Casino de Monte-Carlo, Monte-Carlo

Casino de Monte-Carlo, Monte-Carlo (must see)

The Monte Carlo Casino is perhaps the world's most famous gambling venue, owned and operated by the Société des bains de mer de Monaco. At some point, in the 1950s, it was controlled by Aristotle Onassis.

The idea to open a gambling business in Monaco came from Princess Caroline in the late 1840s. She saw this as a chance for the Principality to avoid bankruptcy after the loss of tax proceeds from the breakaway towns of Menton and Roquebrune.

In the 1850s, Monaco was not much of a fancy place. It didn't have sufficient road link to the neighboring Nice and the rest of Europe, no suitable accommodation or any other amenities for visitors. The casino changed several managers before it started to gain profit, in 1859.

In 1863 it was taken over by François Blanc who had used his entrepreneurial skills to raise a required capital for a massive development of the area, launched in 1858. Among those who first invested in the project were Bishop of Monaco and the future Pope Leo XIII. The new casino complex, designed in a distinct Beaux Arts style by architect Charles Garnier, author of the Paris Opéra building, was finished in 1863. The area, previously known as Les Spelugues (The Caves), was renamed to Monte Carlo in honor of Prince Charles, the then ruler of Monaco. In 1879, an opera and ballet theatre, known as the Salle Garnier, was added to the complex.

For many years, the Monte Carlo Casino remained the key source of income for Monaco's economy, yet its own citizens have always been banned from gambling. It is for this reason that all visitors to the casino must present their IDs to ensure that no locals get inside.

A lot of fictional, as well as factual, peculiar events have been associated with the Monte Carlo Casino over the years. Among them the James Bond movies, partially set in and filmed on the location, and the Monaco Grand Prix (the Circuit de Monaco) Formula-1 race, passing by the casino building each year.

Want to visit this sight? Check out these Self-Guided Walking Tours in Monte-Carlo. Alternatively, you can download the mobile app "GPSmyCity: Walks in 1K+ Cities" from Apple App Store or Google Play Store. The app turns your mobile device to a personal tour guide and it works offline, so no data plan is needed when traveling abroad.

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Casino de Monte-Carlo on Map

Sight Name: Casino de Monte-Carlo
Sight Location: Monte-Carlo, Monaco (See walking tours in Monte-Carlo)
Sight Type: Disco/Nightclub
Guide(s) Containing This Sight:

Walking Tours in Monte-Carlo, Monaco

Create Your Own Walk in Monte-Carlo

Create Your Own Walk in Monte-Carlo

Creating your own self-guided walk in Monte-Carlo is easy and fun. Choose the city attractions that you want to see and a walk route map will be created just for you. You can even set your hotel as the start point of the walk.
Monte-Carlo Introduction Walking Tour

Monte-Carlo Introduction Walking Tour

Situated on a prominent escarpment at the base of the Maritime Alps washed by the Mediterranean Sea, the district of Monte Carlo is an administrative center of the tiny Principality of Monaco.

The latter owes its name to the nearby 6th-century BC Greek colony, seemingly linked to the Greek hero Hercules who visited the area and built here a temple – a sole structure, back then – which came...  view more

Tour Duration: 2 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 3.4 Km or 2.1 Miles
Historical Buildings Walk

Historical Buildings Walk

Monaco – the world’s second smallest state – is also one of the world’s richest. The latter fact definitely shows in the historic buildings – famous casinos, opera house, hotels and opulent palaces – found in the central ward Monte-Carlo, displaying a range of architectural styles quite wide for a small country like this.

The geography of Monaco, featuring sharp hills and narrow...  view more

Tour Duration: 1 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 1.2 Km or 0.7 Miles