Cote D'Azur (Monaco)

In this episode of Passport to Europe, Samantha Brown takes off to a country whose name is synonymous with luxury - Monaco! For most of us, Monaco is a place where an American girl became a Princess. It's where the outrageously wealthy live a lifestyle beyond imagination.and Samantha is anxious to get a glimpse of how the rich and famous do it up in style. For its lofty reputation, most folks don't know that Monaco is tiny, not even one square mile - in fact, the entire country can fit into New York's Central Park! One attraction that can't be missed is the changing of the guard at the Palace - the Grimaldi family came into power in the late 13th century and never left - but that's all right with the people of Monaco - the royal family makes sure that citizens don't pay taxes, and even supplies them with free cable! Being situated along the Mediterranean, Monaco has always had a connection with the sea. Samantha explores its popular Oceanography Museum and discovers not only its unique marine line but learns that the famous oceanographer, Jacques Cousteau led sea expeditions at this museum for over thirty years. The Grand Prix - auto racings glitziest event is held annually through the winding streets of Monaco. Samantha meets up with a past racing champion and takes a spin around town, but it's not in a race car! Ever heard of a soft drink costing 10 bucks - try the mini bar in a Monaco hotel! When it comes to experiencing the billionaire lifestyle Samantha may be on the sidelines except for her accommodations - Hotel Metropole Monte Carlo - where she's right in the game. People flock to Monaco for its famous casino in Monte Carlo - Samantha doesn't gamble but she does do what almost everyone does who comes to gamble - rubs the bronze statue of Louis XV's horse's leg for good luck! Just about 20 minutes from Monaco, Samantha discovers the medieval village of Ez - a place that seems lost in time - it's so perfect that Sam begins to question whether it's real or not - it's real alright! She finds a quaint place to overnight it - Hotel Eza, and comes out smelling sweet after a shopping spree at the famous Fragonard - a premier French perfumery with an outlet in Ez. Early Spring may not be the high season for travelers in the principality of Monaco or the charming village of Ez, but this quieter time of year affords Samantha an opportunity to discover and experience at her own pace these two unique destinations along the Cote d'Azur.
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