Wednesday 14 November 2018

Portrait of a modern monarchy: Sweden's royal family share their private summer photo album

Crown Princess Victoria with husband Daniel and Princess Estelle and Prince Oscar
Crown Princess Victoria with husband Daniel and Princess Estelle and Prince Oscar
Prince Carl Philip and wife Sofia, with sons Alexander and Gabriel. Picture: Anna Lena Ahlstrom/Swedish Royal Court
Crown Princess Victoria with husband Daniel, children Estelle and Oscar and King Carl Gustaf and Queen Silvia. Picture: Anna Lena Ahlstrom/Swedish Royal Court
Princess Madeleine with her family. Picture: Anna Lena Ahlstrom/Swedish Royal Court
Caitlin McBride

Caitlin McBride

Sweden's royal family are masters at the balancing act of satisfying public interested tasked with maintaining some semblance of privacy in their very public roles.

While Britain's royal family are famously clandestine about their holiday time - whether it be Mustique and Norfolk for Kate Middleton and Prince William, Toronto for Meghan Markle, or Balmoral for Queen Elizabeth - and prefer to only share tidbits where unavoidable.

Prince Carl Philip and wife Sofia, with sons Alexander and Gabriel. Picture: Anna Lena Ahlstrom/Swedish Royal Court
Prince Carl Philip and wife Sofia, with sons Alexander and Gabriel. Picture: Anna Lena Ahlstrom/Swedish Royal Court

Other European royal families like Spain, where King Felipe and Queen Letizia organise a regular summer photocall with their daughters Leonor (12) and Princess Sofia (11) on their annual jaunt to Mallorca, understand that a certain amount of access goes a long way, especially in keeping the press, and paparazzi on your side.

Sweden's royal family also understand this practice, and have shared photos of their summer at Solliden palace in Öland, an island on the Baltic Coast, with pictures released through the Swedish Royal Court. Each shot is carefully set-up to reflect the their respective personalities, especially with their spirited young children.

Crown Princess Victoria, next in line to the throne, joins her husband Daniel and their children Princess Estelle (six) and Prince Oscar (two) in a beaming portrait in which Oscar joyfully rides a pony while his big sister helps. They also have an exclusive shot with King Gustaf and Queen Silvia in the property's stables, all suitably dressed in blue blood casualwear: colourful chinos for the men and crisp white for the women (and little Estelle).

Similarly, Prince Carl Philip and his wife Princess Sofia proudly hold their 'Irish twins' - Prince Alexander (two) and Prince Gabriel (11), born just over one year apart, both in matching blue linen shirts and khaki shorts.

Crown Princess Victoria with husband Daniel, children Estelle and Oscar and King Carl Gustaf and Queen Silvia. Picture: Anna Lena Ahlstrom/Swedish Royal Court
Crown Princess Victoria with husband Daniel, children Estelle and Oscar and King Carl Gustaf and Queen Silvia. Picture: Anna Lena Ahlstrom/Swedish Royal Court

In the last shot, Princess Madeleine and her husband Christopher O'Neill pose alongside their three children Princess Leonore (four), Prince Nicolas (three) and Princess Adrienne (five months). The family announced earlier this month that they are moving to Florida for O'Neill work as an investment banker. They are currently based in London, where Mr O'Neill works, but often return home to Sweden to fulfill royal duties and all of their children were baptised in Drottningholm Palace Chapel in Stockholm, Sweden.

Separately, Victoria has followed in Kate Middleton (and her sister-in-law Sofia's) footsteps by getting behind the camera for some candid shots of her children and sharing them on their official Instagram page, a significantly more personal touch than the Kensington Palace accounts which are comprised exclusively of coverage of senior members of the royal family at events and promoting their personal causes.

Princess Madeleine with her family. Picture: Anna Lena Ahlstrom/Swedish Royal Court
Princess Madeleine with her family. Picture: Anna Lena Ahlstrom/Swedish Royal Court

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