Princess Chiara of Bourbon-Two Sicilies has hit back at rumours she’s dating Prince Christian of Denmark.
The Italian heiress, 18, took to her Instagram account to break her silence regarding speculation about her and the 17-year-old future King, insisting that ‘while we all enjoy dreaming of fairytales, what truly matters is reality.’
She wrote: ‘I would like to set the records straight with regards to the unfounded rumour that has been circulating about me. Prince Christian and I share a close friendship.’
The glamorous socialite added that ‘at first, this situation made me smile’ as she further discussed the ‘inaccurate information’.
However, Chiara, the daughter of Prince Carlo, Duke of Castro, and Princess Camilla, Duchess of Castro, added: ‘I believe it is now time to put an end to this rumour. When important events will occur in my life, I will be happy to share them with you.’
Her statement read: ‘I would like to set the records straight with regards to the unfounded rumour that has been circulating about me. Prince Christian and I share a close friendship.
‘However, some inaccurate information has been disseminated. At first, this situation made me smile; however, over time, this rumour has exceeded the limits of common sense and has spiralled becoming at odds with reality.
‘I believe it is now time to put an end to this rumour. When important events will occur in my life, I will be happy to share them with you. While we all enjoy dreaming of fairy tales, what truly matters is reality.’
Speculation on whether the two were dating began in May when a group photo emerged on social media of the duo standing close together at the Monaco Grand Prix.
It was then reported that the prince – son of Crown Prince Frederik and Princess Mary – had hosted Chiara in Denmark in June, making the brave decision to introduce her to his grandmother, the Danish monarch.
‘Chiara was in awe of the Queen – it’s been a dream of hers to meet such an iconic female ruler and she’s been practising her curtsies for months,’ the source told Women’s Day.
Chiara, who has spent her summer in St Tropez with her sister Carolina, 20, then recently told Italian paper Corriere: ‘We’ve known each other since we were little, my father Carlo is godfather to his younger sister.’
Her father Prince Carlo holds a claim to the now defunct throne of the former House of Bourbon-Two Sicilies, a cadet branch of the Spanish royal family , which descends from the Capetian Dynasty and ruled over Southern Italy and Sicily during the 18th and 19th centuries.
Meanwhile, her mother, Duchess Camilla, born Crociani, is the daughter of Italian industry Tycoon Camilla Crociani and the actress Edy Vessel.
While Chiara seemingly likes to appear in the public eye, it seems Prince Christian has kept his private life quiet and has said he won’t take a royal pension when he turns 18.
He will only take money from the royal grant if his father ascends the throne, and will remain limited in his royal duties until he turns 21.
Chasing the spotlight – and bragging about their connections – is perhaps unsurprising given the showbusiness past of Chiara’s family.
Chiara won’t inherit the titles but says she has ‘the same responsibility to continue the history of my royal family’.
She added: ‘I feel the link with the land where the Bourbons reigned. I’ve just been with my parents in Hungary, an official trip, and I’m learning the sense of role. I understood that Royal Highness perhaps means being worthy, not disappointing those who look at you. It’s a responsibility.’
Her mother, Princess Camilla, born Crociani, is the daughter of Italian industry tycoon Camilla Crociani and the actress turned dancer Edy Vessel.
While the Danish royal family is yet to comment on the rumours, Chiara is not afraid to flex her connections.
‘The Bourbon family is related to almost all the royal families or former rulers of Europe, it’s a kind of big club,’ she said.
‘King Felipe VI of Spain, he is my father’s cousin and I am very close to the heir, Leonor, who, like me, loves sports and in particular women’s football’.
‘Then the Belgian royals were often our guests in the summer in Saint-Tropez… and one of my best friends is Alexandra of Hanover, Carolina of Monaco’s youngest daughter.’
Camilla is not as close to her family, having been embroiled in a battle with her sister over their inheritance for over a decade.
The family feud began when their mother set up a trust fund for her two daughters, Cristiana and Camilla.
But when £100million of investments and art was taken from the fund in 2010 and transferred into Edy’s name, Cristiana feared the cash was being given to her sister.
The socialite began legal proceedings in 2011, claiming steps were being taken to block her from inheriting the family’s estate.
But Princess Camilla has refused to disclose the location of valuables including a Gaugin painting worth £49.9million.
Details of the feud emerged when Princess Camilla was ordered to pay a £2million fine by the Royal Court in Jersey which ruled she had ignored a court order.
Her application to stay the order has now been rejected and she has been given two months to pay the £2million fine. If she fails to do so, she faces a 12-month prison sentence.
Princess Camilla has lodged an appeal against the fine, which was issued on December 22, by claiming that she ‘does not have immediate access to £2million’.
She also requested an ‘application of stay’ – a suspension of proceedings – in relation to the order.
In rejecting this, the court pointed out that the princess had been aware for some time that a heavy fine was a possibility. The case is ongoing.
Chiara and her older sister Maria enjoy a life of luxury, spending their time between Italy, Monaco, Paris and Saint-Tropez, soaking up the sun, sporting designer labels and making the most of their family’s wealth.
They are also actively involved with charity work and rub shoulders with the most elite socialites of Europe, speaking English, French and Italian fluently.
The two princesses regularly share snaps of their glamorous lifestyles on Instagram, posting pictures from destinations around the globe, from Paris to Dubai and New York.
Because Chiara is the younger sibling, she will not inherit her father’s title and duties, or his claim to Head of the House of Bourbon-Two Sicilies – they will go to older sister Maria Carolina, Duchess of Calabria and of Palermo (or Carolina for short).
The pair aren’t afraid to show off their extravagant lifestyle either with frequent trips to Trump’s Mar-a-lago complex in Florida, and Chiara recently telling Italian media about her trip to Denmark.
Who are the ancient royal family of Bourbon-Two Sicilies?
The Royal House of Bourbon-Two Sicilies – or Bourbon des Deux Siciles – is an ancient branch of the Spanish royal family which ruled parts of southern Italy for more than 100 years from 1734 to 1861. Its descendants still carry the name today, some 150 years later.
The line descends from Philippe de Bourbon, Duke of Anjou, grandson of Louis XIV of France (1638–1715), who established the Bourbon dynasty in Spain in 1700 as Philip V (1683–1746).
In 1759 King Philip’s younger grandson was granted the kingdoms of Naples and Sicily, becoming Ferdinand IV and III (1751–1825), respectively, of those realms. His descendants occupied the joint throne (renamed ‘Kingdom of the Two Sicilies’ in 1816) until 1860.
The family, then led by Francis II, was overthrown in 1860 by Italian general Giuseppe Garibaldi, who proclaimed a dictatorship on behalf of Victor Emmanuel II, the the King of Piedmont-Sardinia and later King of Italy. The Kingdom of the Two Sicilies and the Kingdom of Sardinia were merged into the newly formed Kingdom of Italy.
The deposed Francis II and his wife spent time in Rome as guests of the Pope where they ran a government in exile. They left the city before it was occupied by the Italians in 1870.
They led a wandering life from then on, living in Austria, France, and Bavaria.
Francis II died in 1894 and was succeeded by his half-brother, Prince Alfonso, who was in turn succeeded by his son, Prince Ferdinand Pius, Duke of Calabria.
The succession has been disputed since Ferdinand’s death in 1960 because he had six daughters and no sons to carry the family line.
Both his nephew Infante Alfonso, Duke of Calabria, and brother Prince Ranieri, Duke of Castro, laid claim to the throne. This feud continues between their descendants today.
Chiara and Carolina are the daughters of Prince Carlo, Duke of Castro, grandson of Prince Ranieri. The claimant on the other side of the family is Prince Pedro, Duke of Calabria, grandson of Infante Alfonso.
Prince Carlo, who only has two daughters, has overturned centuries of male primogeniture and has stated his title will pass to his eldest daughter, Carolina.
Prince Carlo married his wife Camilla, daughter of Italian film star Edoarda Crociani, better known as Edy Vessel, in 1998 at Monte Carlo cathedral. Camilla’s sister Cristina revealed their mother was obsessed with her daughters marrying princes.
As Head of the House of Bourbon-Two Sicilies, Carlo holds many honours, including Sovereign Knight Grand Cross with Collar of the Order of Saint Januarius, of the Two Sicilian Sacred Military Constantinian Order of Saint George and Order of Saint Ferdinand and Merit.
Today Carlo and Camilla are ‘very active in promoting the cultural, artistic, historical, and spiritual identity of southern Italy,’ according to their official website. They split their time between homes in Monte Carlo and Paris.
Camilla is also active in charity work and gives her time to the Red Cross and UNICEF, as well as the Association Monaco Against Autism, Amitié sans Frontières et la Princess Grace of Monaco Foundation.
She campaigns against animal cruelty and is in charge of her own non-profit organisation, the Camilla of Bourbon Charitable Foundation, which works with the government in Mauritius to preserve its wildlife and promote sustainable development.