As reported earlier in the week, it's hard to ignore simple economics of a visit to Monaco. As players will now becoming aware of, it's relatively cheap to get here, Nice Airport being the closet hub, followed by a €90 taxi ride. But as soon as the taxi stops you're on an entirely different meter, with charges jumping out at you from all over the place; rumour has it that if you even open the door of your mini-bar your bank manager calls, a klaxon sounding in the distance, informing you that your account has been closed.
Some have sought a cure for this poverty, unplugging the phone for a start, and using ingenuity to get pass colossal fees.
With the cheapest food on the room service menu being a €22 Euro omelette, with a €6 deliver charge (putting aside the fact that merely looking at the cover of the room service menu sets off a similar klaxon back in the accounts department), you begin to look for the value, nutritional value, between that and the €12 jar of nuts on the dressing table.
Are you going to eat those chips?
Seeking a cup of tea after work last night I attempted to circumvent any charge for tea by ordering a plan jug of boiled water (having brought my own teabags). I figured that simple boiled water might be free of charge, used to remove a stain perhaps, or to deliver a baby. Had I remember to ask for a cup as well this might have worked. But I didn't and they had to bring this separately. How much they charge for this should prove interesting at check out.
Another tactic is to get up early for breakfast, then go back for lunch, although this relies on foiling the waiting staff. In LE Sporting, rumour has it that there's a secret vending machine which, cut off from the world outside, thinks it's about right to charge 80 cents rather than €8 for a small bottle of water. Its location is known to only a handful of misers. I could have my press pass summarily torn from around my neck for even talking about it.
Then there is the supermarket which, in what can be termed a genuine piece of useful consuer advice, we can tell you about. The local Spar can be found in Le Metropole Shopping Centre which can be found on Avenue des Spelugues which Formula 1 racing fans will recognise as the bit with the hairpin turn (see map with pointy arrow).
Down the stairs and down the stairs again
Map of the supermarket in relation to the hairpin turn
The Spa is at the top of the hill, if you're walking up hill around the hairpin past the Fairmont Hotel, and is down some stairs. Monaco this may be but there is no dress code. They have food and everything there. No more peanuts for dinner!
Fill your boots.