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Art and Culture in Monaco

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Rock of Monaco
The Rock of Monaco is a 62 metre tall promontory overlooking Monte-Carlo's port and the Mediterranean sea. It is also the oldest of Monaco's areas, where the Old Town is located. During the 6th century BC, Greeks founded the colony of Monoikos. Its name comes from Hercules, who was said to have constructed the ancient path that passed through the region from Spain to Italy together with Monaco's port and a coastal road. The road was, thus, dotted with altars to Hercules, and a temple dedicated to him was established on the Rock of Monaco. Nowadays, the rock is home to Monaco's Old Town, with medieval narrow streets and the country's most important monuments: the Palais Princier, Saint Nicholas Cathedral and the Oceanographic Museum.
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Prince's Palace of Monaco
The Prince's Palace is the private residence of the ruling Prince but the State Apartments are open for public visits part of the year. The original fortress and ramparts were built by the Genoese in 1215 and throughout the centuries was transformed into one of the most luxurious residences in the style of Louis XIV. Prince Honore II was responsible for re-assembling the rich collections of art, which had been auctioned off during the French Revolution when the Palace was turned into a hospital for the Italian Army. However, Prince Rainier III is credited for restoring the Palace to its former glory and the magnificent state in which it can be seen today. Beginning at the top of the Hercule Gallery and descending on to the main courtyard is a spectacular double-revolution Carrera marble staircase dating from the 13th century and inspired by a similar staircase at the Chateau of Fontainebleau. Adorning the gallery walls are frescoes of mythological figures attributed to Francesco Mazzucchelli dating from the 16th century and the Genovese artist Orazio Ferrari in the 17th century. The frescoes in the Palatine chapel in the north end of the main courtyard depict the history of Saint Devote, the patron Saint of the Principality. The chapel, built-in 1665, is dedicated to Saint John the Baptist.
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Monte-Carlo Casino
As you arrive at the Place du Casino, the sight of this masterpiece by the famous architect Charles Garnier will take your breath away. Built in 1863, the Casino has been designed around an atrium surrounded by 28 onyx columns, behind which the Salle Garnier, an Italian theatre decorated in red and gold is the veritable miniature replica of the Paris opera house.
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Parc De La Colline Du Chateau
The city’s original site, the Castle Hill (Parc De La Colline Du Chateau) once boasted a reputedly impregnable citadel that was entirely dismantled by the soldiers of the French King Louis XIV in 1706. Truly a maze of greenery that has become popular for its cool undergrowth and surprising waterfall, this wonderful place for strolling offers a wonderful viewpoint over Baie des Anges, Old Nice and the Port (orientation table). Spectacular lighting at night.
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The Palais Lascaris
An exceptional example of civil baroque architecture, the Palais Lascaris is a recognised Musée de France, devoted to the art and music of the 17th and 18th centuries.
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Marc Chagall National Museum
The National Marc Chagall museum, was created by the artist's will to bring together in one purpose-built place his most important biblical works : the 17 paintings which make up the Biblical Message. The permanent collection is the biggest public collection of works by Marc Chagall. It is organized around the set of works produced by the painter on the Old Testament themes, supplemented by a large number of works of secular or religious inspiration: over 400 painting, gouaches, drawings, wash drawings and pastels. The museum offers the visitor a first room containing twelve large-size paintings illustrating the first two books of the Old Testament, Genesis and Exodus. In a second, smaller hexagonal room are five compositions on the theme of the Song of Songs, another Old Testament book. Audio-guides in French, English, German, Italian, Russian, Japanese, Chinese and Spanish .
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Allianz Riviera
With the appearance of the Allianz Riviera, the City of Nice has acquired a multifunctional facility to help enhance its international reputation as France’s leading business tourism destination after Paris.
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Chapelle Bellini et Parc Fiorentina
This chapel is part of the estate of Villa Fiorentina, a famous Italian-style villa dating from the end of the 19th century and one of the residences that "made Cannes' reputation". The Baroque chapel was built at the request of Count Vitali, whose coat of arms adorns one of its walls.
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Centre de art la Malmaison
Situated on La Croisette, La Malmaison now hosts three major exhibitions annually. It regularly pays tribute to renowned painters such as Matisse, Ozenfant and Picasso, for whom the French Riviera was an infinite source of inspiration, in addition to internationally renowned 20th- and 21st-century artists such as Miró and César.
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Musee de la Castre
The Castre Museum is located on the Suquet hill, dominating the city of Cannes. From the top of the medieval tower the views across the bay and the Lerins islands are fantastic and not to be missed! Inside the castle and the nearby chapel is a brilliant collection of paintings, art and archaeological artefacts. The Castre Museum is home to a wide collection of antiquities, particularly from the Mediterranean and the Middle East. The 11th-century Saint Anne Chapel houses a remarkable collection of musical instruments from Asia, Africa, America and Oceania. A few rooms dedicated to 19th-century Provencal paintings of Riviera landscapes open out onto the courtyard and a square tower displaying spectacular views. It is surrounded by a beautiful Mediterranean garden with pine trees.
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Lerins Abbey
Situated on the island of Saint Honorat off the coast of Cannes, the Notre Dame de Lérins Abbey is a Cistercian monastery. The abbey was founded around 410AD when Saint Honorat came here with the intention of living as a hermit but was soon joined by his disciples. Together they formed a community that became “an immense monastery” around the year 427. According to legend, Saint Patrick, the patron saint of Ireland, studied here in the 5th century. Today, open or guided tours are offered. The visitor can discover the fortified monastery with the main church dedicated to Saint Honorat in its centre and the Sainte-Marie church to the north. Also the 11th/12th century cloisters that border the common rooms such as the chapter room and refectory. The chapels, numbering seven, are distributed over the island. Finally, the hot shot furnaces remind us that the island and even the monastery had the role of defending the French coast.
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St. Francis and the Basilica
The World Heritage Committee included on its list the Basilica and other sites important to the Franciscan Order, due to the fact that they represent an amalgamation of masterpieces stemming from creative human genius
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The Citadel of Saint-Tropez
Dating from the 17th century, bought by the municipality in 1993, this listed monument is one of the most visited historical and cultural sites in the Var. This monument is composed of a hexagonal dungeon, an entrance with adjoining curtain and bastions.
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Eglise Saint Louis
A mix of Romanesque and Gothic styles, this thirteenth century building offers a beautiful display of 19th c. stained-glass windows produced by the Metz-based Maréchal workshop.
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Strada Nuova Museums - Palazzo Rosso
On display in Palazzo Rosso, a noble residence decorated with valuable furnishings and frescoes by Liguria's greatest painters of the 17th Century, is a rich gallery of paintings, collected over more than two centuries by the noble Brignole-Sale family.
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Sabauda Gallery
The Sabauda Gallery is headquartered at the New Palace of the Royal Palace and retains great masterpieces of the leading European schools. Among the works of Italian masters from the 14th century to the sixteenth century can be admired the Madonna with Child of the Blessed Angelic, the Archangel Raffaele and Tobiolo of Antonio and Piero del Pollaiolo, the Three Archangels and Tobiolo of Filippino Lippi, the Madonna with Child and painted saints by Andrea Mantegna with the help of a collaborator and the great canvas with Dinner at Simone's house by Paolo Veronese.
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Ecomuseo della Pietra da Cantoni
It may seem strange entitle a museum to a stone, but a visit to the Ecomuseo della Pietra da Cantoni clarifies why this unique material is so important to the Monferrato’s culture.
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Uviglie Castle
The property with its ancient park because of its architectural importance and its artistic heritage, it is under the Royal Law Decree of June 1939 and it belongs today to the Società Semplice Castello d’Uviglie.
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La Criee
A fish market opened here in 1909 until 1975 when it was moved to the north of the city to the industrial port of Saumaty. The building’s interior was completely redesigned but its exterior was kept intact. The Théâtre National de Marseille was opened in 1981 by the Mayor of Marseille Gaston Defferre. La Criée was managed by Marcel Maréchal for over a decade and hosts an exciting schedule every season. Opposite the ferry boat pier lies the Bar de La Marine made famous by Marcel Pagnol. It is the main location in the “Marius, Fanny, César” film trilogy filmed at the Old Port in Marseille in the 30s.
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The cellars of the Saint Firmin Palace
Cave dwelling-like halls, cisterns, underground stairways, olive oil mills, etc, built up and fitted out over the centuries in a big house called the "Palais Saint Firmin". Listed as a Historic Monument.
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La Rive Droite
Dedicated to the so-called "right bank", that is, the area of the historic centre that unfolds to the right of the cathedral of San Lorenzo, this itinerary begins in Piazza Caricamento, where goods were once unloaded and loaded in the old harbour. Here, you'll find Palazzo San Giorgio, today home to the Port Authority.
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The Grenoble Museum of Art
Created in 1798, the Grenoble Museum of Art lets you travel through eight uninterrupted centuries of Western art, and includes world-class works for each period.
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Baron Gamba Castle
Gamba Castle Built at the beginning of the 1900s from the designs of the engineer Carlo Saroldi, it was commissioned by Charles Maurice Gamba, husband of Angélique d‘Entrèves, daughter of Count Christin d‘Entrèves. Since 1982 it has been the property of the Valle d’Aosta Autonomous Region. After a complex restoration, today the castle houses an exhibition route that winds through 13 rooms, displaying over 150 works of art such as paintings, sculptures, installations, drawings and photographs belonging to a regional collection dating back from the end of the nineteenth century to the present day. Alongside the works of the 20th-century masters, including sculptures by Martini, Mastroianni, Manzù, Arnaldo and Giò Pomodoro, and paintings by Casorati, De Pisis, Carrà and Guttuso, the collection documents Italian figurative art produced from the second half of the century up to contemporary study exponents, such as Schifano, Baruchello, Rama and Mainolfi. A vast and varied selection of works testifies to the movements that have animated the Italian art scene over the past 25 years: for example, the exhibition hosts representations of Informal art, Geometric abstraction, Transavantgarde and Pop art. Particular importance is given to Valle d’Aosta region through the activity of local artists, or those active in Valley, on regional commission. For visitors seeking both learning and distraction, the exhibition offers a series of services designed to bring different groups of visitors (families, adults, schools, children, young people) closer to modern and contemporary art through workshop activities, guided tours and events.
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Vaugelas Chapel
An area devoted to exhibiting the work of amateur artists, particularly from Chambéry, of new exhibitors and Chambéry associations. The sale of works on the premises is prohibited.
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Museum of the Pieta Rondanini
The new museum, created inside the ancient Ospedale Spagnolo (Spanish Hospital) in the Castello Sforzesco, is a fascinating space that has never opened to the public before and is exclusively dedicated to Michelangelo’s last masterpiece.
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Sforza Castle
Castello Sforzesco is a surprising monument sheltering several specialized museums and traces of the city’s past. An oasis of art and culture. It was originally a Visconti fortress and later home to the mighty Sforzas, the rulers of Milan, who transformed it into a magnificent ducal palace thought to have been decorated by several of the greatest artists of the times including Donato Bramante and Leonardo da Vinci. Transformed into a military complex during four centuries of foreign occupation and subsequently used as the barracks of the Italian army, at the end of the 19th century the Castle was restored by architect Luca Beltrami who turned it into the headquarters of Milan’s Civic Museums. Today the Castle sits in all of its glory in the eponymous square with its 70m-tall “Torre del Filarete” and a number of majestic circular keep-towers.
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Teatrale Alla Scala
La Scala, or Teatro alla Scala in Italian, is one of the most famous opera houses in the world. Its sober and elegant exterior never fails to surprise those that visit it for the first time. The Archduke Ferdinand of Austria-Este commissioned the construction of a new Ducal Theatre when a fire burnt down the previous theatre in 1776. The opera house was built on the site where the former site of the Church Santa Maria alla Scala, hence the name of the Teatro alla Scala. Like other theatres of the same period, La Scala also housed a casino during its early years. In 1943, during World War II, the theatre was badly damaged by bombing. It was reconstructed three years later. In 2002, the Opera House was closed for two years while it was renovated and opened in November 2004 with an opening performance of Europa riconosciuta by Antonio Salieri, which is the same opera that was performed when the theatre was inaugurated in 1778. Many famous operas have had their first production in La Scala, such as Othello, Nabucco by Verdi or Madame Butterfly by Giacomo Puccini. During its early years, the composer Giuseppe Verdi did not want his work to be represented in the Teatro alla Scala because he was convinced that the orchestra modified his compositions. Nevertheless, he then established a very close relationship with the Opera House. The Theatre Museum contains a large collection of paintings, busts, costumes and several other objects related to the world of opera and theatre. The visit includes discovering the theatre’s grand foyer, an elegant and sparsely decorated hall. Then you will be taken to the small box seats covered in red satin, where the high society enjoyed and still enjoys the various operas and ballets performed in La Scala. The enormous auditorium is made of wood and covered in red velvet, adorned with golden coloured stuccos. The stage is lit by a huge Bohemian crystal chandelier with 383 bulbs.
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Brera
Brera is synonymous with the artistic heart of the city. In fact, as you stroll along the streets of this ancient district, you cannot help but be enchanted by its almost surreal atmosphere boasting small artisan’s workshops or quaint stores selling canvases and paints. Additionally, Brera is home to the impressive Accademia di Belle Arti, where visitors can admire Milan’s famous painting collection at the Pinacoteca (the Brera Picture Gallery), the historic Biblioteca Nazionale Braidense (Braidense National Library) , the Museo Astronomico (The Astronomical Museum), the oldest scientific research institute in the city and the Giardino Botanico (Botanical Gardens), an evocative green space located.
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Square of Miracles
The Campo dei Miracoli in Pisa, or the Square of Miracles, was proclaimed a World Heritage Site by UNESCO 25 years ago. The square is not located in the center of the city as you might imagine but to the north-west of the fortified wall, almost out of the town; there probably wasn’t enough space to use at the time the project got underway so this is the site decided upon. Since the times of the Etruscans, the three structures found in the piazza have been considered central to religious life, symbolizing the main stages of a human’s life
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Camposanto Monumentale
The Cemetery is the last monument on Piazza del Duomo, its long marble wall flanking the northern boundary and completing its shape. It was founded in 1277 to accommodate the graves that until then were scattered all around the Cathedral. Archbishop Federico Visconti wanted the building to be a “large and dignified, secluded and enclosed place”. This is how one of the oldest Christian Medieval architectures for the devotion of the dead came into being.
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Santa Maria della Spina
The exuberant Santa Maria della Spina Church in Pisa, Italy, is a beautiful work of Gothic fantasy rendered in miniature, that sits on the banks of the Lungarno Gambacorti. The eye-catching Santa Maria della Spina was originally a simple oratory for seamen, who would come here to pray for a safe return. The church was originally closer to the river bank. The church needed to reflect the value of the relic that it contained, so the best artists of the time went to work on it. These included Lupo di Francesco, Andrea Pisano with his sons Nino and Tommaso, and Giovanni di Balduccio. The “Madonna and the child with two angels” in the tabernacle on the façade is attributed to Giovanni Pisano, an important master who also worked at the Cathedral. The sumptuous decorations on the right side and in the tabernacles were made in the workshops of the Giovanni Pisano school. In contrast with the outside, the interior is quite ostentatious. It’s essentially one open space, at one end of which stands the “Madonna of the Rose” by Andrea and Nino Pisano, one of the most notable achievements of Gothic sculpture.
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Piazza delle Vettovaglie
Piazza dei Cavalieri and Piazza Dante Alighieri are the centres of student life and in the streets around about there are many typical and affordable restaurants. In Piazza delle Vettovaglie there is the historic food market.
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Le Musee des Beaux-Arts et d
Created in 1897 following the meeting of the collections of the city and the Société dunoise of history and archeology, this museum of France houses eclectic collections:
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Theatre La Comedie de Valence
The Theatre La Comédie de Valence is a performance hall and events venue in the municipality of Valence (Drôme, Auvergne-Rhône-Alps). The programme varies depending on the season.
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The Roman Arena
The Roman amphitheatre (or arena) in Nîmes is the best-conserved of the Roman world. It was used for hunting wild animals and for gladiator combats from the end of the first century AD onwards. Many events are held there today.
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The Certosa di Calci
As you exit the main highway at Cascina on the east to west road called the FI-PI-LI and start to drive towards the Apuane Alps, you slowly shake off the busy industrial sensations and start to ease yourself into the quiet and tranquility that first drew the Carthusian monks to this area.