Monte Carlo casino ‘surrealist dinner’ has to be seen to be believed

  • Prestigious dinner welcomes film stars, business leaders, heads of state, and Monaco royalty
  • Kaisin’s ‘surrealist dinner’ a celebration of ‘the art of the game, and the game of art’ at the centre of Monte Carlo lifestyle

There’s style, there’s extravagance, and then there’s Belgian designer Charles Kaisin’s dinner party at the Casino de Monte Carlo.

The surrealist dinner certainly lived up to its name at the Monte Carlo Casino.
The surrealist dinner certainly lived up to its name at the Monte Carlo Casino.

The exclusive, invitation-only, event last Friday evening welcomed luminaries including famous architect Norman Foster, star actress Kristin Scott Thomas, senior executives of Hermes and Rolls-Royce, and more than one – unnamed – head of state.

Such was the grandeur of the prestigious occasion that Monaco’s Prince Albert II and the Princess of Hannover attended the dinner, held in the casino’s Medicin room which took a team of 400 staff four days to prepare.

Charles Kaisin is well known for hosting his ‘surrealist’ dinners, and on this occasion had been invited into the venue by its owners, the Société des Bains der Mer, which gave him free reign to organise the event for a select group of 120 guests.

Served by one waiter for every two diners, Kaisin and the Société’s guests were delivered their meals with to-the-second precision and were entertained by actors and dancers between courses.

According to Kaisin himself, the night’s show was themed to capture the history and culture of Monte Carlo. The spectacles included a 48-metre-long, hand-painted mural displayed on panels carried on the waiter’s backs, Monaco tennis players exchanging a rally over the diner’s heads, and opera singers, who arrived in – and travelled through – the neighbouring Opera Hall courtesy of a golden horse-drawn carriage.

Even in the rarified atmosphere of Monte Carlo, events with the depth and extravagance of the Surrealist Dinners rarely take place. This event, months in the planning, harked back to the spectacular balls and dinners once held under the Belle Époque ceilings of the Casino de Monte Carlo, and – according to Pascal Camia from the Société – a celebration of “the art of the game, and the game of art.”

As for the name of the ‘Surrealist Dinner’, well you can watch this video clip to see why an event has never had a more appropriate name:

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