Prince William and Kate Middleton met several of their fans and well-wishers during their visit to Mumbai, as part of their India and Bhutan tour. However, the British royal couple’s visit turned out to be dream come true for 93-year-old restaurant owner Boman Kohinoor. The nonagenarian is the owner of Mumbai’s iconic Britannia restaurant and a self-proclaimed "biggest fan" of the royals.
Kohinoor became the star of a social media campaign after he expressed his desire to meet the couple. As luck would have it, and after the campaign's video went viral, he finally got to meet the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge in an out-of-schedule arrangement at the Taj Mahal Palace hotel, just before a Bollywood reception.
— Kensington Palace (@KensingtonRoyal) April 11, 2016
The short video was put together by Condé Nast Traveller India. In the video, Kohinoor talks about how he had received a signed letter from Queen Elizabeth II, whom he invited to his iconic restaurant. Around the time of the 75th jubilee celebrations of the British monarch, he received a life-sized cut-out of the queen that stands framed in his eatery.
After the video went viral on social media, Kohinoor was invited by William and Kate for a meet-up. “I met Their Royal Highnesses this evening at the Taj. They were very kind and asked me about my restaurant and my favorite dishes there,” Kohinoor told Condé Nast Traveller in an exclusive interview.
He added that he told Will and Kate about the berry pulao (berry rice) served at his restaurant Britannia & Co and how it was made using his late wife’s recipe. When the Duke and Duchess asked him if he knew to cook, Kohinoor said he did not, but served his customers well. The royal family’s number one fan asked the couple to give his love to their grandmother the queen and love to their kids Prince George and Princess Charlotte.
Kohinoor said he wished he had more time to spend with William and Kate, but was thankful for the opportunity. The nonagenarian even invited the royal couple to dine at his local eatery, which is famed for its cuisine as well as the royal family memorabilia that adorns the restaurant walls.
A spokesperson for Kensington Palace said the three spent five minutes talking. Staff from The British Deputy High Commission visited him in person to invite him to the Taj. An insider added that William and Kate were floored by Kohinoor’s warmth.