Royal wedding: Victoria and Letizia relive magic of their own wedding days

29 APRIL 2011

From the Netherlands to Qatar and the tiny African kingdom of Lesotho, royal houses around the world had sent representatives to join in the celebrations with Prince William and his lovely young bride.

For a number of VIPs, the atmosphere around Westminster Abbey, with its air of excitement and the fluttering flags, must have been reminiscent of their own weddings.

Guests like Crown Princess Letizia would have had a fairly good idea of what Kate Middleton, soon to become the Duchess of Cambridge, was going through.

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The Spanish royal – who arrived looking elegant in a dusky pink gown on the arm of husband Crown Prince Felipe – comes from an ordinary background herself.

She was a newsreader when she met and fell in love with her prince.

Then there was Prince Daniel, the former gym instructor who won the heart of a future queen and her nation. He will certainly have been thinking back to his recent marriage to Crown Princess Victoria of Sweden.

 



Wreathed in smiles and holding hands with Daniel, Victoria still looked like a newlywed although her wedding was almost a year ago. At Friday's emotional ceremony, she was lovely in a long-sleeved peach Elie Saab creation.

Maxima of the Netherlands, a former businesswoman, who has developed a reputation as one of Europe's most vivacious royals, looked pretty in a cinched-in skirt suit with flower detailing.

She was escorted by husband Willem-Alexander, the heir to the Dutch throne.

And Princess Mathilde of Belgium, on the arm of her husband Prince Philippe, further complemented the glamorous royal contingent in a vibrant turquoise number.

For  'nearlyweds' Prince Albert of Monaco and Charlene Wittstock, the grand proceedings must have seemed like a dress rehearsal for their own nuptials, which will take place in early July.



Charlene, whose bridal dress will be made by Armani, was chic in a grey-blue structured coat dress.

Other notable foreign royals taking their seats included Prince William's godfather - ex-King Constantine of Greece, who is Prince Charles' second cousin on his father's side. Deposed in 1973, his family are close to the British royals.

On hearing of his godson's engagement, he wrote advising him to concentrate while flying on RAF duty rather than think about Kate, because "it's dangerous flying a helicopter when you're in love".

The former monarch was accompanied by his wife, Queen Anne-Marie son Crown Prince Pavlos and his uber-glam wife, Marie-Chantal. And completing the group was the couple's eldest son, 12-year-old Prince Constantine.

Another distant relative to arrive was Queen Sofia of Spain. She was born Princess Sofia of Greece and is King Constantine's sister. 

Prince Harry's good friend, Prince Seeison Bereng Seeiso of Lesotho was accompanied by his wife Princess Mabereng Seeiso.

The African royal helped set up childrens' charity Sentebale, meaning Forget Me Not, in memory of their late mother five years ago.

Don't forget to buy your souvenir edition of HELLO! with all the fantastic photos of the big day, on sale Sunday May 1

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