For the Noncommittal Oligarch, a $3.4 Million Rental in Monte Carlo

(Bloomberg) -- A relatively easy way to enter the Monegasque real estate game, and get the benefits of residency, is to rent. And one of the most promising new builds is One Monte-Carlo, a modern, eco-friendly residential project. Its seven curved-glass buildings sit along the principality’s most coveted strip of land—Place du Casino, the chicest corner of Monte Carlo.

This undertaking and a toe-to-tip renovation of the Hôtel de Paris Monte-Carlo, both spearheaded by hospitality juggernaut Monte Carlo Société des Bains de Mer, cost €600 million ($672 million). The Monegasque architect Alexandre Giraldi designed the One Monte-Carlo buildings, while Ivan Harbour, a senior partner at Rogers Stirk Harbour + Partners, imagined it as a new ecosystem within the city. “It’s a piece of urban renewal,” Harbour says. “It is very much about improving the livability, making the city more pleasant to walk around, trying to humanize it.”

For the Noncommittal Oligarch, a $3.4 Million Rental in Monte Carlo

The 37 apartments have Mediterranean views and interior design from Bruno Moinard, who did the revamp of the Plaza Hôtel Athénée in Paris and the new Four Seasons Hotel in London. The annual rents range from €250,000 (for 60 square meters) to €3 million (for 800 square meters) for the apartments, which have herringbone-patterned parquet floors and all-marble bathrooms. Some of the upper-level units come with private swimming pools.

Residents are also afforded valet parking, 24-hour concierge service, and access to one of the finest spas in Europe—the pink-marbled Thermes Marins Monte-Carlo, which includes a heated seawater pool and cryotherapy room. Downstairs, Michelin-star chef Marcel Ravin’s new bistro-patisserie concept Mada One is available exclusively to One Monte-Carlo residents and visitors, who also have the option to order room service from the Hôtel de Paris Monte-Carlo.

But in a principality where high-net-worth individuals keep pied-à-terre just to receive Monaco’s famous tax advantages, the One Monte-Carlo project discourages mere key holders. The development courts active tenants who want to be a part of the community, and they must sign leases for a minimum of one year. Some 65% of the available apartments at One Monte-Carlo are already rented, and tenants consist of an international clientele from the U.K., Russia, and the Middle East.

For the Noncommittal Oligarch, a $3.4 Million Rental in Monte Carlo

Whereas the surrounding belle epoque buildings took inspiration from the dawn of aviation and automobiles, the One Monte-Carlo buildings’ steel-and-aluminum balustrades feature stress lines that Harbour says are in conversation with the future of driverless cars and similar technological advances.

The area also stands to be one of the world’s premier shopping areas. The luxury stores nearby can offer one-of-a-kind merchandise: The Goyard store has a limited collection of bags with a seahorse design that’s exclusive to the principality, and Celine has limited-edition couture available only in Monaco.

This project has been a long time in the making, far before Prince Albert II, son of Grace Kelly and Prince Rainier III, laid the first stone in 2016. When Harbour got the go-ahead from SBM Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Jean-Luc Biamonti, it was the day Lehman Brothers collapsed, in 2008. In times of economic uncertainty, Harbour says, Monaco remains attractive as a safe place.  

The principality is riding this momentum toward the next big residential development on the horizon. Renzo Piano, who teamed with Rogers Stirk Harbour + Partners in the Centre George Pompidou in Paris, is designing the $2.3 billion Portier Cove, a 15-acre neighborhood with 120 luxury apartments and 10 villas, due in 2025.

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