Monday, 13 September 2021

James Middleton & Alizée Thevenet Marry in France's 'Flower Village'

The Cambridge family flew to the South of France for the wedding of James Middleton and Alizée Thevenet. The intimate nuptials took place on Saturday, with the happy groom sharing a lovely photo yesterday. The accompanying message read, "Mr & Mrs Middleton. Yesterday I married the love of my life surrounded by family, friends and of course a few dogs in the beautiful village of Bormes-les-Mimosas. Words cannot describe how happy I am."

James met French financial analyst Alizée in 2018 with a little help from his beloved spaniel Ella (Lupo's mother). During an afternoon at the South Kensington Club, Ella "made a beeline" for Alizée, prompting James to rush over to fetch her and apologise. The rest is history... Like so many couples, the pandemic meant original plans for the big day had to be shelved. Last September, James revealed, "It's a year since I asked Alizée to marry me… what a year it's been! Two homes, lockdown, two attempts at a wedding, a litter of pups, launching of new company, a beard shave and much more but the best part is that I get to share it with you Alizéé and I can't wait to take on whatever the future holds for us." In addition to personalised gifts company Boomf, the youngest Middleton sibling launched Ella & Co, an online dog food company.

There had been some uncertainty regarding the guest list, and if the Cambridge children would accompany their parents. The Daily Mail's Rebecca English confirmed William, Kate, George, Charlotte and Louis were all present. Michael and Carole Middleton, Pippa and James Matthews and their children Arthur and Grace, joined Alizéé's family and friends for the day. It does appear the group managed to avoid paparazzi. The Cambridges usually travel to France on the Duke of Westminster's jet, but I understand James Matthews owns a private jet. Regarding Covid protocols, the UK is currently on France's "amber list". In this case, the rules for fully vaccinated travellers do not require self-isolation or proof of a negative test. Instead, the family will have submitted proof of vaccination in addition to a 'déclaration sur l’honneur' (a sworn declaration). Upon return, William, Kate, George and Charlotte must get tested on or before the second day of their return. I have no doubt George, Charlotte and Louis were on pageboy and flower girl duty.

Page Six reports:

'Prince William and Kate Middleton jetted to France Saturday for the intimate wedding of her brother James Middleton to his French love, Alizee Thevenet, Page Six can reveal.

The Cambridges and their three young children, Prince George, Princess Charlotte and Prince Louis, were all on hand to witness Middleton and Thevenet finally say “I do” after twice postponing their nuptials due to COVID-19.

Jean-Gabriel, a retired French diplomat who now runs a rustic inn, told the Daily Mail in January 2019: “My daughter Alizee is very happy with James, they are very much in love. I know she is very happy,” he added. “We keep our fingers crossed for them.”

Between land and sea, the picturesque village of Bormes-les-Mimosas is considered one of France's most vibrantly flowered villages, making it the ideal backdrop for a wedding. Home to 700 plant species, including 90 variteties of Mimosa, the village won a coveted Gold Medal, which was awarded by the Entente Florale.

The hilltop village boasts panoramic views stretching to the Mediterranean coast, with medieval houses adorned by bougainvillea.

France Voyage writes:

'This village dates from the 12th century and reveals many medieval treasures. Wander the flower-filled streets and covered passages, slip down the alleyways, stop for a while on the adorable little squares decorated with fountains, and admire the various views before you. Here, the Golden Islands; over there, Le Lavandou.

Built between the 13th and 14th centuries, the castle of the Lords of Fos also offers a stunning view of the Hyères Islands as well as the Favière marina. The latter is also a lovely place for a seaside stroll. You may also find your way to the Church of St. Trophymus, built in the 18th century and inspired by the Romanesque style, or the Chapel of St. Francis of Paola, another Romanesque-influenced building dating from the 16th century. In the heights of Bormes-les-Mimosas, you can discover the charming 12th-century Chapel of Our Lady of Constance once you have travelled up the old way of the cross starting at the castle. Featuring an orientation table, this site perched at an altitude of 324 metres offers a superb view of the surrounding landscapes.'

A street in the village. Click here to learn more -- or plan a future trip :)

The Duchess of Cambridge wore a light green dress. People reports:

"It was a very nice and very family ceremony," said François Arizzi, mayor of the idyllic hilltop village of Bormes-les-Mimosas who officiated the civil union inside the local town hall.

In keeping with the casual spirit of the occasion, "Prince William did not have any formal attire but wore a beige and off-white suit," said Arrizi, who said Kate wore "a long dress of a very light green color."

"I was able to interact with [William and Kate] in very poor English," the mayor quipped. "We talked about the charms of Bormes-les-Mimosas and its climate, banalities.... It was a simple moment, and I wasn't more impressive than that!"

Now, I know the question on your minds... Will we see family photos released? As of writing, there's no word on this, but should anything emerge, I'll update the post immediately. Congratulations to James and Alizée!

************

In other news,  a special documentary entitled Prince Philip: The Royal Family Remembers will air on BBC One at 9 pm on September 22. More than a dozen royals, including all of the Queen and Prince Philip's children and adult grandchildren (William, Harry, Peter, Zara, Beatrice & Eugenie) will share fond memories, thoughts and reflections in tribute to the Duke's extraordinary life. Victoria Murphy reports the Duchess of Cambridge will not be participating, and neither will other royal in-laws, from what I've read. Her Majesty has given the broadcaster access to her cine-film collection. Additionally, members of the late Duke's staff will feature. It promises to offer a unique look at the "pioneering royals", with plenty of humour and fresh insights. At the moment, there's no information on broadcasts outside the UK. I'll share updates on this as they become available.

With all the talk of beautiful flowers, I was reminded the RHS Chelsea Flower Show was postponed this year until 21-26 September. I think it very likely we'll see the Duchess in attendance -- should the annual royal preview gathering go ahead. Thus far, there's been no word on a return to engagements for Kate. Should anything emerge, I'll update Kate's Calendar.

23 comments:

  1. Every good wish to the happy couple on their wedding. It seems that they managed to keep this as an intimate family and close friends event and totally avoided the cameras and media. The location for the wedding is breathtakingly beautiful. It must have been wonderful for all the Middleton family, complete with five little cousins, to be together.

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    1. And Laura, I hope they may share a few photos. It would be a welcomed treat.

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    2. I echo your post, Laura. And it sounds relatively casual, which I like.

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  2. Wow, Bormes-les-Mimosas looks like a dream! I would love to visit someday. Congratulations to James and Alizée! He has been through a lot and I wish them much happiness together.

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  3. On an unrelated note, do you still maintain the Royal Digest blog?

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    1. There's been a great deal of work done on the site over the summer. It should be completed soon. Thank you for your interest :)

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    2. That's fantastic to hear. I miss your posts on the other royals.
      C.

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  4. My best wishes to to newlyweds. What a beautiful little village. Her dress seem to be very nice from what one can see. Hope we will see some pictures in the very near future.

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  5. Wow!! Best wishes to them! How exciting it must have been for the whole family to travel to this lovely place on such a happy occasion ❣️💐 Thank you for the post, Charlotte!
    I do hope the new documentary about Prince Philip will be available later for watchers outside the UK!

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  6. Congratulations to James and Alizee!! I am glad they were able to have a private wedding though I am sorry not to see more pictures. Hopefully, in time we will see the pictures they want us to see. What a beautiful village! I would love to visit someday!!!

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  7. Wow, how beautiful! It seems like the perfect place for a country wedding! Hopefully we will see photos at some point, can't imagine that Kate didn't take the opportunity to take a Cambridge family photo to use for their Christmas card!! What a happy post, can just imagine the family and all the cousins having a grand time! Congratulations to James and his bride!!

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  8. It's so nice that they were able to have family and friends with them for a destination wedding. I still wonder about quarantining rules for the children. They won't be vaccinated and will be back to school soon. But whatever, I am sure they have thought about it beforehand. I would love to see one or two pictures, you know, the dress, the guests (Kate cough cough).
    C.

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  9. An engagement announcement for the Duchess tomorrow!

    The Duchess of Cambridge will visit RAF Brize Norton in Oxfordshire tomorrow where she will meet a number of those who supported the UK’s evacuation of civilians from Afghanistan. Operation PITTING, the largest humanitarian aid operation for more than 70 years, ran between 14th and 28th August, where in excess of 15,000 people were flown out of Kabul by the Royal Air Force.

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    1. Most Afghans fled overland to Pakistan because of war and violence. Currently Pakistan is hosting over 1.4M Afghan refugees (including the Talibans), but humanitarian organizations and UNHCR believe there are many more who are unregistered and have passed through or are now living in Pakistan since the war with Russia. I volunteer with an organization that helps resettle refugees and displaced people. There are approximately 3.5 M displaced people within Afghanistan and over 2.2 M refugees living in neighboring countries (Iran currently has nearly a million and after Russia invaded the country, over 3M fled to Iran or Pakistan). Most people don’t realize that many Afghans today were born outside Afghanistan.

      The press in its fury has covered the American pull-out with great theater when in fact Afghanistan has been forgotten except for the occasional news burst. If you work with service men and women, they’ll tell you this. Few people and certainly not tabloids understand what went on over there.

      About 5,000 British nationals with their families were evacuated along with 8,000 Afghans (and their families) who used to work for the UK and are considered at risk from the Taliban.

      The UK plans to resettle 20,000 in 5 years. 5,000 in 2021, but there is currently a backlog of
      70,000 applicants. Over the years, Germany and Turkey have taken in hundreds of thousands followed by Austria, Sweden, Greece, France, Switzerland, and Italy. The UK has deported over 15,000 Afghans back to Afghanistan since 2008. It has rejected over 32,000 asylum seekers since western forces took over Afghanistan.

      Despite the rhetorics and promises, the heroic talk is much faster than the walk. It remains to be seen if the UK will deliver on its commitment or if this will become another lie to be swept under the rug or worse, these refugees are treated as unwanted and a threat to the country by xenophobic minded people.

      Afghanistan has been a modern humanitarian crisis for over 50 years. It’s important to put this event into historical context. This breaking news event has already faded from the front page. I hope the plight of these people will not be used as an opportunistic patriotic prop because it dehumanizes the millions of lives affected for the heroics of the few.

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    2. Thanks, Anonymous 6.53 for the summary of how this crisis is being handled. You neglected to state that Canada has programs to resettle up to 20,000 vulnerable Afghan national. This is such a sad plight for these people, Those of us in safe, peaceful, prosperous countries are so very fortunate.

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  10. Absolutely wonderful news! Oh, to be a country mouse and sneak a peek! That 'poor mayor' had to be busting at the seams to keep this secret! He may need to step up his reporting though on what everybody was wearing though, very vague, so many questions! The little village looks absolutely charming, thank you Charlotte for taking us on this mental journey!

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  11. What a very beautiful village, the perfect setting. All good wishes to the happy couple.

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  12. No shade meant to anyone at all, just the general celeb culture, but I find it very refreshing that these mega-renowned (by proximity) people could pull off such a personal celebration in private! It would be great if more pulled one over on the paparazzi vultures.

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  13. I have always liked James Middleton and I hope for the very best for him and his new bride Alizee.

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  14. Tammy from California14 September 2021 at 19:30

    Such a natural beauty Alizee is. I wish them all the best and more grandchildren for Granny Carole who is so good at the job!

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  15. congratulations to the newlywed looking forward to the tribute to prince Phillip

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  16. A beautiful couple, a gorgeous town for a wedding. I'm sure the Middletons are thrilled! She seems like a perfect addition to a fantastic, close and truly loving family.

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  17. Best wishes to the newlyweds!!!

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