Today, King Willem-Alexander and Queen Máxima officially started their three days state visit to Luxembourg.
They were welcomed at the airport by Hereditary Grand Duke Guillaume and Hereditary Grand Duchess Stéphanie. There was a funny moment when Queen Máxima and Hereditary Grand Duchess Stéphanie greeted each other as their hats collided and Stéphanie’s hat fell.
Afterwards, King Willem-Alexander and Queen Máxima were officially welcomed at the Grand Ducal Palace by Grand Duke Henri and Grand Duchess Maria Teresa. There was another sweet moment when the little girls who were supposed to give flowers to Queen Máxima were scared and, Grand Duchess Maria Teresa reassured and encouraged them and called them ‘mes chéries’ (‘my darlings’).
After a short walkabout, the royal couple and the Grand Ducal Couple had a private meeting inside the palace.
King Willem-Alexander and Queen Máxima also laid a wreath at the National Monument of Luxembourg Solidarity with the Luxembourger Prime Minister. They also had lunch with the Grand Ducal Couple and the Hereditary Grand Ducal Couple at the Palace.
They also met with the Prime Minister, the President of the Chamber and the Minister of Foreign and European Affairs. The King and Queen then joined Grand Duke Henri and Grand Duchess Maria Teresa at City Hall where they met Luxembourg City’s mayor before taking part in a short city walk where they learned about the historical development of the city and the fortifications that show similarities with Maastricht. The old city of Luxembourg has been named a world heritage by UNESCO.
In the evening, Grand Duke Henri and Grand Duchess Maria Teresa hosted a gala dinner in honour of King Willem-Alexander and Queen Máxima at the Grand Ducal Palace. Hereditary Grand Duke Guillaume and Hereditary Grand Duchess Stéphanie also attended, and both the King and the Grand Duke made a speech.
King Willem-Alexander praised Luxembourg and Grand Duke Henri and Grand Duchess Maria Teresa in his speech: “Your Royal Highnesses, you both embody the open spirit, self-confidence and warmth that characterise the people of Luxembourg. And those qualities give this state visit an added personal dimension. We look forward to learning more about Luxembourg during our visit. Tomorrow we will explore your long economic history, from the steel industry that laid the foundation for your success to space mining, something in which this country excels today.
For Luxembourg, the sky is clearly not the limit!”
This state visit is the first state visit from the Netherlands to Luxembourg since 2012 when Princess Beatrix was still Queen of the Netherlands.