‘Like nowhere else’: Monaco launches 2023 campaign to lure new generation tourists

Monaco’s Tourism Department has revealed its latest strategy to win back tourists and return Monaco to its pre-Covid figures.

Guy Antognelli, Monaco’s Director of Tourism and Congress, on Tuesday 21st March revealed the Principality’s tourism figures for 2022 to industry professionals and Minister of State Pierre Dartout.

He announced that hotel occupancy rose in 2022 compared to 2021, but the Principality’s hotels were still yet to better pre-Covid figures of 2019. “This positive balance sheet suggests good prospects for the months to come, particularly with revenue per room up sharply,” he added.

The director of tourism also revealed that the number of clients from France, Israel, Mexico, Qatar and Kuwait were up, even compared to the year 2019. On the other hand, visitors from Russia, Ukraine, the United Kingdom, China, Japan and Italy were in sharp decline, due to the international context or national political instability.

Monaco’s tourism strategy for 2023

In order to remain competitive, Guy Antognelli announced that the tourism department will consolidate its promotional campaigns to its preferred markets.

In business tourism, he envisages Monaco benefitting from a return of face-to-face events for congresses and business meetings, which should benefit the Grimaldi Forum and the hotels in the Principality.

Meanwhile, the government’s ‘Destination Monaco’ campaign will be more targeted to a new generation of customers. It will incorporate current trends in communication: Monaco’s “instagramability”, it’s appeal to “digital nomads”, and its commitment to sustainability.

“In all these areas, Monaco has significant assets to welcome them and retain them,” said Sandrine Camia, Deputy Director of the Monaco Government Tourist and Convention Authority.

At the end of the presentation of the 2022 tourist figures, the team unveiled its 2023 slogan: ‘Like Nowhere Else’, designed to reaffirm Monaco as a unique destination.


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Photo credit: Manuel Vitali, Government Communication Department

France’s sunniest cities: the Riviera reigns supreme in new rankings


The sun really does shine on the south of France, with the French Riviera outclassing every other region in the country when it comes to sun-filled days. But where does it shine brightest? 

More than two thirds of the destinations that made it into the Top 30 of the list, which was created by travel platform Holidu, are to be found in the south of France, or more specifically the Provence-Alpes-Côte d’Azur region. Its Alpes-Maritimes department had the best showing overall, clinching all top five slots. 

Grasse takes the top spot 

Perfume capital Grasse came in first place, with an estimated 285.5 hours of sunshine a month. Antibes was a close second, with just shy of 285 hours, while Cagnes-sur-Mer, Cannes and Nice were also all within reach of the top spot.  

Into the Top 10 and there are plenty of other familiar locations: Fréjus, Martigues, Marseille, La Ciotat and Hyères.  

It’s not until 18th place that another French region gets a mention, with Perpignan in Occitania getting that honour. The Coriscan cities of Bastia (22nd) and Ajaccio (24th) also made the otherwise PACA-dominated list.  

The statistics used in the compiling of the “France’s Sunniest Cities” report came from World Weather Online, which has tracked the average monthly hours of sunshine in France between 2009 and 2022. France’s 100 biggest cities – those with over 20,000 inhabitants – were all considered in the rankings.  

To see the full list, please click here.  


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Photo source: Pays de Grasse Tourisme


Football: Paul Mitchell to leave AS Monaco

Paul Mitchell has announced that he will be leaving his position as sporting director at AS Monaco, with the Englishman announcing that he has “completed his mission” at the club.

The 41-year-old, who assumed the role of sporting director back in 2020, announced his decision in an interview with Nice Matin and L’Équipe on Wednesday.

It was first announced by L’Équipe in February that Mitchell was to leave Les Monégasques. According to the French publication, he was set to depart at the end of the summer transfer window, however, Mitchell gave no timescale on his departure.

Mitchell has been charged with the task of finding his replacement by owner Dmitry Rybolovlev. In order to ensure a “smooth transition,” Mitchell will first recruit his successor then guide them through their “first steps” at the club. In the search for his replacement, Mitchell said that he has “some names in mind”.

“I have completed my mission”

Speaking to Nice Matin, Mitchell revealed that the club had attempted to extend his deal, but the former Red Bull and Tottenham Hotspur man believes that now is the right time to hand over the keys to the Monaco project.

“I have loved my experience at the club. I always felt a lot of support from President Dmitri Rybolovev and from the Principality. We had numerous discussions about my mission, about the possibility of changing my role within the club, about extending my contract. I am very grateful to the president for having confidence in me. I’ve spent a lot of time away from home and my close ones these past years. I have the feeling that the mission I had, which was to create a sporting project, is complete,” said Mitchell.

Vanderson, Caio Henrique and Axel Disasi the biggest successes

During his time at the club, Mitchell has overseen a managerial change, with Philippe Clement replacing Nico Kovac on the sidelines of the Stade Louis II. He has also overseen the rise of academy products such as Benoît Badiashile and Eliesse Ben Seghir. The former became a key member of the Monaco team during his tenure and recently left the club to join Chelsea for €40 million.

Mitchell has also overseen the recruitment of signings such as Vanderson, Caio Henrique, Axel Disasi and Kevin Volland, all of whom have gone on to become important members of Monaco’s squad.

Monaco searching for a similar profile

It is unclear whether Mitchell will sign further players during the summer transfer window, or whether his successor will be charged with the task. He did, however, say that he is “still very invested in the club, and will continue to be so until [his] final day”.

Mitchell also outlined the credentials of his successor, saying that he will be looking at “a similar profile”. The continuation of a philosophy of promoting youth is fundamental.

A new era is set to begin at Monaco, and Mitchell still has a hand in shaping it.


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Photo by Monaco Life

King Charles III faces rubbish-filled streets and transport delays on first state to visit France

king charles france

King Charles III and Queen Consort Camilla will this weekend visit a France in chaos with strikers threatening to disrupt at every turn.  

King Charles III and Queen Consort Camilla are making their first foreign trip as monarchs to France from 26th to 29th March, and it looks like it will be quite a roller coaster ride.  

The King and Queen Consort are stepping into a firestorm of pension reform rebellions ranging from major transportation disruptions to mountains of garbage in the streets and outright hostile interferences. 

Possible awkward moments

The trip has no doubt been meticulously planned, but the full official schedule has not been released to the public, a sign that there is unease about the possibility of disruptions.  

One of the few things on the agenda that has been released is a trip to Bordeaux, where the royal couple were set to take the tram.  

“It’s almost certain that the King won’t be able to take the tramway,” Pascal Mesgueni, a local leader of the CFTC union in Bordeaux, told the Sud Ouest newspaper this week.   

City transport operator Keolis added that there “will possibly be disruptions linked to the protests against pension reform”.  

Rail workers are also threatening to strike on the day the King plans to go Bordeaux, noting that the environmentally aware monarch will most like choose this form of transport over air travel.  

Arc de Triomphe ceremony in Paris 

Buckingham Palace has also said that Charles was due to join French President Emmanuel Macron for a remembrance ceremony and wreath laying at the Arc de Triomphe in Paris on Monday, as well as to speak to the French Senate. So far there hasn’t been word that these plans will be foiled, so organisers will simply have to hold their breath and hope for the best – not ideal on an official state trip.  

Bad timing

Macron is drawing fire for not cancelling the visit, being accused of insensitivity for making plans to host a state banquet at Versailles Palace, just outside Paris. The site is symbolic for French people as the home of King Louis XVI and Marie Antoinette and their excesses, which prompted the French Revolution, and for which they were punished by execution.  

Macron’s opponents liken him to an authoritarian leader of the 18th century variety, citing his decision to by-pass the legislature and force his controversial pension reform bill through.  

“He (Macron) should cancel this visit,” left-wing MP Sandrine Rousseau, a senior member of the Green party, told BFM news channel on Wednesday. “Is it really the priority to welcome Charles III in Versailles? Of course not. Something is happening in French society. The priority should be speaking to society, which is rising up.” 

The trip is meant to be a way of renewing ties between the two nations, whose relations have been tension-filled over Brexit. The royals are heading to Germany after their stay in France.


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Photo: King Charles III with French President Emmanuel Macron and France’s First Lady Brigitte Marie-Claude Trogneux Macron during a reception for Heads of State and overseas visitors at Buckingham Palace, 18th September 2022. Source: UK Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office, Flickr


Easter fun in Monaco: eggs, events and the ecology!

easter monaco

The Monaco Mairie is putting on some super Easter-themed events that will not only keep kids entertained, but also teach them some environmentally friendly ways to celebrate. Hop on for the fun! 

Ahh, Easter. The holiday that heralds in the spring and fills children’s minds with the wonder of what delicious and beautifully crafted treats the Easter Bunny will bring. 

Every year, the Monaco Mairie gets into the spirit by putting on a series of eggs-cellent workshops and events for kids, giving them a chance to show their creative sides and perhaps learn a thing or two in the process.  

This year, the townhall will be hosting three different activities, starting on Wednesday 5th April at 3pm at A Fàbrica in the Princess Antoinette Park, when kids aged six to 10 will be invited to come and make a rabbit. Not just any old bunny, mind, but one fashioned from cardboard and recycled plants, giving it a very modern eco twist. The workshop is being run in collaboration with Les Petits Ecoliers de Monaco. To book a spot, call +377 93 15 29 33. 

The Botanical Centre is also getting in on the game and has organised a “plant hunt” on Saturday 8th April for children between the ages of three and 12 who are residents or who attend school in the Principality. The one-hour game will take place in the greenhouses of the Centre, and three time slots are available: 9.30am, 10.30am and 11.30am. For reservations, ring +377 93 15 29 80 or drop an email to jardin-exotique@mairie.mc and let them know which time suits.  

Last but not least, Monaco’s Entertainment Service, in collaboration with the association La Boîte de Jeux, is putting on a big Easter egg hunt at the Princess Antoinette Park on Sunday 9th April between 2pm and 5.30pm. The afternoon will be filled with workshops and games for Monegasque children and residents from the age of six and up. To book a space for one of the games or for more information, click here

On a side note, the Easter Bunny will hop his way into the Condamine Market on Saturday 8th April from 10am, handing out chocolate eggs to those who ask.  

These egg-stra special events only happen at Easter, so don’t miss out on the fun!


Do you have an event in Monaco or the French Riviera that you would like us to include in our What’s On section and events calendar? Please email editor@monacolife.net.  


Photo source: Gabe Pierce for Unsplash.

Fuel limits imposed on the French Riviera as shortages worsen

fuel limit

Service stations across the Côte d’Azur are imposing strict 30-litre limits on fuel due to strikes and walk-outs at some of the largest refineries in France.  

In attempt to avoid a scenario like last October, when pumps ran dry at petrol stations nationwide, local authorities in the Alpes-Maritimes and the Var – like many others in France – have decided to limit refuelling to 30 litres for the average driver. For heavy goods vehicles and tractors, the limit is 120 litres. 

The limit applies to all forms of fuel: petrol, unleaded petrol, diesel and LPG.  

Prefect for the Alpes-Maritimes Bernard Gonzalez has called on drivers to be responsible in filling up their vehicles, saying “overconsumption will destabilise distribution and could create a shortage situation”.  

The limits remain in place until midnight on Monday 27th March.  

The use of jerricans and other portable containers for fuel is already subject to a ban. Only those using such equipment for professional reasons are permitted to fill up.  

A situation that will get worse before it gets better 

Earlier this week, the Secretary General of CGT’s National Federation of Chemical Industries, Emmanuel Lépine, warned that disruptions to fuel provisions would get worse before they got better as union bosses backed widespread protests within the industry. In light of France pushing ahead with its controversial pension reforms, against the wishes of many, Lépine said shortages were inevitable.  


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Photo source: Wassim Chouak for Unsplash