Just as the month was beginning, King Juan Carlos of Spain celebrated his 80th birthday, and now, as the month is coming to a close, his only son, King Felipe, is also celebrating a milestone birthday. The King of Spain turns 50 today.
In celebration of his turning 50, Casa de la Moneda is issuing a commemorative 30 euro coin that will have his face on one side with his coat of arms on the other. A commemorative 1€ stamp was also released earlier this month of His Majesty by España Correos. You can read more about the stamp here.
Telemadridalso has plans to air a 90 minute documentary about the King, which includes interviews with the likes of Spain’s Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy. In respect for Spain’s current sensitive political, social and business situations, Casa Real has elected not to have large celebrations for His Majesty’s turning half a century old.
However, the King will celebrate his birthday by awarding his older daughter, Leonor, Princess of Asturias with the Order of the Golden Fleece in an official ceremony today.
Felipe Juan Pablo Alfonso de Todos los Santos de Borbón y de Grecia was born on 30 January 1968 in Madrid to the then Infante Juan Carlos and Infanta Sofía (born Princess Sophia of Greece and Denmark). He has two older sisters, Infanta Elena (b. 1963) and Infanta Cristina (b. 1965).
Felipe, who was given the title of Infante shortly after his birth, was baptised in the Roman Catholic Church on 8 February 1968 at Zarzuela Palace. Years later, he would go on to study law at the Autonomous University of Madrid. He would go on to obtain his master’s degree from Georgetown University’s Edmund A. Walsh School of Foreign Service in Washington D.C., where he lived with his first cousin, Crown Prince Pavlos of Greece.
His father became King of Spain when Felipe was seven years old, and two years later, he was named Prince of Asturias.
Casa Real announced on 1 November 2003 that Felipe was engaged to Letizia Ortiz Rocasolano. Letizia was well-known television journalist in Spain and a divorcee. On 22 May 2004, they married in Madrid at the Almudena Cathedral. They have two daughters: Leonor, Princess of Asturias (b. 31 October 2005) and Infanta Sofía (b. 29 April 2007).
On 2 June 2014, his father, King Juan Carlos announced that he was abdicating in favour of his son. Spain’s parliament, Cortes Generales, had to pass a law to allow for Felipe’s ascension to the throne since there was no process for abdication in the Constitution of Spain. Felipe became King of Spain at midnight on 19 June; later that day, he was crowned in the Palacio de las Cortes.