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After a visit from Alassio and several trips on the train from Roquebrune to this lovely place we were lucky enough to be there in 2009 (on the QM2 Cruise) for Edna's birthday. Unfortunately(?) this was four days before the Grand Prix and everything was being got ready (lot's of scaffolding, stands etc.) but this did make an interesting diversion. Monte Carlo is a special place, from the yachts in the harbour to the cars parked outside the Hotel de Paris (very surprised to see a Smart car parked here!) and the Casino. Didn't get up to the Palace this time but perhaps next time (when we win the lottery?).
One (near) disaster. We had to go ashore by tender and there was no sign of the shuttle bus. Most of the people on our tender were on organised tours so there were just a few of us who wandered off to try and find the bus. No luck so we went back and asked one of the tour guides where the bus was. "To the main road and turn left". Went to the road, turned left and walked. Saw a couple of reserved coaches parked and asked if they were the shuttle buses. "No, they're for tours, you need a number 6 bus". This was the local bus and NOT a shuttle bus so we wandered around again. Suddenly a chap on a scooter (nothing to do with Cunard) pointed down a road and told us that the buses were down there. We walked and found a girl with a Cunard board who pointed us in the right direction. She was at the end of a short cut from the dock but there was no-one at the other end when we passed it! Cunard? P*** up and Brewery comes to mind!
Never mind, we'd wasted 45 minutes of Edna's birthday but we saw the Casino, Hotel de Paris (had a Coke at the Cafe de Paris) etc. and some lovely views and then found a place for lunch (a cafe in a baker's but nowhere is bad in Monaco and beggars can't be choosers). Steak, chips and salad was the fixed menu with a pastry for sweet so we went for that. The waitress couldn't speak English but luckily I remembered what "a point" meant so we all had our steaks medium (whether we liked it or not)! Somewhat fatty but very tasty and the pastry was excellent. A few glasses of wine didn't go amiss either..

Hotel de Paris


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