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Celebrities gather for the royal jubilee in Athens

15 September 2014 / 21:09:20  GRReporter
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On 18th September 1964, Constantine King of Greece wedded the 18-year-old Anna-Maria Princess of Denmark in the cathedral of Athens. Members of royal families and various nobles arrived in Athens from all over the world to be guests at the event. Since then many things have changed in Greece, including the position of the royal family in Greek society, especially after the referendum repealing the monarchy in 1974. Yet, half a century later, Constantine and Anna-Maria decided to celebrate the 50th anniversary of their wedding in Athens with their children and grandchildren and other noble guests. So Athens is expected to recapture days and nights filled with real glamour.

The 18-year-old bride is smiling slightly embarrassed in the black and white photos. Her veil was made of handmade lace and her dress – from lace and silk. The young king next to her looks extremely confident.

Constantine took the throne a few months before the wedding - in March 1964. The 24-year-old king - a keen fan of sailing - even won a gold medal in the Dragon category at the Olympic Games in Rome. His marriage to Anna-Maria took place six months later, since according to press releases from the time he could not wait any longer, overwhelmed by the beauty of the youngest daughter of the Danish King Frederick IX, with whom he fell in love when he first saw her in Copenhagen. In 1959, the young prince was travelling together with his parents in Denmark, Sweden and Norway when he met the then 13-year-old princess. They met again two years later in Denmark.

After this meeting Constantine told his parents that he wanted to marry Anna-Maria. At the wedding of his sister Sofia with Juan Carlos who later ascended to the Spanish throne, all noticed that he danced only with the Princess of Denmark.

Their flirting become a subject of keen interest both for the cream of Athenian society and for the ordinary citizens of the capital. According to some commentators their story somewhat quietened down the row concerning the wedding dowry of Sofia.

The marriage of Sofia and Juan Carlos

50 years later, the Queen of Spain is quite likely to arrive in Athens alone. Stories on the likelihood of Juan Carlos divorcing Sofia are increasing in the Spanish press.

For Constantine and Anna-Maria this half century has also been filled with many events. Constantine was king from 1967 to 1974, when 69.2 percent of Greeks voted against the monarchy and Greece became a republic. After a stay of several years in Rome the family moved to London, where they lived with their five children - Alexia, Pavlos, Nikolaos, Theodora and Philippos.

In 2013 Constantine and Anna-Maria returned permanently to Greece. They live in Athens and in the seaside town of Porto Heli, where they have a house, and this year they have organized their 50th wedding anniversary.

Their son Pavlos with his wife and daughter

In the coming days they await the arrival of their children and grandchildren, as well as their high-ranking guests. The royals are expected to arrive in the most advanced private aircraft. Instead of carriages with white horses on the streets of Athens there will be luxurious cars and the royal chambers will be replaced by luxury hotel suites with designer furniture in a minimalist style. Most of the guests will stay at the Hilton hotel.

Their son Nikolaos and his wife Tatiana Blatnik

According to sources the king of the Netherlands Wilhelm Alexander will be among them with his wife Maxima. Other sources say that the former Queen of Persia (modern Iran) Farah Diba, would have attended the festivities but the latest information is that she has not arrived in Athens.

 

The King of the Netherlands William Alexander and Queen Maxima

The cocktail party and the dinner will be held in the Sea (former Royal) Club. Before the central event there will be many smaller lunches and cocktails.

 

Spain's King Felipe and Queen Letizia

They will be attended by members of the royal families of Denmark, Belgium, Serbia, Sweden, Norway and ship owners such as the Martinos and Lemos families.

However, the nephew of Constantine and King of Spain, Felipe, is unlikely to attend the anniversary and no one knows whether there will be a representative of the British royal family.

 

Prince Charles and Camilla Parker Bowles

Tags: Celebrities Greek royal family anniversary wedding Constantine
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