Record-breaking wins at Mare Nostrum Monaco swim meet

It was an exciting day for swimmers and fans at the 37th annual International Swimming Meet held at the Albert II Nautical Centre last weekend. Three new records were set on Saturday, followed by another six on Sunday.

Hungarian Katinka Hosszu took the gold in three events: the 200m Butterfly, 100m backstroke and 200m medley. Daiya Seto, the Japanese powerhouse, set the world record for 400m men’s medley, beating his 2015 best.

American Michael Andrew set a Mare Nostrum record in the 50m backstroke, and also came in at the top spot for the 100m backstroke.

And Siobhan Haughey became the first swimmer from Hong Kong to ever win gold in the Mare Nostrum Series.

Mare Nostrum is a series of swimming meets with three events taking place around the Mediterranean sea – Monaco, Barcelona and Canet-en-Roussillon in France. Until 2005 a meet in Rome was also included in the series.

Homage to Jean Vanier

The Monaco chapter of Friends of l’Arche, l’Amadarche, will screen a documentary that follows the life of Jean Vanier, founder of l’Arche, who passed away on 7th May. Three screenings will take place on 12th June at the Agora Diocesan House at 4pm, 6pm, and 8:30pm.

Screenshot: Jean Vanier in a scene from the film ‘The Sacrament of Tenderness’

The film, titled ‘The Sacrament of Tenderness’ and directed by Frederique Bedos, tells the story of the man who dedicated his life to helping the developmentally disabled and those who care for them.

Vanier was a Swiss-born Canadian theologian and humanitarian who was the founder of the international string of “communities” which came to be called l’Arche, in 1964. 

Spanning 37 countries, their philosophy states that, rather than being burdens, people with disabilities are here to be our teachers, a radical idea in the 1960’s where often these people were institutionalised for life and largely forgotten about.

Day out with Enfants de Frankie

Monegasque association Les Enfants de Frankie has put a smile on the faces of a large number of sick, disabled and underprivileged kids, organising some fun on the sea recently.

Photo: Roca Jet Club

On 8th June, 80 young people ranging in age from five to 15, were invited to spend a day riding jet skis and bobbing around on rubber tubes behind boats. The event, co-hosted by the Roca Jet Club, is in its 11th year and supports local sick, disabled and disadvantaged youth. The day was aimed at introducing kids to water sports, as well as giving them a reason to smile. 

The all-day adventure began at 10am and included jet ski rides, which the children were allowed to drive with an adult’s assistance, boat rides and towed buoy rides.

Roughly 30 volunteers were in attendance, giving the children basic knowledge of water safety and showing them how to use equipment. Among the volunteers was co-world champion jet skier Lisa Caussin-Battaglia, who has been working with the association for a number of years. “Before starting in competitions, I participated with the association as a volunteer,” said Lisa. “I enjoy investing in this club, I get to share my passion and my experience.”

The day ended at around 5:30pm, and the children were sent home with smiles after their adventure and some fun in the sun. 

TV stars on the red carpet

The countdown is on for the 59th annual Monte Carlo Television Festival and there are a host of opportunities for the public to get involved and meet the stars.

Along with Michael Douglas and Catherine Zeta-Jones, other big name celebrities set to grace the red carpet include Jessica Alba and Gabrielle Union (LA’s Finest), Ludwig Alexander (Vikings), Christina Chang and Nicholas Gonzalez (The Good Doctor), and Producer Dick Wolf with actors Missy Peregrym, Zeeko Zaki, Ebonée Noel and Jeremy Sisto (FBI).

There will be autograph signings with many French stars including cast members from perennial favourite Plus Belle La Vie and France 2’s most popular series Un Si Grand Soleil. Denise Richards, Scott Clifton and Annika Noelle (The Bold and the Beautiful) will also be available for autographs and a question and answer session.

There will be a Fan Zone set up on the esplanade of the Grimaldi Forum all week featuring selfie opportunities and autograph signings, allowing fans some contact with their favourite celebrities. Live entertainment will also picture heavily, making it a fun place to hang out all week.

The final evening award ceremony will be a black tie event, presenting the best TV programming for around the globe with the coveted Golden Nymph Award. Afterwards, a star-studded gala will be highlighted with a concert by singer Gloria Gaynor.

Originally created by Prince Rainier III of Monaco, and now under the Honorary Presidency of Prince Albert II of Monaco, the Monte-Carlo Television Festival has, for more than half a century, presented the very best of television from around the world. The 2019 edition runs from 14th to 18th June.

Public enquiry into toxic algae

Residents in Monaco will be asked to take part in a research project studying the effects of Ostreopsis ovata microalgae on the Mediterranean.

The three member states of the RAMOGE Agreement – Monaco, Italy and France – have joined the research project headed by European Co-Clime.

Two students from Nantes University, who are the scientific partners in the project, will be in Monaco from 16th June to 15th September asking residents of the Principality to answer a series of questions, such as how often they go to the beach and their thoughts on global warming.

The roughly 30-minute interview will be conducted at various locations around town including Larvotto Beach, the public gardens, Albert 1er wharf, and the Fisherman’s Beach.

The goal of the study is to ascertain the effects of toxic algae growth on the Atlantic and Mediterranean coasts. It also will attempt to determine the habits and behaviours of residents and tourist on high traffic beach areas, such as Monaco, Nice and Marseille, specifically regarding leisure activities along the coast.

All data collected will be anonymous and is being used solely for scientific purposes. For more information, contact


INTERPOL regional conference

Several high-ranking law enforcement officials from Monaco travelled to Poland to be part of the 47th European Regional Conference of the International Criminal Police Organisation (IOOP) INTERPOL. Monaco has been an active INTERPOL member, known and appreciated for the rapid execution of cross-border arrests in the past.

Olivier Jude, Police Commander, Head of the International Cooperation Section, on the left, Richard Marangoni, Director of Public Security at the center, and Stéphane Giorgetti, Commander-Chief of Police, in charge, acting, of Chief of the Judicial Police Division. © DR

The main purpose of these meetings was to invite each member state to comment on ways to improve information gathering and dispersing procedures and to modernise and streamline information sharing.

 Proposals were directed toward more efficient ways to fight terrorist threats, by increasing the distribution of biometric data, fingerprints and DNA samples for persons of interest in current cases, and persons known or believed to be risks.

They also addressed how to fight international drug trafficking by focusing on the main culprits, the organised crime syndicates, and ways to lessen their presence. Additionally, the meeting introduced cybercrime experts who are now being used to combat criminal acts committed through the internet, the darknet and social media networks.