His Royal Tie-ness! Prince Albert gets festive as he joins Princess Charlene to hand out toys to Monaco children
It was a day of festive cheer in Monaco yesterday as Prince Albert II and wife Princess Charlene invited the children of the principality to their annual Christmas tree ceremony.
The crowd of excited children gathered outside the palace in their Santa hats to meet the royals, who arrived together with Father Christmas and his helpers to greet the eager group.
Prince Albert II truly entered into the spirit of things, donning a festive Warner Bros tie for the occasion, decorated with cartoons of the Tasmanian Devil and Daffy Duck wearing Christmas hats.
Christmas spirit: Prince Albert II of Monaco and wife Princess Charlene made an appearance outside their palace to meet the children of the principality and hand out gifts from Father Christmas
For her part, South African-born Princess Charlene, a former Olympic swimmer who met her husband at the 2000 Olympic Games, opted for a more understated look, wearing an elegant camel funnel-neck coat and nude shoes.
The royal two joined Father Christmas for a gift giving ceremony outside the , where the children of the principality were handed generous presents – Hello Kitty toys and a range of games.
Beleaguered since their July wedding by rumours of unrest in their relationship, here the two looked relaxed and affectionate as they laughed and joked with the children.
Jolly: The Royals were in good spirits at the event – with Prince Albert even donning a festive tie decorated with cartoon drawings of Daffy Duck and the Tasmanian Devil in Christmas hats
Generous: The Royal two joined Father Christmas and his helpers in handing out gifts to the children, including games and Hello Kitty toys
Festive cheer! The children celebrated with the royals outside the palace before going inside to be given their gifts
THE CLASSIC SOPHISTICATION OF CHARLENE
Previously an Olympic swimmer, Charlene, 33, was not born to royal stock and is new to the harsh media spotlight the role entails.
Now thrust into the public arena, she has had to adapt – fast – to what is expected of a working royal. That means that quite apart from her every move being analysed (remember the runaway bride furore surrounding her marriage), her every wardrobe choice will be scrutinised in microscopic detail.
Here though, she has never put a foot wrong. South African-born Charlene has taken to the high profile role with aplomb, managing to look constantly glamorous, sophisticated and classy – thanks, in part, to her stature and willowy figure, but also down to her simple, elegant taste.
Though criticised by some for her penchant for so-called dull colours (Charlene usually opts for black, beige, white, grey or camel), the fact is simply that Princess Charlene, who turns regularly to Giorgio Armani and Karl Lagerfeld for style inspiration, has found her fashion niche. She knows what works for her, and for now, she”s sticking to it.
“I”ve reached the point where I know whatI like and what works. I”m starting to play with fresher, bolder, and more daring looks,” she says.
No doubt we will see Charlene experiment more with colour or embellishment as she grow into her role – her past dalliances with colour have included bright fuchsia and glittering emerald – but for now, Princess Charlene is the epitome of understated chic.
Understated in sand-toned trouser suit
Subtle: Charlene in a one-shouldered slate grey gown
Sophisticated in a nude-toned gown