The Spanish Royal Family has got celebrations for this year’s Princess of Asturias Awards under way with a very different audience for winners of the 2020 prizes.
Princess Leonor was joined by her parents, King Felipe VI and Queen Letizia, and her younger sister, Infanta Sofia, for a socially distanced meeting with a handful of those who have been recognised at this year’s events.
The royals traditionally hold an audience with winners ahead of the main ceremony itself. Usually, the prizes are presented in person. However, the coronavirus pandemic means that organisers have dropped the obligation for winners to attend. It meant that the preliminary audience on the morning of October 16th 2020 was smaller than before.
Princess Leonor, along with her family, formed a reception line with local politicians and dignitaries, members of the Princess of Asturias Foundation and award winners stepping forward to exchange socially distanced nods with the royals. They also posed for photos with the winners.
The audience was held at the Hotel of the Reconquista in Oviedo where the awards were first developed and organised in 1980. Then known as the Prince of Asturias Awards, they were established to recognise achievement in culture, sports and science. Over the past four decades they have become one of the most celebrated awards events in Europe.
King Felipe and his family arrived in Oviedo on October 15th when they toured an exhibition celebrating the achievements of this year’s winners. The Princess of Asturias Awards ceremony is set to take place on the evening of October 16th 2020 with the Spanish Royal Family due to visit the recipients of this year’s outstanding community prize on the morning of October 17th.