With only five days to go until the wedding of Crown Princess Victoria and Daniel Westling the last preparations are underway in Stockholm before the wedding celebrations kick off on Wednesday.
On Wednesday night the county governors will host a buffet dinner for the 170 guests, including the bridal couple, at the old ship “Götheborg”, which will anchor off Skeppsholmen. Altogether 21 ships will be on parade around Skeppsholmen, including “Norge” and “Dannebrog”, the only two remaining royal yachts in the world, and the British naval vessel HMS “Kent”.
On Thursday the foreign guests will begin to arrive. About 30 guests will stay at the Royal Palace and a further 30 at Drottningholm Palace. The Royal Court has also rented half of Grand Hôtel, while the Danish and Norwegian royals will stay onboard their yachts.
In addition to those I mentioned on Friday more royal guests have now confirmed their presence for the wedding, among them the Queen of Spain (but not the King, who recently underwent lung surgery and nevertheless rarely attends weddings) accompanied by the Prince and Princess of Asturias, the Duchess of Lugo and the Duchess and Duke of Palma de Mallorca, the Sovereign Prince of Monaco, the Hereditary Prince and Princess of Liechtenstein, the ex-Crown Prince of Yugoslavia and his wife, and Countess Marianne Bernadotte af Wisborg.
The King and Queen of Sweden will on Thursday host a lunch for family and friends at Rosendal Palace, which was built as a pleasure palace for King Carl XIV Johan and is rarely used for such occasions as it has been a museum since 1913 and is rather fragile. In the evening the King and Queen will also host a private party at their home, Drottningholm Palace, for 200 guests.
On Friday the royal guests will go by boat from Drottningholm to have lunch at Sturehov Palace at Botkyrka and on the same day the final inspection of the bridal couple’s new home, Haga Palace, will take place.
Between 2.30 p.m. and 4 p.m. the royal family will attend the government’s reception in the City Hall for 700 guests from the Swedish municipalities and county assemblies and from 6.30 p.m. to 8 p.m. the government hosts 300 guests for dinner in the Eric Ericson Hall (the former Carl Johan Church, commonly known as Skeppsholmskyrkan, which ceased being a church nine years ago). Thereafter the Parliament of Sweden will welcome 1,600 guests to a performance in the Concert House in which 300 artists will take part. But the evening will not be over by then: the Royal Court holds a reception in the Grünewald Hall of the Concert House and then follows a party at Café Opera.
On Saturday, the day of the wedding, there are no scheduled events before the wedding takes place in the Cathedral at 3.30 p.m. Having made their vows, Crown Princess Victoria and Prince Daniel will leave the Cathedral at 6.40 p.m. to drive through the streets of Stockholm in an open landau accompanied by nearly 80 horses.
They will go around the Cathedral and down Slottsbacken, along Skeppsbron and across Norrbro to Gustaf Adolfs torg, continue along to and past Kungsträdgården, turn left into Hamngatan and cross Sergels torg, drive along Sveavägen, turn into Kungsgatan and drive on to Stureplan, down Birger Jarlsgatan and along Strandvägen across the bridge to Djurgården, where they at 5.10 p.m. will embark “Vasaorden”, a replica of a ceremonial barge first used for the wedding of the future King Carl XIII and Queen Hedvig Elisabeth Charlotta in 1774, and be rowed around Skeppsholmen under gun salutes to Logårdstrappan. There they will step ashore at 5.35 p.m. and walk up the stairs to the Royal Palace. At 6 p.m. they will appear on Lejonbacken to listen to 250 singers and the Army band perform. The gala banquet will take place at the Royal Palace and at midnight there will be a show at Strömmen for the general public.
On Sunday the wedding festivities will come to an end with the King and Queen hosting a brunch for their guests at Drottningholm.