Leaving Nice was melancholy because I only touched the surface of the charming city. I must go back and visit the places I did not have time to check out. But it was time to move on and see Monte Carlo, Monaco. My home base for two nights was the amazing Fairmont Resort Hotel.
In the heart of the action, this hotel is right next door to the infamous Casino de Monte-Carlo. Its location was key; walking distance to the best people watching in the world. Outdoor cafés and great dining options were plentiful. There was a bus line directly across from the hotel entrance and riding it all over Monaco was a snap.
At first glance, the hotel seemed overwhelming, but looks can be deceiving because although the Fairmont is the largest hotel in the area, it still had a small hotel feel. Check-in was seamless and we were in our room within minutes of our arrival. The hotel was filled to capacity so our room was not facing the incredible views of the Mediterranean Sea, however we enjoyed our lovely patio complete with a lounge chair and nice sitting area. The room itself was bathed in beautiful tropical colors so soothing to the mind and soul. There was plenty of room to stretch out and a lovely desk area to work from. Fluffy robes to lounge in and top quality toiletries are always a nice feature to make the stay feel luxurious.
One highlight of the hotel was the fantastic Willow Stream Spa. I was treated to a relaxing signature massage which took the fatigue of travel right out of my body. It was the best way to shake off jet lag and work out the kinks. My massage therapist worked wonders with her technique and I left feeling completely rejuvenated and ready to start my hectic day. I highly recommend booking an appointment in advance and allocating enough time to enjoy the tranquil spaces.
Another unique feature of the hotel was the Saphir 24 Bar and Lounge. It’s open 24 hours a day and I can see why – the views of the sea were to die for. They say that New York is the city that never sleeps, but I suspect that Casino goers and nightclubbers in Monte Carlo can give the New Yorkers a run for their money! The bar was hopping at all hours of the day and night. The decor was hip and modern but classy and the glassware they served drinks in were really interesting! You have to have a drink there during the day to appreciate the view, but a drink at night is also called for as the landscape shows off the moon glistening on the water.
The pool area was spectacular – located on the roof and overlooking the panoramic views of the sea, it’s a great spot to enjoy some sun and take a swim while being treated to a feast of architectural wonders dotting the steep hillside next to the hotel. I observed a few families with children having a ball frolicking in the warm water and it made me miss my boys who I know would have jumped right in!
Foodies would be in heaven with the lavish breakfast hot and cold buffets and the coffee served was some of the best I’ve tasted in Europe. The breakfast area is a charming spot overlooking the water and it was a pity we had to have the shades lowered as the winter sun proved to be too much in the morning, but we still enjoyed basking in its warmth while feasting on crusty French bread and tasty beignets. I know first hand from tasting the delicious and gorgeous creations by pastry Chef Claire Verneil that it is well worth spending a few calories on their pastries. Chef Verneil is the first female pastry chef at the Fairmont Monte Carlo and I was privileged to attend the press conference where her signature feminine delicacies were unveiled.
Personalized service is something that I know the Fairmont chain is committed to and I was delighted with the personal welcome note along with a bowl of fresh strawberries and local red berries along with a delicious bottle of red wine and nightly treats at turn down service time. It takes so little to make a stay away from home feel welcoming and the Fairmont made a huge effort to ensure that our time there was truly special.
12, Avenue des Spélugues
The Weekend In Paris was compensated but not compromised for this hotel stay. All opinions are my own. All photos are the property of Weekend In Paris unless otherwise noted. Must obtain permission before use.