Mary Gostelow plays high society in Monte Carlo

Girlahead road tests Monaco's hot new dining venue

The Rivera is now taking front stage on the post-pandemic theatre floor. This catapults Monte-Carlo’s hot new dining venue, La Môme, right into the limelight.

It opened four months ago but the brand’s already known to Monagesques and many others. 30 minutes west, across the French borders in Cannes, the Lecorché brothers’ La Môme has quietly, or not so quietly, been spreading over what could be called Cannes’ scoffing street, rue Florian, and there’s also a popular beach restaurant, La Plage La Môme, directly opposite The Carlton.

Bar La Môme

Why does La Môme have such a following? Just as with Cinquante-Cinq in St-Tropez, La Môme minutely interprets what impresses the most desirable customers and gives it to them, and more so.

La Môme Monte-Carlo opens directly off steeply sloping avenue de Monte-Carlo, seven minutes’ walk down from the Casino. Year-round, unless the weather makes a rare intrusion, it’s cocktails outside on a La Môme terrace, looking across at the hilltop Palace. There’s also, inside, a prominent semicircular bar, silver with eight tall bar chairs, blue and white on metal turning plinths – designers Liautard and the Queen were apparently inspired by Alfred Hitchcock’s 1955 epic To Catch a Thief, starring Grace Kelly (all rather appropriate since she lived in that palace). Think curves, elegance and subtle colours – and High Society.

The players in this, La Môme, performance are led by restaurant MD Luigi Visciano, Italian charm to make you want to buy-up, say add Beluga to a tuna tartare and guacamole appetizer. Go on to simple seabass in salt, or a Wagyu sirloin Kagoshima Grade 5 (don’t miss a ceramic bowl of eat-forever sweet potato mash).

Luigi personally recommends Pez 2019, the second label of Saint-Estèphe. His team is alert, moving at Grand Prix speed, uniform of logo-on-cuffs white shirts plus your-choice for lower

Luigi Visciano, Managing Director

half. For girls, this is currently black skirts, about 25-cm long, over basketball-height black tights. As Ugo Lecorché says, choose people who are happy, help’em look good and train the rest.

Port view

Another big plus is this is a restaurant with rooms. Beneath La Môme, locked directly into the mountain wall, is Port Palace Hotel. Five floors offer a total of 50 bedrooms, all facing out, directly over rue JF Kennedy to the super-yacht harbour five metres in front. Best view of the Grand Prix is down at 62 sqm suite #201. One C-shaped window of this suite allows the best views of the cars roaring out of the tunnel. Sadly, it’s long since booked for the weekend of 26-28 May 2023, regardless of price hike, but stay other times, and imagine.

Back to La Môme. They do breakfast here, showing the best of the area. Dip a still-warm croissant, just arrived from La Môme’s own bakery in Cannes, into Bonne Maman chocolate spread, and add yet more caviar to whatever. One more espresso, and it’s time to head ten minutes up to Allée des Boulingrins gardens and their Carré d’Or retail therapy. More than a spot of Bulgari, Chanel, Dior and the rest await.

Junior Suite, Port Palace Hotel, Monte Carlo

Mary Gostelow publishes the daily, a weekly newswire Mary Gostelow’s Inner Circle, and a unique weekly 15-minute industry Mary Gostelow Girlahead Podcast, all part of Almont Global.

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