Showing posts from February, 2014

And the Oscar goes to....

The Oscars, taking place in Los Angeles on March 2nd 2014, are the meeting place of Hollywood royalty.  But while real royals might have some of the best stories in town, it's rare for a regal role to win a king or queen of the big screen the ultimate prize - an Oscar.  In the eighty six years of the Academy Awards, just a dozen or so royal roles have led to an Oscar win.  And with no kings, queens, princes or princesses among the parts nominated this year, it will be another year before any chance of an extra royal joining the list.  Here are the royals whose lives have landed their stars an Oscar.

The Queen - Helen Mirren won the Best Actress Oscar for her portrayal of Elizabeth II during the days following the death of Diana, Princess of Wales in 1997
In the last fifteen years there have been three winners who scooped the ultimate acting award with a royal role with perhaps the best known being Dame Helen Mirren who won just about every prize going for her portrayal of Elizabeth…

Another Aenor

The decision of Madeleine of Sweden and Chris O'Neill to name their daughter, Leonore, has turned the name - and its variants - into one of the most popular royal monikers around.  Leonore is another version of Eleanor and in less than ten years this once forgotten regal name has enjoyed a resurgence that has seen it invade just about every royal court in Europe.  While the name may be rare in Sweden - the princess shares her name with just 128 of her fellow citizens - in the royal houses of the 21st century it's hard to get past go without passing an Eleanor.

Leonore of Sweden is following a royal trend with her first name
The name has several variations so in Spain it became Leonor when the Prince and Princess of Asturias surprised many by choosing it for their first daughter, and the country's future queen, when she arrived in October 2005.  In Belgium, the version Eleonore was used by the then Prince Philippe and Princess Mathilde for their youngest child, the princess …

Grandmother first, for a moment...

She has been a queen for almost forty years but for a moment, Silvia of Sweden was a grandmother first.  In a photo released to mark the official naming of her second grandchild, the Swedish consort is seen beaming with pride as she holds Princess Leonore, Duchess of Gotland in her arms.  No crown, no throne, no robes but a huge smile that shows even queens fall in love with princesses.

A king, a queen and their little royal duchess - Sivlia of Sweden holds little Leonore while Carl XVI Gustaf looks on

And Madeleine's daughter is called....

Her Royal Highness Princess Leonore Lilian Maria of Sweden has made her debut.  Little Leonore, born to Madeleine on February 20th 2014 in New York, has been seen for the first time in a photo released to mark the official announcement of her name.

The Duchess of Gotland sleeps through her first photocall
As is traditional for the Swedish Royal Family, special ceremonies had to be observed for the naming of its latest member.  King Carl XVI Gustaf told his country's cabinet about the arrival of its newest princess, informed them of her name and full title and only then could the rest of his fellow citizens be told.  

The king who couldn't help being a grandfather - Carl XVI Gustaf bursting with pride as he tells the Swedish cabinet all about his new granddaughter
Auntie Victoria was there for the special announcement to the cabinet before the Marshal of the Realm took over to formally announce the full name of the fifth in line to the throne as HRH Princess Leonore Lilian Maria …

Going for gold and silver and bronze

King Willem-Alexander and Queen Maxima of the Netherlands seemed to love every minute they spent at the Winter Olympics in Sochi so it's no surprise that they are keeping the flame of the Games alive back home in The Hague.  Today the king and queen held a reception for the winners of the twenty four medals their country brought back from Russia.

More to celebrate for medal winners from the Netherlands as they get a royal reception from their king and queen at the Noordeinde Palace in The Hague
Willem-Alexander had presented one of the eight gold medals won by his fellow citizens as well as one of the bronzes and Maxima had cheered plenty of winners from the stands.  And today they sealed the celebrations with a right royal reception and kept the Olympic spirit alive just a little bit longer.

Zara's daughter becomes a headline act

The decision of the Queen's granddaughter, Zara Phillips, to show off her baby girl in a photospread in Hello magazine has raised eyebrows.  Zara's brother, Peter, famously sold his wedding pictures to the magazine and received quite a bit of stick as a result.  Questions were raised about the fact that the photos, for which Peter received around £500,000, included images of other members of the royal family and it was reported that the Queen was not overly amused.  Zara Phillips' decision to show her little girl off in Hello doesn't involve any other member of the royals but it has led to some criticism.

Sixteenth in line to the throne and the fourth great grandchild of Elizabeth II, Mia Grace Tindall makes her debut on the front of Hello magazine
It's led to more questions about royals making deals with magazines.  But while the first image of Mia may have caused a stir, there's one thing that won't raise any questions.  Who she looks like. Little Miss Ti…

Being number five

The new princess of Sweden is fifth in line to her country's throne and unlikely ever to occupy it.  And that she has in common with the other princes and princesses who find themselves at number five on the countdown to a crown.

The new princess of Sweden and her parents leave hospital on February 22nd 2014 in New York where she was born, fifth in line to the throne, on February 20th 2014
The oldest royal at number five is the Duke of York who fell to his lowest position in the British line of succession on the birth of his great nephew, Prince George of Cambridge, in July 2013.  Andrew Albert Christian Edward was born second in line to the throne in February 1960, the third child and second son of Elizabeth II and the Duke of Edinburgh.  He held that role for 22 years until he was moved down the order by the birth of William of Wales and then again, a few years later, by the arrival of Prince Harry. Andrew's path, like all the number fives, is only downwards as younger royals…

Estelle turns two

While she waits to meet the cousin who will no doubt turn into a playmate, Princess Estelle has kept herself busy posing for photos to mark her second birthday.  The future queen is looking very grown up as she marks her milestone and mum and dad are fading into the background as the little princess takes centre stage.

One down, one to go - Princess Estelle tackles her birthday candles one by one in a special photo released on February 23rd 2014
The princess is also seen painting before settling on a sofa at the Haga Palace for a very smart portrait to mark her big day.  The little girl who was famously shown off by her parents for the first time in a car seat on their way home from hospital in February 2012 is now queen of the photoshoot.

Estelle of Sweden on her second birthday, February 23rd 2014

Car seat royals

Princess Madeleine kept to tradition to announce the birth of her baby girl but the royal Facebook fan was back to social media for the first photo of her daughter.  As the princess and her husband, Chris O'Neill, took their baby home the posted a picture on Facebook of the proud family complete with Sweden's newest royal safely tucked up in her car seat.

Baby makes three - two princesses and a proud daddy on their way home from hospital in New York
The photo is reminiscent of the famous first photo of future queen, Estelle, who was shown to the world for the first time bundled up in her car seat on her way home from hospital in February 2012.

Royal trendsetters - Victoria and Daniel of Sweden started the wave of baby princes and princesses in car seats when they took Estelle home from hospital in February 2012
And the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge also showed Prince George off in his car seat when they left hospital with him in July 2013.  After posing for photographers, Kate g…

Royal round up, week ending February 22nd 2014

A round up of all the news from Europe's royal houses for the week ending February 22nd 2014...

Princess Madeleine of Sweden gave birth to a daughter on February 20th 2014.  The little princess was born in New York at 22:41 local time and her father, Chris O'Neill, revealed at a press conference the following day that she had weighed 3.15 kilos at birth and was 50 centimetres long.  The official announcement of the birth was made by the Marshal of the Realm and the baby's name will be revealed by King Carl XVI Gustaf at a cabinet meeting.  Princess Madeleine and her daughter, who are both reported to be doing well, were visited by the king and Queen Silvia on February 21st after they flew out to America on hearing the news of the arrival of their second grandchild.

Princess Madeleine of Sweden and her husband, Chris O'Neill, became parents of a daughter on February 20th 2014
The king and queen had begun their week in Russia - they had arrived in Sochi to support …