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Prince Albert II of Monaco, pictured with his fiance Charlene Wittstock at the funeral of Albert's aunt Antoinette last week. Lionel Cironneau/AP
Princely Visit

Monaco's Prince Albert to visit Ireland next week

Prince Albert II, the current ruler of the principality, will visit Ireland next week – 50 years after his late parents.

IRELAND WILL PLAY host to a state visit from the ruler of Monaco next week, it has been confirmed.

His Serene Highness, Prince Albert II, will visit from Monday to Wednesday of next week, accompanied by his fiancée, Charle Wittstock – marking the 50th anniversary of the visit of his late parents, Prince Rainier III and Princess Grace.

Albert will visit Trinity College, where he will participate in the recording of a podcast, as well as visiting the Docklands area and the Irish Marine Institute at Oranmore in Galway.

He will also hold meetings with the Taoiseach, Enda Kenny, environment minister Phil Hogan, agriculture minister Simon Coveney, and Dublin’s Lord Mayor, Gerry Breen.

A state dinner in honour of His Serene Highness will also be held by President Mary McAleese and her husband Martin.

Albert will be accompanied by a delegation from the Monaco Chamber of Economic Development at certain events.

Among his engagements will also be the inauguration of an exhibition in honour of his late mother at Farmleigh House, where Albert will also host a reception to highlight Irish literature and art.

Albert has a significant Irish connection, in that his late mother Grace (née Kelly) was of Irish stock: born to Irish-American parents, her own father ‘Jack’ Kelly won three Olympic gold medals in rowing for his adopted country of the USA.

The Princess Grace Irish Library in Monaco, which was established in 1984, is acknowledged as being responsible for creating a hub of Irish culture in the Mediterranean.

Princess Grace, née Grace Kelly, was a famed actress in her own right before she married Reinier in April 1956. Albert and Ms Wittstock are to marry in July of this year.

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