Friday, March 30, 2012

Prince Charles & Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall Scandinavian tour - Norway, Sweden & Denmark

Norway


Day 1 (20 March)


Upon their arrival in Norway, the future monarch of the United Kingdom and his consort attend a youth event at the Nobel Peace Center {Photos} before laying a wreath during a wreath  laying ceremony at the National Monument at Akershus Fortress {Photos}

In the evening, Prince Charles of Wales, Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall, along with the entire Norwegian Royal Family attended an official dinner at the Norwegian Royal Palace {Photos}

Day 2 (21 March)


Prince Charles of Wales and Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall, accompanied by King Harald and Queen Sojna, visited Bergen, Norway. During their visit, they visited  sustainable fisheries, outdoor kindergartens, and took a closer look at Norway's culture and local history. Prince Charles, accompanied by King Harald, where they visited  the research vessel M/V Brennholm and  HMS Liverpool.

Meanwhile, their respective counterparts, Queen Sojna and Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall, visited   the Granebo/Radiostasjonen outdoor kindergarten located at the top of Fløyen mountain. 

In the evening, the two couples attended a concert and reception at Håkon’s Hall. Upon their arrival, they were greeted by the Norwiegen Honor Guard. Performances were given by the ensembles Currentes, Skrik, and the vocal and dance ensemble Fargespill.

After the reception, they were given a guided tour of Bryggen, the old Hanseatic wharf of Bergen, which is a UNESCO World Heritage Site where they were given a brief lesson on the history of the wharf and the surrounding landmarks. 

Later that day, Queen Sonja & Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall concluded their day in Bergen with a visit to Troldhaugen, the home of composer Edvard Grieg, which became a museum in 1928.
{Photos}{Video}.

Day 3 (22 March)


 Prince Charles of Wales started his final day in Norway attending meetings with local business representatives at the British Embassy in Norway, while his wife, Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall, accompanied by Queen Sojna, paid a visit to the cancer ward at Ullevål Hospital.

In the late afternoon, the couples of Norway and United Kingdom regrouped for a visit to an Art Museum in Olso, Norway to view the exhibition "The royal journey from 1905 to 2005.

The exhibition is part of the Government's gift to the King and Queen on the occasion of their 75th birthdays in 2012 (Queen Sojna on 4 July; King Harald on 21 February). A special focus was spent on the British and Norweigen ties-how Great Britain's Princess Maud would marry Norway's King  Haakon VII  in 1896. Princess Maud was Prince Charles's great-great grandaunt (I think) and Haakon VII was King Harld's grandfather.

Sweden


Day 1 (22 March)


The future King and Princess Consort of the United Kingdom arrived at the airport in Sweden, where they were received by Prince Carl Phillip in the early afternoon. In the company of Sweden's third in line, they toured the JAS Gripen, and were given information about the Swedish Air Force operations over Libya. After the presentation, they proceeded to the Royal Palace, where they were recieved by Queen Silvia in the guest apartment. In the later afternoon, they proceeded to Frost House where they were received by Prime Minister Fredrik Reinfeldt and Fryshusets founder Anders Carlberg {Source}{Video}{Photos}.

Day 2 (March 23)


In the morning, Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall and Queen Silvia of Sweden visited the British International Primary School in Stockholm, Sweden {Video}. While Prince Charles of Wales and King Carl Gustav were visiting the  Swedish Resilience Centre {Photos}.

They visited the Vasa Museum in the company of Queen Silvia and King Carl Gustav {Video}.

They attended a luncheon with the Royal Family of Sweden in their honor at the Royal Palace of Stockholm. The luncheon was attended by King Carl Gustav, Queen Silvia, Crown Princess Victoria, Prince Daniel, Prince Carl Phillip and Princess Madeleline {Photos}.

After the luncheon, they boarded their plane for the flight to Denmark, the last leg of their tour.



Denmark


Day 1 (24 March)


 The Prince of Wales & Duchess of Cornwall arrived at Copenhagen International Airport, where they were greeted by Crown Prince Fredrick and Crown Princess Mary {Photos}.

Day 2 (25 March)


 The Prince of Wales & Duchess of Cornwall attended a church service at St Alban’s Anglican Church and afterword, planted a tree at The Churchill Park to commerate their visit to Denmark {Photos}.


Day 3 (26 March)


The British Royals paid a visit to The Citadel with Crown Prince Fredrick and Crown Princess Mary. During their visit, the future Kings of Great Britian and Denmark laid a wreath at the National Memorial. Afterword, the two royal couples visited  the Eternal Flame and the Memorial Wal before attending a reception for Danish soldiers who have served in Afghanistan and their families {Photos}.
Later on, the future monarchs of the United Kingdom visted the town of Elsinore, Denmark, where they took a short guided walking tour of the town, that ended at St. Mary's Church. Afterwards The Prince of Wales and The Duchess of Cornwall will visit Kronborg Castle to view a Hamlet workshop facilitated by HamletScenen and the Royal Shakespeare Company{Video}.
Later in the afternoon, they returned to Copenhagen, where The Prince of Wales visits Rud Rasmussen’s furniture workshop, Nørrebro, Copenhagen.
That evening, along with the entire Danish Royal Family (Queen Margarethe, Prince Henrik, Crown Prince Fredrick, Crown Princess Mary, Prince Joachim, Princess Marie, Princess  Benedikte), they attended an official dinner at Christian VII's Palace {Photos}{Photos}{Video}.

Day 4 (27 March)


 The Prince of Wales & Duchess of Cornwall visited the VIA University College's Campus Horsens to "...to visit VIA University College, Campus Horsens in order to hear about research and development of Eco-friendly solutions which can contribute to a reduction of CO2 emissions" {Source}, before touring the "3D modeling laboratory" and meeting with students and faculty {Photos}{Photos}.

Crown Princess Mary of Denmark and Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall visited the set of the show, The Killing, where they visited with cast and crew, got the chance to play with some of the shows props, and generally had a great afternoon {Photos}{Photos}{Video}. After visiting The Killing, they moved on to Ballerup where they toured the Center for Clinical and Basic Research, where they were "....briefed on trials being conducted for the potential benefit of osteoporosis patients, and viewed the clinical trial facilities." 


While their wives were off having some fun, Prince Charles of Wales & Crown Prince Fredrick of Denmark visited Gyldenrisparken in Amager, Denmark where they toured the Gyldenrisparken housing estate to review a new regeneration project, visited a carbon-neutral kindergarten, and mingled with the elderly in a new activity center built especially for them. Afterward, the two future kings visited the Avedøre Power Station were they toured the station's biomass power generator as well as met with the employees "... involved in sustainable energy projects." {Photos}

Royal Profiles: Jordanian Birthdays

-Princess Sara & Princess Aisha celebrated their 15th birthdays on Tuesday. They are the twin daughters of Prince Fasial, who is presently 3rd in line for the throne. Princess Sara bint Al Faisal of Jordan and Princess Aisha bint Al Faisal of Jordan are the nieces of the present King of Jordan. Their father is King Abdullah II's brother. The girls were born 27 March 1997, the daughters, and third and fourth children of Prince Faisal bint Al 
Al Hussein and his wife at the time, Princess Alia Tabbaa. They have two older siblings- Princess Ayah bint Al Faisal and Prince Omar bin Al Faisal.
*************************************

-Princess Badiya celebrated her 38th birthday on Wednesday. She is a first cousin of Jordan's present King, and the daughter of Prince El-Hassan bin Talaal and his wife, Princess Sarvath El Hassan. She was educated at Amman Baccalaureate School, before moving to England to continue her education at Sherborne School for Girls, Oxford University (where she earned a BA in History) and London School of Economics (earning a
LL.M in International Law). The Princess is a member of and has collaborated with various international organizations. Her work focuses on promoting interfaith and cross-cultural understanding, human rights and the rights of asylum seekers and refugees.  She is presently the Chairman of Mosaic, a mentoring program founded by Prince Charles. She married Khaled Edward Blair in 2008.

**************************************

-Prince Hamzah celebrated his 32nd birthday on Thursday. He is presently 7th in line for the throne, after his cousin. He was educated in Jordan and England, attending The Harrow School and Royal Military Academy Sandhurst (RMAS). Upon graduation of Royal Military Academy Sandhurst (RMAS), he was a commissioned officer in the Jordan Arab Legion in December 1999, with a number of prizes including the Sandhurst Overseas Sword, granted to the best overseas cadet and the HRH Prince Saud Abdullah Prize, presented to the cadet with the best aggregate mark in academic subjects. Serving then as an officer in the Jordan Arab Army’s 40th Armored Brigade, Prince Hamzah attended a number of military courses and attachments in Jordan, the UK, Poland, Germany and the US. Currently holding the rank of Lieutenant Colonel in the Jordan Arab Army, he served with the Jordan-United Arab Emirates force operating in former Yugoslavia under the umbrella of international peacekeepers. In the year 2006, he graduated from Harvard University. Prince Hamzah has also served his country in a number of other capacities; he was sworn in as Regent on numerous occasions and deputized for His Majesty King Abdullah II on a number of missions in the Kingdom and abroad. Prince Hamzah heads the Royal Advisory Committee on the Energy Sector. He is also the Honorary President of the Jordan Basketball Federation. HRH, who received a number of high decorations from Jordan and other countries, including Bahrain, Italy and the Netherlands, is also the Chairman of the board of trustees of the Royal Automobile Museum,  the President of the Royal Aero sports Club of Jordan and the President of Al-Shajarah (Tree) Protection Society. Prince Hamzah is a qualified rotor & fixed wing aircraft pilot and enjoys other sports such as Jujitsu and target-shooting.
He married his 2nd cousin, Princess Noor bint Asem bin Nayef, at Al Baraka Palace in Amman on 29 August 2003. The official wedding was held on 27 May 2004. On 18 April 2007, the then Princess Noor Hamzah gave birth to the couple's only child, Princess Haya bint Hamzah, in Amman, Jordan. Prince Hamzah and Princess Noor divorced on 9 September 2009. On January 12, 2012 prince Hamzah married Princess Basma Bani Ahmad.

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Prince Albert and Princess Charlene: World Travelers Part 2

Prince Albert and Princess Charlene of Monaco are at it again: Traveling the world. This time it's to Lapland, where they will visit the upper regions of Norway and Lapland.

During the first leg of their tour, they attended the Sámi culture´s St Mary's Day in Hetta, which is an old Sámi tradition in Enontekiö, Finland {Source/Photos}.Before they witnessed a traditional reindeer race before having lunch and traveling on to the upper region of Norway where they spent Sunday night {Source}{Photos}.

They arrived in Norway late Sunday afternoon {Video}.

On Monday, they enjoyed a "romantic" reindeer sleigh ride before Prince Albert presented  “… a scholarship to young Russian and Mongolian reindeer herding students”.


Later in the day, they met with local officials of organizations such as  the University of the Arctic, the Finnish Sami Reinders’ Association, the NGO Finnish Sami Youth, the Youth Council of the Sami Parliamant of Finland, the Association of World Reindeer Herders and the Upper Secondary and National Reindeer Herding Scholl.

On Tuesday, before returning to Monaco, Prince Albert gave a speech at  the 2012 World Indigenous Television Broadcasting Conference in Norway during a seminar entitled, Arctic Change, Indigenous Youth and Future Opportunities {Video, 4th clip down}.

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Recap of The Royals You Love: March 19-25

Belgium


-Prince Philippe presented grants from the Lauréat du Fonds Prince Albert on Tuesday, to several Belgian professionals.

-Princess Mathilde celebrated the 55th anniversary of the Queen Astrid Clinic in Malmedy on Thursday {Photos}

Denmark


-Queen Margrethe II held audiences with various officials at Christiansborg Slot in Copenhagen on Monday {Source}.

-Crown Prince Fredrick  was in Pyeongchang, South Korea on Monday  where he participated in a 4-Day IOC conference {Source}. 

-Crown Princess Mary attended the opening of the Social Affairs and Integration Ministry conference, Europe de L'Enfance on Monday {Photos}.

-Prince Joachim & Prince Felix attended the inauguration of the exhibition, Vand: Et Hav af Oplevelser(Water: A Seas of Experiences) held at Experimentarium on Thursday {Source}.

-Prince Joachim attended the inauguration of the new exhibition, Under En Sort Sol (Under the Black Sun), held at the Rundetårn on Friday {Photos}
-Princess Benedikte attended  the International Women's Club of Copenhagen luncheon held at the Marriott Hotel on Thursday. On  Friday, she inaugurated the Pindstrup Centeret, a new activitiy building for youth  with disabilities and their families  in Denmark {Source}{Video}.

Great Britain


-Queen Elizabeth & Prince Phillip, The Duke of Edinburgh attended a meeting of both Houses of Parliement where Her Majesty addressed both Houses of Parliament to commerate her Diamond Jubilee on Tuesday {Photos}{Video}. On Friday, they visited Manchester as part of Queen Elizabeth's Diamond Jubilee tour where they toured {Photos}


-Prince Phillip, The Duke of Edinburgh & Prince Edward, The Earl of Wessex attended the Umpires' Dinner for the Lords Tavener's held at the Hilton Hotel in London on Monday {Source}.


-Prince Charles of Wales and Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall began their Scandinavian Diamond Jubilee tour this week, starting in Norway, continuing on to Sweden and finally to Denmark.

-Prince William, Duke of Cambridge returned to the United Kingdom after a six week tour of duty with his military obligations in the Falklands. He and Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge are said to be taking a few days to visit with his family and friends before Prince William returns to work in Wales {Source}.

-Prince William, Duke of Cambridge & Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge were spotted at a ski resort in Switzerland over the weekend {Source}


-Sophie, Countess of Wessex visited the Conquest Centre for Disabled Riders at Norton Fitzwarren on Wednesday, where she met the children, staff and horses {Source}.


-Anne, The Princess Royal, Peter Mark Andrew Phillips, Autumn Patricia Phillips, Savannah Phillips, Zara Anne Elizabeth Phillips, The Lady Davina Lewis, Gary Lewis, Senna Lewis spent the weekend at the Gatcombe Horse Trials on Saturday and Sunday {Photos}



-Catharine, Duchess of Cambridge visited her patronage, EACH, on Monday, where she gave her first public speech at the opening of EACH's The Treehouse Children's Hospice. While there, she toured the facility, and meet with its supporters {Soure}{Video}.

-Princess Eugenie celebrated her 22nd birthday on Friday.



Greece


-King Constantine II, Princess Tatiana & Crown Princess Marie-Chantal attended the Celia Kritharioti Spring/Summer 2012 fashion show in London on Tuesday {Photos}. It appears the rumors that Princess Tatiana was expecting her first child for the last few months were untrue. It is unknown to royal bloggers everywhere why she has been out of sight for the last several months (or perhaps she had the baby quietly, and got a quick get-rid-of-baby-belly-procedure done?)

Japan


-Emperor Akihito will undergo another procedure to remove fluid in his chest {Source}.

-Emperor Akihito & Empress Michiko held a farewell audience at Akasaka Palace with Sheikh Sabah al-Ahmad al-Sabah of Kuwait {Photo}
Luxembourg


- Grand Duchess María Teresa celebrated her birthday on Thursday.

Monaco


-Prince Albert attended the inauguration of the Centre de Secours de Fontvieille on Monday {Photo}. On Tuesday, he attended the conference entitled “Pioneer Spirit to invent the future” delivered by Mr Picard at the Theatre des Variétés {Photo}. On Wednesday, he met with Sebastiao Salgado {Photos}.  



-Prince Albert & Princess Charlene announced that they will visit the Sami community Guovdageaidnu later this month {Source}. On Tuesday, they visited a new daycare center in Monaco {Photos} {Photos}. The palace announced that they traveled to Lapland  from 25-27 March, where they "...will have the opportunity to see the progress and results of projects such as those that are introduced in the International Polar Year, and which are driven by the Arctic Council or the UNEP." {Source}.

-Prince Albert, Princess Charlene & Princess Caroline  attended an evening celebrating the 100 years of Martell on Thursday evening {Photo}{Photo}{Photos}{Photos}.

-Prince Albert & Camille Marie Kelly Gottlieb visited the Ever Exhibition promoting the use of electric vehicles and green transportation on Thursday {Photo}{Photos}{Photos}.


-Prince Albert, Princess Charlene, Princess Caroline, Charlotte Marie Pomeline Casiraghi & Melanie-Antoinette de Massy attended the annual Bal de Rose in Monaco on Saturday, in which the theme was 1960s Swingin' London/British Rose, with the performances by Pete Doherty, Mark Ronson, The Hype, Imelda May and Miles Kane. Casiraghi cousin Afra Casiraghi also attended. {Source}{Video}{Photos}{Photos}{Photos}.


-Princess Charlene attended a conference regarding Heart and Vascular Diseases held at the Hotel Fairmont in Monaco on Wednesday {Source}. On Thursday, she announced that she has volunteered to organize the ‘Ladies lunch’ at the Prince’s Palace this year, of which the funds raised will go to disadvantaged children {Source}.


(TRF Readers: I've been noticing numerous mistakes when lurking in the Monaco forums this week. 
  1. Claims Camille wants to be a photographer are false. Read the Gala interview again, where she says she wants to attend an ACTING school in Paris and take over the Princess Grace Theatre from Princess Stephanie someday. It's likely a class project (note the other kids her age there doing the same thing!) or just a hobby. The camera she has is not a professional camera-a friend of mine who is a hobby photographer-has a very similar one. 
  2. Claims Charlotte attended her first Rose Ball at 19 years old: False. She was 18, as her 19th birthday was in August 2006. Pierre was 18, Andrea was 21 at the 2006 Rose Ball as their birthdays all occurred AFTER the ball in June, August and September 2006 since the ball was in March.)
The Netherlands


-Queen Beatrix  arrived in Luxembourg to begin her three-day state visit to the country on Monday. See here for a full report.

-Princess Maxima attended the 55th anniversary of National Tree Day in Cuijk and Boxmeer on Wednesday {Video}{Photos}

Spain

-King Juan Carlos I & Queen Sofia attended a celebration to commemorate the 200th anniversary of the promulgation of the Constitution Cádiz of 1812 on Monday {Video}. On Wednesday, they attended the inauguration of the University Hospital King Juan Carlos in Móstoles {Photo}.

-King Juan Carlos I held an audience with the President of Fomento del Trabajo Nacional, Mr. Joaquim Gay Montellà i Ferrer-Vidal on Thursday {Source}.

-Queen Sofia presided over the National Design and Innovation Awards in Bilbao {Source}.  

-Prince Felipe of Asturias held audiences at Zarzuela Palace in Madrid this afternoon with various representatives from the Business Federation of Graphic Industries, the INESCOP, CME and others on Friday {Source}.

Bal de Rose: A retrospective

2002:



Attendees: Princess Caroline of Hanover, Prince Ernest-August of Hanover,  Prince Rainier of Monaco, Princess Stephanie of Monaco, Princess Antoinette of Monaco, Elisabeth-Anne de Massy, Prince Albert of Monaco {Photo}{Photo}
Theme: Pop
Performers: Marianne Faithful and Ringo Starr
{Source}


Arrivals:

Two waves: Prince Rainier with his girls, and Princess Antoinette with her daughter? Really? You can't all come at once?
Where are you Albert?

Outfits:

Princess Caroline, I think your little sister beats you here. Princess Antoinette and Elisabeth too.

2012:

Attendees from the Princely Family: Prince Albert, Princess Charlene, Princess Caroline, Charlotte Marie Pomeline Casiraghi & Melanie-Antoinette de Massy
Random attendees: Afra Casiraghi, The Duke and Duchess of Castro, Victoria Silvstedt, Dmitry Rybolovlev, Jean-Christophe, Juliette & Valentine Maillot
Theme: 1960s British Rose/1960s Swingin' London {Source}{Source}
Performers: Pete Doherty, Mark Ronson, The Hype, Imelda May and Miles Kane{Source}

My thoughts:

Arrivals:


Princess Caroline with Princess Charlene? Prince Albert with Charlotte? Huh? Were Prince Albert & Charlotte running late and Princesses Caroline & Charlene got tired of waiting so they just decided to go? Where are the boys? And the usual friends of the Casiraghis? Where was Melanie in the official arrivals?

Outfits:

Princess Caroline: Totally digging it. 100% spot on! {Photo}
Princess Charlene: WHAT WERE YOU THINKING?!?! It looks like she mixed up her events...and ditch the bangs permanently. You're not a toddler. {Photo}
Melanie: Black? Again? Really?? {Photo}
Charlotte Casiraghi: Playing in Mama's closet are we, Charlotte? Aren't we a little old for that? My first thought was that it was going to be something like in the movie, What a Girl Wants, with the Dress Amanda Bynes is given by her future stepsister with the brown thing over it and the really nice thing underneath and Amanda doctors it, cutting the brown thing to like a cape over the dress....but no. {Photo}

Friday, March 23, 2012

Royal Profile: HRH Princess Eugenie of York

Princess Eugenie Victoria Helena of York was born 23 March 1990 the younger child of Prince Andrew, Duke of York and Sarah, Duchess of York. At present, she is the sixth in line for the throne of the United Kingdom & its commonwealth realms, and is only the second female.

She was baptized at the church of St. Mary Magdalene, Sandringham, by the Bishop of Norwich, on 23 December 1990, she was the first royal baby to have a public christening, and her godparents were James Ogilvy (her father's third cousin), Captain Alastair Ross (who was unable to attend), Mrs Ronald Ferguson (her maternal grandfather's 2nd wife), Mrs Patrick Dodd-Noble, and Miss Louise Blacker.She was named after Victoria Eugenie of Battenberg, the daughter of Princess Beatrice, the youngest daughter of Queen Victoria, and Princess Helena, Victoria's third daughter.

She began her education at Winkfield Montessori School in 1992, of which she only attended for a year. After Winkfield, she joined her sister at Upton House School, which she attended for two years, from 1993-1995. After The Upton House School, she attended Coworth Park School until 2001. She attended St. George's School, Windsor Castle from 2001-2003. She boarded at Marlborough College from 2003-2008, where she earned A-Levels in Art (Grade: A), English Literature (Grade: A), and History of Art (Grade: B). She undertook a gap year, before beginning a degree in  Art History, English Literature and Politics at Newcastle University in 2009. She should be graduating in the spring.

Her parents divorced when she was six years old. However, because her parents chose to have joint custody and were amicable with another, it was often like her parents weren't divorced at all. In an April 2008 interview with Tatler, Princess Eugenie described her parents as "the best divorced couple I know".

She's had her medical issues. At the age of 12, she underwent back surgery to correct her scoliosis. When she was seventeen, she underwent orthodontic treatment, which were  removed two years later.

Since her education has taken preference over royal service, Princess Eugenie has undertaken limited royal engagements, often appearing only when the entire family would make appearances. She, along side older sister Princess Beatrice, represented their father at the service of thanksgiving for their late aunt, Diana, Princess of Wales in 2007. Her first official royal engagement was opening the Teenage Cancer Trust's unit for young cancer patients in Leeds in October 2008. On 2 June 2011 Princess Eugenie, with her father, visited the Royal National Orthopaedic Hospital.

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Queen Beatrix of The Netherlands embarked on a three-day state visit to Luxembourg on Tuesday.

Queen Beatrix of The Netherlands embarked on a three-day state visit to Luxembourg on Tuesday.


Day 1 (March 20)



Upon her arrival, she was greeted by the Grand Duke & Grand Duchess of Luxembourg in a welcoming ceremony where both countries national anthem's were played. After the welcoming ceremony, the Queen met with local dignataries. Afterward, she, along with the Grand Ducal couple, along with their heir apparent, Hereditary Grand Duke Guillaume, attended a private luncheon in the Grand Ducal Palace. After the luncheon, Queen Beatrix participated in a wreath laying ceremony held at the Monument National de la Solidarité Luxembourgeoise. Later that same day, she returned to the Grand Ducal Palace to meet with dignitaries before participating in a round table entitled "Strengthening Business Climate in Europe", in the presence of both Dutch and Luxembourg officials along with Hereditary Grand Duke Guillaume. In the evening, she attended a state dinner at the Grand Ducal Palace in Luxembourg hosted by the Grand Ducal couple and attended by Hereditary Grand Duke Guillaume.{Photos} {Video}

Day 2 (March 21)




Queen Beatrix visited the satellite control center of satellite operator SES Astra in Luxembourg. While there, she attended a presentation by officials. She, along with local officials and Grand Duke Henri, rode a train together. She, along with the Grand Duke & Grand Duchess of Luxembourg, also attended a ceremony at Chateau de Bourglinster {Photos} {Video} {Video}.

Day 3 (March 22)


Queen Beatix, accompanied by Grand Duke Henri, reviewed the Luxembourg's Guard of Honor during a farewell ceremony for Her Majesty. She also visited Luxembourg University {Photos}.

Royal Profile: HRH Grand Duchess Maria Teresa of Luxembourg

María Teresa Mestre y Batista-Falla (aka HRH Grand Duchess María Teresa of Luxembourg) was born 22 March 1956, the daughter of José Antonio Mestre y Alvarez and María Teresa Batista y Falla de Mestre in Mariano, Havanna, Cuba.

During Cuba's revolution in the late 1950s, Maria and her parents left Cuba for the United States. While growing up in New York, NY, she studied at the Marymount School and took ballet, voice, skiing, water sports and ice-skating. When she was 5 years old she began to study at the Lycée Français de New York. When she was 9 years old, she and her family moved to Santander, Spain before taking a permanet residence in Geneva Switzerland. During the family's stay in Switzerland, she attended Institut Marie-José in Gstaad, Switzerland, where she successfully passed the French Baccalaureate in June 1975. She then attended University of Geneva, where in 1980 awarded him the degree in Political Science. While at University, she was part of a group taking care of visiting elderly in nursing homes. She has also taught catechism in a classroom of children in Geneva. His social commitment becomes a passion, continues and is growing again, after installation in the Grand Duchy.

During her youth, she kept with her family's tradition of being interested in social and humanitarian problems and having civic involvement. On 10 June 1997, Great Crown Princess becomes Goodwill Ambassador of UNESCO for the fight against poverty, to promote microcredit and education of girls. In the field of microfinance and more recently through the concept of Social Business, she worked for many years closely with Professor Muhammad Yunus, Nobel Peace prize in 2006, and in collaboration with key players in Luxembourg. In April 2007, the Grand Duchess is named "Eminent Advocate for Children", UNICEF, focusing its first Action for AIDS orphans and child soldiers.

Many sponsorships and commitments in socio-cultural and charitable organizations such as Luxembourg the Luxembourg Red Cross with the Grand Duchess took the Chair and the Cancer Foundation of which she assumes the Presidency of honor.

The highest awards that the Grand Duchess has received for his humanitarian efforts are witnesses of this extraordinary commitment: in October 1999, His Royal Highness the Grand Duchess was heiress named Honorary Doctorate from Seton Hall University (New Jersey, United States). In February 2003, the Grand Duchess receives the title of Doctor Honoris Causa from the University of Leon (Nicaragua) and June 13, 2006, representing the Holy See to the United Nations awarded him the "Path to Peace Award" a prize awarded annually to a person distinguished by his humanitarian and social. On Thursday, March 7, 2008, at the Palais lecture of the Order of Malta in Rome, the Grand Duchess is presented with the insignia of Dame Grand Cross of Honour and Devotion.

While at UoG, she met her future husbamd, the Hereditary Grand Duke Henri. On Valentine's Day 1981, they were married. Shortly after their wedding, Prince Guillaume was born on 11 November 1981. He was followed by Prince Felix on 3 June 1984, Prince Louis on 3 August 1986, Princess Alexandra on 16 February 1991, and Prince Sébastien on 16 April 1992.

After 19 years and 9 months as the Hereditary Grand Duchess, she became the Grand Duchess of Luxembourg on 7 October 2000, after the abdication of Grand Duke Jean of Luxembourg.

Monday, March 19, 2012

Op-Ed: Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge's first major speech

I am compelled to write this op-ed after watching Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge’s speech this morning.

I stayed up to watch Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge’s speech at her patronage EACH.
Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge gave her speech at 11:30AM GMT, which means it was 7:30AM my time.
Of course, being a royal blogger, I knew this was going to be the big news of the day, so I stuck around my laptop to watch and then to see what articles popped up about it right away.

Here’s my opinion of how she did:

She seemed poised, but extremely nervous, and over rehearsed. WAY over rehearsed, almost too rehearsed and it seemed very unnatural for her to give the speech. She would have been better off not rehearsing as much as she reportedly did.

She apparently is unaware of her habit of touching her hair when  she’s nervous, otherwise she would’ve wore her hair up and/or back so she wouldn’t do that annoying hair flip thing. It was distracting to her speech as a whole. Having the same bad habit when I get nervous, only I’m aware of it and take steps to prevent me from doing it by wearing my hair back, I think she should have been aware of it and at least attempted to prevent it or have been more conscious of it.

Her voice was EXTEMELY soft. If it were not for the microphone, you would not be able to hear her at all.
Her speech was a very Sarah Palin-like speech-very much someone else’s views rather than her own. “If William were here…William would love this place.” Who cares what William would think? It’s YOUR patronage, not his! When Princess Charlene did her first major speech at the Grace Kelly: Style Icon opening in Bendigo, Australia, the only reason why Prince Albert was mentioned in her speech was because she was appearing on his behalf at the opening. Meanwhile, with Catherine’s speech it was for her personal patronage, and not on William’s behalf so William should never have been mentioned. I felt like mentioning him she was trying to take away her purpose and it took away from her visit as a whole.

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Recap of The Royals You Love: March 12-18

Belgium


-Prince Philippe & Princess Mathilde continued their economic mission to Vietnam this week. They participated in a wreath laying ceremony at the "...mausoleum of the late Vietnamese revolutionary leader Ho Chi Minh...". On Tuesday, the Prince met with President Truong Tan Sang, while his wife visit a health center before they attended an evening gala dinner {Photos}.

-Prince Laurent opened the Festival of Arts and Culture Calamartes organized by the University of Antwerp on Monday {Source}


Denmark


-Queen Margrethe II was at the Livgardens Barracks at the Gothersgade in Copenhagen to attend the Queen's Parade of the Royal Life Guards on Wednesday {Photos}.


-Crown Prince Frederik attended a reception in Hellerup to commemorate the victims of the earthquake and tsunami in Japan that struck on March 11, 2011 on Tuesday {video}. On Monday, he attended the 2012 Tun Byg Building/Construction Trade Fair held at the Fredericia Exhibition Center {Photos}.

-Crown Princess Mary attended the opening of the project,The World's Refugees 2012, held at the Frederiksberg Rådhus (Town Hall) on Tuesday{Photos}. She participates in the Combating Antimicrobial Resistance: Time for Joint Action conference held at the Bella Center in Copenhagen on Wednesday. On Wendnesday, she visited Holbæk Hospital, as patron of the Heart Foundation {Photos}. On Friday, she attended a conference put on by the Danish International Development Agency (DANIDA) before attending  a gala dinner in honor of the 50th anniversary of the organization in Copenhagen {Photos}{Photos}.

-Prince Joachim's unnamed daughter will be baptized on May 20 {Source}. For her, my godparent predictions are as follows:
  1. Sophie, Countess of Wessex
  2. Crown Princess Victoria of Sweden
  3. Princess Charlene of Monaco (doubtful, but wishful thinking!)
  4. Princess Märtha Louise of Norway
  5. Princess Laurentien of the Netherlands 
  6. Edouard Cavallier 
(name prediction: HH Princess Margarethe Françoise Ingrid Victoria of Denmark, Countess of Monpezat)


Great Britain


-Queen Elizabeth II, Prince Phillip, The Duke of Edinburgh, Charles, The Prince of Wales, Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall & Sophie, Countess of Wessex celebrated Commonwealth Day 2012 by attending an observance service held at Westminster Abbey on Tuesday {Photos}.

-Queen Elizabeth II & Prince Phillip, The Duke of Edinburgh attended the re-opening ceremony of Kensington Palace on Wednesday {Photos}

-Charles, The Prince of Wales, Camilla, Duchess of Corwall, & Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge visited the Dulwich Picture Gallery, where the Prince introduced the Duchess of Cambridge of the work of The Prince's Foundation for Children and The Arts on Thursday {Photos}.

-Charles, The Prince of Wales opened the 2012 Ideal Home Show in Earl's Court, London on Friday, where he showcased his own design, "The Prince's House", which highlights the:...benefits of sustainable, eco-friendly living, this year’s Arts and Crafts House combines wonderful craftsmanship with the use of the finest local materials. The house, which takes its name after the 19th century Arts and Crafts Movement, was designed by a team which included HRH The Prince of Wales, and incorporates energy saving features directly into its design. {Source} {Photos}.

-Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall, Anne, The Princess Royal and Zara Anne Elizabeth Phillips Tindall and Mike Tindall attended the Cheltenham Festival's Ladies Day on Wednesday{Photos}.

-Pince Harry attended the England vs. Ireland rugby match at Twickenham Stadium on Saturday {Photos}

-Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge visited the Great Britain field hockey team for the Olympics at the Olympic Park on Thursday {Photos}. On Saturday, she presented shamrocks to members of the 1st Battalion Irish Guards at the St Patrick's Day Parade at Mons Barracks{Photos}{Video}.

-Prince Andrew, Duke of York spent the day in the Gloucester area of England on Thursday where he visited the Llanthony Warehouse, Emma Willis, 2, Southgate Street, Gloucester GL1 2DH, GE Aviation and Moog Technology  {Source}.

-Sophie, Countess of Wessex spent the day with her patronage, The Lions Club International, where she visited with the group's president at Bagshot Park before attending an evening reception for the organization at the House of Lords on Tuesday. Also on Tuesday, she, as trustee of Action for Hearing Loss, attended their meeting {Source}.


-Zara Anne Elizabeth Phillips Tindall attended the Cheltenham Festival this week{Photos}{Photos}{Photos}. The Festival ran from March 13-16.


Luxembourg

-Prince Gabriel celebrated his 6th birthday on Monday.

Liechtenstein



-Hereditary Prince Alois  celebrated the 75th anniversary of the Liechtenstein Gymnasium in Vaduz on Wednesday {Source}.


-Prince Constantin celebrated his 40th birthday on Thursday.

Monaco


-Prince Albert attended the 6th World Water Forum in Marseille, France on Monday {Photos} He celebrated his 54th birthday on Wednesday. On Saturday, he attended an Irish Harp concert, organized by the Princess Grace Irish Library, held at the Chapelle de la Visitation {Photos}.

-Prince Albert & Princess Caroline  attended the 75th bazaar in aid of the work of Sister Marie at Chapiteau de Fontvieille on Friday {Photos}

-Princess Charlene traveled from Australia to China on Sunday. On Monday, she was spotted visiting the Shanghai Pudong Special Education School in Shanghai, China {Photos}. She was in China as part of her role as  Global Ambassador to the Special Olympics.

The Netherlands


-Queen Beatrix attended the première of the play, Ongezien, in Wolfheze, on the “… occasion of the 100th anniversary of Het Schild, a center for the blind and visually impaired elderly.” on Saturday {Source}

-Queen Beatrix, Prince Willem-Alexander & Princess Maxima participate in NL Doet, National Volunteer Day on Friday {Photos}


-Prince Williem-Alexander attended the 6th World Water Forum in Marseille, France on Monday {Source}. On Wednesday, he boarded the new Dutch Royal Naval ship in Amsterdam, HMS Holland, to travel to Greenwich, England {Photos} {Video}. On Friday, he opened the 15th Annual National Career Fair held at the RAI in Amsterdam where he also mingled with attendees {Photos}.

Norway


-King Harald V attended a memorial service held at Evenes (Glasgow) Airbase to remember five servicemen who recently died in a plane crash at Kebnekaise in northern Sweden on Sunday {Source}.

-Princess Maxima  was at the Salle Pleyel in Paris, France on Saturday to attend a concert performed by the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra under the direction of Valery Gergiev as well as a post-performance reception {Photos}.
Spain


-King Juan Carlos held an audience at Zarzuela Palace with the founders of the transport company, SUER, on the occasion of their 70th anniversary on Wednesday {Source}.

-King Juan Carlos& Queen Sofia attended  the 'La Caixa' Scholarship Gala on Wednesday {Photos}{Video}


-Queen Sofia attended a gala tribute in honor of legendary Cuban prima ballerina, Ms. Alicia Alonso on Wednesday {Photos}.

-Prince Felipe of Asturias held an audience at Zarzuela Palace with professors and graduate students enrolled in the MBA program at Columbia University on Wednesday {Source}.

-Princess Letizia of Asturias participated in the CNSE Foundation Awards in Madrid, Spain on Wednesday {Photos}.

-Iñaki Urdangarín, The Duke of Palma de Majorca's courruption trial continued this week {video}.

Sweden


-King Carl XVI Gustaf  opened the Royal Palace Sprint on Wednesday {Video}.

-King Carl XVI Gustaf, Queen Silvia, Princess Madeleine & Prince Daniel attended a gala dinner held inside the Charles XI's gallery at the royal palace in Stockholm on Thursday {Photos}.

-Queen Silvia opened the Malteaser Dementia Meeting Place. This new complex was developed in collaboration with the World Childhood Foundation in Bottrop, Germany on Friday {Photos}.

-Crown Princess Victoria is said to be enjoying motherhood, according to The Swedish daily paper Aftonbladet {Source}.

-Princess Estelle will be christened May 16 and is expected to follow Swedish Traditions {Source}{Source}. With that said, I change my predictions of godparents (again):

  1. Crown Princess Mary of Denmark ("Mary" has to come from somewhere + CP V is also her son Christian's godmother)
  2. Anna Westling
  3. Princess Maxima of The Netherlands (again, her oldest is CP Victoria's godchild...so why not?)
  4. Crown Princess Marie-Chantal of Greece (her oldest is CP Victoria's godchild...so why not?) 
  5. Crown Prince Haakon of Norway (his oldest is CP Victoria's godchild...so why not?+ his father is CP Victoria's godfather. He will be the future king of Norway...so yeah)
  6. Crown Prince Philippe of Belgium (his youngest is CP Victoria's godchild...so why not?)

So instead of the traditional 4, there will be 4 godmothers and two godfathers if my list is accurate {Source}.


-Princess Madeleine visited one of her patronages, My Big Day (the Swedish equal to the Make-A-Wish Foundation) , where she toured offices, and met with staff on Monday{Source}.

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Princess Charlene Travels the Globe!

Princess Charlene of Monaco, the wife of Prince Albert, has been spotted playing "Where in the World is Princess Charlene?" with her fans this week.

On Friday, March 9th, she was spotted visiting with old friends at the Melborne Sports & Aquatic Centre. She was also spotted attending a private gala dinner hosted by  Lady Mayoress Emma Page Campbell at the Melbourne Town Hall in honor of her visit to Australia.

On Saturday, along with Prince Albert's cousin John Kelly III, she opened the Grace Kelly: Style Icon exhibit at the Bendigo Art Gallery {Source} {Photos}{Photos}{Photos} {Photos} {Video}{Video} {Video}. 

Either late Saturday night or early on Sunday, she boarded her plane for a flight to Shanghai, China. 

On Monday, she appeared at the  Shanghai Pudong Special Education School, as part of her role as Global Ambassador to the Special Olympics {Photos}

Royal Profile: HSH Prince Constantin of Liechtenstein

Prince Constantin  of Liechtenstein  was born 15 March 1972, the third son of Prince Hans-Adam II of Liechtenstein and Princess Marie of Liechtenstein. He has two older brothers, Prince Alois and Prince Maxmilian, and one younger sister, Princess Tatjana.

He married Countess Marie Gabriele Franziska Kálnoky de Kőröspatak in 1999. They have three children:
  • Prince Moritz Emanuel Maria, who was born in New York on 27 May 2003. 
  • Princess Georgina Maximiliana Tatiana Maria, who was born in Vienna, Austria on 23 July 2005.  
  • Prince Benedikt Ferdinand Hubertus Maria, who was born in Vienna, Austria on 18 May 2008 
Prince Constantin is presently 7th in line for the throne of Liechtenstein, after his two older brothers and four nephews. Females are excluded from succeding the throne in Liechtenstein.

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Diamond Jubilee 2012: Prince Harry visits Belize, the Bahamas, Jamaica and Brazil as a representative of Queen Elizabeth II

Day 1 (March 2)


Prince Harry arrived at Philip Goldson International Airport where he was greeted by   Diane Locke from the Belize Foreign Ministry and Belize Governor General Colville Young. {Photos} During his meeting with the Governer General, he celebrated the unveiling of the freshly minted "Queen Elizabeth II Boulevard" {Source}{Photos}

Day 2 (March 3)


He met with children and their families at an arts center on the Belizean-Guatemalan western border, as well as visit the Belizean Defense Force. In the late afternoon, Prince Harry hoped on his royal jet to head to the Bahammas where he was greeted and met with  the Guard of Honour of the Royal Bahamian Police Force and Band {Source}{Photos}.

Day 4 (March 4)


Prince Harry visited the Bahamanian Island of Harbour Island, where he attended a service at Christ Church Cathedral, accepted a painting on his grandmother's behalf from The Prime Minister of the Bahamas during a visit to the Government House, and visited with students of the island schools {Photos}. Before departing, he had dinner with one of his late mother's bridesmaids, who resides on the island and is a distant cousin of his, India Hicks {Source} .

Day 5 (March 5)


 Upon his arrival in Jamacia, Prince Harry was greeted by and inspected the Members of the Jamaican Defence Force. He began his tour with a visit to The University of West Indies, before touring two area hospitals. After his tours, he visited with the Prime Minister {Source}.

Day 6 (March 6)


During his visit to The University of West Indies, he ran a race with Usain Bolt {Photo}. He also unveiled the ‘Ring of Life’ at the Victoria Jubilee Hospital (VJH) in downtown Kingston on the first full day on activities of his four-day official visit to Jamaica {Source}.

Day 7 (March 7)


He participated in a military exercise at the Jamaica Defence Force (JDF) headquarters and oversee the dedication of the JDF’s Rappelling Tower {Source} {Photos}.

Day  8 (March 8)

He ended his Jamacia tour in the afternoon by boarding his jet at  Sangster International Airport, where he headed to Brazil.

Day 9 (March 9)


Not sure....perhaps a travel day?
Day 10 (March 10)


Prince Harry arrived in Brazil. He arrived to promote the 2016 Olympic Games and promote tourism in the UK. He took part in a beach volleyball game, charity fun run (where he wore an unusual item of kit-a face mask of his brother, the Duke of Cambridge) and visited various British exhibits {Source}.

Royal Profile: HSH Prince Albert of Monaco

Albert Alexandre Louis Pierre Grimaldi (aka HSH Prince Albert II of Monaco) was born 14 March 1958, the only son and middle child of HSH Prince Rainier and Princess Grace of Monaco. He was surrounded by two sisters-one older and one younger. As a child, he and older sister Princess Caroline did not get along-one time she even destroyed a picture book because he simply touched it and she would often bite him when mom and dad weren’t looking! He has a wonderful relationship with his sister, Princess Stephanie of Monaco, Countess of Polinac, the two are said to be extremely close. He is the godfather of his nephews and one of his nieces, Pierre Rainier Stefano Casiraghi (the son of older sister Princess Caroline)and Pauline Grace Maguy and Louis Robert Paul Ducruet (the children of Princess Stephanie) and his first cousin once removed, Baron Jean-Leonard Taubert-Natta de Massy who is the son of his cousin Baroness Elisabeth-Anne de Massy.

Like his sisters, Prince Albert attended local Monaco primary schools, only he was the only one to graduate with the French baccalauréat  from Lycée Albert 1er in 1976. After graduating from Lycée Albert 1er, Prince Albert spent a year gaining familiarity with the running of the principality, then went to university in the United States. He attended UMASS Amherst, earning a bachelor’s degree in political science, with minors economics, psychology, English literature, the history of art, anthropology, geology, philosophy, sociology, German and music in 1981. After graduation, he entered the French Navy, where he served on the French Navy's helicopter-carrier "Jeanne d'Arc", with the rank of Ship-of-the-Line Ensign (2nd class). Presently, he is currently a reserve Lieutenant Commander in the French navy. From 1983 until 1985, Prince Albert worked in various international organizations in the fields of communication, financial management and marketing ("Morgan Guaranty Trust", in New York, "Moët-Hennesy", in Paris, "Rogers & Wells" law firm,"Wells Rich and Greene" in New York.

Since 28th May 1993, the Prince has led the Monegasque delegation to the General Assembly of the United Nations. Since the opening of the 48th Session in September 1993 in New York, Prince Albert has regularly taken the floor on behalf of the Principality of Monaco. On 5th October 2004, H.S.H. the Prince presided over the delegation of Monaco in Strasbourg for the official ceremony of accession of the Principality to the Council of Europe as the 46th member state of that organisation. In April 2006, H.S.H. Prince Albert II visited the North Pole by dog sled from the Russian base of Barneo 120 kilometres away. This journey was the opportunity for him to pay tribute to his great-great grandfather, Prince Albert I of Monaco, a pioneer of modern oceanography, who, in 1906, set out to Spitzberg, in the archipelago of Svalbard, the most successful of his four Arctic exploration campaigns.The trip also helped to raise the world's awareness of the planetary challenges which, in the short term, represent risks related to climate change and the dangers of industrial pollution. In June 2006, H.S.H. the Prince set up the Prince Albert II of Monaco Foundation dedicated to protecting the environment. It encourages sustainable and fair management of natural resources and places man at the centre of its projects. It supports the implementation of innovative and ethical solutions in three broad areas: climate change, water and biodiversity. In January 2009, Prince Albert II of Monaco undertook a three week scientific journey in the Antarctic. He visited a large number of scientific stations and rejoined the South Pole in the company of the explorer Mike Horn. They made a film of this journey "Antarctique 2009, Terre en Alerte" [Antarctic 2009, Earth on Alert] which was presented to the Principality's inhabitants in April 2009.

Prince Albert is a committed and avid sportsman. He participated in the Winter Olympics from 1988-2002, with the Monaco Bobsled Team. Since 1985, Prince Albert has been a member of the International Olympic Comittee. He is President of the Monegasque Olympic Committee. He is Honorary President of the International Union of Modern Pentathlon and the International Athletics Foundation.He is also a member of the Honorary Board of the International Paralympic Committee.

Like many other royals, Prince Albert has had his share of scandals. Robert Eringer, Albert II’s intelligence adviser from 2002 to 2008, alleges the prince, as president of Monaco's Olympic Committee, accepted expensive gifts from Vladimir Putin, the Russian Prime Minister, and Sergei Pugachev, a Russian banker, in return for voting for Russia to host the 2014 Winter Olympics. He would have received a dacha, a Polar trip, a fishing trip and a state dinner. In 1986, he was accused of fathering a son with Bea Fiedler, an accusation that was proven false after a blood test was performed. He has confessed to fathering two children with two different women, neither of whom he married. His two known children are 20 year old Jazmin Grace Grimaldi with former waitress turned real estate agent tuned model Tamara Jean Rotolo of Palm Desert, California, USA and 8 year old Alexandre Eric Stephane Coste with Togolese-French former Air France flight attendant Nicole Coste. Just prior to his July 2011 wedding to long-time girlfriend Charlene Lynette Wittstock, there was a rumor that he had fathered another illegitimate child from another woman while dating Wittstock. The Palace Princier extensively denied that rumor and there has been no news of the incident since his marriage to Wittstock. 

Over the years, Prince Albert has accumulated numerous awards, from honorary doctorate degrees, to various other honours. Prince Albert holds honorary doctorates from Pontifical University of Maynooth in Ireland (in Philiosphy, 1996), Honorary Professor of International Studies at Tarrant County College, Forth Worth, Texas, United States (2000), The Docteur Honoris Causa Insignia of Nice-Sophia-Antipolis University (2009) and The Docteur Honoris Causa Insignia at The Portalis Law and Political Science Institute of Aix en Provence in 2011. He also is an honorary member of the Geographical Society of Russia (2009), and the Ligurian Academy of Science and Letters and of the Italian Geographical society (2010). He has received numerous international awards including:Grand Officier of the Order of the Lion (Senegal, 1977), Knight Grand Cross of the Order of the Holy Sepulchre (1983, Holy See), Medal of the International Merit of Blood (International Federation of Blood Donor Organizations, 1994), Rise in the College of Darjah Kerabat Diraja Pahang (Pahang, 1997), Grand Cross of the Ordre National du Mérite ( 1997, France), Grand Prix Humanitaire de France (France, 2007), Grand Cross of Honour and Devotion of the Sovereign Military Order of Malta (Sovereign Military Hospitaller Order of Saint John of Jerusalem of Rhodes and of Malta, 1997), Grand Cross of the Order of the Niger (Nigeria, 1998), Grand Collar of the Order of the Liberator of the Slaves José Simeón Cañas (2002, El Salvador), Grand Cross of the Order of Vasco Núñez de Balboa (2002, Panama), Grand Cross of the Order of the Sun (2003, Peru), Knight Grand Cross with Grand Cordon of the Order of Merit of the Italian Republic (Italy, 2005), Grand Cross of the Legion of Honour (2006, France), Grand Cross of the National Order of Juan Mora Fernández (2009, Costa Rica), Knight Grand Cross of the Grand Order of King Tomislav (2009, Croatia), Commander of the Ordre des Palmes Académiques (France, 2009), Collar of the Order pro merito Melitensi (Order of Saint John of Jerusalem of Rhodes and of Malta, 2009) Knight Grand Cross of the Order of Prince Danilo I (Montenegro), and Bailiff Grand Cross of Honour and Devotion of the Sovereign Military Order of Malta (Sovereign Military Hospitaller Order of Saint John of Jerusalem of Rhodes and of Malta, 2011). He has also been awarded numerous times domestically, in Monaco, by his father. He has received Grand Master and Grand Cross of the Order of Grimaldi (Grand Cross, 18 April 1958; Grand Master since 6 April 2005), Grand Master and Grand Cross of the Order of St. Charles (Grand Cross, 13 March 1979; Grand Master since 6 April 2005), Grand Master of the Order of the Crown (since 6 April 2005) and Grand Master of the Order of Cultural Merit (since 6 April 2005). He serves on many committees, as an honoray member and honorary president including: Monaco's delegation to the United Nations (President), President, Monaco Red Cross (President), Monaco's Olympic Committee (President), Association Mondiale des Amis de l'Enfance (Honorary President), The Automobile Club de Monaco (Honorary President), Jumping International de Monte Carlo (Honorary President), Monte-Carlo Rolex Masters (Patron), and Peace and Sport Organization (Patron). As Monaco's head of state, Prince Albert is depicted on coins, including collectors' coins, with very rare exceptions. One of the most recent examples is the €5 silver Prince Albert II commemorative coin, the first commemorative coin with his effigy on it, minted in 2008. On the obverse, the prince is depicted in profile with his name on the top of the coin. On the reverse, the Grimaldi coat of arms appears; around it, the words "Principauté de Monaco" (Principality of Monaco) also appear along with the nominal monetary value of the coin.

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Op-Ed: Minor BRF Participation in The Queen's Diamond Jubilee

I've been thinking about this a lot lately, and a few recent articles about Princess Beatrice of York wanting to be a bigger part of her grandmother's big celebrations and a part of the "firm" of the family plus a few other things make me want to write something about it.

The Diamond Jubilee was a chance to let the monarchy shine and to celebrate Queen Elizabeth's milestone. It's not every day that your grandmother makes such a fabulous milestone!

It was decided late last year that the following royals would visit the following commonwealth countries:

-Queen Elizabeth and Prince Phillip, The Duke of Edinburgh are touring around various parts of the United Kingdom from March until July.

-Prince Charles & Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall  are all set to visit Australia, Canada, New Zealand and Papua New Guinea.

-The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge will head to Malaysia, Singapore, the Solomon Islands and Tuvalu.

-Prince Harry is wrapping up his Royal Tour to Belize, Jamaica and the Bahamas with a stop over to Brazil to promote the London 2012 Olympics this week.

-The Duke of York will head to India.

-The Princess Royal will head to Mozambique and Zambia.

-The Earl and Countess of Wessex recently wrapped up their tour to the West Indies and Gibraltar.

-The Duke of Gloucester will go to the British Virgin Islands and Malta.

-The Duke of Kent will head to The Falkland Islands and Uganda.

In my opinion, this would be a fabulous chance for the "minor royals"-The York daughters, The Wessexes, Princess Anne & her commoner children, Princess Margaret's family, The Kents, The Gloucester etc to step up and shine rather than send the major royals-their time to shine will come.

For example, this week: I was looking for information on The Earl and Countess of Wessex's tour to the West Indies and Gibraltar, the day Prince Harry started his tour....and found only information on Prince Harry's tour. LAME. Now, if all of the minor royals were sent on the tours, the media coverage of the tours would be equal. That or they should have spread the tours out more so they didn't overlap!

But that's just my opinion.

Monday, March 12, 2012

Royal Profile: HRH Prince Gabriel, Prince de Nassau

Gabriel, Prince de Nassau was born out-of-wedlock to his parents, Prince Louis of Luxembourg and Tessy Antony at a private Swiss hospital on 12 March 2006. He was christened Gabriel Michael Louis Ronny de Nassau. He is the first and oldest grandson of The Grand Duke and Grand Duchess of Luxembourg. His godparents were his parent's siblings, his paternal aunt Princess Alexandra of Luxembourg and maternal uncle Mchael Antony. 

He was given the title and style of His Royal Highness, Prince of Nassau by his grandfather on 23 June 2009.

Upon his father's marriage to his mother on 29 September 2006, when he was just six months old, his father gave up his succession rights and the rights for his children. 

He is presently six years old, and resides in London with his parents and younger brother Noah. 

Royal Profile: HRH Prince Edward, Earl of Wessex

Edward Antony Richard Louis Mountbatten-Windsor (AKA HRH The Prince Edward, Earl of Wessex) was born the third son and fourth child of Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Phillip on 10 March 1964. At the time of his birth, his two brothers stood before him and the throne, now, in addition to his brothers he has two nephews (Prince Charles's sons), and two nieces (Prince Andrew's daughters), making him 7th in line.

Like his older siblings, he was born at Buckingham Palace. He was baptised on 2 May 1964 in the Private Chapel at Windsor Castle by the then Dean of Windsor,Robert Woods; the Prince's godparents were: Prince Richard of Gloucester (his cousin); the Duchess of Kent (his cousin by marriage, for whom Princess Marina, Duchess of Kent stood proxy); Princess George William of Hanover (his paternal aunt); the Prince of Hesse and by Rhine (his cousin); and the Earl of Snowdon (his maternal uncle by marriage).

Again, following the upbrining of his siblings, his early education was the responsibility of a governess. At the age of 7, he entered Gibbs School, which he attended for one year. When he was eight, he moved on to Heatherdown Preparatory School, and eventually, following in his father and older brothers' footseps, he attended Gordonstoun SchoolWhen his formal education ended, he began a gap year, working as a house tutor and junior master for two terms in September 1982 at the Wanganui Collegiate School in New Zealand.  When he returned to his home country, he began a study in history at the Jesus College, Cambridge. Of course, because his grades were less than perfect when receiving his A-Levels, his admittance to Cambride was controversial. However, he is one of four members of the British Royal Family to ever obtain a Masters degree (which he obtained in 1991).

Upon ending his studies, he attempted at a millitary career, but didn't make it as far as his older brothers had-he barely made it past training before giving it up for a life in the arts. He began to work along side Andrew Loyd Webber for several of Webber's productions. While working with Webber, he commissioned the 1986 musical Cricket from Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice, for his mother's 60th birthday celebration.

While working with Webber, he met a girl, actress Ruthie Henshall, whom he dated for two years. He began dating public relations representative, Sophie Rhys-Jones in 1993, after meeting her at a tennis match. The pair dated for six years before announcing their engagement in January of 1999. They married on 19 June 1999 at Windsor Castle's St. George's Chapel. His wedding broke the royal tradition of weddings either taking place at Westminster Abbey or St. Paul's Church. On 19 June, Queen Elizabeth conffered the titles Earl of Wessex and  Viscount Severn, braking another royal tradition that the Queen's sons be created dukes upon marriage. It was announced that upon the deaths of both Queen Elizabeth & Prince Phillip that Prince Edward is to be given the title Duke of Edinburgh-but that will be up to the then sovereign at the time (whether it be Prince Charles or Prince William...only time will tell). At the time of his wedding in 1999, the Royal House also announced that rather than his children be known as Prince/Princess of Wessex (like they legally are under the Royal Pattens of George V as male-line grandchildren of a monarch), they will hold styles of the children of an Earl, thus, Lady Louise Mountbatten-Windsor (Novemer 2003) and James, Viscount Severn (December 2007).

Also during his time dabbing in the arts, he cohorted several members of the British Royal Family-his sister Princess Anne, The Princess Royal, his sister-in-law and older brother The Duke & Duchess of York-into joining him in the fundraising-reality television program like show,  It's A Royal Knockout {Video, I cannot believe someone put this on YouTube!}. 

In 1993, he started his own production company, Ardent Production, while he leased the Royal Residence, Bagshot Park. He ran this business under the name Edward Windsor from 1995-199, then as Edward Wessex from 1999-2002. In Europe, although his business was successful, he was often accused of using his status for financial gains. In the United States, his productions were often well-received. In 1996, his company produced a documentary about Prince Edward's great-uncle, King Edward VIII, which did well globally. 

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Recap of The Royals You Love: March 5-11

Belgium


-King Albert II held an audience with the Secretary of State to Asylum, Immigration and Social Integration and the Assistant to the Minister of Justice, Ms. Maggie de Block at Château de Laeken and President of the General Assembly of the United Nations, Mr. Nassir Abdulaziz Al-Nasser on Tuesday.

-King Albert II & Queen Paola visited the town of Waremme in the province of Liège, where they visited the Bettincourt Language Immersion School {Photos}.

-Prince Philippe & Princess Mathilde began their six-day economic mission to Vietnam on Saturday {Source}.

-Princess Mathilde was in Schaerbeek to visit Maison des Femmes de Schaerbeek (House of women of Schaerbeek) whereupon she participated various workshops as well as a roundtable discussion with the managers as well as partners of this project {Photos}.


Denmark


- Queen Margrethe II held an audience with ambassadors from Lesotho, Indonesia, Ethiopia, Ecuador and Angola at Christiansborg Slot in Copenhagen.

-Prince Henrik inaugurated the new Hotel Mermaid in Bangkok, Thailand on Saturday {Source}


-Crown Prince Frederik participated in a meeting with the Danske Geografiske Selskabs (Royal Danish Geographic Society) in Copenhagen on Monday evening {Source}. On Thursday, he was in Belgium, where he visited the NATO Headquarters in Brussels and met with former Danish Prime Minister, now NATO Secretary General, Mr. Anders Fogh Rasmussen {Photos}

-Crown Princess Mary attended the opening of the European Disability Convention and Conference held at Scandic Sydhavnen in Copenhagen on Monday {Photos}. On Tuesday, the Royal Court announced that she was appointed a Young Global Leader in connection with The Forum of Young Global Leaders and the World Economic Forum


-Prince Joachim & Princess Marie announced the date of the christening of their daughter-April 20, 2012. (I'm still calling HH Princess Margrethe of Denmark-think about it: her older brother is Henrik for his grandfather, and it's the anniversary year for Margarethe II) {Source}

-Princess Benedikte attended the Danish Varmblods International Stallion Show held at the Messe Center in Herning, Denmark on Saturday {Video}.

Great Britain


-Queen Elizabeth II & Prince Phillip, the Duke of Edinburgh attended a "...service of dedication and thanks for the Order of the British Empire..." held at the grand St. Paul's Cathedral in London on  Wednesday {Photos}.


-Queen Elizabeth II,  Prince Phillip, the Duke of Edinburgh & Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge visited Leichester, England, where they arrived by train at St Pancras station, before attending a welcoming ceremony and toured De Montfort University, Leicester Cathedral {Photos}.

-Queen Elizabeth II, Prince Phillip, the Duke of Edinburgh & Peter Mark Andrew Phillips & Autumn Patricia Phillips attended a performance of One Man, Two Guvnors at the Theatre Royal Haymarket on Monday evening {Source}

-Prince Harry began his first royal tour, where he toured Belize, Jamaica and the Bahamas. Check back for the full report.

-Princess Beatrice of York is said to be trying several different work placements in order to find a career of choice, likely in either Fine Arts or fashion {Source}. She was also spotted out and about with her moter,
Sarah, Duchess of York, on Monday in London {Photos}.

-Prince Edward celebrated his 48th birthday on Saturday.

-Prince Edward, Earl of Wessex & Sophie, Countess of Wessex  finished their royal tour of the West Indies. Check out the Royal Recap of their tour here.

-Prince & Princess Michael of Kent were on a private visit to Sri Lanka this week {Source}.

Japan


-Emperor Akihito was at the Imperial Household Hospital for a procedure to "... have fluid removed from his chest that had accumulated since undergoing heart bypass surgery last month" {Source}.

-Crown Prince Naruhito held an audience with Thailand's Prime Minister, Mr. Yingluck Shinawatra at the royal palace on Thursday {Source}.
Luxembourg


-Hereditary Grand Duke Guillaume visited the Accumalux S.A. company where he toured the facility and attended a presentation on Thursday {Source}

Monaco


-Prince Albert attended a scientific conference at the University of Milan, then attend the signing of an agreement between the Italian branch of his Foundation and the group communication Finelco, creator of the program Mr PLANET and finally, he attended a gala that benefited his foundation on Tuesday {Source}{Photos} {Photos}. On Thursday, he attended the ceremony in which Philippe Narmino, director of the Court Services and Chairman of the State Council has been honored with the Order of Merit of the Légion d'honneur {Source}. On Friday, he attended an AS Monaco FC match {Photos}. He also attended the 6th World Water Forum in France over the weekend {Source}.

-Princess Charlene visited with old friends at the Melborne Sports & Aquatic Centre (Where she won the gold medal for the 100 metres backstroke in the World Cup for South Africa in 2002) before attending a private gala dinner hosted by Lady Mayoress Emma Page Campbell at the Melbourne Town Hall in honor of her visit to lovely Australia on Friday. On Saturday, along with Kelly cousin John III, she officially  opened the Grace Kelly: Style Icon exhibit in Australia {Source} {Photos}{Photos}{Photos} {Photos} {Video}.

-Princess Caroline of Hanover watched her youngest daughter participate in another ice skating competition on Saturday {Photo}{Photo 2}

-Andrea Albert Pierre Casiraghi & Charlotte Marie Pomeline Casiraghi attended the Gucci Forever Now party in honor of Charlotte becoming the new muse for the campaign on Tuesday {Photo} {Photo} {Photos}. The party was also attended by Alicia Keys, Rosario Dawson, Giambattista Valli, Frida Giannini, Bianca Brandolini d'Adda, and Maya Sansa, Edwina Alexander,  among others {Photots}

-Charlotte Marie Pomeline Casiraghi appeared in a video shoot for her new Gucci gig, Forever Now {Video}. Over the weekend, Charlotte participated in the second weekend of the Nice Jumping Competition {results 1}{results 2}.

-Princess Alexandra of Hanover participated in another ice skating competition on Saturday {Photo 1}{Photo 2}{Photo 3}{Photo 4} {Photos}

Norway


-Crown Princess Mette-Marit attended the opening of the 10th Annual Oslo International Kirkemusikkfestivalen (Oslo Church Music Festival) held at the Oslo Cathedral on Friday {Source}.

The Netherlands


-Queen Beatrix was in Soesterberg where she opened the "...the new Sergeant-Major Scheickkazerne explosives ordnance disposal EOD..." Afterward, she  unveil a new plaque as well as toured the new facility on Wednesday{Source}

-Prince Willem-Alexander of Oranje and Princess Maxima were in Den Haag this evening to attend a gala dinner for the Stichting Instandhouding Nieuwspoort held in the Knights Hal on Wednesday {Photos}.

-Prince Willem-Alexander of Oranje  participated in the 6th Annual World Water Forum over the weekend {Source}

-Princess Maxima was at the Koninklijk Instituut voor de Tropen in Amsterdam whereupon she received a copy of the report, A Billion to Gain on Tuesday {Photos}. On Thursday, she attended  Women TOP Society Breakfast held at De Witte in Den Haag {Photos}


Spain



-Queen Sofia attended the 2012 Reina Sofía de Conservación y Restauración del Patrimonio Cultural Awards in Madrid, Spain on Wednesday {Photos}


-Prince Felipe & Princess Letizia of Asturias attended the Tesoros Vivos de la Televisión tribute meeting in Madrid, Spain on Tuesday {Photos}.

-Princess Letizia of Asturias attended the presentation of the campaign, Be More, Be Stronger, in collaboration with the Spanish Association Against Cancer in Madrid, Spain on Monday {Video}.

-Infanta Cristina, Duchess of Palma de Majorca will not be subpoenaed in her husband’s corruption case. Iñaki Urdangarín, Duke of Palma de Majorca, and others are accused of fraud as well as“….embezzling public money paid to a non-profit institution, Nóos Institute, that was under his control.”{Source} (Side note: She's probably not being called to testify becasue she has diplomatic immunity being the daughter of a head of state of a foreign country and is in line for the throne of Spain)

Royal Profile: Crown Princess Mette-Marit of Norway

Crown Princess Mette-Marit of Norway was born Mette-Marit Tjessem Høiby on 19 August 1973{ Source }. Her parents divorced when she was you...