He may have sold his stake in the Columbus Hotel in the Fontveille district of Mont-Carlo, but still, David Coulthard’s name remains synonymous with the iconic cool of an establishment that took luxury into the new century.
David Coulthard still has a home in Monaco, along with other F1 Grand Prix greats such as Lewis Hamilton and Max Verstappen. Many others have been guests at the David Coulthard Hotel in Monaco, the Columbus, including Mark Webber, Michael Schumacher, and Sebastian Vettel.
The unlimited Monte-Carlo cool appeal of international motor racing on the streets of Monaco has been a massive draw for drivers and fans for decades. It would only be a matter of time before that innovative modern spirit hit and brought the hotel market up to date too.
Columbus: The David Coulthard Hotel in Monaco
Located in the newer Fontveille district, an area reclaimed from the sea, the Columbus rises between the Princess Grace Rose Gardens and the sea.
- Five minutes walk from the football stadium and the International Circus Festival, the hotel is perfectly positioned for visits to the Prince Rainier III car collection too.
- Ten minutes walk from the Hercule Port and its array of yachts for hire, the hotel is within easy reach of the City Market and the Cap d’Ail beaches.
- Fifteen minutes walk from Le Rocher with its old town charm, the Columbus Hotel is within a reasonable distance of the Prince’s Palace and the railway station.
About the Hotel
The Columbus David Coulthard Hotel in Monaco has 181 rooms but still maintains a contemporary boutique feel. There is a bar and a restaurant, and the hotel also caters for business events.
The Hotel Rooms
- Rooms start from the 25m Superior Room.
- A larger deluxe Room can be connected to other rooms for a family-friendly stay.
- Book a Riviera Room if a sea view is a must-have for your trip.
- There are several good-size suites on the higher floors, with fabulous views.
- The Rose Garden Suites are amongst the largest in Monaco at 55m.
- There is also a penthouse for high-rollers which boasts 71m and has access to its rooftop pool.
Drinking and Dining
- The Columbus Cocktail Bar is open for light snacks and drinks from its iconic cocktail menu from 3 pm to 11 pm.
- Just off the lobby is the lounge, a relaxed spot for a coffee.
- The restaurant is open from 6:30 am for breakfast up to 2:30 pm, seven days a week.
- There is plenty of room with up to 130 covers if you count the terrace, which overlooks the famous rose garden.
- The hotel is available for full privatization of the facilities should a company need a destination for a delegation or conference event.
- The hotel facilities include a boardroom linked to seven suites that can be used as breakout spaces.
- The bar, restaurant, and outside terrace are also available for private hire for events, launches, etc.
- A Mercedes Viano shuttle is also available to transfer delegates.
- The heliport at Monaco (7 minutes from Nice) is situated on the other side of the Rose Garden.
Columbus Chill Time
- The hotel boasts a gorgeous art deco outside pool that is open from April to November.
- There is a fitness room in the hotel and links to a running circuit that takes you through the Princess Grace Rose Garden and along the seafront.
- VIP access is provided to a private beach via a shuttle service, where sun beds, umbrellas, and towels are all included as part of the Beach and Chill by Columbus offers.
The hotel started as a purpose-built three-star hotel in 1989 and was initially designed to serve the business community. When David Coulthard bought it in 2001, his stated aim was to completely change how hotels in Monaco were expected to look and feel.
- David Coulthard brought in contemporary interior designer Amanda Rosa, who took one look at existing traditional Riviera palettes and turned them on their head, instead going for a cool blue minimalist sensibility.
- The gamble worked and the Columbus soon became a magnet for the Champion Racing Drivers’ Formula One colleagues, sporting legends such as Britain’s David Beckham and supermodel Naomi Campbell.
- F1 guests have included top drivers Niki Lauda, Damon Hill, Daniel Ricciardo, Roman Grosjean, and Kimi Raikkonen.
- In 2010 David Coulthard sold the hotel to London and Regional for $37 Million, making almost as much as he had from his Formula One racing career.
The Columbus Hotel Today
The David Coulthard Hotel in Monaco was sold in 2020 to the French family-owned Bertout group, which has retained the essence of the Grand Prix chic, and drivers still use the Columbus as a base when staying in Monte-Carlo.
- Rooms come with private terraces.
- Soundproofing means that privacy is rated highly here.
- Suites come with complementary Panama hats!
- 24/7 Golden Key concierge service.
Renovations and upgrades to the hotel services have been ongoing ever since but they do not seek to eclipse the Coulthard Hotels in Monaco legacy but rather build upon and extend the aesthetic of success it embodies.
What do Guests Say?
Apart from the minor disappointment that a Formula One legend is not at reception to greet guests when they arrive at the hotel, most were blown away that the Columbus Hotel is not rated higher than three stars in Monaco.
- The concierge service came in for high praise, with the flair for organizing transport top of the list.
- The views took guests’ breath away, whether of mountains or sea, and the private terraces are trendy.
- The friendliness of the staff is noted by many, which is good news for the new management as it was a main Bertout group target.
- Cleanliness and maintenance were also singled out by guests as being top-notch and better than higher-starred competitors in Monte-Carlo.
Book Your Stay at the David Coulthard Hotel in Monaco
Booking your stay at the David Coulthard Columbus Hotel couldn’t be easier. Check out availability here for when you want to visit Monaco.
Hotel Price Range
Prices spike around popular events such as the Grand Prix and the annual Yacht Show, and the International Circus Festival. Off-peak and High Season, there are still opportunities for upgrades, and there are often great deals to be had either direct or online.
- If you are flexible with your dates, a Superior Double Room can be had for as little as $175 when booked ahead, and if you are staying later in the year.
- The average price starts at around $240 for a Superior Double Room, while upgrading to a Deluxe Room for $275 will give you a terrace with an iconic Monaco view.
- Breakfast is extra at $30 per person, but it comes highly recommended.
- A Superior Room with a sea view will cost on average $325 with breakfast for two included.
- Suites start at $400, but the price can increase to four figures for the larger rooms at any time of year!
- In high season a standard Superior Double Room will cost $3,000 on average for a week’s stay.
The hotel has ninety parking bays linked to its valet service, but I wouldn’t recommend you turn up in your Formula One racing car, even if you are David Coulthard.
- The hotel is on the far Western end of the Principality, if approaching by car, the first landmark will be the Louis II Sports Stadium, home of Monaco AC.
- Take the Avenue du Port and merge onto the Avenue des Guelphes. At the first roundabout, take the first exit onto the Avenue des Papalins.
- If you are arriving by train, I would call ahead to the hotel concierge service for a transfer or take a walk down to the port if I was traveling light.
- Take the Boulevard Rainier III, then the Avenue de Fontveille.
- There is a free shuttle bus from the heliport, which is situated just across the rose gardens from the hotel.
Getting the Best From Your Trip
The Columbus Hotel exists in a Riviera culture that has been developed over more than 150 years that seeks to keep redefining luxury and service. So what can you do to ensure your expectations are met?
- If you have any particular access or dietary needs make sure that these are communicated directly.
- There are suites with disabled access, but the number is limited, so booking well in advance is a must.
- The restaurant uses organic ingredients wherever possible, when they are available, and has a wide range of choices available for coeliacs or those on a gluten or dairy-free diet.
- If you order something from the 24-hour concierge service, say if the restaurant is closed, then you will find an extra room-service charge on your bill at check out.
- The views improve as you rise up the building, so go for the highest level available for a better vista.
- Speaking of views, it’s the rooms and suites on the Rose Garden side that have the best terraces, and they do come with a partial sea view!