This is really a heavenly place. Along the coast of the warm Mediterranean Sea on a strip of land four kilometers away is a small country, the principality of Monaco. To go through all of it, it will take only about an hour.
In the case of Monaco, a piece of land is the real “golden shore”. Locals move only on the Rolls Royce and Lamborghini, nobody here knows the word “unemployment”, the bay is lined with luxury yachts, and one weekend is given to the Formula 1 races.
In Monaco on the territory of 2 square kilometers there are 37 thousand people, mostly millionaires and elite. The Principality is the pride of the Côte d’Azur. But the country is often idealized, endowing it with non-existent and almost fabulous properties. We will deal with these myths.
The inhabitants of Monaco are called Monegasques.
Monegasques are the aboriginal inhabitants of the principality. They are only a quarter of the population. Reside in Monaco, in addition to them also Frenchmen, Spaniards, Italians, other European nations. The very word “Monegasque” refers to the name of the ancient deity. And the name of the principality was derived from the word “monk”, which is also in our language. There are a couple of clergymen on the coat of arms of Monaco. It is believed that he founded the principality of Francesco Grimaldi. He and his friends, wearing the robe of a Franciscan monk, made his way to the fortress and seized it.
In Monaco, everyone plays in the casino.
The Principality is famous for its casinos, but this is entertainment for visitors. Monaco does not recommend his citizens to get involved in gambling. It is believed that it can not only harm the personal budget, but also go to waste of public funds. It is forbidden to access the casino and children, even accompanied by parents.
The capital of Monaco is the city of Monte Carlo.
Geographically and politically, it really is. But Monaco is actually divided into three communes. In ancient Monacoville there is a princely residence, Monte Carlo plays the role of business and entertainment center, Condamine – seaport. Fontvill – a new modern area, appeared on the land reclaimed from the sea territory.
There is no crime in Monaco.
This is indeed so. A lot of indigenous people serve in the police. It is considered prestigious, requires a good education. The population of the city is small, which makes it possible to control crime. Many residents are engaged in a lucrative tourist business, because there are no problems with rich guests in Monaco. There is no graffiti on the walls or public transport, but the police are at every turn. In fact, for every 60 people there is one guardian of the law, this is one of the highest rates in the world.
In Monaco – dirty.
The people of Monaco love their country. Yes, and the abundance of policemen helps the order. But in the tourist season Monaco becomes dirtier – visitors do not need to throw away the wrapper or trash on the lawn. But this is not typical for the principality.
Monaco is a member of the European Union.
The Principality is not a member of the EU and is not obliged to comply with its regulations and laws. This applies to all areas, except, perhaps, bank insurance. In other cases, Monaco operates its own legislation. Traditionally, the state minister at the Governing Council is a Frenchman. Protects the principality, too, France. If the prince does not leave an heir, then his state will become autonomous under the protectorate of his influential neighbor.
In Monaco, high taxes.
Monaco does not depend on Europe for financial matters. This allowed us to introduce a simplified taxation regime here. It is interesting that the Monegasques were exempted from paying taxes in the 15th century by the prince of Monaco. At the present time both for aboriginals and for foreigners who are here for most of the tax year, income tax is simply absent. And this is regardless of the amount of income. The exception is the French who arrived in Monaco after October 13, 1962, and the company, a quarter of whose activities lie outside the principality.Activities related to creativity are not taxed. The inheritance tax is humane. Close relatives will not have to pay anything, distant relatives – from 8 to 13 percent, and not relatives at all – 16 percent. All issues of customs and VAT Monaco decides jointly with France. This is the only country with which Monaco has bilateral tax agreements. VAT here is charged according to the norms of French law. There is no tax on wealth in Monaco, on the profit from owning private capital. To manage it in general, no license is needed. But any business activity in the Principality is obliged to pass state licensing.
In Monaco, there are restrictions on the purchase of real estate.
The area of the country is so small that it seems reasonable to protect property from acquisition by foreigners. In fact, there are no restrictions. Any citizen of any country can purchase real estate in Monaco. This freedom inflated the prices of houses and apartments in the principality. Allow them to get really wealthy people.
Monaco is the most expensive state in Europe.
Monaco is usually associated with luxury, casinos and high prices. But this is not at all what life determines here. Real estate in the country is really expensive. The square meter costs up to 20-30 thousand euros to 50-70 thousand in new buildings. Interestingly, to obtain a residence permit, real estate can be simply rented. It’s much more profitable. Rent an elite apartment for 10-15 thousand euros per month, a high-quality apartment with a couple of bedrooms will cost 4 thousand euros. You can find a studio for only 1-2 thousand euros, which is already comparable with prices in London and pre-crisis in Moscow. Prices here are slightly higher than in France. Lunch in a good restaurant will cost 30-40 euros. To save money, you can settle not in the hotels of Monte Carlo, but in the neighboring towns of Nice or Beausoleil. Eat better at family restaurants, and not dress in designer boutiques, but in much more democratic Zara and Mango.
For Russians it is impossible to obtain a residence permit in Monaco.
It used to be really difficult. But after the crisis of 2008, the English and the Scandinavians began to leave the principality. Then the government had to think about who to compensate for this outflow. Candidates were Russians, Arabs, Asians. As a result, the authorities preferred Europeans who were closer to them in spirit. Russians are trying to become residents for tax exemption. To obtain a residence permit, it is required that there be at least one hundred thousand euros on the account. Preference is given to families with children. If teenagers still go to a local school, then we can consider ourselves full citizens of the principality.
In Monaco, the elite constantly hangs out.
An elite society meets in the principality usually in July-August. Living here are trying at this time to go somewhere. In the rest of the time Monaco is a quiet family city.
Education and medicine in Monaco are expensive and inaccessible.
Actually, there are no problems with the definition of a child in a local school. The level of education in Monaco is good, it is appreciated when enrolling in the best universities in Europe. And to study here is much cheaper than in Europe. A similar situation with medicine. The quality of services here is at the highest level, and the prices are much lower than even in Moscow.
In Monaco is a closed society.
It seems that it is difficult to become your own. In fact, assimilation occurs quite quickly. In the principality there are families from all over Europe. Local residents are tolerant and open to communication.
In Monaco, tourists have nothing to do.
This wonderful world is worth seeing. Monaco – a small fairy tale, originated in the center of Europe. It’s easy to meet a celebrity on the street. For each unit of area in the principality, many cultural attractions are collected. This includes gardens, parks, palaces and museums. You can walk even on the estate of the prince. Monaco’s special pride is the Museum of Oceanography, directly connected with Jacques Yves Cousteau.Also famous for its Japanese garden, where you can enjoy a combination of glass, stone and water, relaxing. Tourists entertain themselves in the casino, making memorable photos against the background of exclusive cars. A huge interest for the public is the Formula One Grand Prix, which is considered a legendary event.
In Monaco, everyone drives around on expensive cars.
This is a stereotype. It seems that those who live here certainly own a luxury car. Tourists and strive to be photographed next to Ferrari or Bentley. In fact, most people in Monaco prefer to move either by public transport or by taxi. For traveling to and from work, clean and modern buses are quite suitable. A lot of cars in Monaco are middle class and miniature smart cars.
In Monaco, all are well dressed.
This statement is true only partially. It is believed that the French have a sense of style. Given that 40% of the inhabitants of the principality represents this people, I want to believe that they dress well here. Indeed, in Monaco, you can meet men in suits from “Brioni”, and women with handbags from the latest collection of haute couture. There are those who are up and down wearing designer clothes, clearly demonstrating their capabilities. Given the fact that some of the richest people in the world live here, this is normal. But the truth lies in the fact that people do not always dress like that. And not all rich people want to draw attention to themselves. All people are different. But most choose a laid-back versatile style. In Monaco there is no strict dress code, and everyone can freely choose what to wear.
In Monaco it’s always sunny.
Thinking of Monaco, the sun and the blue sea appear. Most of the time, everything is really so – the heat is refreshed by a slight breeze. But the weather here is quite unpredictable. Even in summer the Mediterranean climate is fraught with unexpected rains and thunderstorms.
In Monaco, everyone speaks English.
It seems that in a place so popular among tourists, everyone should understand English. There are such people, but more often than not there is a language barrier. The official language in Monaco is French, but many also speak Italian. This country is nearby. So it’s better to start the conversation in French, asking if the other person knows English. Monaco is part of France.
Monaco is counting its independence from 1297. And although the principality is small and does not border with other countries, it is still independent. It is ruled by the prince, whose actions are limited by the constitution. In 1997, Monaco became a member of the UN. The French tried to annex the principality from the XVII century, but the international agreements of the XIX century established the status of Monaco as an independent state.
In Monaco, restaurants work around the clock.
Tourists think that restaurants should be ready to serve them at any time. But the restaurants are open on weekdays for dinners from 12 to 14 and for dinners from 19 to 22. And on Sundays, restaurants in general are almost all closed. Lovers to sit with a cup of coffee at a table overlooking the embankment will have to run.