Though most of the countries in the world are no longer ruled by royalty, there are a few that are, including Swaziland, Saudi Arabia, and Monaco. For a lot of other countries with royalty, however, the Royals are just a sort of symbol of their country for the world to see. These royals must be on their best behavior at all times to represent their countries to the fullest.
Some of our favorite modern royals are British royalty. Prince William is the oldest son of Charles, Prince of Wales and Diana, Princess of Wales. He is the second in line to the British throne after his father. In 2011, he married his long-term girlfriend, Kate Middleton. The couple met in college at St. Andrew’s University. Though both students started off studying art history, William eventually switched to history.
Their wedding was one of the most publicized events of that year. Roughly over 3 billion people, around 45% of the world’s population, tuned in one way or another to the Royal Wedding. The couple is very charming, so Kate easily won the hearts of the world and the British people. Here are a bunch of facts about them that we have all just been dying to know!
18 Their Names & Titles
Catherine Elizabeth Middleton was born January 9, 1982, at Royal Berkshire Hospital in Reading. She is the oldest of three children born to Michael and Carole Middleton. Her father worked for British Airways while her mother was a flight attendant. The family began the company Party Pieces in 1987. Upon her marriage to Prince William, Kate became known as “Her Royal Highness The Duchess of Cambridge” but her formal titles include Countess of Strathearn, Lady Carrickfergus and the Duchess of Cambridge.
She is technically not a princess.
Prince William’s full name is William Arthur Philip Louis. After his wedding, his title was changed to “His Royal Highness The Duke of Cambridge” as well as the Earl of Strathearn and the Baron Carrickfergus. He is also a Royal Knight Companion of the Noblest Order of the Garder.
17 A Price To Pay
Their wedding took place on April 29th, 2011 at Westminster Abbey and was declared a national holiday. It was reported to have cost $34 million. The flower budget was almost $1 million alone. Considering the average bride spends a little over $2,000 on flowers the royal couple pulled out all the stops to make sure they had the best floral arrangements. Kate’s modest bouquet was an arrangement of myrtle, hyacinth, lily of the valley and sweet William.
Kate’s gown was designed by Sarah Burton for Alexander McQueen at over $400,000—one reason it might have been so expensive is that it was made with a 1,800-year-old lace technique. However, Kate’s engagement ring, which was originally Diana’s, is worth more than her wedding dress at a whopping $500,000.
16 A Long Time Coming
William and Kate met in 2001 at St. Andrew’s University where they both started out studying art history. A year later, the pair moved into the same student house as friends. Kate broke up with her then-boyfriend at the end of 2003, and sparks started flying between her and the prince. They continued publicly dating until 2007. However, Will and Kate soon got back together.
In June of 2010, the couple moved in together in a farmhouse in north Wales.
Will and Kate announced their engagement on the 16 of November in 2010. The couple only told the Queen and the Prince of Wales of their engagement just two hours before they went public with the news. They were married April 29, 2011, in Westminster Abbey.
15 Musical Tastes
The couple’s favorite song is apparently “I Like The Way You Move” by the BodyRockers that was released in 2005. The band is an English, Irish, Australian electronic music duo—an interesting choice for a royal couple. At the Royal Wedding Reception, Herefordshire pop star Ellie Goulding performed a two-hour set. Ellie met the Prince in 2010 and he described her music as “brilliant,” but she was utterly shocked when the royal couple asked her to perform at the Royal Wedding Reception.
She performed a cover of Elton John’s “Your Song” as the opening for the night. Prince William has also been known to enjoy Kanye West and Linkin Park though many of his friends and family members are embarrassed by his music taste. The Duchess is also a big fan of Abba.
14 Patrons Of Many Charities
Like his mother Diana, Prince William is a patron of Centrepoint. Centrepoint was designed to help homeless people. At one point, William demonstrated conditions faced by rough sleepers by spending the night on the streets of central London. He even helped launch a helpline for homeless people.
Kate is also a patron of many charities, many of which focus on children’s welfare. She is a patron of The Royal Foundation, Action on Addiction, The Art Room, The National History Museum, The National Portrait Gallery in London, East Anglia’s Children’s Hospices, SportsAid, Place2Be and The 1851 Trust. The Royal Foundation was founded in 2011 by Prince Harry and The Duke and Duchess. It focuses on supporting the armed forces, conservation, and young people.
13 Kate, The Fashionista
Kate has always had an interest in fashion. Perhaps it has something to do with the fact she has a Master of Arts degree from the University of St. Andrews. Before she married Prince William, she worked in London at the clothing company Jigsaw Junior as a part-time buyer. During her tour of Los Angeles and Canada in July of 2011, Kate donned more than 25 iconic outfits.
She has embraced a lot of iconic brands, including Jenny Packham, Jimmy Choo, Dolce & Gabbana, Mulberry, and Seraphine.
Even during her pregnancy, Kate has rocked some truly fashionable looks.
Blue is most definitely her color as it makes her blue eyes pop. She, like the Queen, often wears bright colored coats, sometimes with matching hats. She also wears a lot of classy dresses that are often floral print.
12 Childhood Crushes
Prince William is known to have had many different childhood crushes. One of his crushes was an American model, Cindy Crawford. When he was thirteen years old, his mother, Princess Diana invited the supermodel to a lunch at Kensington Palace so that young William could meet Cindy Crawford. Of the event, Cindy Crawford said she very carefully chose her outfit to be appropriate but still beautiful.
When the Duke of Cambridge was 14 years old, he announced to his family his new crush on Emma Bunton from the Spice Girls, instead of Baywatch’s Pamela Anderson. Interestingly enough, when Kate was young one of her childhood crushes was the dazzling Prince himself. She even had a poster of William on her wall in her bedroom. In college, Kate would jokingly talk about how there was no man for her but the Prince.
11 They’re Independent
Prince William and Kate are not one of those couples that always have to be together and do everything together. For instance, Kate often goes to charity events by herself and gives speeches. On St. Patrick’s Day in 2012, Kate went by herself to carry out the traditional awarding of shamrocks to the Irish Guards in Aldershot. In 2014, Kate intended to take her first solo trip to Malta, but it was canceled, likely because of her pregnancy.
She eventually made her first solo trip to Luxembourg in 2017 as a Brexit Ambassador.
The Duchess has also made other solo trips, including one to the Netherlands. Prince William regularly takes solo trips as well. At the end of 2016, he went on a solo trip to visit Southeast Asia.
10 Both Enjoy Cooking
The Duchess enjoys cooking and baking a lot. She often tries recipes from The Great British Bake Off. In 2013, she told Mary Berry, one of the judges on the show, “I’m a big fan of your cookbooks and your cakes.” Prince William's favorite cake is chocolate biscuit cake that uses tea biscuits and dark chocolate. Traditionally, the cake cools in the fridge instead of being cooked in the oven.
The couple had a version of that cake at their wedding. When Prince William and Kate started dating, William would often try to impress Kate by cooking fancy dinners.
However, he often struggled because he would burn something, something would catch on fire or something would spill.
Kate’s mother, Carole Middleton, even bakes with her grandchildren because George and Charlotte love to bake.
9 Growing Family
A little over a year after their marriage, the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge announced that Kate was pregnant with their first child. On July 22, 2013, the couple went to the Lindo Wing of the St. Mary’s Hospital in London. This is the same hospital where Prince William himself was born. Prince George was born later that day. A little over a year after the birth of Prince George, the couple again announced that they were expecting.
Kate went to the hospital on May 2, 2015, and gave birth to Princess Charlotte. On September 4, 2017, another pregnancy was announced from the Royal couple. The baby is due in April of 2018. The Duke and Duchess also have an English cocker spaniel named Lupo. The children also have a pet hamster named Marvin.
8 A Not-So-Humble Abode
William and Kate live in Kensington Palace, Apartment 1A located in Kensington Gardens in London. It has four stories and used to be the home of the Queen’s younger sister, Princess Margaret.
The home has three-bedroom suites, a nursery, three kitchens and five reception rooms. Kensington Palace has been the home of the British Royal Family since the 1600s.
Prince Harry, the Duke and Duchess of Kent, the Duke and Duchess of Gloucester, Princess Eugenie and Prince and Princess Michael of Kent also reside there.
William and Kate also have a private home called Amner Hal in Norfolk. In 2013, the Queen allocated the home to William and Kate and their growing family. The home has a swimming pool and a private tennis court. It was also recently refurbished with additions like a new roof, an updated kitchen, and a garden room.
7 Binge Watching... Just Like Us
The royal couple admits that they are really “box setty”—meaning they enjoy long television shows. They are really big fans of the series Homeland. They have been known to say that Game of Thrones is worth watching and they also enjoy the Australian soap opera Neighbours. They think The Windsors show is absolutely hilarious. It is a parody of life for the Royals in which Kate’s character is a gypsy with her sister Pippa as a jealous attention-seeker.
The couple also really enjoyed Downton Abbey, The Voice, The Apprentice, and X-Factor. When their children are in bed, they enjoy ordering in curry and curling up in comfy clothes on the couch together. Their children enjoy Fireman Sam and Peppa Pig, which have become very popular children’s shows in the past few years.
6 Marriage Counseling
Though this may just be a rumor, it is suspected that Kate and William have begun attending marriage counseling. First of all, there is nothing wrong with marriage counseling. It shows that couples are willing to work on their communication and their relationship. It is suspected that the couple began attending counseling around a year after their marriage because William cheated on Kate when he was on vacation with his friends.
Though reports say William stopped short of going all the way, Kate was obviously less than pleased. Couples therapy seemed like the answer for Will and Kate. One purpose of the therapy is for William to show that he is willing to publicly show he is willing to put work in on their marriage. Whether it is true or not, perhaps Prince Harry is not the prince of a scandal.
5 They Host BYOB Parties, Too
This past Christmas, the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge hosted their annual Christmas party for their staff at Beach Blanket Babylon in Notting Hill. The family rented out the venue’s upstairs ballroom and paid around 110 pounds per person to cater the event. However, because the Beach Blanket Babylon had had its liquor license revoked, guests had to bring their own alcohol.
For appetizers, the guests chose from salmon, avocado vignette, and wild mushrooms. They had five different choices for the main dish before indulging in desserts of either Christmas pudding, chocolate cake or cheesecake.
The venue was an interesting choice for the Royals. It is only about two miles away from Kensington Palace, and it is not generally considered a classy establishment.
Residents that live nearby have reported that it is loud and regularly full of tipsy customers.
4 Parenting 101
William and Kate hope their children can lead as normal of a childhood as possible. This is something that was very important to Princess Diana as well. The family frequently tries to do “normal” things, like going to the movies or going to McDonald’s. Like their father, the royal children will probably do some chores. When the family resides in their country home in Norfolk, it is likely the children will lead a much more normal life and be able to attend school.
The children will still have some royal training and make some appearances, but will likely not be constantly swarmed by the media. Though William and Kate are very hands-on parents, the children have a nanny named Maria Borrallo to look after them. Kate’s mother, Carole Middleton, also enjoys spending lots of time with her grandchildren.
3 One Of The World’s Favorite Couples
After the Royal Wedding in 2011, merchandisers had a hay-day producing all sort of different memorabilia. For instance, the famous PEZ company produced William and Kate PEZ Dispensers. Soon after the wedding, people were willing to bid on the dispensers for over $10,000. At the Royal Wedding, some interesting souvenirs were also handed out—
including Royal Wedding barf bags, William and Kate tea bags and “The Crown Jewels,” Prince William and Kate-inspired prophylactics.
Unfortunately, the prophylactics were designed as more of a souvenir than an actual product. Along the same theme, a company designed a limited edition “Royal Romance Massage Oil.” Multiple different companies have created William and Kate-inspired action figures as well. Papa John’s even recreated an image of the couple’s wedding in pizza form.
2 Sports Fans
The Duke and Duchess really enjoy sports. Prince William, for instance, is a fan of the football team Aston Villa, which his helicopter pilot co-workers joke that it worries them. He has taken part in sports like skiing, tennis, surfing, soccer, rowing, hockey and shooting—but has less time to do those things now. The Duke even surfed at St. Andrews, Cornwall and Devon.
William is also left-handed, which made polo difficult for the Prince as it is a right hand only sport. The Duchess of Cambridge also enjoys sports. In school, and even now, Kate enjoys sports like hockey, netball, and tennis. Like her parents, Princess Charlotte has also begun to show her athletic side. She enjoys riding and soccer. Whereas George has not really gotten the hang of soccer yet, Charlotte seems to be taking more of her parents.
1 In Other News
In their free time, the royal couple really enjoys going to the movies or just watching movies. Prince William has been spotted watching The Avengers, Bridesmaids, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part Two and The Inbetweeners. Kate really enjoys photography.
Before she was married she took photographs of her family’s mail-order business. She even modeled for Vogue in June of 2016, for a whole 10-page spread. While she was in school, she spent some of her free time indulging in drama and music.
Kate also enjoys painting in her free time and trying new sports as well. The couple also spends a lot of time working with their charities and watching sports. In fact, William is the president of England’s Football Association and the Vice Royal Patron of the welsh Rugby Union.