Right after the Vatican City, Monaco is the second smallest independent, sovereign state in the world, with a total area covering just a little over than 2 sq. kilometers. Situated in the French Riviera, the microstate is surrounded by France on three sides, and has a vast access to the Mediterranean Sea on the fourth. With a total population of almost 39,000 residents, it is one of the wealthiest and most expensive places to live on the globe.
With a wide ranging historic past and rich culture and diversity, the microstate has been garnering attention from all over the world, for a variety of reasons, out of which its royal casinos have always been the talk of the town. Casino Monte Carlo, or as it is officially called, Casino de Monte Carlo, was opened in July 1865, and has been a source of entertainment and luxury to people from all across the planet.
Nothing matches the experience of a good round of roulette, with the crowd cheering for you to win. However, recent times have forced everyone to stay indoors as much as possible. But that has not impacted the spirits of players and now the joy and thrill of a casino can be experienced from the comfort of homes, with everything moving online. You can try different pokies online with just one click.
Casinos of Monaco have been a go-to place for tourists, gamblers, and players from all over the world. However, the casinos are not open to the locals. Yes, you read that right. But why is this so, or what is this rule? Continue below to know more:
Casino de Monte Carlo
This tale is as old as the casino itself, which dates back to the mid 1800s. When the casino was being planned by Princess Caroline, wife of Prince Florestan of Monaco, the princess was quite adamant that the casino should be open only to the individuals of foreign nationalities. This was done to promote tourism and thereby, boost the economy, which was still at its fetal stages back then. The idea has worked quite well, both for the locals and for the state’s economy. In exchange for not entering the casinos, the locals were promised a life free from income tax, a trend which is still very prevalent in Monaco.
Railways connecting the state to France were also designed in such a way that it brought potential clients, players, gamblers, and tourists to the city. Upon arrival, they were lured to the vibrant architecture and luscious halls of the casino, which brought with itself the much needed revenue. Slowly, Monaco and Casino de Monte Carlo became a hit and were a tourist destination spot for people from all over the planet.
New Gambling Laws
The 157 year old law is still somewhat followed in Monaco, and it is what makes it so special than the rest. If you want to get access to the casinos of Monaco, you might have to undergo a proper checking on the entry gates, where you would be required to show your passport. Passport verification is done to ensure that only the foreign nationals are entering the casino premises, thereby eliminating the chances of it being bypassed by locals.
However, change is the only constant entity in this universe. These laws have been amended and modified from time and again to suit the business requirements. Now, the locals can gamble in the casinos of Monaco, only online. So, practically, again, they are not allowed to step inside their own casinos. But this too might get changed in future.
Locals: Residents VS Citizens
Another important factor to consider whilst discussing the casino policies of Monaco is to understand the difference between its locals. The local folks can be broadly classified into two distinct categories: Residents and Citizens. Out of the total population of Monaco, only around 9,500 are the actual citizens of the country, and are called Monēgasque. These are the actual individuals who are not allowed to gamble their money in the casinos of Monaco. The remaining population of Monaco is free to use their money as they see fit, as these residents are usually high-profile people who are living a luxurious life in the country, and bring revenue to the microstate. People usually get confused with these loopholes and end up making mistakes about who all are invited into the casinos and who is not.
Tourists are absolutely free to enter, unless they forgot their passport or are under 18 years of age. So be mindful and don’t forget your passport back in your hotel room.
If you have seen the Bond 007 movie franchise, then it is quite obvious that you are aware of the casino of Monaco. The Casino of Monte Carlo has been a shooting location for many Bond movies and has made an appearance in many other movies. The Hotel de Paris, Monte Carlo was built around the casino, with the casino being the center of attraction and the hotel being so lavish the guests could hardly resist it. Currently owned by the Royal Family of Grimaldi, these have been a major source of income for them and the state as well.
All in all, Monaco has become one of the most visited and sought after places in Europe, thanks to its breath-taking views and magnificent casinos. It is one of the most expensive places to go and live, but it attracts a similar crowd. If you are planning on a trip to Monaco, do not forget to carry your passports along when visiting the gorgeous casinos. They offer many and all sorts of activities, from a few games of roulette, to a classic game of jack, and many more. If you are looking for a relaxing vacation and are interested in gambling, this is the place for you to be.