The first time I went to Monaco was when I was 20. I was on a camping holiday and we had stopped in Nice at a site there, and the bus had taken us to Monaco for the evening. I know I was 20 as we could not get into the casino as you had to be 21, and I was near to my birthday.
I remember us taking photos on the steps and looking at the grand and expensive Hotel De Paris opposite saying one day I would be back, and well off enough to stay there.
It took 30 years, but finally this week I kept that promise. Though to be fair, I was not paying as was on a work trip to attend a conference..
But I am glad I have got to stay at one of the “iconic” hotels of the world, famous for its location.
The outside looks stunning and very grand, and it must be on of the most photographed and videoed hotel facades in the world. The lobby is even more breathtaking. It is big, dramatic, ornate and grand. It has a sense of importance and style. I felt myself breath in as I had not expected it.
You always know when you are checking into an expensive hotel (in my experience) when the reception is seated at a standalone desk and they ask you to sit down versus standing in front of their desk while they tap away on the computer. The Hotel de Paris is like this, and someone keeps trying to wrestle your luggage off you to carry it.
The hotel room I had (408) was a strange mix of looking and feeling like you were staying at your grandmother’s house, as the furniture and style was very old-fashioned with pieces that had been updated but surprisingly cheaply for the nature and cost of the hotel. The bathroom medicine cabinet looked very cheap and the cupboards were cheap looking aluminium. The bathroom unit was very old fashioned. The place though was very clean and neat. The room I had had a stunning view across to the yacht basin, and so this made it very pretty and also very quiet as did not face onto the main square where the casino is. It was great opening the shutters and looking at the view.
In the bathroom they have La Parire toiletries and you are left some of their creams on your bed at night. The bed was large and fairly comfortable but not amazing.
Overall service is good and formal, but not amazing or better than many other hotels. Though I do believe from others staying there that is you need something done you will find people go out of their way to do it. Like walking your dog! I was amazed at how many people seemed to be staying there with their little lapdogs.
The food and drink is outrageously expensive. A Cesar salad and Diet Coke in the bar will set you back close to 30 Euros, and it is hard to have a meal in room service that will cost you up to 80 Euros. But I guess that comes with the nature and location of the hotel.
I had a hire car and parked it in the garage under the casino square and that was very close to the hotel
I am glad to have finally got to stay here, as is one of the trophy hotels of the world. It is a bit stuffy for me overall, but is great to be able to say I have stayed there.
Watch the video of the outside of the hotel, the amazing lobby and my room (408) and the view:
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