Monday, August 16, 2010
The second time I was there I will never forget. I just got hired as a waiter on Regina Renaissance back in 1992. The company paid my way to get on the ship that was still being built in Marina di Carrera Italy. For a couple of weeks the service staff just hung around while the builders were doing their thing putting the finishing touches on the ship.
Then we set sail for a trial run at sea to make sure everything was working to perfection while on our way to the principality of Monaco and the city of Monte Carlo. But this was just not going to be just a stopover but a 10 stay while the ship got loaded with it's furniture , beds , and everything you could think of that you see on a cruise ship.So during the day we would load and the evenings we would have off. Our ship was small enough we could just go right ashore when we wanted with no need for a tender.
Of course Monte Carlo is best known for it's gambling and Cafe de Paris where you can sit and have a cappucino and watch the people go by. The weather was already warming up even for February when we were there which was really nice because back in Canada it was still in the deep freeze.
We see Monaco today as a place where the super rich go and spend their money drinking fine champagne. But it wasn't until Charles II of Monaco back in 1856 who decided to open a casino did the area start to become popular. Slow at first, the appearance of the railway in 1868 cinched the resort's prosperity in future years by making it easier for tourists to visit this hard to get to place from all points in Europe.
You will find if you are on a cruise stopping by in Nice. It will be easy to take a short train ride to Monte Carlo. Unlike here , the trains run frequently as well. Most of the time on the hour.
So if you are planning on taking a cruise in the future you may want to decide on including a stopover in Monte Carlo. If you go in June you may catch the Grand Prix run right on the streets of the city right along the waterfront. The yachts you see moored in the harbour will take your breath away.
After being there many times on different cruises the thing I really liked to do there was after lunch go to an outdoor cafe and have a latte or a beer and relax. I don't think in the 20 or so times I was there did it ever rain.
What a beautiful spot!
Click on the link to find out more about Med Cruises and all the different places you can go. There is a cruise that will tailor to you and your budget so you should be able to find the right one. Treat yourself just once on a cruise. You deserve it!
Radio talk show host of "The Hospitality Industry News Network" and author of "You Only Live Once" about his early years traveling around and working on ships and foreign countries Steven blogs about his thoughts on the restaurant industry as he sees it today.
Check out his web site at www.stevennicolle.com for more information.