Prince William and Kate Middleton will be spending Christmas at Anmer Hall for the first time, according to Vanity Fair. The home has been undergoing extensive renovations since Queen Elizabeth II gave the estate to them as a wedding gift, and it seems to finally be ready for the royals.
Luckily the residence is close to Sandringham House, where the Queen hosts dinner on Christmas Eve. However, Kate’s family reportedly won’t be at that dinner because the Queen didn’t send them an invite. The snub wasn’t out of spite, but out of necessity. There just isn’t enough space at Sandringham House.
“The Queen is fond of Kate and doesn’t mean to exclude her family – indeed she has broken many of the old rules for them in the past. But if all of her children and grandchildren’s wives had their families to lunch, there wouldn’t be enough room, even at Sandringham House’s dining room,” a source told the Daily Mail.
The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge will reportedly attend the dinner at Sandringham House and attend a Christmas Day service the next morning. They’re expected to attend St. Mary Magdalene Church, the Mirror reports. They went to the same church last year, but Prince George wasn’t in attendance. No word on if George will be there this year.
Later, the couple will have Christmas dinner at Anmer Hall. The Middleton family is invited, but Kate’s siblings, Pippa and James, might not bring dates. Vanity Fair reports that they still haven’t been told if they’re allowed to bring guests to the family affair, even though they're both in relationships. James has been dating TV personality Donna Air while Pippa has been in a relationship with stock broker Nico Jackson.
While planning any holiday gathering can be stressful, it seems that the family will likely relax at the end of the day with the “Downton Abbey” Season 5 Christmas special. Prince William himself told “Downton” executive producer Gareth Neame that he was looking forward to the episode.
“He said that he was really looking forward to the episode that we run on Christmas Day [in the U.K.], which is the season finale [for American viewers]. . .so we know that William and Kate are fans,” Neame said.
The holiday is almost here and it seems that the family is ready to host a celebration. Kate already proved that she is in the Christmas spirit on her quick trip to New York when she wrapped Christmas gifts at the Northside Center for Child Development. Prince George has even shown some holiday cheer in his new photos.