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Marika Taishoff (International University of Monaco)
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22 pages
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This is part of a case series. Although the 'Monte Carlo Société des Bains de Mer' Case A and Case B have been written as self-standing documents, it is when they are taught together that the full and integrated learning objectives become apparent. Depending on course learning objectives, instructors are thus encouraged to use both cases in order to encourage class discussion around such notions as building and growing luxury brands; luxury marketing; place branding; designing, delivering and supporting a luxury customer service experience; and the creation and strengthening of a luxury service ecosystem, which, to date, Monaco and, specifically, Monte-Carlo can be considered as the prime example. The focus of Case A is on how a small strip of land, within a tiny nation which had been on the brink of financial ruin, had been transformed, in the space of a few years in the 1860s, into the world’s most luxurious resort and powerful brand: Monte-Carlo. The elements involved in creating such a luxury brand are implicit in the case. In particular, the notions of heritage, rarity, exclusivity, elitism, dreams - as well as the importance of art and culture - are suggested. While these are now well-known attributes in the creation and strengthening of luxury brands, the fact that the SBM had incorporated these elements in its brand positioning in the 1860s - well before the current 'luxury industry era' - is testament both to the company’s, and the Principality’s foresight and creativity. The success of the strategies employed also demonstrate the credibility of the tenets of luxury brand positioning as we know them today. A corollary question is how Monte-Carlo managed to maintain this unrivalled status despite the successive series of externalities in the 20th century which affected its targeted customer base and required radical rethinking of the strategies necessary to maintain its position.

Teaching and learning

This item is suitable for postgraduate and executive education courses.


Luxury brand development; Luxury services; Luxury services marketing; Luxury brands’ experience; Luxury consumer segment; Luxury hotels and resorts; Luxury tourism; Ecosystem creation; Ecosystem services; Casino resorts


The events covered by this item took place in 19th-21st centuries.

Geographical setting

Monaco; France

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