LONDON – As if Britain’s royal family didn’t have enough going on in 2018 with the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge’s third child due in April, and the wedding of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle in May, Buckingham Palace said Monday that Princess Eugenie of York is set to tie the knot.
The youngest daughter of Prince Andrew and Sarah, Duchess of York will wed her long-term beau Jack Brooksbank at St. George’s Chapel in Windsor Castle in the autumn, the same venue that Harry and Meghan have chosen for their May 19 nuptials.
Eugenie, 27, met Brooksbank, the 31-year-old manager of the nightclub Mahiki and a brand ambassador for Casamigos Tequila, while skiing in Verbier, Switzerland in 2010, having been introduced by mutual friends. Rumors had been flying for more than a year that they were set to be engaged.
“Her Royal Highness and Mr Brooksbank became engaged in Nicaragua earlier this month,” the palace said in a statement. “The wedding will take place in the autumn of 2018 at George’s Chapel in Windsor, with further details to be announced in due course.”
The younger sister of Princess Beatrice of York and a first cousin of Prince William and Prince Harry, Eugenie is a graduate of Newcastle University and works as an art gallery director and philanthropist. She is granddaughter of Queen Elizabeth, and eighth in line to the throne although she does not carry out royal duties or receive funds from the Privy Purse, a Parliamentary-approved allowance for the private expenses of the monarch.
Editor-in-chief of Majesty Magazine Ingrid Seward described the royal as “the most charming and adorable lovely lady. She’s such fun and she’s naughty, too. She is a real winner and a great addition to any social gathering. She also has a well-developed sense of philanthropy and will do anything to help a friend.”
However, Seward doesn’t believe her style is up to par. “She looks as if she has been told what to put on – but I know she hasn’t. She has no natural flair and if she has – she doesn’t have the confidence to use it.”
In the past, the British press has mocked the royal sisters’ style. Princess Beatrice was criticized for the “pretzel hat” she wore during the wedding of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge in 2011, although the sisters sense of dress has improved since then.
Of late, Eugenie has opted for streamlined silhouettes such in the form of shifts and knee-length dresses and has worn designers including Valentino, Vivienne Westwood, Anya Hindmarch and Louis Vuitton. She has also accessorized with shoes and bags from Jimmy Choo Russell & Bromley, Kurt Geiger and L.K. Bennett.
“I think (the public) thinks that she doesn’t have any style, and that she dresses like an old lady,” said Seward. “They are quite nasty about both York girls, who always seem to turn up in something they simply shouldn’t be wearing.”
Seward believes that Princess Eugenie will chose a classic wedding dress and pointed to designers such as Bruce Oldfield, Sarah Burton, Amanda Wakely, Jenny Peckham as possible candidates. “It will probably be October, so I would love to see her quite covered up with long lace sleeves and a plain bodice and a beautifully tailored cream gown. The plainer the better and slender and body-hugging with a sweeping long skirt billowing out at the bottom. It should be a U.K. designer – but not over the top on price. I think couture would send out wrong message as mom Fergie is so notoriously extravagant.”
Princesses Eugenie and Beatrice are the only two grandchildren of Queen Elizabeth to hold the title Princess of the United Kingdon of Great Britain and Northern Ireland.
She supports charities including Teenage Cancer Trust, Children in Crisis and Elephant Family. Eugenie has been an associate director at Hauser & Wirth since 2015 and prior to her role at the gallery, she worked at Paddle8, the auction house. She attended Marlborough College and while at university studied art history, English literature and politics.