While staying in the Principality of Monaco, I wanted nothing but the best out of my experience in this beautiful country. So it comes as no surprise that out of the slew of luxury hotels in the area, I decided on one of the most iconic in Monaco—the Hôtel de Paris in the Golden Square, overlooking the landmark Monte Carlo Casino. The Principality alongside the Côte d’Azur may not have the coldest weather, but the days are getting cooler here so that means it’s time to bring out (or go shopping for) your winter wardrobe. When it comes to winter clothing, there’s nothing I love more than the feel of cashmere—light and soft, yet sophisticated, sure to keep you warm almost anywhere you go … and if your destination is Monte Carlo, Monaco Cashmere is the perfect choice.
It’s no wonder cashmere is the perfect material for cool climates, since it comes from goats in Northern India’s Cashmere region, where winter is well below freezing (around minus 30/40°C) and these animals are essentially protected by a super effective thin winter coat.
I have recently discovered a brand in Monaco that’s mastering the art of cashmere clothing. Headquartered in Monaco for over 10 years, Monaco Cashmere ships to high-end shops around the globe and is also sold in the Principality during very exclusive pop-up shops open only a few weeks a year in luxury hotels and at private salons.
From the classic V-neck for men to the beautiful cashmere cardigan for women mixed with fur, the brand offers a large selection of pieces that’s about to expand even more with its upcoming collection. If you’re not in Monaco and don’t happen to be near any stores carrying the brand, you can still browse turtlenecks, vests and jackets at the online boutique at www.monacocashmere.com.
Of course while packing my travel wardrobe for Monaco, I threw in a few cashmere pieces from the brand that are easy to mix and match with different looks, depending on the mood and moment. Now imagine me driving on the Place du Casino in front of Hôtel de Paris in a Kobi bronze Aston Martin Vanquish Volante.
It’s hard to arrive discretely in this sculpted beauty with its powerful V12 568 bhp engine—and that’s exactly the point. Probably one of my favorite automobile brands, the Aston is just as stunning inside as it is out, with high-quality materials and a true attention to detail.
As I pull up to the hotel and hand the keys to the valet, I get out looking just as stylish as the car I’m driving. I’m rocking a casually elegant look: a Monaco Cashmere turtleneck that’s spruced up with a brand-new Saint Laurent leather jacket accented by metal inlays on the shoulders and running down the back; Valentino boots; Dolce & Gabbana pants; and precious bracelets by young designer Andrea Pepe, which you can find at the Society Club Monaco store.
On my wrist, you can’t miss the 18K gold-lined Chopard Superfast Chrono. With a 60-hour power reserve and a unique see-through engine on its chronometer-certified movement (designed entirely by Chopard), this “Classic Racing Collection” timepiece is a masterpiece.
My matte black shades, the Tsuki, are a pair of Masunaga, a special edition designed by KENZO TAKADA himself, the finest in Japanese craftsmanship in Titanium mixed with a solid 18K gold piece running along the sides.
I’ve made my way to my room, or should I say my suite …
—or even the suite, as I am staying in the Suite Charles Garnier, one of the two Diamonds Suites. At 170 square meters, the room features a large terrace with a direct view on the Casino; the sparkling Mediterranean Sea as a perfect backdrop; two bedrooms; and an enormous lounge with a dining area.
This suite offers what is essentially the best of the best in Monte-Carlo. Built in 1864, the hotel’s grandiose design and attention to details, from décor to the furniture, give the impression that you’re stepping back in time. Of course this lavish lifestyle I’m taking part in is only enhanced by the high caliber of dining and spa facilities, from Alain Ducasse’s Louis XV and The Salle Empire restaurant to the recently remodeled Thermes Marins spa and private lounges.
As a bottle of Champagne is delivered to my suite, I can’t resist savoring my first glass on the terrace, looking out at the casino and all of the energy on the square. Since I’m relaxing in the luxury of my private suite, I kept the mood casual going for an almost all-white look with a Monaco Cashmere full-zip vest. The vest is actually thicker than it looks, so it definitely keeps me warm and is a great wardrobe staple that can go with a variety of outfits.
I combined the cashmere vest with a few Tom Ford pieces and a Seraphin coat to throw on when stepping outdoors, since it’s relaxed yet still sophisticated in style. I’m having a bit of a moment with the Masunaga special KENZO TAKADA Mokko shades, so I’m wearing them again, but this time in the Crystal version edition.
I went with a slightly more elegant Chopard timepiece with this look—the L.U.C Lunar Big Date in 18K rose gold. With a clean and thin case, the watch contains an ultra-precise combination of movements: the chronometer-certified L.U.C and its moonphase complication is incredibly accurate, with only one day of difference between its indication and the actual lunar cycle every 122 years!
It’s still early, so before heading out to explore Monte-Carlo, I stop downstairs at the classic Le Bar Américain, one of my favorite places here because of its special energy.
This lounge is the perfect place to start or end a night, with its soft lighting, comfortable leather seats, and long bar stocked with a well-curated selection of whiskies and cognacs—my favorite type of distilled alcohol.
A jazz band reigns over the bar scene come nightfall, one of signatures of Bar Américain, making this place a favorite for any music lover or bon vivant visiting Monte-Carlo. I personally love live music and it’s always a treat to settle in and enjoy the jazz here, especially when I have the chance to sip fine Remy Martin Louis XIII cognac blended from 1,200 Eaux-de-vie that are 40 to 100 years old.
I’m still sporting Monaco Cashmere at the bar here, but I’ve adopted a more classic style. I’ve paired the navy blue V-neck pullover with a sleek shirt, tie and blazer from Tom Ford and a pair of Valentino jeans—an effortless style that’s elegant but not in the least bit simple, since these small details (and your attitude) make all the difference.
Time for me to go outside and explore the Principality … till next time!
If you like the Monaco Cashmere styles find the brand in pop up shops in Monaco or in different stores internationally. Get more information about the brand and shop online at www.monacocashmere.com
Discover more information and pictures about the prestigious Hôtel de Paris with the following link www.fr.hoteldeparismontecarlo.com
Get more information about the Aston Martin Vanquish Volante or any other Aston Martin models by visiting Aston Martin Monaco showroom located 23, Boulevard D’italie 98000 Monaco or visit the website: www.monaco.astonmartindealers.com
Visit Society Club store located at Metropole Monaco Shopping Center to discover their stunning collections including Balmain, Tom Ford, Valentino, Dolce & Gabbana and many more including Jewellery for Men by Andrea Pepè. Website : www.society-club.com
If you like Masunaga stunning eyewear visit the shop of Opticien Créateur located 5 Impasse de la Fontaine, 98000 Monaco: www.opticien-createur.com
More information about Chopard stores located Place du Casino and Pavilions Monaco : www.chopard.com
Executive Producer, Director, AuthorTom Claeren
Make Up ArtistKelly Mcclain
Hair StylistClaudio Piroso
Text editorLane Nieset