT Facebook page



The Monaco Life Ski Report

Fresh snowfall, low temperatures and clear skies have coincided to create some ideal skiing conditions across the region’s resorts this coming weekend. 

Isola 2000 – There are currently 43 ski slopes and 17 ski lifts open in Isola 2000, an increase on last week after snowfall on Monday. It will be sunny throughout the weekend, making for perfect skiing conditions. Temperatures are set to fall this weekend with highs of 5°C and lows of -12°C. The Col de la Lombarde road is closed until further notice. There will be a youth skicross championship, the ‘Winter Cup’, with U12, U13 and U14 categories taking place at the resort on Sunday.

Auron – There are currently 42 ski pistes and 19 ski lifts open at the resort. Consistent with the rest of the region, temperatures are expected to drop relative to last week, with lows of -8°C. In terms of access, Route de la Bonette, Piste de la Moustière, Piste de Demandols and Route de la Lombarde are all closed for the winter season.

Valberg – There are 28 ski slopes and 13 ski lifts open. After the heavy snowfall towards the end of last month, there is still 60cm worth of snow at the summit, however, unlike many resorts in the region, there hasn’t been any fresh snowfall in the past week.  As it is throughout the rest of the region, it will be a sunny weekend with temperatures milder than neighbouring resorts, ranging from 9°C to -1°C.

Limone Piemonte – The Italian resort is reporting 29 open runs and 12 ski lifts. Snow levels are improving in the resort after snowfall on Tuesday. It is expected to be sunny throughout the weekend, with lows of  -6°C and a potential high of 10°C. Passage through the Roya valley currently isn’t possible due to the collapsed bridge at Tende. The journey from Monaco is currently approximately three hours by car, although the train line is in operation.

Gréolières-les-Neiges – This popular family resort, which lies less than an hour from the coast, continues to struggle with poor snowfall due to its location at a lower altitude than other south of France ski stations. However, unlike last week where there were no pistes open, six will be skiable this weekend, all of which are in close proximity to the village, thanks to snowfall during the week.

Val d’Allos – Better news is to be had over in this Alpes-de-Haute-Provence ski area. Consistent with the rest of the region, there has been further snowfall this week, resulting in 160cm of soft snow. The resort, which combines Allos, Seigneus and La Foux d’Allos as well as access to Pra-Loup, is running close to complete capacity, with 28 out of its 27 lifts in operation and 59 out of 64 pistes welcoming skiers, snowboarders and the rest.

Chamonix – Deeper into the Alps and a five-and-a-half-hour drive to the north of Monaco, the resort of Chamonix has 115 pistes and 66 ski lifts are currently in operation. As it is elsewhere, it will be largely sunny over the weekend. However, temperatures will be milder, with lows of -4°C, and potential highs of 13°C.

Note: Snow tyres or other suitable equipment must be used on the roads up to the ski resorts.


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Photo source: Auron, Facebook page

Christian Moore: “There’s never been a better time to join the Monaco Ambassadors Club”

monaco ambassadors club

In this, its 50th anniversary year, the Monaco Ambassador’s Club is hitting top gear with bold plans to open a clubhouse, partner with other associations, support sustainable solutions, and go global.

When Christian Moore took over as President of the Monaco Ambassadors Club (MAC) four years ago, Covid-19 put a screaming halt to all the exciting plans he and the board of directors had to revitalise one of the Principality’s oldest social clubs.

“Those two years were a very difficult time because, as a social club, we couldn’t really do anything social,” Christian Moore tells Monaco Life. “But it was always my plan to expand on what the previous president Alexander Moghadam had done, which was to bring back to life the Monaco Ambassadors Club, Princess Grace’s personal project with Prince Rainier to make members of the community emissaries for the message of Monaco.”

The MAC Board of Directors at the Christmas Gala 2022. Photo credit: Yvan Grubski

Monaco Ambassadors Club signature events

Nonetheless, 2022 showed what the Monaco Ambassadors Club was capable of, and members were treated to a series of exceptional social events, from the signature summer party and the annual Goodwill Ambassador Gala honouring John Christodoulou to the always elegant Christmas Gala. As Honorary President, Prince Albert II supported it all.

“As we are the Prince’s club, the Sovereign attends these events, so we give that access and understanding of Monaco a little bit more than perhaps other social clubs here,” adds Moore.

This year, the Monaco Ambassadors Club hits full steam. In July, the MAC will unveil its first ever clubhouse, in what was formerly the Star Deck of the Stars n’ Bars restaurant on Quai Antoine 1er, which itself is undergoing a rebirth.

“One of the club’s challenges that was quickly identified was that we needed a place where we could deliver the message to existing members and attract more members to have a greater impact on the community,” says Luc Leleux, Treasurer and member of the MAC Board of Directors. “So, one of the immediate targets was to have a clubhouse, which will become the base where members will meet, exchange, identify topics, and find sustainable solutions which are good for the community and can be delivered outside of the community of the Principality.”

MAC Honorary President Prince Albert with MAC President Christian Moore (left). Photo credit: Yvan Grubski

Taking the Monaco Ambassadors Club global

The next part of the strategy is uniting the Monaco Ambassadors Club with similar clubs throughout the world, offering reciprocal memberships, “so we can grow our base, but at the same time open the conversation to wider subjects”, says Moore.

The club will also begin organising events outside of the Principality to build personal and business connections, like the upcoming trip to Cyprus at the end of March, where members will have an opportunity to meet with the future president of Cyprus, engage in cultural visits, experience the ‘Cyprus Has Talent’ TV show and more.

“Our aim is to get a better understanding of how other countries can tie into Monaco on many levels, bringing forward those ventures that the Principality emulates on the environmental level,” says Christian Moore, adding that there has never been a better time to join the Monaco Ambassadors Club.

Membership includes single, couple or benefactor membership, which comes with a host of benefits, including event tickets for clients and partner marketing opportunities.

For more information, visit the website:


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Photo above: Prince Albert II of Monaco surrounded by Christian Moore (far left), John Christodoulou, and Mike Powers during the the 2022 Goodwill Ambassador Award. Credit: Yvan Grubski



Monaco streamlines customs service for imports and exports

monaco import and export

Monaco has changed the way local companies handle imports and exports, making the process easier and allowing an administrative operation that previously forced applicants to go to Nice to take care of business closer to home.  

What a difference a few words make. By simply changing the name of Monaco’s Customs Office from an inspection centre to a main office, the act of import and export business has been simplified in the Principality.  

The Monaco Economic Board organised a conference on 2nd February at the Novotel to explain to interested parties how the new bureau will operate.  

Since October, Monaco’s office was considered a place where businesses needing customs approvals and advice stopped into before being sent to Nice to take care of the actual administrative procedures necessary for imports and exports.  

This was time-consuming and inconvenient, but as Monaco is considered part of France’s customs territory, and thus part of the European Union’s, it was a necessary evil. Now, the Monaco office has been allotted the same status as Nice, giving the region the only one ‘in France’ to have two main offices. 

“We now give access to all services, but also to remote customs clearance procedures which can be entrusted to Monegasque logistics professionals,” said Muriel Deya, Head of the Monaco Office. 

This new set-up also allows the possibility of having storage areas approved locally, which avoids companies being forced to transit goods through specific customs clearance areas. In addition, the Monaco Office’s knowledge of local players will help make checks easier, in particular avoiding certain random checks that have become unnecessary. 

Another feature of the new system allows for the idea of a ‘referent’ customs office, meaning companies can use the Monaco branch for all customs formalities upon leaving France. 

The conference, attended by about a hundred Monegasque professionals, was also an opportunity to present the many changes to come in the field of customs clearance as well as introduce the tools and regulations of which are constantly evolving.  

Roger Combe, the Regional Director of Nice Customs spoke about the changes, explaining that “Monaco is an important economic platform that did not have the appropriate customs structure to provide the best support to the economic actors of import [and] export.”  

With the changing of the name of the Monaco bureau, it now does.


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Photo source: Monaco Economic Board

Welcome to the jungle: First look at the Café de Paris’ new rooftop restaurant, the Amazónico

amazonico monaco

Amazónico, the luxe rainforest-themed restaurant serving up sushi and Latin American cuisine in Madrid, Dubai and London, is finding a new home in Monaco at the newly renovated Café de Paris. Here’s a sneak peak of what it will be like.  

The Amazónico brand, known for its tropical ambiance and inspired menu that mixes Latin American cuisine and sushi, is already making huge waves in London, Dubai and Madrid. Now it is set to open on the Place du Casino in Monaco as part of the much-anticipated reopening of the Café de Paris.

The restaurant, first created in 2010 by Spaniards Sandro Silvo and Marta Seco in Madrid, has been touted as a “sensory journey” that incorporates all the senses. Live jazz music accompanies the visual experience, where diners feel transported to the Amazon basin in a living, breathing environment of live plants, tropical-print décor and opulent velvet seating.  

Amazonico Monte-Carlo - Visuel 3D
Amazónico by night. Photo courtesy of Société des Bains de Mer

A lounge bar will feature a resident DJ pumping out “electro-pical” tunes, and a private speakeasy-style section will offer restaurant patrons an air of exclusivity.  

Though the menu for Monaco’s version has not been released, it can be expected to follow in the same vein as the other locations, offering a mix of signature and locally-inspired dishes.  

The €40 million renovation of the landmark Café de Paris is expected to be complete at the end of June, just in time for the summer season. Owners Monte-Carlo Société des Bains de Mer have been able to walk a fine line between modernising the space and retaining the classic belle-epoque beauty, adding two floors and space for several boutiques as well as Amazónico. 


Revealed: Café de Paris’ spectacular renovation


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Photos courtesy of Société des Bains de Mer

Opération Tranquillité Vacances: French police offer free home surveillance

Opération Tranquillité Vacances

If you are taking a vacation away from home, or your second home, this school holiday break, why not take advantage of Opération Tranquillité Vacances, a free police service that monitors your property in case of burglary. 

Opération Tranquillité Vacances is the brainchild of the three branches of the French police. This collective effort between the gendarmerie, local and national police was set up to help deter robberies from occurring when people are away on holiday by monitoring the homes of those who sign up for the service.  

Police officers patrol the homes of registered users randomly, day and night, as a deterrent to anyone who may be considering breaking in. If a break-in or theft does occur, the police notify the user either personally or via a trusted person or friend.  

The idea is that the faster one can react in the event of a burglary, the less damage will be incurred, allowing people time to do necessary tasks such as change locks, contact insurance companies or cancel credit cards.   

The service is open to those resident in France and who are planning to be away for a maximum of one year. It is available year-round. As of now, businesses are not included in the list of those who can apply.  

To register for the service, apply at a local police station or sign up online


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Photo source: Gwedal Cottin for Unsplash