Theme Week Monaco – Monaco City

28 December 2016 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, French Riviera Reading Time:  6 minutes

Monaco City © Antonu/cc-by-sa-3.0

Monaco City © Antonu/cc-by-sa-3.0

Monaco City (French: Monaco-Ville) is the southcentral Ward in the Principality of Monaco. Located on a headland that extends into the Mediterranean Sea, Monaco City is nicknamed The Rock (French: Le Rocher). The name “Monaco City” is misleading, Monaco City is a historical and statistical district, not a city. Monaco City is one of the four traditional quarters (French: quartiers) of Monaco, the others are La Condamine, Monte Carlo, and Fontvieille.   read more…

The Prince’s Palace of Monaco

23 December 2015 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, French Riviera, Museums, Exhibitions, Palaces, Castles, Manors, Parks Reading Time:  8 minutes

Rocher de Monaco, with Palais de Monaco © Georges Jansoone/cc-by-3.0

Rocher de Monaco, with Palais de Monaco © Georges Jansoone/cc-by-3.0

The Prince’s Palace of Monaco is the official residence of the Prince of Monaco, located in Monaco-Ville. Built in 1191 as a Genoese fortress, during its long and often dramatic history it has been bombarded and besieged by many foreign powers. Since the end of the 13th century, it has been the stronghold and home of the Grimaldi family who first captured it in 1297. The Grimaldi ruled the area first as feudal lords, and from the 17th century as sovereign princes, but their power was often derived from fragile agreements with their larger and stronger neighbours. Thus while other European sovereigns were building luxurious, modern Renaissance and Baroque palaces, politics and common sense demanded that the palace of the Monegasque rulers be fortified. This unique requirement, at such a late stage in history, has made the palace at Monaco one of the most unusual in Europe. Indeed, when its fortifications were finally relaxed during the late 18th century, it was seized by the French and stripped of its treasures, and fell into decline, while the Grimaldi were exiled for over 20 years.   read more…

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