F1 driver Charles Leclerc's balcony terrace is the epitome of Monaco chic – experts love his elegant style

It celebrates grandeur yet has a relaxed and lived-in feel. Fall for the charms of Monaco chic style

Charles Leclerc
(Image credit: Getty Images Francois Nel / Staff)

Charles Leclerc, the Monegasque F1 driver, is no stranger to impeccable style – and his design-savvy credentials extend far beyond his grace on the race track. Leclerc's balcony terrace is a masterclass in classic Monaco chic. 

Similarly to the Parisian modern trend, Monaco style embraces the trend for 'stealth wealth' decorating, also more commonly referred to on social media as 'quiet luxury'. Known for glitz and glamor, this tiny sovereign state along the French Riviera has long fascinated visitors. Famed for Grace Kelly and the Monaco Grand Prix, it's a playground for the super-rich. But it's also a place that exudes an 'old money' style. 

So what is it about this seemingly simple style that designers and homeowners alike adore? It's a movement that prioritizes subtlety and refinement, creating serene, calming spaces that reflect a sense of sophistication without ostentation. 

It is also not as unobtainable as it may at first appear. In fact, just one sophisticated room color idea can turn your home or garden into a luxurious space that is as perfectly composed and enriching as Charles Leclerc's.

Black and white, the color combination so beloved by Coco Chanel, offers the perfect way to create a stylish scheme. This classic duo has the power to add drama and refined sophistication to a scheme. While monochrome color schemes can be tricky to get right, a considered approach will be rewarded by a simple but impactful scheme.

A black and white decorating scheme is a brave choice, as it requires careful editing and a strong design eye. This type of interior can also appear ‘flat’ if you don’t introduce texture and subtle tonal variety. But put together carefully, it’s a great way to add drama and style.

Farrow and Ball: Recipes for Decorating | $43.16 at Amazon

Farrow and Ball: Recipes for Decorating | $43.16 at Amazon

Farrow & Ball is a leading producer of high-end paint and luxury wallpaper, and their design experts share their wisdom for creating harmonious interiors and beautify home décor in this inspirational book.

A scheme based on varying tones of one color, typically black, combined with plenty of white, is both smart and relaxing. Note that here black has been used as an accent rather than a base hue, which might have felt oppressive. If using lots of pattern, balance the look with some simple, unadorned lines and utilitarian fittings to prevent the scheme from being too busy.

The strict use of black and white creates a sense of drama in this outdoor space, with the balance tipped in favor of white to keep the look light and bright. With limitations on color, creative flourishes are needed to pull off this look. 

The usual design rules apply though, particularly where white is concerned. It’s generally acknowledged that a totally white color scheme can look clinical, reminding us of an operating theatre rather than a warm, welcoming outdoor living room.

Incorporate contrasting finishes, such as natural stone flooring and fittings – which also have textural qualities. Here, Leclerc has used patterned upholstery on his outdoor furniture to add depth, interest, and dimension.

Jennifer Ebert

Jennifer is the Digital Editor at Homes & Gardens. Having worked in the interiors industry for a number of years, spanning many publications, she now hones her digital prowess on the 'best interiors website' in the world. Multi-skilled, Jennifer has worked in PR and marketing, and the occasional dabble in the social media, commercial and e-commerce space. Over the years, she has written about every area of the home, from compiling design houses from some of the best interior designers in the world to sourcing celebrity homes, reviewing appliances and even the odd news story or two.