Thursday, February 18, 2010

General News and Updates

Grand Duke Jean visited the MUDAM. This was also mentioned in Wort but I seem to have lost the link.

The birthday's of Archduke Carl-Christian, Archduke Christoph, Princess Marie-Astrid, and Princess Alexandra came without birthday wishes from me. Happy belated birthday! The 29th anniversary of the wedding of Grand Duke Henri and Grand Duchess Maria-Teresa was 14 Feb. This is an impressive milestone! Congrats!

Just letting all my fellow Lux lovers know that Félix is in a serious relationship  with Claire and has been for some time. I've been about 95% sure of this for a while now. I've finally had it confirmed from an irrefutable source that the information I had was accurate. Our dear Felix is unavailable. :(

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Family hosts working dinner

On Friday The Grand Ducal Family hosted a working dinner at Chateau de Berg.

They hosted Nobel Laureate Professor Muhammad Yunus and Mr. Hans Reitz who is the founder of the Grameen Creative Lab. The Grameen Creative Lab is currently working on a project with Professor Yunus which includes the World Economic Forum and private meetings with more than 20 heads of state. They are both distinguished men with admirable goals and achievements. I encourage you to read about their projects.

Some thoughts from the picture:

1. The Grand Duchess and Mr. Reitz - clearly shopping together when she purchased her dress and he aquired those leg warmers.

2. The Grand Duke - the picture of posh - as always.

3. Guillaume - just reminding us why I coined the term "Gui-Yum" for him.

4. Sebastien - when did you get taller than Guillaume???

5. Felix - I see you have finally taken my advice and spoken with Guillaume about proper beard techniques. It's a good look for you. Also, I mentioned some weeks ago on this blog's forum that Felix was sporting a beard, and now we have a public picture of it.....proof positive that I know what I'm talking about.

6. Professor Yunus - the picture of smiling professional dignity.

Friday, February 5, 2010

The Hereditary Grand Duke, Prince Guillaume and Princess Sibilla at MUDAM

Guillaume was at the Museum of Modern Art to aid in the presentation of the Edward Steichen Award. For some reason it is not mentioned on the official website that Prince Guillaume and Princess Sibilla were also in attendance.

Guillaume was wearing his wonderful beautiful beard. He seems to have aged recently - for the better. I think that retailers in Luxembourg should start refusing to sell razors to Guillaume. ;)

The official website also has a mention of the forum that The Grand Duchess and Princess Margaretha attended with a few more photographs.

Thursday, February 4, 2010

The Grand Duchess opens dyslexia forum and visits exhibition with Princess Margaretha

On Tuesday The Grand Duchess gave the opening address for the first World Dyslexia Forum at UNESCO. The forum is 3-5 February at UNESCO in Paris. There is actually a lot of information about the forum online. If you are interested in the topic it's worth a Google.

The Grand Duchess has been an UNESCO Goodwill Ambassador since 1997.

The Grand Duchess and her sister-in-law Princess Margaretha of Liechtenstein (nee Princess of Luxembourg) also visited the exhibition "Expression is More Than Just Words" as part of the program.

It is nice to see Princess Margaretha out on an engagement with The Grand Duchess. Princess Margaretha and her sister Archduchess Marie-Astrid (nee Princess of Luxembourg) are my two favorite royal ladies. Archduchess Marie-Astrid accompanied The Grand Duchess on an engagement in December. Both ladies frequently accompany their aunt Queen Fabiola to events in Belgium. I am in favor of seeing them at Luxembourg related events more often.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

The Grand Duke and The Grand Duchess attend conference on gender equality

On Monday The Grand Duke and The Grand Duchess attended a conference on gender equality in politics. In January The Grand Duchy initiated a National Action Plan (NAP) on gender equality and equality in general. This program will last until 2014.

There were also a series of workshops that were designed to make sure the necessary agencies were aware of the policies of the NAP and to make them active participants in the program.

Manuel Dias has a gallery of the event.

The Grand Duke, of course, has a progressive and egalitarian view on gender equality. He has made it known that he wants the succession to the throne to be based on birth order alone. Luxembourg and Liechtenstein are currently the only European monarchies that limit succession to males only. Female succession in Luxembourg is only permitted after all available dynastic males have exhausted. So, technically Princess Alexandra and her aunts (both of whose marriages are certainly considered to have been with consent) have places in the succession but they would rank so far down that it's hardly worth bothering with. I find this unfortunate given that The Grand Duchess Charlotte was an exceptionally popular monarch.

The Grand Duke has also admitted Princess Alexandra to the Order of the Gold Lion of the House of Nassau. This is the highest honor in The Grand Duchy. Men who are brothers or sons of a Grand Duke (or reigning Grand Duchess) are members of The Order from birth and receive their insignia upon their majority. Prince Sebastien is, for example, a member of the order since his father became Grand Duke but he will not receive his insignia until after 16 April 2010. Personally, I feel that Princess Margaretha and Princess Marie-Astrid should also be included in The Order since we are speaking of gender equality. In terms of equality, Princess Elisabeth, Princess Alix and Princess Marie-Gabriele should also be included since they are the remaining daughters of The Grand Duchess Charlotte.

For more information on the orders of Luxembourg you can view the information provided by the government.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Fire at the Grand Ducal Palace

On Tuesday a washing machine or dryer in the basement of the Grand Ducal Palace caught fire. The responding firemen had to use oxygen masks due to the heavy smoke inside the palace. The fire was safely contained and it appears that there is only minor damage limited to the laundry area. The area of the palace had to be vented and evacuated due to the smoke.

I am glad that the fire/smoke alarm went of so quickly and that further damage to the historic structure was prevented. I am also exceptionally glad that no one was injured. Although, I really hope the smoke damage to the historic paintings, furnishings and walls is minimal.

RTL also has a similar article with different pictures. You can clearly see The Grand Duke chatting happily (and safely!) with the firemen who responded.

The Station made light of the situation by saying that The Grand Duke shouldn't try to cram all his laundry in one load and that if you spot a burn mark on His uniform you know where it came from. ;)

There is also a mention in Tageblatt. I suspect this will make all the Luxembourg news sources because even a small fire in the the Palace (or any other building associated with The Grand Duke) is a big deal.