Prince Albert At 50
With a world of glamour as his kingdom, Prince Albert of Monaco could be forgiven for enjoying life to the full and simply having the best of times in and around Monaco.
But as the prince turns 50, his reputation is deservedly a more serious one among his fellow world leaders.
For far from spending all his time in Monte Carlo’s casino and rubbing shoulders with Grand Prix drivers, actresses and multi millionaires, he is just as likely to be found trekking the North Pole or maing an impassioned speech about the environment at events in Europe and around the world.
In the world of politics, Monaco has extended her influence since Albert became Sovereign by opening new consulates in both London and New York.
Closer to home as well the Prince has been busy, and there are plans to extend Monaco’s land base with a new island off Monte Carlo which will be ready in 2018, which will host a university, housing, a museum and new Monaco hotels.
Prince Albert’s mother was the American Oscar winning actress Grace Kelly, star of hit 1950’s films such as To Catch A Thief, Dial M for Murder and High Society, acting alongside screen legends such as Cary Grant and James Stewart.
With a Hollywood actress for a mother Prince Albert might find his stage of Monaco a glamourous one, but his campaigning for the environment has seen him turn to the world of politics with ease and increasing influence with decision makers.
One policy that Prince Albert has seen introduced since becoming Monaco’s Sovereign according to http://www.yourmonaco.com is the reduction of bus fares to one Euro, meaning that thousands of workers travelling in from Monaco to work in the casino and the hotels can travel by train and catch the bus from Fontvieille to Casino Square, instead of driving a car to work.
But the Prince has managed to balance a world of Grand Prix, casinos, yachts and glamourous lifestyles with the more serious but perhaps mundane subject of reducing Monaco’s carbon footprint, with the overall aim of the whole country becoming carbon neutral in a few years time, perhaps the first country in the world to achieve carbon neutral status.
But the world of glamour and celebrity magazines could very easily be focused on Monaco this year, not only for the Monaco Grand Prix - sometimes known as Monaco Formula One - but also because of rumours of the possibility of Prince Albert and Charlene Wittstock announcing their marriage.
Prince Albert and Charlene have been seeing each other for a couple of years now, and while for a time it looked as though their romance had cooled, she has been seen at official events in recent months accompanying the Prince. Charlene was a member of the South African 2000 Olympic team, representing her country in the swimming, and shares his passion for sport.
As Prince Albert turns 50 and Charlene recently celebrated her 30th birthday, there is good reason to assume that 2008 will be make or break year for the couple.
If there is a wedding, Monaco will do it in style!
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