Almost sixteen years have passed since Albert and his wife, Princess Charlene, met for the first time. In 2000, the future ruler of Monaco saw Miss Wittstock perform during a sports event. The Crown Prince, experienced in love affairs, was wrong to think that he could easily win the heart of a 22-year-old Olympian swimmer. It took him six years to talk Charlene into moving to the Principality. A year later, Monegasque people learned about the upcoming royal marriage.
In 2015, on the occasion of the 10th anniversary of Albert’s reign, the French magazine Paris Match published an interview with Princess Charlene. The former Olympian swimmer opened up about her life with the Sovereign Prince of Monaco. The interview took place in the Prince’s Palace full of books and toys. Since the birth of the royal twins, Monaco’s ruler boldly faces the future and tackles serious matters with vigour and determination, as he knows that his wife will support him in the most difficult moments of life.
The first ten years of Albert’s reign
Princess Charlene told Paris Match that Prince Albert II’s engagement in Monaco life has always been impressive. He seems to have boundless energy and passion for noble projects and objectives and has done so many things within Monaco and abroad. She said that he has accomplished them in a subtle way but with great determination.
In ten years, Prince Albert has not only consolidated what his father had built, but has also given a new dimension to his country. She explained that he has invested in building bridges with Monaco’s partners and neighbours, maintaining relationships based on transparency, exchange and justice.
As a husband as a ruler
Princess Charlene feels that Albert got his strength of conviction from his father, Prince Rainier III. She describes him as a sportsman with team spirit, open and very attentive. All these qualities, she said, make him a remarkable head of state who has a very clear vision for the Principality.
What is his vision?
She remembers that during his speech for his ascension to the throne, Prince Albert quoted from his father: “Let us remember that it is not necessary to be a great country to dream big. We don’t have to be a great nation to make our dreams come true”. This challenge, she said, became Prince Albert’s mission. She lists his priorities as high living standards, education, economic development, sports, health, and the environment. She believes Albert shows a great sense of responsibility and courage in the face of the ‘difficult times’ we are living in.
What will she teach her children, the heirs to throne, and what are their characters like so far?
She describes her son, Jacques, as extremely curious and ‘a real boss’. Likening him to his father, she said he grows fast, needs little sleep and has his eyes open all the time. Her young twins seem to ‘have their own world’ where they communicate with each other and finds it very interesting to watch them communicate. Their daughter, Gabriella, has developed the attitude of a little princess and she find it is quite amusing. Her favourite colour and she doesn’t’ take no for answer! Both children have inherited a passion for the water and Princess Charlene believes that they will be swimming long before they start walking.
Prince Albert as a father
Princess Charlene describes Albert as a wonderful father who adores his kids. She said family life is very important for him, and he spends time with the kids whenever he can. Charlene finds it “touching” to watch him talking to the twins. She said: “I often see him holding Jacques or Gabriella in his arms with infinite tenderness.”
Source : Paris Match magazine