New Venezuelan restaurant TAERA to open next month at the Hôtel de Paris 

taera hotel de paris

TAERA, a fresh new Venezuelan restaurant concept headed up by the talented Victoria Vallenilla, is set to open at the Hôtel de Paris in October. Here’s what we know so far. 

It has been a very busy year for Monte-Carlo Société des Bains de Mer (SBM) when it comes to new restaurants, reopenings and renovations, so perhaps it is no surprise that little noise has been made about TAERA as yet. 

However, we do have some information on this new gourmet destination, including its launch date: Thursday 12th October. 

The Venezuelan cuisine-led eatery will be located on the Patio of the Hôtel de Paris and it will be open daily from noon until 7pm, thus providing a “Salon de Thé” style service, but with its own strong South American twist.  


Chef Victoria Vallenilla, a name that fans of the vibrant COYA Monte-Carlo might recognise, will be in charge of the kitchen, which is set to serve up traditional Venezuelan dishes steeped in “colour and originality”.  

Vallenilla was born in Caracus in Venezuela, but grew up on the Isla Margarita in the Caribbean, so her personal style has an element of fusion. This background certainly helped Vallenilla play to her strengths at COYA, which she has been at the helm of since 2021, but her connections to Monaco go back a little further. 

The 30-year-old started off in the Principality at the Vistamar of the Hôtel Hermitage Monte-Carlo under Joël Garault and later Benoît Witz. From there, she took up at post at Alain Ducasse’s Trattoria before joining COYA as a junior member in 2018.  

“Victoria’s joyful cuisine traces a history rich in flavors, offering authentic dishes revisited with creativity,” reads the incoming restaurant’s excerpt. “The menu is an invitation to gastronomic exploration, highlighting the Arepa, a corn pancake garnished with salmon, burrata and caviar, or pulled meat… A subtle balance between modernity and heritage to enhance the flavours.” 

As always with restaurants managed by SBM, the design and décor of the space has been given as much thought as the menu. Although no images of TAERA have been released yet, it is described as a “lively and warm” locale decorated with frescos painted by South American artist Viviana Grondona.  

Stay tuned for more information on Monaco’s latest restaurant as we get it!


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Photo credit: Monte-Carlo SBM

From Carpentier to Micallef, the long and illustrious history of boxing in Monaco

Boxing in the Monte-Carlo Casino

Boxing will make its return to the Principality later this month when Hugo Micallef competes on home soil for the first time. The bout will mark the latest chapter in Monaco’s long and illustrious boxing history. 

Like Monaco, boxing is associated with glamour and wealth. However, the Principality is more well-known for the Monaco Grand Prix, the Monte-Carlo Masters or its football club, AS Monaco, than it is for hosting a thriving boxing scene.

A European Middleweight title contested in La Condamine

That isn’t to say that one doesn’t exist. Monaco’s history with boxing dates back to the 19th century when Prince Albert 1 oversaw the rise of the sport and the installation of structures and facilities to allow for boxing to grow in popularity.

Then, in 1912, a year in which the European middleweight title was contested within the borders of the Principality, the sport really exploded onto the Monegasque scene.

Georges Carpentier and England’s Jim Sullivan came to town to fight it out for the title, the former beating the latter in a bout organised by the International Sporting Club, an internal structure of the Monte-Carlo Société des Bains de Mer (SBM), and contested on the Radziwill field in La Condamine. The venue had just celebrated its 18th birthday at the time.

A regular visitor

Whilst an iconic venue given its place in Monaco’s boxing history, it would not be one more commonly associated with boxing. That title perhaps goes to the Stade Louis II, which saw frequent fights in the 1970s, as well as a certain frequent visitor.

In the space of just over six years, Argentine boxer Carlos Mónzon came and conquered in the Principality. The undisputed middleweight world champion took part in four fights in the Stade Louis II between 1971 and 1976.

He won the first, against Nino Benvenuti by technical knockout in 1971, before proceeding to beat Emile Griffith and Rodrigo Valdez by unanimous decision. After a second fight against Valdez in Monaco in 1977, just one year after his last victory against the Colombian, Monzón called a time on his career, ending on a high after another unanimous decision.

An iconic knockout at the Stade Louis II

Fighters such as Gerrie Coetzee, Leon Spinks, Donald Curry, Richie Sandoval, Davey Moore, Bob Arum, Milton McCrory, Sumbu Kalambay and Doug DeWitt have all fought in Fontvieille over the years, but arguably the most iconic fight to have taken place within the borders of the Principality pitted Lee Roy Murphy against Chisanda Mutti.

In an IBF cruiserweight bout, the pair landed simultaneous right-handers with both boxers hitting the canvas in the 12th round. Both boxers had already suffered heavy knockdowns, but on this occasion, Murphy managed to lift himself. The same could not be said for Mutti, who was counted out and subsequently lost the fight.

A boxer in his prime

Julio Caesar Chavez, who is regarded by many as one of the greatest in the history of the sport, competed in Monaco in his prime. The Mexican boxer, who held the WBC super featherweight title from 1984 to 1987, beat Rocky Lockridge in Fontvieille in 1986 to retain his title by majority decision.

Monaco has become no stranger to hosting big fights, with the WBC middleweight title contested by Mike McCallum and Sumbu Kalambay in 1991. The former came out on top in that bout.

Prince Albert II at the Monte-Carlo Boxing Bonanza. Photo source: Monte-Carlo Société des Bains de Mer

In recent years, the iconic Casino de Monte-Carlo has hosted fights as boxing experiences a resurgence in the Principality. Eddie Hearn and Matchroom organised an eight-fighter-strong Sky Sports event billed as the “Monte-Carlo Showdown” in the location back in 2016, whilst the Monte-Carlo Bonanza has also taken place in the same event. The last edition occured in 2019.

Micallef writing a new chapter

Boxing is now set to return to the Principality once more thanks to the young Hugo Micallef. The Monegasque boxer, known as the “Fresh Prince of Monaco”, is unbeaten in his short professional career, and he will be looking to extend his run in another new venue, the Châpiteau de Fontvieille. There he will face Czech boxer Michal Bulik on 23rd September.

Micallef is helping to reignite mainstream interest in the sport thanks to his exploits, and his return to the Principality will be a blockbuster event. Many world-renowned stars have boxed in Monaco over the years, but the latest chapter of the sport’s history in the Principality is a local story and one that is already capturing the imagination of the Monegasques.


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Photo source: Monte-Carlo Société des Bains de Mer

Société des Explorations de Monaco welcomes Xavier Prache as new director

The Société des Explorations de Monaco has said a fond farewell to outgoing boss Gilles Bessero and welcomed in its new leader, Xavier Prache. 

The Société des Explorations de Monaco, a Monegasque government-created initiative committed to knowledge, sustainable management and protection of the oceans, has a new director.  

Upon his retirement, outgoing Chief Gilles Bessero (pictured left above), who had been in charge since December 2018, passed the baton to Xavier Prache at a ceremony held at the Musée Océanographique de Monaco on 1st September.  


Prache is a 1992 graduate of the Naval Commissariat School and has spent his career until now in the service of the French military, where he was most recently Commissioner of the Armed Forces and previously head of the support group at the Toulon Defence Base. 

Over the years, he has been stationed in La Réunion, Brest, Cherbourg, Toulon and Monaco, where he was seconded to serve as aide-de-camp to Prince Albert II between 2011 and 2012.  

His training and management skills in financial, logistical and administrative matters made him a stand-out candidate for this new job, but it is his deep understanding of the marine world and his expertise in geostrategy were the clinchers.  

Xavier Prache officially assumed the duties of former Director Gilles Bessero on 1st September. Photo credit: Michel Dagnino


Prache will hit the ground running with a Mediterranean mission followed in 2024 by one in the Coral Sea of the South Pacific.  

“The future of the ocean is a subject that concerns us all, inseparably linked to that of humanity,” said Prache at his appointment. “It requires having a good knowledge of this environment, ensuring its sustainable management and, of course, protecting it.”  

By combining scientific research, public mediation and cooperation governmental, the Société des Explorations de Monaco is in line with the legacy of Prince Albert I “to make the Ocean known, loved and protected”. 

Prache concluded, “It is driven by realistic optimism that I take up my duties, happy at the idea of contributing to the action of the Sovereign and the Principality for the sustainable preservation of the ocean, and of preparing and leading the programme of activities with our partners around the world.” 


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Photo credit: Michel Dagnino

Rugby World Cup: Scotland team to base themselves in Nice

The Scotland Rugby Team

Scotland’s Rugby Union side will be based in Nice for the entirety of their Rugby World Cup campaign, which gets underway against South Africa in Marseille on Sunday.

Scotland will train at the Arboras complex near the Allianz Riviera in Saint-Isidore for the duration of the campaign.

“We already managed to come in June for a 10-day camp. The installations are superb, with a main pitch, the perfect gym and the new synthetic pitch being a useful tool for our players,” says Coach Gregory Townsend. “By coming to Nice in June and August, we have created on each occasion the training and preparatory conditions that we’ll have during the World Cup. It’s really perfect!”

The team arrived on Monday, posing on the iconic blue chairs that line the Promenade des Anglais to inaugurate what they hope to be a successful tournament.

For Scotland, it will all kick off this coming Sunday in Marseille, when the team comes up against one of the favourites for the competition, and reigning champions, South Africa.

Four group-stage matches in Nice

A fortnight later, on Sunday 24th September, the Scottish side will make the short journey up the road to face Tonga at the Allianz Riviera, before subsequent matches against Romania in Lille and then against statistical favourites Ireland in Paris.

Whilst Scotland feature just once in Nice, the Allianz Riviera will host three more group-stage matches. The first will see Wales face Portugal on Saturday 16th September (5.45om). On Sunday 17th September, England will face Japan (9pm). Italy will face Uruguay on Wednesday 20th September (5.45pm) before Scotland’s match against Tonga, the final match to take place on the Riviera.

South Africa based in the Var

Meanwhile, South Africa will be based in La Seyne-sur-Mer, just down the coast in the Var region, for the duration of the tournament. The coastal town is just a short drive from Marseille, where the Springboks will contest two of their group-stage matches (against Scotland and then Tonga on Sunday 1st October).

Coach Jacques Nienaber believes their opener against Scotland will be “the most important of the tournament”.

“We are in a difficult group, that’s why the match against Scotland is so important,” concluded the South African.


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Photo credit: Christophe Souques



Prince Albert and Princess Charlene welcome new French ambassador

new french ambassador

Jean d’Haussonville, France’s new Ambassador to Monaco, has met with Prince Albert and Princess Charlene to present his papers and be welcomed into the Principality’s diplomatic fold.  

Ambassadors from Monaco’s closest neighbour of France are more than simply ceremonial. The two nations are intertwined, sharing many things, including an integrated customs system and a common language to name but a few.  

This close relationship means that when a new ambassador from France is appointed to the Principality, it is cause to pull out all the stops.  

On 5th September, such an occasion occurred as Prince Albert II of Monaco and Princess Charlene, alongside Isabelle Berro-Amadeï, Monaco’s Government Advisor-Minister of External Relations and Cooperation, met with Jean d’Haussonville, who presented his Letters of Credence to the sovereign.  

The newly appointed Ambassador was then received by Minister of State Pierre Dartout, who hosted a welcome lunch for him at his residence. It was an event also attended by the Prince.  


D’Haussonville is a graduate of the Institute of Political Studies in Paris and a former student of the National School of Administration. Since 2010, he has acted as Managing Director of the Chambord National Estate and he notably was First Secretary at the Permanent Representation of France to NATO in Brussels from 1997 to 2001 as well as Advisor to the Minister of Culture and Communication from 2004 to 2007. 

Additionally, he is an Officer of the National Order of Merit, Knight of the Legion of Honour and Officer of Arts and Letters. 

All of Monaco wish the Ambassador a successful and fruitful term.  


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Photo credit: Palais Princier de Monaco 

Classic yachts: Sail into a world of tradition

Autumn sees the annual Les Voiles de Saint-Tropez bringing together some of the world’s most beautiful modern and classic sailing boats to race in what is one of the most the prestigious regattas on the racing circuit. Miriam Cain looks at a handful of the finest classic sailing yachts, and replicas, available for the yacht aficionado to be part of the action.

The perfect backdrop for a classic sailing yacht regatta, Saint-Tropez has been hosting Les Voiles de Saint-Tropez for over 40 years. Originally known as La Nioulargue, the annual rendezvous of beautiful, traditional and modern sailing yachts is held in the bay of Saint-Tropez each autumn. This year, it will take place from Friday 29th September to Sunday 8th October.

The history of Les Voiles de Saint-Tropez

The event was launched in 1981 when an owner and skipper of two classic yachts raced each other from the foot of the village of Saint-Tropez around the Nioulargo to arrive opposite Club 55 on Pampelonne beach. Today it has become an exciting regatta for owners to enjoy the power and performance of over 300 sailing yachts in every size and shape racing across several performance classes.

The Voiles de Saint-Tropez, and other classic regattas hosted in some of the world’s favourite cruising grounds, capture the attention of not just yachtsmen and dedicated racing fans, but of owners, their captains and crew worldwide. The yachts themselves are awe inspiring but add to this the passion and skill of their crew together with the festival like atmosphere that surrounds a racing event both on the water and on the quayside, and you have the making of an exciting few days that is accessible to owners worldwide.

A world of tradition

For those wanting a genuine sailing experience or to take part in some of the finest racing action, the enduring appeal of a classic yacht is second to none. Admired for their beauty and desired wherever they go, owning a classic sailing yacht is not just about acquiring a vessel, it’s about becoming a part of a rich legacy.

The French two-masted Schooner Weather Bird, for example, was built in 1931 for Sara and Gerald Murphy, a high-society American couple whose well-known families flourished in fortune. After settling on the French Riviera, the couple launched Weather Bird, which served as inspiration for numerous artists that they hosted on board. Some of her most notable guests included Cole Porter, Coco Chanel, Ernest Hemingway and Pablo Picasso, not to mention Murphy’s good friends Zelda and F. Scott Fitzgerald. It is rumoured that Fitzgerald characterised the main characters in his novel Tender is the Night after the Murphys.

Weather Bird has received many updates and upgrades over the years, including a complete refit in 2021. Her interior spaces showcase the classic 1930s styling, with a timeless, romantic feel, while her exterior deck spaces are spacious and offer seating areas for guests to socialise and relax while cruising, or racing in regattas, such as Les Voiles de Saint-Tropez.

The 31m (101’8”) WEATHER BIRD is available to purchase through Northrop & Johnson with an asking price of €3,370,000.

Another classic is the legendary sailing yacht Tamory. The 26.58m (87’) wishbone ketch was built in 1952 and will be familiar with classic yachting enthusiasts in the Riviera, having been moored in the Monaco Palace’s berth in Fontvieille for the last few decades. She is a yacht of special character and strong heritage; any new owner would be owning a piece of yachting history. Despite having undergone a number of refits over the years, including her most recent in 2000, Tamory has managed to retain her classic, elegant styling with her teak deck in excellent condition and below deck, her charming interior comprising a wood and cream finish with polished brass accents.

The timeless Bermudian schooner Armide is another fine example of a beautifully restored classic. Built in 1938 and meticulously restored between 2016 and 2018, her exterior radiates timeless elegance with her classic design and flush decks. Adorned with beautiful bronze deck fittings, reconditioned spruce masts and booms, and a new bow sprit to enhance performance, she is now part of the South of France’s maritime patrimony. Although she was not initially built as a race boat, thanks to her new sails and rigging, Armide would be a formidable contender on the regatta circuit.

The 40.5m (132’1”) NAEMA is available to purchase through Northrop & Johnson with an asking price of €5,950,000.

For those looking for a classic design but with all modern amenities, there are a number of replica vessels and classically styled but modern builds. The topsail zchooner Naema, for example, is classic to all appearances, but she is in fact a replica of the famous Alfred Milne design Panda, which was launched in 1938. Built in 2006 and refit in 2015, Naema has been created with authentic schooner rigging, but with modern sail handling systems and electric winches.

For those looking to race, she has a proven record having won the 2019 Classic Schooner Association Regatta. She has also been engineered to deliver all amenities for luxury living aboard, including superb guest entertaining areas.

The 27.32m (89’) SPIRIT OF VENICE is available to purchase through Northrop & Johnson with an asking price of €2,100,000.

Alternatively, the 2018-built Spirit of Venice is a classic masterpiece combining modern elements and the latest technology with an authentic classic style. She was built with all the features to be sailed single-handedly around the world with the utmost comfort and updated technology.

Whatever your preference, be it a restored classic with a special pedigree or a modern day replica, the immediacy of ownership is a distinct advantage as you can sail away on your classic yacht without having to wait for a new build –  see you on the finish line.

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Feature photo: The 31m (101’8”) WEATHER BIRD is available to purchase through Northrop & Johnson with an asking price of €3,370,000. All photos supplied.