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Monuments in Monaco  

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Overall Evaluation
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Description

Monaco's Cathedral
Built with white stones from La Turbie in 1875, this Roman-Byzantine style construction shelters the tombs of the deceased Princes. As for the interior decoration one may especially admire an altarpiece (retable) painted in 1500 by Louis Brea, a native of Nice, as well as the high altar and the Episcopal throne made of white marble from Carrara. Pontifical Services are held during the main liturgical celebrations, accompanied by a four keyboard Grand Organ, inaugurated in 1976; its magnificence permits remarkable spiritual concerts to be organised. From September to June, every Sunday at 10 AM Mass is sung by the "Petits Chanteurs de Monaco" and by the "Maîtrise de la Cathédrale

Fort Antoine Theatre
This fortress, built during the early part of the XVIIIth century, is now an open-air theatre. It was rebuilt in 1953 under the initiative of HMS Prince Rainier III, after having been destroyed in 1944.
Its military architecture, its look-out turret (bartizan), the almost total solitude one finds there, all concurs to create its particular charm. Its platform has been pleasantly arranged. A pyramid of cannon balls stands at its centre. The fort's military architecture has been emphasized by pittosporum hedges, which serve as protection where no parapet stands.

Sainte-Dévote Church
This XIth century votive chapel is dedicated to the Principality's and to the Princely family's Patron Saint. It was built in the hollow of the "Vallon des Gaumates". During the IV th century, a frail boat carrying Sainte Dévote's remains ran aground at its entrance. Each year on January the 26th, a boat is burnt atnightfall as part of the ceremonies of a still fervent traditional cult.

Saint-Charles Church
This Renaissance style building with its 30-meter tall bell-tower was inaugurated in 1883. Nineteen stained glass windows lighten up its nave whose gilded centre-lights come from the old arms room in the Prince's Palace.

Monte-Carlo's Casino and Opera House
Charles Garnier, the architect of the Paris Opera House, built it in 1863. Its marble paved "atrium", surrounded with 28 Ionic columns made of onyx, gives access to the Opera Hall which is entirely decorated in red and gold, with bas-reliefs and sculptures. For more than a century, its stage has been the setting for international lyrical creations, prestigious concerts, as well as exceptional ballets. Its linked "Gaming Rooms" are admirably decorated with stained glass windows, sculptures, and allegoric paintings.

The Prince's Palace (State Apartments)
As guardian of an age-old tradition, this Palace, located in a unique setting, was built on the site of a fortress erected by the Genoese in 1215.
Today one may indeed admire thesplendours of this palace, such as: its Italian-style gallery and its XVIth centuryfrescoes; its Louis XVth suite all in yellow and gold, its Blue Suite, a harmonious blend of glorious blue and gold; its Palatine Chapel covered with polychromatic wood-panelling (wainscoting); the Throne Room, decorated with an impressive Renaissance fireplace; the Palatine Chapel built in the XVIIth century; St-Mary's Tower, built from white stones from nearby La Turbie; the Main Courtyard and its XVIIth century Ferrara marble horse-shaped staircase…
The construction of this Palace was begun in 1924, upon the personal initiative of HMS Prince Louis II; it was inaugurated on May 1st 1930. A grey and porous stone, sea tuff, was used for its construction, as well as for Monaco's ramparts. This stone contains numerous small stones, and sometimes mollusc shells. The bust of the Sovereign Honoré II, dated 1568, appears on one of the Palace façades.

The Chapel of Mercy (Chapelle de la Miséricorde)
Located in Old Town, this chapel has just one nave; its inaugural stone was blessed in 1639 under the reign of Prince Honoré II, Prior of the Brotherhood of Black Penitents.
On Holy Friday, during four centuries, this chapel was the starting point for the traditional procession of Christ-Dead. It was suppressed in 1870, and has been resumed in the last few years.
It shelters a wooden Christ sculpted by a native of Monaco, François-Joseph Bosio, official sculptor of Emperor Napoleon I.

The Oceanographic Museum
Inaugurated in 1910 by its founder, Prince Albert I, this exceptional Museum is a masterpiece of monumental architecture whose façade looks out over a cliff that falls sharply down to the Sea 85 metres below. It took eleven years of work to build it, and 100,000 tonnes of freestone from La Turbie. This is a naturally light brown stone that acquires a light grey patina when it rains

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