Monaco’s Prince Albert is the first head of state to test positive for coronavirus

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I’ve heard and read stories about Monaco’s absolute ruler, Prince Albert, many times over the years. It’s generally the same story: that the residents of Monaco quite like him, and he is known as a thoughtful, benevolent sovereign who treats his people well. Generally, Monaco’s citizens are there for the tax-free lifestyle with spectacular views of the Mediterrean, so they overlook his tacky personal dramas and his tacky wife, Her Serene Highness Princess Charlene. Charlene and Albert have settled into a quiet marriage where they almost entirely live apart and he sees their five-year-old twins often enough. The twins, Jacques and Gabriella, are Albert’s only heirs born in wedlock. He’s also father to Jazmin Grace and Alexandre, both teenagers and neither is an “heir” to the Grimaldi throne. I bring this up because Albert’s health is in danger. Albert is 62 years old and he’s the first head of state to test positive for coronavirus.

Monaco announced Thursday that Prince Albert II has tested positive for COVID-19, making him the first head of state and reigning monarch to go public with a diagnosis for the coronavirus disease sweeping the world. In a statement, the Prince’s Palace of Monaco said Albert had been tested at the start of the week and that his condition is not cause for any worry.

He is being treated by his doctor and specialists at the Princess Grace Hospital Centre, which is named for his late mother, the former actress Grace Kelly. Albert is said to be continuing to work in his private apartments and is in touch with the members of his cabinet and government.

“His Serene Highness urges the people of Monaco to respect containment measures and to limit contact with others to a minimum,” said the palace. “Only the rigorous observance of these containment rules will stop the spread of the virus.”

Monaco currently has at least seven confirmed cases of the virus. The prince, 62, is among the world’s wealthiest royals and has ruled Monaco since the death of his father, Rainier III, in 2005.

[From Buzzfeed]

I honestly find it a bit suspicious that Albert wouldn’t release a photo or a video of himself just to ease his people’s minds, you know? Do it Tom Hanks-style, release a social media video or just a photo and say “listen to the experts, and btw I’m fine.” He must not be doing very well. I’m sure the doctors are looking after him very well though. Notice that they don’t even make mention of Charlene either – Charlene was probably at their other home, out of Monte Carlo, and I wonder if she even bothered to call or visit. Not that she would have even been allowed to visit, come to think of it. Which probably suited her just fine. And notice that they didn’t even bring up the idea that he might have exposed her too – they really do live separate lives. I doubt they’ve seen each other in weeks/months.

Oh, and after I wrote all that, I saw that the palace did release some photos of Albert in semi-isolation, working at his desk. He apparently feels “stuffed up.”

Prince Albert II and Princess Charlene of Monaco attend the Christmas Gifts Distribution At Monaco Palace

Ceremony Of The Sainte-Devote In Monaco

Photos courtesy of WENN, Backgrid and Avalon Red.

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49 Responses to “Monaco’s Prince Albert is the first head of state to test positive for coronavirus”

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  1. runcmc says:

    Wait why is Charlene considered tacky?? I remember all the drama surrounding their wedding when she tried to leave him and they took her passport so she fled to the South African embassy for help… then they forced her back and she cried through the whole thing.

    All that aside, I’m happy for her that she doesn’t have to be around someone she obviously didn’t want to marry. I wish him health and a speedy recovery, far away from Charlene lol

    • Spicecake38 says:

      Idk, Charlene is not tacky in my opinion,I don’t think she seems happy when she’s photographed with her husband,but I wouldn’t want to be married to him either…
      I think she lives a pretty quiet life away with their children.

    • Thirtynine says:

      My first thought too. I don’t understand why she would be thought tacky? It was my understanding that she did her job faithfully and that she was accepted by the people of Monaco. I always had the impression that she is naturally quiet and sensitive, and that living up to the expectations of the role was very challenging for her.

      • sam says:

        Yeah, I like Charlene and feel for her. She tought she’d met Prince Charming and when she realized what awaited her, she did try to flee. Those tears at the wedding with Albert shushing her like a child was painful to watch. Those were not tears of joy, she was sobbing incontrollably.

      • EB says:

        Do you have a link? I tried to find it on YouTube but the video only shows them smiling as they say “oui” and exchange the rings.

      • Jamie says:

        I agree with everything you said. Charlene is the probably the least tacky member of that family.
        All 3 of Ranier and Grace’s children have out of wedlock kids by different partners. Snooty Caroline was a home wrecker who’s clinging to a marriage that’s been dead for years because she doesn’t want to lose a worthless German title.
        And Stephanie … well, there isn’t enough space in this comment box to describe how she is the epitome of tacky.

      • minx says:

        Jamie, agree with all of that. Monaco itself seems like the epitome of tacky, headed by a pretty worthless family.

      • Jaded says:

        @EB – here’s the video of her sobbing…

      • Thirtynine says:

        I’ve never seen that video before. That’s so sad. She looks like some sort of beautiful sacrifice. Having said that, I hope she has now found some happiness in her life. There are later pictures which show them looking relaxed and comfortable with each other.

    • Penelope Cantrell says:

      Thank you for saying that. Why are you hating on a woman who was so obviously forced into a marriage?

    • minx says:

      Same, I’ve always had a soft spot for Charlene, she seems like a decent person who has gone through some rough times. I’m always happy to see a post about her. And speaking as a former swimmer myself, I’m always interested to see how she looks great with broad swimmer’s shoulders. I’m serious!

    • Oh-Dear says:

      I have read numerous times that she has a long-time lover (there are pics and she looks happy). I wondered if she tried to bolt because there had been an agreement in place that she could continue to have her own side relationship with discretion but just before the wedding Albert or his people told her she couldn’t maintain her relationship until she produced heirs. Just speculation.

    • Sojaschnitzel says:

      I don’t think Charlene is tacky at all. Quite the opposite. Unhappy? Yes. Tacky? Not by a long shot.

  2. Aims says:

    Their marriage always made me curious. She has always looked miserable and their wedding photos wasn’t exactly giving anyone the awws. I also feel that they live separately. She has her own life with their children and he is doing his own thing. She did what she was supposed to and had children. Now she wants everyone to leave her alone.

    Anyway, hope he gets better and anyone who is dealing with this.

  3. hindulovegod says:

    I have never thought of Charlene as tacky. Poor judgement? Absolutely. She got in way over her head.

    • Ali says:

      Tacky is a weird word to describe her but maybe I am missing something.

    • BayTampaBay says:

      I never thought of Charlene as tacky either. There must be some gossip out there about Charlene that has not seen the light of day for whatever reason.

    • Kaiser says:

      All of the plastic surgery & she has the glazed-over look of someone self-medicating with pills & booze, and Monaco peeps apparently can’t stand her! I find her tacky, sorry. She’s like a Real Housewife of Monte Carlo

  4. Ali says:

    9 days ago Prince Albert was in London with Prince Charles. Not to say he got it in London. Cough hot bed of the virus cough.

    I hope Charles is getting tested.

    • Harper says:

      I feel like i need to see a photo of Charles going about his daily life right about now. Just to be sure he’s doing okay. I read a report that he has not been shaking hands, instead doing a bow, so I hope that’s protected him. I am REALLY scared of getting a King William too soon.

      • Ali says:

        It’s weird Charles hasn’t released a statement but whatever.

        There will be no King William in the near future.

        Anyone who thinks he’s going to step up during a pandemic are mistaken.

        I hope everyone in Britain just stays home.

      • Xo says:

        Ali: & did you predict a pandemic two months ago? Life can throw us curve balls. . .

        I hope Charles is fine.

  5. Ali says:

    Did you know that prince Albert’s grandmother was adopted by her own father because she was born out of wedlock?

    I find it hilarious he didn’t do that with his illegitimate white daughter. I know he wouldn’t do that for his black son.

    • Courtney B says:

      Maybe, maybe not. But the original adoption was necessary because there was literally no other heir except for a German prince who was the son of a princess of Monaco. That was unacceptable since this was just after WW1 and the alternative was being swallowed up by France under their treaty.

  6. heygingersnaps says:

    I’ve never thought of Charlene as tacky. She seems to just want to be left alone to live her life and is quite private.

  7. Geraldine Granger says:

    Why is Albert Prince and not King?

    • Eldy says:

      Because Monaco is a Principality and not a Kingdom.
      Albert’s ancestors have been its rulers since the 13th century.

    • Lucy2 says:

      It looks like the highest title is sovereign prince. It’s pretty extraordinary one family line has held that for that long.

      I went to Monaco once, it was absolutely gorgeous, but I have never felt more non-wealthy in my entire life!

      • Spicecake38 says:

        Lucy2,I would love to see Monaco! I’ve been to Northern Europe and felt so at home,and we want o take our daughter to Italy and Spain after she graduates next year (in all seriousness I pray those countries and everyone everywhere)will be full functioning and open to the world.
        So if we go there for a while I do want to see Monaco,but I have no idea how to *be* over there-too try hard is obviously just that,but I’m sure my yoga pants won’t fly either-I get nauseous in Saks 5 Ave so I’m sure I will feel very non wealthy too😂But I’m sure it will be worth it!

      • Flamingo says:

        Monaco has a way of making everyone feel poor. I think the only place I’ve visited where I’ve felt more like gutter trash was Singapore.

      • BayTampaBay says:

        I spent 10 days in Monaco followed by 10 days in London in 2000. It was wonderful. Everyone was very-very nice and accommodating. Very interesting to see how the 1% of the top 1% live. I went in September during the off season. Vacationing in Monaco was cheaper than vacationing in London.

      • Charfromdarock says:


        Same. It’s beautiful but I have never felt so out of place in my life.

      • Alexandria says:

        Lol Flamingo…visit our heartlands and you won’t feel that way.

      • Dilettante says:

        I love what Somerset Maugham said about it: A sunny place for shady people.

        Completely soul-less in my experience

  8. ME says:

    Would suggest a clarification to the headline: “First head of state to publicly confirm testing positive for coronavirus.”

    Maybe I’m wearing a tinfoil hat, but I find it awfully convenient that while the spouses of heads of state are getting sick, their significant other is not. Jezebel had an interesting breakdown of why this may be happening, such as the “second shift” effect where the spouses may be attending different events and may be more likely to physically interact with folks. However, another theory is “bullshit.”

  9. MeghanNotMarkle says:

    I’ve never thought of Charlene as tacky. Incredibly private and reserved, yes. Likely living a life separate from her spouse, yes. But tacky? That’s reaching.

    I hope Albert is well again soon. I also don’t understand how these spouses are getting the virus but not their husbands. My tin foil tiara says this is BS and that they are sick, but just not advertising it. But that’s just me and I’m incredibly bored from being hunkered down for so long. I’ve got lots of time to think about weird theories like that.

  10. Sunshine says:

    He’s the first one to admit it.

  11. Emily says:

    I always thought Charlene held on to Albert as a way to get out of South Africa. I don’t know much about her childhood there but my guess is there wasn’t much of a future for her there and she knew she would be taken care of and have a better life in Monaco. Then maybe the drama before the wedding (rumor has it there’s a third illegitimate child out there?) made her realize it wasn’t worth it but by then it was too late. But I believe her whole family lives in Monaco now. So honestly I believe their marriage is a transaction. Albert got his legal heirs and Charlene can live a life of leisure in Monaco and raise their kids quietly in a much better environment and also got her family out of South Africa.

    • rawiya says:

      She’s an Olympian. She could have continued her swimming and athletic career. She would have been fine had she stayed in South Africa.

    • BayTampaBay says:

      “Then maybe the drama before the wedding (rumor has it there’s a third illegitimate child out there?)”

      @Emily – I have read the exact same rumor several different places.

  12. rawiya says:

    Charlene’s not tacky! And I think Albert’s very active in the twins’ lives. I know a lot of people don’t like Charlene because she’s not ~glamorous or doesn’t do what they think princess should, but she seems like a good person.

    People get mad at her because she’s not at 1000000 different ribbon cuttings, but she’s very dedicated to her interests. Swimming and water safety things? Check! Race cars? (Funny enough) check! Newborn baby hospital visits? Check!

    Anyway, I think Albert’s the first to *admit* he’s got the virus. I don’t believe not one head of state, who interacts with so many people on a daily basis, is sick—but all their wives are.

  13. Busyann says:

    Am I the only one that thinks Albert and Prince William look alike in some of these photos?

  14. McMom says:

    I googled the Grimaldi family last night (because I’m bored and I can only look at Facebook for so long) and Prince Rainer I allegedly kidnapped and raped a young woman who became a witch and put a curse on the family that none of them would find happiness in marriage. It certainly seems to have held true for the modern Grimaldis – messy, messy, messy.

    • MC2 says:

      Oh! Bored & just fell down this rabbit hole, thanks to your post.
      I find it disheartening that every report I read about this, says that Prince Rainier I kidnapped & “defiled” a young woman. The word defile means to dirty something or make it lose it’s purity, which is pretty sick to say about a young woman who was a victim of assault. Thanks for saying he raped a young woman, and I get why she would want to curse him.

  15. Di says:

    Tacky wife?… what a terrible thing to say.

  16. Esma K. says:

    Wow so unnecessarily aggressive toward Charlene. Does being a former Olympic swimmer make someone tacky? I don’t get it.