The first day of the Spanish State Visit to Sweden concluded with a sparkling State Banquet at the Royal Palace in Stockholm.
King Carl XVI Gustaf and Queen Silvia hosted King Felipe and Queen Letizia on the evening of 24 November in the Royal Palace’s largest ballroom, the White Sea. Crown Princess Victoria, Prince Daniel, Prince Carl Philip, Princess Sofia and the Spanish delegation were also in attendance.
Due to the ongoing global health crisis, the State Banquet was held in a smaller format for safety reasons.
Guests dined on the Royal Family’s Brazilian silverware on French linen. Glasses used were gifts from the government for King Carl XVI Gustaf and Queen Silvia’s 1976 wedding.
The royals greeted their guests ahead of the official dinner. The King of Sweden escorted Queen Letizia to the table while King Felipe guided Queen Silvia.
The roughly 90 guests dined on fried wild turbot and Swedish squid, rice-smoked reindeer saddle with mushroom croquettes, venison, autumn apples in salted caramel with rosemary, among other delicacies.
The King of Sweden addressed his guests, touching on the pandemic and the need for sustainable societies. He said that this “presents us with challenges, but also with opportunities for innovation and development. The close ties between our nations and people lay the foundations for cooperation and solidarity, and for solving problems – together.“
King Felipe also spoke, saying, “The Queen and I wholeheartedly hope that this trip will serve as an expression of the special friendship that brings even closer to our two countries, geographically distant, at the North and the South of Europe, but united by the same values and permanent principles.
“Indeed, Spain and Sweden share the fundamental democratic principles and values that lay at the foundation of today’s Europe. We are both proud of our institutions based on the rule of law and of our inclusive societies, where human rights are protected, and equal and fair opportunities are offered to all, notwithstanding social, economic or gender differences.”
During the evening, Queen Letizia was wearing her new Order of the Seraphim sash bestowed on her by King Carl Gustaf, and her husband was wearing the Seraphim Order chain that was given to him during the State Visit. Felipe has been a member of the Order of the Seraphim since 1991.
King Felipe granted Queen Silvia the Grand Cross by the Order of Carl III and Crown Princess Victoria the Grand Cross by the Order of Isabella the Catholic. Prince Daniel, Prince Carl Philip and Princess Sofia received the Grand Cross by the Order of Civil Merit.
The State Visit concludes Thursday, 25 November.