It is perhaps unusual to talk of prime locations in an area so small, but Monaco is a world unto itself. Each part of Monaco has a unique character and feel, and all districts have something to offer. That said, Monaco’s super-prime areas invite special comment.
Monte Carlo is the place that most people think of when they hear the name Monaco. This area has a history of Belle Epoque glamour: the Hotel de Paris, the Hotel Hermitage, the Casino and the “chocolate box” Salle Garnier opera house in the Casino building. Le Carré d’Or – the area surrounding the Casino Square – will always be a sought-after location for properties, as is Boulevard De Suisse. Some of the best new additions to Monaco’s architectural landscape are in Monte Carlo: 26 Carré d’Or as well as One Monte-Carlo with its world-class shopping. The Casino Gardens provides immaculately manicured green space here, always with the Mediterranean as a sparkling blue backdrop.
Larvotto is very popular because of its proximity to the sea, waterfront vibe and relaxed beach feel. Larvotto is perfectly situated for residents to make the most of the Principality. In the summer, Larvotto beach (which is in the process of being totally updated) is a magnet for locals with its beach bars and restaurants. This area is home also to the stunning Anse du Portier land extension development, designed by Renzo Piano.
The Bay House construction is another noteworthy development. Also in Larvotto, the building will have 54 apartments and five villas. Construction is due to finish in 2022.
Another noteworthy area includes Fontvieille, a land reclamation project built in the ’70s. With both large housing and smaller units, a mall, hotels, offices and the main helicopter airport, Fontvielle also has a strong following as it tends to be less busy with more of the feel of a seaside resort.
The Jardin Exotique area is home to a new, aptly-named development called L’Exotique, which is on track for completion late in 2021. As well as residences, the development includes plans for a cable car, offices and parking.
It’s hard to go wrong in Monaco, wherever you buy. The selection of Monaco property on offer has never been better. Anyone looking to live in the Principality will be spoilt for choice, given the wide selection of beautiful homes on the market for sale and rent.
When it comes to renovations or developing a property in Monaco, make sure you ascertain the possibilities before you buy. Each building will have different rules and regulations, and you will need to have due diligence carried out to know what you can change or work on.
For example, some residences only have owners’ meetings yearly. If this is the case, you’ll only be able to put forward your building projects to the co-property for approval at this time. If you purchase at the wrong time, it could delay your project significantly as you’ll have to wait for the next owners meeting (possibly up to a year away) before you can even submit your plans for consideration, let alone get to work.
Just as with any international property purchase, the need for local professionals with a great network and a proven track record is paramount. The Monégasque planning and authorisation process for renovation or development projects is complicated and can seem daunting.
Working with a trusted partner who can lead you through the whole journey will be a great help. They will be able to explain some of the subtleties of planning and renovating (you’ll be obliged to work with Monégasque architects, for example). A local partner can also support you tender the building team, liaise with planning departments and handle all the other necessary administrative submissions.
For more information, download the ''How to Buy and Finance Luxury Property in Monaco'' guide.