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Three royal weddings and a birthday

Basking in the exhilaration of Prince George’s recent nativity, royal watchers everywhere were treated to more blissful news this weekend as three royal couples were given their fairytale “happily ever after”.

Prince Rahim finds a princess
Prince Rahim, the eldest son of His Highness Aga Khan IV, wed beautiful supermodel Kendra Spears in a private ceremony on the shores of Lake Geneva in Switzerland Saturday.

Courtesy of and © The Aga Khan Development Network.

Courtesy of and © The Aga Khan Development Network.

The traditional Muslim ceremony took place at the elegant Château de Bellerive, residence of the Aga Khan’s uncle, the late Prince Sadruddin and his wife Princess Aliya.

In photos published by The Ismaili, the bride looked stunning in an ivory sari embroidered in gold, and her hair was swept in an up-do, showcasing exquisite diamond earrings and a multi-tiered necklace.

Prince Rahim Aga Khan holds a BA from Brown University and an executive management degree from the Navarra Business School in Barcelona, Spain. He is involved in the poverty reduction efforts, notably micro-credit activities, of the Aga Khan Development Network – one of the largest private systems of agencies fostering social, cultural and economic development in Asia, Africa and the Middle East.

Princess Salwa, as Ms. Spears will now be called, holds a BA in sociology from the University of Washington in her native Seattle. She has a strong interest in arts and architecture. Ms. Spears has had a highly successful career as a model, working with many of the most prestigious fashion houses including Chanel, Versace, Dolce & Gabbana, Armani and Gucci.

The groom follows in the tradition of his grandfather who married famous actress Rita Hayworth, his father who wed British model Sarah “Sally” Croker-Poole, and his younger brother Prince Hussain, who married model Kristin White in 2006.

Monaco lovebirds tie the knot
Monegasque heir Andrea Casiraghi and his longtime love Tatiana Santo Domingo were officially wed in a civil ceremony before close friends, family, and their Boston Terrier dog Daphne, on the beautiful grounds of the Prince’s Palace.

True to her low-key, laid-back style, the bride wore a lacy boho-chic Missoni gown over flat silver sandals, with a simple floral garland crowning her long wavy mane. Andrea was dashing in a dark blue suit, white shirt and speckled tie.

Andrea is second in line to the throne after his mother, Princess Caroline, and Tatiana is the daughter of late Colombian billionaire brewing mega-magnate Julio Santo Domingo Jr.

The two met 10 years ago through Andrea’s sister Charlotte, who befriended Tatiana when they attended the Lycée Jeanne d’Arc Saint-Aspais, in Fontainebleau, near Paris, together. Tatiana has been genuinely embraced by the Grimaldi family for her great humility, her discretion, her social credentials, and her unwavering loyalty to Andrea.

Like Prince William who lost his mother at a young age, Andrea lost his father Stefano at the tender age of six in a tragic boat racing accident. Tatiana has been a most supportive consort for him as she also lost her father in 2009.

Like William, Andrea has taken a keen interest in his mother’s and grandmother’s humanitarian endeavours, and demonstrated his and Tatiana’s tender affection for children on a trip with AMADE as he brought awareness to the threats facing children in the Philippines in the penal system, on the streets, and children suffering from toxic waste contamination.

Like the Duchess of Cambridge, Tatiana is an art history major, and along with a partner, Dana Alikhani, has founded The Muzungu Sisters, an ethical fashion line.

The two became parents to a little boy Sacha in March earlier this year.

A religious wedding ceremony will take place a few months from now, in Tatiana’s native Switzerland.

Interdynastic nuptials in Istanbul
The Arab world reveled in yet another royal wedding as Prince Muhammad Ali, son of King Fuad II of Egypt, and Princess Noal Zaher, granddaughter of King Zaher Shah of Afghanistan, wed in a much anticipated ceremony on Friday.

The lavish nuptials took place at the luxurious Çira?an Palace on the European shores of the Bosphorus in Istanbul, Turkey. Once the residential palace of the last Ottoman Sultans of Turkey, the Çira?an Palace now houses an über-exclusive 5-star hotel that is considered to be one of the finest in the world.

In a photo obtained by nettyroyal, and another posted on King Fuad II’s Facebook page, Princess Noal was beaming in a modern, off-the-shoulder sequined gown, while Prince Muhammad chose black tuxedo tails with a white bowtie and vest.

The couple reportedly met while on holiday in Istanbul, possibly at the nuptials of their honoured guests Prince Rudolf and Princess Tilsin of Liechtenstein who also wed at Çira?an Palace last year.

The groom, who was raised in France and Morocco, is involved in real estate in Paris, while his Italian-born bride runs a jewelry design company, having obtained her European Business degree at the prestigious French university Institut Saint-Dominique, and a technical degree in jewellery design at Webster University in London.

…And a royal birthday
Queen Rania of Jordan celebrated her 43rd birthday on Friday, August 31. She received an early present of sorts at a private audience with the Holy Father, Pope Francis on Thursday. Known for dispensing with formalities, Pope Francis greeted Queen Rania with a bow, even though protocol dictates that visitors bow to him.

Prince Rania and King Abdullah meet Pope Francis's predecessor, Pope Benedict XVI.    Photo credit: h2onews via photopin cc

Prince Rania and King Abdullah meet Pope Francis’s predecessor, Pope Benedict XVI.
Photo credit: h2onews via photopin cc

“Up until the 19th century, visitors would kiss the pope’s shoes, and the tradition is still that all visitors, women included, bow to him, but Francis behaves as he did before he became pope and is not interested in protocol,” explained a senior Vatican official to The Daily Telegraph.

One of People Magazine’s most beautiful women of the world, Queen Rania has four children, writes children’s books, bakes a “mean chocolate chip cookie”, and is the founder of the Jordan River Foundation which seeks to better the lives of women and children in Jordan.

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