At the centre point of Monaco is the iconic Monaco Casino Square, or Place du Casino as it is locally known. Located in the famed Carre d’Or Monaco, this legendary destination is home to the world-famous Casino de Monte-Carlo, which includes not only a casino but also the Opéra de Monte-Carlo.
The Carre D’Or Monaco is home to the world’s wealthiest who enjoy the area’s lavish resorts, award-winning restaurants, and designer boutiques. Indeed, Monaco’s Casino Square is the place to see and be seen. Keep on reading to find out more about this world-famous destination.
Monaco’s Casino Square
Monaco’s Casino Square is perhaps the principality’s best known and most photographed locale. The famous square dates back to the time of the expansion of the casino in the late 1800s. The Société des Bains de Mer opened the Monte Carlo Casino in 1863, and in 1864 the adjacent Hôtel de Paris was opened by Charles III of Monaco. But it wasn’t until a railway link to France was built in 1878, responsible for bringing large numbers of visitors to the principality, that Monaco’s Casino Square was established.
Developed as a grand esplanade to accommodate the wealthy visitors arriving in elegant carriages, the square was the most fashionable place to see and be seen, not only because of its proximity to the casino, but also as the gateway to the luxurious Hôtel de Paris and the surrounding Belle Époque buildings.
Historically, Monaco’s Casino Square was a park area with flowers, encircled by towering palms. It also served as the premier parking place for Ferraris, Lamborghinis, Rolls-Royces, and other prestigious cars, much to the delight of spectators and diners at restaurants surrounding the esplanade.
In 1920, the legendary Formula 1 Grand Prix track was built, with one section along the square passing in front of the Hôtel de Paris. In 1999, the remarkable “Sky Mirror” sculpture by British artist Anish Kapoor was installed. The concave disc made of polished steel captures the reflections of the fountain that surrounds it, the sky, and the casino. Over the years, Monaco’s Casino Square has been a favourite of filmmakers, including those behind the James Bond thriller “Golden Eye”.
In the past year, thanks to renovations by renowned landscape architect Michel Desvigne, Monaco’s Casino Square has a new look and a greater purpose. The esplanade has been expanded to a 3,500-metre pedestrian area, its turf replaced by marble-like Comblanchien limestone from France. Twenty palm trees surround the space, which can now accommodate more tourists as well as provide a venue for events and expos.
The new esplanade not only offers a new look — with the classic beige stone replacing the “camembert, or grassy knoll— but also a showplace for Monte Carlo real estate for sale in the stunning Carré d’Or Monaco, the most exclusive address to own property in Monaco. In addition to luxury residences, the prestigious “Golden Square” area includes designer shops, the famous Café de Paris, five-star hotels and restaurants, and a gourmet bakery and grocery.
With its exquisite setting and iconic status, Monaco’s Casino Square has not only stood the test of time, it has also adapted to the changing times. The modern, open space welcomes visitors as well as those who choose to live in this most elegant setting of Monaco.