Games of the Small States of Europe: Prince Albert II honours Monaco’s athletes

Monaco's Athletes from the Games of the Small States of Europe meeting with Prince Albert II

After their 33-medal haul at the Games of the Small States of Europe in Malta last month, Monaco’s athletes have been honoured by Prince Albert II and Minister of State Pierre Dartout.

Monaco’s 33 medals, which included 13 golds, saw the Principality finish fourth in the 19th edition of the athletics event. T toast their triumphs, the protagonists of that success, including Giulia Viacava, who won seven of the 33 medals, were all invited to a special welcome at the Minister of State’s residence last week.

Pierre Dartout congratulated the Monegasque delegation “for their brilliant results and for having flown the Monegasque colours high” at the games. Yvette Lambin Berti, the Secretary General of the Monegasque Olympic Committee, added, “All of this wasn’t by chance. Behind the success, there is a lot of hard work, perseverance, rigour and patience.”

Monaco to host 2027 edition of Games of the Small States of Europe

Addressing Prince Albert II of Monaco, who was present at the event, Berti continued, “These encouraging performances are the result of your policies that value and support sport, and also the result of the means that you provide your government to put them in place. We are grateful to you.”

Andorra will host the next Games in 2025 before the event comes to the Principality in 2027. It will be the third time that Monaco will have hosted the Games of the Small States of Europe, after having previously done so in 1987 and 2007.

With a home event in sight, Berti told those gathered, “You must now persevere and keep going. Many of you are already preparing for these games. We will be at your side, and we will support you.”


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Photo: Direction de la Communication / Manuel Vitali

Monaco Supreme Court rejects Claude Palmero’s action against Prince Albert II

After being forced into early retirement over the so-called “Rock Files”, Claude Palmero’s attempt to have his dismissal reversed and compensation paid by the Palace has been rejected by Monaco’s highest court.

On 14th July, Prince Albert’s former ally in charge of managing the Palace’s assets, Claude Palmero, filed a request before the Supreme Court of Monaco seeking an annulment of the order of his dismissal, as well as compensation.

On Monday, the Parisian communications agency of the Prince’s Palace reportedly released an extract from the order of the Supreme Court to the press.

“Mr. Claude Palmero contests before the Supreme Court of Monaco the dismissal of his functions as Administrator of the property of HSH Prince Albert II of Monaco and asks the Prince to pay compensation of one million euros,” reads the extract, as reported by Monaco Matin. “He also requested a stay of execution of the decisions of June 6 and 9, 2023 relating to his dismissal.

“By a decision of September 5, 2023, the Court, ruling in summary proceedings, rejected the request for suspension of execution presented by Mr. Palmero on the grounds that these decisions which relate to the organisation and functioning of the Sovereign House and are not detachable from the person of the Sovereign Prince, escape the jurisdiction of the Supreme Court”.

Claude Palmero’s lawyer, Marie-Alix Canu-Bernard, has not responded to local media requests for comment.

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Claude Palmero, in charge of Prince Albert’s assets, steps down


Photo by Monaco Life


Time to party Peruvian-style with a Criolla concert hosted by AMLA

Blending Peruvian, European and African traditions into one, the Criolla is a traditional style of dance and music celebrated with its own special day. Now AMLA is putting on a show to introduce it to Monaco and make it part our world as well.

Starting as a musical genre and ballroom-style dance in the 19th century, Criollo is a heady mix of folk, polka and waltz, developed in the coast of Peru by the criollos, mixing Peruvian, European, and African instruments and tunes.

The music is so important to the culture that a holiday, El Día de la Canción Criolla, or Criolla Song Day, was established in 1944 by then President Manuel Prado and is celebrated nationwide on 31st October.

To bring this special and romantic music to the masses, the Latin American socio-cultural association AMLA is organising a one-night-only event in the Principality on Tuesday 10th October at the Theatre des Varietes at 7pm where the audience is invited to discover the Cancion Criolla.


“The Criolla music is very dear to Peruvians, not only because it mainly refers to romance and to Peru, but because it conveys with passion the wonders of Peru and love for the country,” says AMLA, who is organising the performance in conjunction with the Embassy of Peru.

Rolando Ruiz Rosas Cateriano, Ambassador of Peru to France and Monaco, will attend the event that will feature virtuous violinist Maria Elena Pacheco from the National Symphony Orchestra of Peru, incomparable guitar playing by Ernesto Hermoza and the unrivalled voice of Cecilia Bracamonte, all bringing the best of Peruvian song and dance to the stage including waltzes, Jaranas, Lando, tangos, boleros and flamenco.


AMLA was founded in Monaco to preserve Latin American heritage and culture as well as being a fun way to promote “the Principality’s unique position and lifestyle, with the objective of creating lasting bonds of friendship between the Principality of Monaco and the countries of Latin America.”

In this quest, they hold regular charity events each year that include galas, workshops and conferences that benefit vulnerable people in Latin America and are centred on matters such as education, health and well-being, and sustainability.

The concert is free, reservations can be made at

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Elite boxing to make star-studded return to the Casino de Monte-Carlo

Boxing in the Monte-Carlo Casino

Elite boxing is returning to the Principality with the Monte-Carlo Showdown set to storm to the Casino this coming autumn. 

The event, born from a collaboration between Eddie Hearn’s Matchroom Boxing and the Casino de Monte-Carlo, will return to the Principality on Saturday 4th November. A star-studded line-up has been announced, which notably includes Joe Cordina, who will be looking to defend his IBF Super Featherweight Championship title. The Welshman, one of the biggest names in British boxing, will face American rival Edward Vazquez.

Cordina, a two-time champion of the world in just 16 professional bouts, returns to Monaco, where he overcame Mario Enrique Tinoco back in 2019. Vazquez, meanwhile, gets his shot at glory after four consecutive victories.

“It is an honour to be returning to Monaco”

Three other fights are on the billing. South African Sive Nontshinga will put his IBF Light Flyweight Championship on the line against Mexico’s Adrian Curiel Dominguez, whilst one of the rising stars of French boxing, Souleymane Cissokho, will be looking to defend his WBC Siver Welterweight title against Mexican boxer Isaias Lucero.

Finally, Ramla Ali will seek to bounce back from the first defeat of her professional career in a rematch with Julissa Guzman as the pair contest the IBF Inter-Continental Super Bantamweight Championship. Guzman beat Ali in Round 8 of the fight in New Orleans in June. Ali, an activist who fled war-torn Somalia, was selected as one of Time Magazine’s Women of the Year for 2023.

“It is an honour to be returning to Monaco and to the incredible setting of the Casino de Monte-Carlo,” said Hearn, who has constructed the stellar cast for the 2023 edition of the Monte-Carlo Showdown. “It is exciting to be coming back on 4th November in what promises to be a memorable evening of elite, championship boxing.”

The Monte-Carlo Showdown isn’t the only blockbuster boxing event to take place in the Principality before the end of the year. Monegasque boxer Hugo Micallef announced earlier this month that he would be fighting in the Principality for the first time on Saturday 23th September. The ‘Fresh Prince of Monaco’ will meet Denis Bartos in his eighth professional fight at the Chapiteau de Fontvieille, and will be looking to continue his unbeaten run (7-0).


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Photo source: Monte-Carlo Société des Bains de Mer

Nice Airport returns to pre-pandemic figures, but with fewer planes

The number of passengers passing through Nice Côte d’Azur Airport hit 99.9% of 2019 levels this summer, though with notably fewer planes touching down due to changing schedules and demand.  

Nice Côte d’Azur Airport saw 3.3 million people pass through its two terminals this July and August, roughly the same as before the pandemic, providing positive proof that the region is as desirable as ever to tourists.  


The one aspect that has changed significantly between the pre- and post-pandemic years is the number of aircraft taking off and landing in Nice.  

This summer, the airport was down 675 flights, a fact that has been attributed to a “better passenger load factor”, which is good news for the environment. 

“Fleets composed mainly of latest-generation aircraft, perfectly accommodated for at our terminals, and with better passenger load factors and even greater potential for improvement, are all major levers for reducing the environmental impact of an essential mode of transport that guarantees our regions stay connected,” explains Franck Goldnadel, CEO of Aéroports de la Côte d’Azur. 

He continues, “2023 marks a return to pre-COVID levels and the same growth drive that allowed us to accommodate 30% more passengers between 2012 and 2019 without increasing aircraft movements. This virtuous trend is enhanced by the fact that today’s aircraft produce fewer emissions than those of 10 years ago.” 


The summer of 2023 saw the airport add 26 new routes, including three new long-hauls – Doha, Atlanta and Riyadh – which will have improved accessibility to the region.

Though always an international airport, this year has seen the total number of long-haul flights rise to 11, with six of those servicing North America. 2023 was the biggest year of growth for flights to and from the US. 


The UK was the top destination for international flights, making up 15% of the total summer traffic, and up over 2019 figures. Italy, Greece and Tunisia were also high on the list of places to travel abroad to from the south of France.  

Flying within France accounted for just over a quarter of all flights, which is marginally down on pre-pandemic numbers. There have been far fewer connections between Nice to Paris Orly this year compared to 2019.  

That being said, there has been a rise in the number of domestic flights to regions outside of the Ile de France, such as Bordeaux, Nantes, Caen and Biarritz. These “regional” flights now represent 40% of domestic routes from Nice. 

Goldnadel says, “Linking up the French Riviera directly with big cities in other regions, and developing direct routes to international capitals, are the simplest ways of meeting the travel needs of our local residents and all those who come to visit us. That’s what responsible, necessary air transport is all about.”  


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Photo via Nice Côte d’Azur Airport


Back to school for Monaco’s Prince Jacques and Princess Gabriella

This year’s La Rentrée was a little different for Prince Jacques and Princess Gabriella, who are back at school in Monaco, albeit with one big change.  

Most parents bid farewell to their children at the school gates last week, but that time only came on Monday 11th September for Prince Albert II of Monaco and Princess Charlene’s eight-year-old twins, Hereditary Prince Jacques and Princess Gabriella, who joined friends and classmates for this universal rite of passage that marks the start of a new “année scolaire”.  

The family made sure to document the moment with a series of sweet pictures, which were later shared on the Palais Princier de Monaco Instagram feed.  

Prince Jacques and Princess Gabriella have entered CE2 at the François d’Assise-Nicolas Barré primary school. Photo credit: Palais Princier de Monaco

Their parents, Prince Albert and Princess Charlene, were there together as the twins, dressed in their school polo shirts as way of uniform, made their way into their separate classes. For the tightly knit pair, this year will mark the first time they are not together. 

“For back-to-school this morning, Jacques and Gabriella were both very excited to see their friends again after such a long vacation,” Princess Charlene told the Monaco Matin. “It’s also the first time that they won’t be in the same class. It’s a big step for them, and that seems good to me… As for any student on the first day of school, they had a lot of expectations: about the new classmates, about the teachers, about what they were going to wear for their first day.”  

Jacques and Gabriella are attending the François d’Assise-Nicolas Barré primary school on the Rock, where they have been going since 2021, and have entered CE2.  


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Photo credit: Palais Princier de Monaco