Despite its modest size (it comprises an area of just 2.02 kilometres) Monaco has a population of about 37,800, making it the second smallest and most densely populated country in the world. It is estimated that more than 30% of the population is made up of millionaires, so it is high time we moved house.
Monaco has a long history and is one of the best-known places in the world.
Immortalised by the 1892 song, The Man Who Broke the Bank at Monte Carlo, its world famous casino (citizens of Monaco are forbidden to enter the gaming rooms) has featured in numerous films, perhaps most famously the 1995 Bond movie Goldeneye (it also appeared in the unofficial Bond, Never Say Never Again).
Once every year since 1929 the streets become the location for the Monaco Grand Prix, the only one that does not adhere to the mandated minimum distance of 305 kilometres.
Brazil’s Ayrton Senna holds the record for the most victories (six) including five consecutive chequered flags between 1989 and 1993.
The Monte Carlo Rally (on which the 1969 film Monte Carlo or Bust! is based) started in 1911 and originally competitors set off from all four corners of Europe to travel to Monaco, as will some of the contestants in the Winter Games.
Monaco has frequently played host to the world’s finest bridge players, notably staging the World Championships in 1954, 1976 & 2003.
The 2003 event is memorable for the dramatic last board finish to the Bermuda Bowl final between the USA and Italy, but 1976 is both historic and unique; it is the only occasion on which two World Championships have been contested in the same year.
In the Bermuda Bowl the USA beat Italy in the final, – ending the 20 year reign of Italy’s legendary Blue Team – it was the first time they had been defeated.
In the Olympiad that immediately followed, Italy also surrendered their title when they were overtaken by Brazil after a dramatic last round.
In recent years, Monaco has been the venue for the prestigious Cavendish, its lavish prizes matching its location.
Now Monaco is about to host a new event that will add a new chapter to the history of this most famous of Principalities.