The Principality of Monaco often gets compared to a small paradise where luxury, elegance and comfort live side by side. This perception emphasises the small size of the Monegasque Eden. But technological and industrial ingenuity has made it possible to expand this small piece of paradise into the sea.
Best Monaco land reclamation projects
Larvotto – Monaco’s first land reclamation project
After the Second World War, the principality had to find a source of income other than tourism and games. Prince Rainier III’s vision was this: Monaco must promote local economic development by focusing on the industrial sector. In the 1950s, Monaco seized its chance by hosting some of the biggest names in perfume and the pharmaceutical industry. Because of this, the principality needed to be able to receive a growing workforce, and for that reason, it needed to gain surface.
The government selected the promising shoreline of Larvotto for this expansion. This Monaco land reclamation project stretched an impressive 54 000 m² and included an artificial beach, which remains one of the most popular areas in the principality.
After that, the Prince validated various architectural plans, including the construction of over 2,000 homes on the seafront. Urban development also provides for the creation of tunnels and highways. At the same time, illustrious hotels such as Loew’s were created in the 1970s. The Larvotto property project also included the construction of a cultural and congress centre, the future Grimaldi Forum and the Rainier III auditorium.
More recently, the Larvotto beach has undergone regeneration, with a new esplanade boasting space for a range of boutiques and restaurants. The new beach will link with the new eco-district Mareterra, another Monaco land reclamation project, totally rejuvenating this area.
The Fontvieille district – the next land reclamation project in Monaco
At the end of the 1960s, the enlargement of the principality turned towards the west of the territory. Because Monaco has constantly been confronted with its problem of space, the city-state had no choice but to continue its extensions at sea. So, the ambitious land extension project of Fontvieille was born.
The challenge of this Monaco land extension was daunting because the seabed reached 40-metres deep in some areas. Supported by SADIM, a Franco-Italian-Swiss group, work began in 1965. After dyking the sea, the bay was dried up. More than 220,000 m² of landings came out of the water, and a marina of 55,000 m² was created. Finally, a dike of one kilometre was designed to protect buildings from sea storms. The work ended in 1971, and the Monegasque State acquired the entirety of the Fontvieille platform in 1973.
The Fontvieille property district in Monaco has not only increased the country’s housing capacity but has also helped increase its economic activity. The construction of the Stade Louis II in 1985, the development of luxury hotels, and the port’s attractiveness give this area a much sought-after appeal.
Mareterra Monaco – The land reclamation project of the future
Dubbed Europe’s most ambitious construction project, given the scope of the land reclamation development, the Maretrerra project is set to cost an estimated US$2.4 billion. Mareterra will expand the Principality of Monaco by some six hectares and is set to be completed by 2025.
The Mareterra Monaco land extension project, formerly known as Portier Cove, brings a new dimension to waterfront luxury living and an eco-design that will set new benchmarks.
Mareterra will include 110 apartments and 10 villas, six of which will be located directly on the waterfront. The district will also include commercial spaces, a new marina, a pedestrianised seafront promenade, and green open spaces, offering a vibrant place to live, work, and play.
This Monaco land reclamation project has been designed with sustainability in mind and will include several innovative green technologies. Solar panels, e-bike stations, thermal pumps, and rainwater recovery systems are just a few ways Mareterra intends to be more eco-friendly. The entire land extension project has been designed to ensure that its energy consumption aligns with Monaco’s ambitious goal of being carbon-neutral by 2050. Mareterra will take Monaco’s super-prime real estate market to new heights. The team of architects and designers behind the project are world-class and have designed the development to blend seamlessly into its environment.
With so many technologically advanced land reclamation projects under its belt, all eyes will be on Monaco as to how it continues to extend its shoreline in the future.
If you are interested in luxury real estate for sale or rent in Monaco, contact the La Costa Properties Monaco team today.