Monaco Day 2: Flying to the Grasse Rose Fields
I’m not going to lie, after a wonderful first day in Monaco with Fairmont and Le Labo Fragrances, I was expecting nothing but magic on day two. While you may think I’d set my standards too high, the next 24-hours would turn out to be a once-in-a-lifetime, unforgettable experience that we’ll still be pinching ourselves over for many years to come.
Seriously though, how much does it suck waking to your glaringly loud alarm when you’ve had less than 8-hours sleep? Thankfully for me this morning, Brad was right there beside me, armed with our in-room Nespresso coffee machine. Hallelujah! Sipping on my espresso and watching the magnificent sunrise from our private terrace, I spent the morning replying to urgent emails and editing photos, aka. making Lion in the Wild go ‘round. The view definitely made the early wake-up call a little easier to digest.
I don’t know whether it was the caffeine or the excitement for the day ahead, but before we knew it we were dressed in our finest and on our way to the Monacair helipads for our ‘commute’ to Grasse, a French town in the Alpes-Maritimes synonymous with perfume. We gasped at the panoramic views of the Mediterranean coastline, rolling green hills, mist-covered waterways and even the snow-capped French Alps during the 15-minute helicopter flight. I was truly humbled by the beauty of France.
With a sweet floral scent in the air, we enjoyed much-craved cappuccinos and French pastries (nobody does bread better than the French!). Surrounded by charming country buildings, vineyards and rose fields, I couldn’t think of a better way to devour my morning croissants.
Rebecca Minkoff red knitted jumper (sold old – similar style here), black crop top, Zara polkadot midi skirt and straw bag, Lack of Colour straw boater hat, Fendi sunglasses, CLUSE gold watch, necklaces and bracelet, gold anklet and Rag & Bone espadrille sneakers (sold out – similar style here on sale!).
After breakfast, we walked amongst the family-owned, sixth generation Le Labo rose fields, learning about the rich history, the rarity of the roses and the process of perfumery along the way. A delicate process, the feminine Le Labo Rose 31 is derived from the unique damask rose grown and cultivated right here in Grasse, which provides a unique combination of climate, soil quality, people and just a little magic.
Wandering the muddy rose fields (we had to wear waterproof covers to protect our shoes – very fashun 😜) as the workers meticulously collected the aromatic roses ready for cultivating, a once-a-year occasion, I couldn’t help but finally understand the preciousness of each bottle of Le Labo Rose 31.
Our tour continued on at the Le Labo Factory, just 10-minutes from the rose fields, with an olfactive workshop where we got to experience the many different complex scents and fragrant combinations of Le Labo. It was at this moment – and this moment only – that I wanted to make the 24-hour journey home to Perth and my Le Labo Discovery Set so I could fully appreciate each extraordinary eau de parfum. Just kidding. Don’t make me go home!
Just when we thought our time in Grasse couldn’t be any more perfect, we sat down to a divine long table lunch with views across the valley of vineyards and chateau’s. We toasted to a day well-spent in fabulous company with rosé (what else?!) and feasted on an assortment of delectable French cuisine. Don’t get me started on the fruit tart. 🤤 And here I go again, craving food from half a world away. I really don’t know how I’m going to have quick meals at my desk again after all these three-hour long luncheons in the South of France, seriously.
I was hesitant to leave enchanting Grasse until I remembered our commute back to stunning Monaco was a helicopter ride over the magical French Riviera. How could you possibly be disappointed about that? Sitting in the front this time, I couldn’t stop the smile on my face as our legs dangled over the impossibly beautiful landscape below. E-P-I-C.
Before retreating back to our room, Aggie (of Travel In Her Shoes) and Michael showed us their favourite Starbucks with a view, which is conveniently right next door to Fairmont Monte Carlo. Overlooking the glittering Mediterranean Sea, I ordered my go-to chai latte, and retreated back to our hotel room to relax and rejuvenate before dinner. I pampered myself with the luxurious and feminine Le Labo Rose 31 Shower Gel and Body Lotion, with a new respect for every drop of beautifully scented product.
Emerging out of our room smelling like my very own customised type of damask rose (or the Rose 31 Eau de Parfum – whatever tickles your fancy), we met the wonderful #FairmontxLeLabo crew in the spacious hotel lobby for a surprise dinner. A 10-minute drive later and we were standing out the front of the majestic Oceanographic Museum of Monaco, our breathtaking destination for the night.
How often does one get the chance to tour a museum after hours, one that is open just for you? Well, that’s exactly what we did. Yes, it’s true, I was a little disappointed when the museum didn’t come to life and Ben Stiller didn’t make an appearance, but it was amazing nonetheless. And now I can tick-off eating the best cheesy risotto and scrumptious little desserts amongst a blue-lit aquarium with Nemo and Dory off the bucket list. Pretty cool, eh?!
When we appeared out of the depths of the Oceanographic aquarium at the end of the night, it seems we were stuck in the middle of a huge thunderstorm and heavy downpour. I couldn’t have thought of a more dramatic and fabulous way to end another exceptional night.