Football: Spain beat England to win first Women’s World Cup

Spain's Alexia Putellas at the Women's World Cup 2023

Spain beat England in a cagey, tactical Women’s World Cup final on Sunday (1-0). However, celebrations have been marred by the actions of Spanish FA President Luis Rubiales, who has been criticised for kissing Jenni Hermoso. 

European Champions England would have arrived in the final with great confidence after beating home favourites Australia in the final. However, Sarina Wiegman’s side were dominated by a well-organised Spanish side, who stifled England’s attacking threat.

In a game of very few chances, Spain were clinical. Captain Olga Carmona scored the only goal of the game, capitalising on Lucy Bronze’s loss of possession, breaking and slotting past Mary Earps.

The England goalkeeper, who won the Golden Glove Award post-match, kept England in the game by saving a penalty in the second-half, but the Lionesses couldn’t profit from her impressive individual performance as England struggled to create clear-cut openings.

Celebrations marred by post-match controversy

Both sides were competing in their first ever Women’s World Cup final, and it was Spain who held their nerve to take the slender but deserved victory in Sydney.

However, the celebrations were marred by the action of Spanish FA president Rubiales, who kissed Spanish player Hermoso on the lips during the presentation ceremony. “I didn’t like it,” reacted the Spanish international on Instagram.

Rubiales has since apologised. “I was completely wrong. I have to admit it. I have to apologise, learn from this, and understand that when you are president, you have to be more careful,” he said on Monday.

Spain’s equalities minister Irene Montero has criticised Rubiales. “We should not assume kissing without consent is something ‘that happens’,” she said. His actions have dampened what is an euphoric moment for the Spain Women’s team as they overcame infighting and controversy to win their first World Cup title.


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Photo credit: Sven Beyrich

Air pollution alerts activated across Monaco and the Riviera

air pollution

Higher-than-usual levels of tropospheric or ground-level ozone have been recorded in a large swathe of southern France, as well as Monaco, leading authorities to activate a Level 1 warning for the region.  

AtmoSud, the air quality monitoring service for the southerly parts of the Provence-Alpes-Côte d’Azur region, has placed four of the departments it covers under a Level 1 pollution warning.

The alert warning service is used by prefectures when the concentrations of ozone, nitrogen dioxide, sulphur dioxide or PM10 particles risk exceeding the criteria defined by national air quality standards. In this particular car, ground-level ozone gas is the culprit, with levels surpassing the threshold of 180µg/m3.

Monaco’s government, which independently operates five air quality monitoring points across the Principality, has noted similar conditions and has also announced the same alert level.  

Air quality is expected to remain “poor” until at least Tuesday 22nd August, when conditions are expected to improve. 

The region – the Principality of Monaco and the French Riviera and Provence – is prone to higher air pollution levels, given the climate and the large number of people who live and visit the area.  

“The multiple sources of emissions combined with strong sunshine expose the region to photochemical pollution that is amongst the highest in Europe,” reads an explanation on the AtmoSud website. “These sources are also strong emitters of fine particles, causing numerous exceedances of regulatory standards.”  


When the air quality is bad, it is recommended that people, especially the more vulnerable members of society, take heed and follow a few common-sense guidelines to protect themselves.  

AtmoSud advises against outdoor exercise, especially in the heat of the day, as air pollutants enter the body most readily through the respiratory tract, causing inflammation, irritation and reduced breathing capacity.  

Poor air quality can be particularly dangerous for those with conditions such as lung cancer or asthma. It also can bring on heart attacks, so extra caution on these alert days is advised.  

To help combat the pollutants in the air, AtmoSud recommends switching to public transport or carpooling to cut down on the number of cars on the roads, as well as respecting rules on fires and moderating the temperatures of indoor spaces without excessive use of air conditioning.  

According to an EQIS study on the public health impact of air pollution conducted by Santé Publique France, poor conditions can lower life expectancy by more than two years in some French cities. Medium and small towns, in addition to rural areas, fare a bit better with, on average, pollution shortening life expectancy by nine to 10 months.  


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Photo source: Unsplash

All about the fairy tale Grand Ball of Monte-Carlo in Venice

grand ball of monte-carlo

The Grand Ball of Monte-Carlo, taking place this month in Venice on the opening night of the International Film Festival, promises to be an event “bursting with glamour”. 

An event fit for royalty, the Baglioni Hotel Luna on the legendary Piazza San Marcos in Venice will be the scene for the Grand Ball of Monte-Carlo on 31st August. It is set to be a one-of-a-kind gala where guests become princes and princesses for a night and immerse themselves in a world of unparalleled luxury and fun.  


The ball, which will be taking place on opening night of the Venice International Film Festival, is a themed event, with the ladies asked to dress in sumptuous ball gowns and the men in white tie or ceremonial military uniforms.  

The organisers, Noble Monte-Carlo, sum up the spirit of the event, saying, “Sophistication, elegance, and ineffable aesthetic will fill the upcoming Grand Ball of Monte-Carlo. An exclusive gala for lovers of luxury and grand parties, for whom this is a truly unmissable occasion.” 


The red carpet really will be rolled out for guests, who can strut or saunter its length all the way to a welcome cocktail within the prestigious hotel.  

Entertainment will naturally be part of the evening, with singers, dancers, musicians and perhaps even the odd juggler set to perform with the sole intent of pleasing the crowds. The attendees will also partake in dancing after a magnificent five-course meal, and the night is likely to continue well into the wee hours of the next morning.  

The organisers have held several other events of this calibre, including last year’s Grand Ball of Princes and Princesses in Monaco and another in Dubai.  

To book tickets as well as for more information, visit the website here


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Photo source: Noble Monte-Carlo 

Bal du Marché to return to the Condamine Market

The popular Bal du Marché is back this September, bringing a fun new dynamic to the busy Condamine Market.

On Saturday 2nd September, the outdoor Condamine Market will take on a festive atmosphere for the Bal du Marché, organised by the Mairie de Monaco.

The square, normally filled with fruit and vegetable vendors, will be taken over by picnic tables for guests to feast on the offerings available at the food stalls, located inside the food hall.

Entertainment will include live music from the Benty Brothers and a claw machine for the young ones.

The Bal du Marché kicks off at 7.30pm. Given the popularity of the event, reservation is needed. More information can be found at

Photo source: Mairie de Monaco


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France to send bullies to a different school in new strategy to strengthen protections for victims

school bully

This year’s La Rentrée will mark not only the start of a new school year, but also a new era of proactive measures combatting in-school bullying and cyberbullying, as well as better protections for victims.  

As of September 2023, perpetual bullies may be transferred out of current schools without the consent of their parents or legal guardians in order to better protect their victims. The revision of France’s educational code hopes to halt the trend of victims choosing to move school and instead force bullies to relocate, even if their parents don’t agree.  

Bullying is defined by the government as “repeated violence that can be verbal, physical or psychological” and it is not acceptable in any form at schools.  

The French government has come down hard on these behaviours in recent years. Since March 2022, school harassment has been considered an offense and dealing with it relies on a strict set of guidelines set forth by the Ministry of Education and Youth.  


Now the authorities have gone a step further, adopting a new measure that states that schools can remove a pupil from their current school if their “intentional and repeated behaviour poses a proven risk to the safety or health of other students”.  

It is applicable across all age groups, from primary through to high school, and also allows for procedures to be launched against students from other establishments in the case of cyberbullying.  


The new measure paves the way to remove bullies after repeated efforts to solve the problem have been made.  

Initially, the school is encouraged to try and rectify the situation in cooperation with the parents and students concerned. Then, if this does not solve the problem, government officials can step in with an on-site team to assess and fix the situation.  

If there is no resolution after this, the third step is to allow schools to remove the harasser without consent of the child’s parents or legal guardians. The mayor of the town must approve the request before finalising the move.  


Last year, the pHARe anti-harassment programme was implemented. In 2023, it manages a network of 400 academic and departmental referents across the country, who deal with harassment situations reported by school heads. As of September, the programme will be extended to include high schools. 

Additionally, the authorities are pushing the two designated emergency numbers, 3018, the national bullying hotline, and 3020, the victim’s listening and support number, to remind students they have voices in this matter.  

Staff training has also been stepped up to make sure teachers and administrators are au courant on how to manage and handle situations when they arise.  


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Photo source: Taylor Flowe, Unsplash

MACM to close and reopen as Female Artists of the Mougins Museum

Europe’s first museum dedicated entirely to female artists will open in Mougins in 2024.

Christian Levett, the founder and owner of the Mougins Museum of Classical Art, has announced that the museum founded 12 years ago is set to undergo a complete facelift, closing as a classical art museum on 31st August 2023 and reopening in 2024 as the first private European museum dedicated entirely to women artists.

“Creating this museum and sharing it with the public has been an incredibly exciting experience for me as a collector,” Christian Levett said in a statement. “I have been a passionate collector for over a quarter century now, and as my collecting and art research interests matured over the years, I believe that it is now time for the museum to evolve as well. I cannot wait to reopen the new museum, FAMM, which I am certain will quickly become a vibrant destination for connoisseurs, collectors and art lovers in the South of France and globally.”

The end of a successful era

The Mougins Museum has been open daily to the public for the past 12 years, and up to now has showcased Levett’s visionary curation juxtaposing ancient art from Egypt, Greece and Rome with classically inspired artworks from neoclassical, modern and contemporary periods.

The MACM will close at the end of August for a full refurbishment before it reopens as the new FAMM

The museum immediately gained international recognition when it was awarded the Apollo Magazine ‘New Museum of the Year Award’ in 2011. Two years later, it was the only French museum to be nominated in the European Museum of the Year Awards in 2013. It has received a number of French cultural awards, as well as Trip Advisor’s Certificate of Excellence each year since it opened. Towards a quarter of a million visitors have enjoyed visiting the collection.

An exciting celebration of female artists

Visitors have until 31st August to enjoy the MACM as the Musee d’Art Classique de Mougins, before it closes for refurbishment, ready to re-open in summer 2024 as FAMM: Female Artists of the Mougins Museum.

The new museum will showcase works by artists from The Levett Collection, including Joan Mitchell, Lee Krasner, Helen Frankenthaler, Grace Hartigan, Elaine de Kooning, Barbara Hepworth, Marlene Dumas, and many more.

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Photo by Monaco Life