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Wrong Barry Monaco?

Barry Monaco


The Ritz-Carlton

HQ Phone: (301) 547-4700

Email: b***@***.com

The Ritz-Carlton

4445 Willard Avenue Suite 800

Chevy Chase, Maryland 20815

United States

Company Description

The Ritz-Carlton Hotel Company, L.L.C., of Chevy Chase, Md., currently operates 90 hotels in the Americas, Europe, Asia, the Middle East, Africa, and the Caribbean. More than 30 hotel and residential projects are under development around the globe. more

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Background Information

Web References

Monaco, the richest 0.76 square ...

frugaltraveler.blogs.nytimes.com [cached]

Monaco, the richest 0.76 square miles on the Mediterranean, is not exactly the Frugal Traveler's kingdom.This independent principality is synonymous with money â€" big, untaxed money â€" and ways of spending it: fast cars, luxury goods, gourmet meals and high-stakes gambling.That was apparent even on the five-hour train ride from Montpellier (41.60 euros, or about $67 at $1.61 to the euro; www.voyages-sncf.com) along thegorgeous French Riviera.Instead of backpacks and sandals, my well-tanned fellow passengers were armed with Louis Vuitton handbags and Gucci sunglasses.

But to me, Monaco represented a challenge â€" possibly the ultimate test of my ability to save money and unearth the unusual on my Grand Tour of Europe this summer.Could I pass a couple of days there without going broke, while discovering something besides high-end shopping malls?
Steps in BeausoleilA typical stairway in Beausoleil.Monaco and the Mediterranean are visible in the distance.
The first thing I did was to book a room in the middle-class French town of Beausoleil, ever so slightly uphill from Monaco.In fact, it's literally across the street.If you didn't know where you were going, you might walk from one country into the other without even realizing it, especially since Beausoleil and Monaco look essentially the same: belle époque apartment buildings lining narrow roads, interspersed with modern towers and charming villas, all arrayed on hills so steep that stylish women probably think twice before donning high heels. (They wear them anyway.)
There are, of course, differences.Monaco, being the playground of the super-rich, has escalators and elevators for those rare occasions when people actually walk, instead of being driven.Beausoleil does not.
Beausoleil also has the 31-room Azur Hotel (12, Boulevard de la République; 33-4-93-78-01-25; www.azurhotelbeausoleil.eu), which I found through Lonely Planet's Web site.At 53 euros a night, it was cheaper than the worst hotel in Monaco by at least 25 euros.And it was, surprisingly, kind of nice.My single room had a wrought-iron balcony that looked down over the Boulevard de la République, capped at either end by the misty, rocky hills that lead to the Alps.
Next door was an Indian grocery, down the street was a takeout Thai place, and around the corner was La Taverne (10, Boulevard de la République; 33-4-93-35-07-87), an excellent French restaurant where I ate dinner â€" braised lamb shank, red wine, custardy apple tart (24 euros) â€" my first night in Beausoleil.Over a free glass of the homemade limoncello, I asked the owner, Jean-Marc Guilbard, about how Beausoleil compares with Monaco.
"It's where the people who work in Monaco live," he said.
It makes perfect sense.You can't afford a 5 million euro, one-bedroom apartment if you're working at the McDonald's in Monaco (or even at the Monte Carlo Casino), but you can rent in Beausoleil for a few hundred a month (and still brag, almost truthfully, that you live in Monaco).There are Beausoleils everywhere â€" the banlieue of Paris; the old, sandy quarters of Dubai; Oakland, Calif.; Brooklyn â€" and they're gold for frugal travelers.
Monaco's Japanese GardenMonaco's Japanese Garden.
From my base in Beausoleil, I set out to see Monaco from the bottom up.First, I bought a cheap lunch â€" bread, goat cheese, tiny peaches (6.90 euros) â€" at the Gustave Eiffel market in Beausoleil, then carried it down through a maze of twisting alleyways, to Monaco's Japanese Garden, where rain forced me under a gazebo.As I slathered chèvre on my baguette, I took in the scene: a relaxing haven of rock gardens, waterfalls, lacquered bridges and stone paths.And just behind them, the hulks of concrete towers, glistening palaces, construction cranes.It was messy, a bit garish and not what I expected for moneyed Monaco.
Then I set out to explore the principality.While Monaco's elite might ride around in vintage Ferraris, I relished the irony of taking the bus (normally 1 euro per ride, but free because it was World Environment Day).
It seemed unfair: the rich of Monaco, who pay no taxes, had the wherewithal to buy fancy cars and gamble the night away, and now we, the poor tourists, had to fork over our hard-earned euros to see the outdated symbols of their wealth?How about someday the rich come over to my house and pay 1,000 euros to look at my silverware, my carpets, my wallpaper?Hey, Prince Albert, bring a coupon and I'll let you in for half-price.
My cynicism was getting the better of me, so I went for a walk down by Monaco's port, where ridiculously huge boats were bobbing in the blue waters and where I struck up a conversation with Ryan, a 33-year-old Algerian who told me about his job on the Wedge Too, a wood-trimmed behemoth floating nearby.
Basically, he worked from 8 a.m. till 5 p.m., cleaning windows and watching over the boat, and the nights were his.He and the other ship workers would then go "drink and drink and drink and drink and drink and drink," usually at Stars 'n' Bars (6, Quai Antoine I; 377-97-97-95-95; www.starsnbars.com), which he loved for its "gorgeous girls, cool attitude, smiling people and distress."
I walked back uphill to the Beausoleil, taking every diversionary alley I could find, loving every heavy step and wishing Monaco could always be like this: dark and cool, the knotty streets the province of night owls like myself, who don't need a prince's ransom to live like kings.
Initially, I was wondering how traveling around Monaco could be funny and cheap ate the same time.
One day we decided to take a drive into Nice, and from there we hit Monaco and then it was on to Italy, to a little village called Coldirodi outside San Remo.
Loved your piece on Monaco, but find it hard to believe that a hotel in Europe could cost only 53 euros!Was the bathroom down the hall?Passed by Monaco on the train a few years ago on the way to Nice, which was "nice."You have excited my travel bug, which can ill afford to be excited in these dire economic times.Looking forward to your piece on Rome.Loved the pix of Monaco as well.Keep it coming!
We did a day trip to Monaco on Sunday and went to the Anglican church there.Old money!We didn't go to the casino but did look at the palaces.Then after that we went to visit some friends of my wife who lived in a little hill town inland from Monaco.
It is (was?) cheap and in the heart of Monaco!
We rented a car from Nice to Monaco and entered the Hotel Monaco in shorts and t-shirts, with a healthy dose of unshaven facial scruff.
Monaco - I still think you need a big account to truly enjoy it, otherwise what you see opens up too many questions abut how money is made and why you don't have a seven digit bank account balance.
We'll save your wonderful article on Monaco because we'll be there in October for a week, then on to Genoa, Quince Terra and Milano.
I understand that Monaco and Menton are on the road to Italy, but I can't resist plugging my adopted region (Languedoc-Roussillon), which is the place for frugal travelers who want to visit the south of France.
Start in Montpellier or Perpignan, both beautiful, affordable, pedestrian-friendly cities.
You have to climb down some steep steps to get to the beach, and the train, that goes between Nice and Monaco didn't actually stop, but only slows at Cap D'ail as you jump on or off.
I have pleasant memories of Monaco from a visit way back in the dark ages…1970.
My wife and I spent 3 days at a hotel on the Med just a little south of Lowes, so not exactly in Monaco.
â€" Posted by Barry Monaco
I was mightily impressed the Traveler tried to tackle Monaco on a budget rather than Nice.I lived outside Monaco in Eze-sur-mer for 15 months while my girlfriend attended the prestigious Princess Grace Ballet Academy on scholarship.
I loved this article on Monaco!I went there on a Student Ambassador trip (People 2 People Student Ambassador Program) when I was 17!We spent the day there touring Monaco and Monte Carlo - the gardens, the square outside the palace, the raceway…
the best highlight - which you should have done - was going abseiling and rock climbing on the cliffs overlooking Monaco!It was amazing!
I've been to Monaco two years ago, and to be honest don't go there if you can't afford to have a good time.
Next time you are near Monaco, visit Roquebrune.
Other than that, I've always felt attracted to Monaco, especially whilst watching the F1 races (although it rained during this year's GP diminishing its charm).
Another cheap way to stay in Monaco is to make a friend on the train from Paris to Nice who has an apt in Monaco and invites you to stay a few nights.Now that's living.I ended up visiting Monaco about 3 times and you forgot to mention the changing of the guard, the church Princess Grace is buried at and that Ringo Starr has prime property in Monaco.I ended up visiting Monaco about 3 times and you forgot to mention the changing of the guard, the church Princess Grace

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