Monaco – with its tax haven status – has always been a playground for the rich and famous.
But it’s not content. Recession or no recession, the little principality in south-western Europe wants more of what it calls URIs (that’s Ultra Rich Individuals) to come to its luxurious shores.
Monaco’s network of 100 honorary consuls dotted around the world have been set the task of identifying some extremely wealthy people, particularly in developing economies such as India, Brazil and Russia.
The guests will then be invited to enjoy ‘Monaco Private Label,’ a bespoke holiday of private shopping tours around luxury boutiques with helicopters to whisk them to the Alps or to a yacht in the Mediterranean. They’d also get access to three-Michelin-star restaurants and the world’s biggest private wine cellar of 600,000 bottles.
Four tax havens were named and shamed at the recent G20 meeting in London, but Monaco wasn’t among them. Instead, it was put on a list of countries that have committed to, but not yet implemented, international standards of financial transparency.
Monaco has a total of 35,000 residents, but a reported 350,000 bank accounts containing total deposits of more than £80bn ($118 billion).
Matti Kohonen, of the Tax Justice Network, says only an end to banking secrecy will do. “It’s a tax haven because lots of outsiders place their money in Monaco, pay no tax, and have banking secrecy which allows for investments there not to be discovered by foreign tax authorities,” he said.
by Andy Moreton, with Stephen Chittenden in Monte Carlo
You don’t have to be a URI to enjoy some leisure time in Monaco. Luxique offers great rates at six luxury Monte Carlo hotels, including the celebrated and magical Hotel de Paris. A great time to go might be for the Monaco Grand Prix through the weekend of May 22-24.