King Willem-Alexander and Queen Maxima of the Netherlands attend glittering gala

9 mins read


Crown Princesses Victoria and Sofia dazzled in glittering ballgowns last night as the Swedish royals hosted a lavish banquet for King Willem-Alexander and Queen Maxima of the Netherlands. 

King Willem-Alexander showed he was possibly the most self-sufficient of the European royals as he co-piloted his wife Queen Maxima to Stockholm yesterday morning on the Dutch government plane.

Touching down at Sweden’s Arlanda airport just outside the capital in bright sunshine, King Willem-Alexander quickly moved from pilot to monarch, donning a smart suit jacket and taking the plane steps with Maxima, who looked elegant in an ankle-length camel coat, and a stylish nude dress with matching hat and suede heels.  

The couple were greeted by their Swedish counterparts on the tarmac, with Crown Princess Victoria, who wore a striking purple dress with matching jacket and shoes, and Prince Daniel of Sweden offering a warm hug ahead of the journey to Stockholm’s Royal Palace.

In the evening they changed into glitzy gowns and suits with royal sashes as they attended a splendid state banquet at the Swedish royal palace, called Kungliga slottet.

Maxima looked glamorous in an off-shoulder glitzy pink gown, while her husband wore a smart suit with a royal sash. 

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Stockholm fairytale! Glamourous Queen Maxima and King Willem-Alexander of The Netherlands joined King Carl Gustaf XVI and Queen Silvia of Sweden for a glitzy reception on the first night of the Dutch state visit to the Scandinavian country

Stockholm fairytale! Glamourous Queen Maxima and King Willem-Alexander of The Netherlands joined King Carl Gustaf XVI and Queen Silvia of Sweden for a glitzy reception on the first night of the Dutch state visit to the Scandinavian country

A Swedish welcome: Sweden's royals, Crown Princess Victoria, Prince Daniel, Princess Sofia and Prince Carl Philip arrive for a gala dinner for the Dutch royal couple at the Royal Palace

A Swedish welcome: Sweden’s royals, Crown Princess Victoria, Prince Daniel, Princess Sofia and Prince Carl Philip arrive for a gala dinner for the Dutch royal couple at the Royal Palace

Queen Maxima appeared to be having a ball of a time as she laughed alongside Sweden's King Carl Gustaf. Carl XVI, 76, is the longest-reigning Swedish monarch

Queen Maxima appeared to be having a ball of a time as she laughed alongside Sweden’s King Carl Gustaf. Carl XVI, 76, is the longest-reigning Swedish monarch

He has been on the throne for 49 years, since 1973, and was seen raising a toast beside Queen Maxima, who was wearing stunning diamond earrings

He has been on the throne for 49 years, since 1973, and was seen raising a toast beside Queen Maxima, who was wearing stunning diamond earrings

The Dutch King and Queen looked stunning and regal as they attended the dinner in the 262-year-old royal palace in the capital of Sweden

The Dutch King and Queen looked stunning and regal as they attended the dinner in the 262-year-old royal palace in the capital of Sweden

Former glamour model and TV personality Princess Sofia married Prince Carl Philip of Sweden in 2015 and the couple have three children together

Former glamour model and TV personality Princess Sofia married Prince Carl Philip of Sweden in 2015 and the couple have three children together

The dinner had all the bells and whistles of a royal state banquet at the home of the Swedish monarchy in their palace in Stockholm

The dinner had all the bells and whistles of a royal state banquet at the home of the Swedish monarchy in their palace in Stockholm

Upon landing in the Scandinavian country, the embrace between couples clearly showed the already strong bond between the two European royal houses.

The Dutch King was spotted at the controls of the aircraft, alongside a co-pilot, as the Government jet touched down in the Swedish capital on Tuesday morning.

King Willem-Alexander has form when it comes to piloting planes; the monarch surprised passengers on a KLM flight in 2018 and today he was clearly keen to show off his skills once more. 

The Dutch royals then enjoyed a horse carriage procession to the Royal Palace, where they were greeted by Sweden’s Queen Silvia and King Carl XVI Gustaf. 

Queen Silvia of Sweden and King Willem-Alexander of the Netherlands were seen smiling during the meal as Swedish footmen stood proudly behind them

Queen Silvia of Sweden and King Willem-Alexander of the Netherlands were seen smiling during the meal as Swedish footmen stood proudly behind them

The royals appeared to be in high spirits as they arrived for the event in Stockholm last night, with Queen Maxima and Queen Silvia matching in pink gowns

The royals appeared to be in high spirits as they arrived for the event in Stockholm last night, with Queen Maxima and Queen Silvia matching in pink gowns 

Crown Princess Victoria could be seen sipping her champagne as she stood alongside King Willem-Alexander at the event in Stockholm last night

Crown Princess Victoria could be seen sipping her champagne as she stood alongside King Willem-Alexander at the event in Stockholm last night

Crown Princess Victoria could be seen sipping her champagne as she stood alongside King Willem-Alexander at the event in Stockholm last night 

Seated at a banquet table, Prince Daniel and Queen Maxima are pictured during a gala dinner for the Dutch royal couple

Seated at a banquet table, Prince Daniel and Queen Maxima are pictured during a gala dinner for the Dutch royal couple

Queen Silvia of Sweden is seated next to the Dutch King at the banquet table

The Swedish Queen wore her finery including an historic tiara for the banquet

Queen Silvia of Sweden is seated next to the Dutch King at the banquet table, the Swedish Queen wore her finery including an historic tiara for the banquet

Queen Maxima during a gala dinner

Queen Maxima during a gala dinner

Well-wishers waving Dutch flags lined the city streets, with Queen Maxima and Queen Silvia of Sweden, elegant in green, chatting to those gathered. 

An official welcome ceremony followed at the palace, with Willem-Alexander and Maxima inspecting a guard of honour. The two families then posed for photos, joined by Princess Estelle, the ten-year-old daughter of Princess Victoria and Prince Daniel.

King Carl XVI Gustaf said in a statement: ‘We are honored to receive the King and Queen. ‘Our countries are very similar. For example, in our positions on the rule of law, international relations and human rights. We are going to strengthen ties in defense and security.’

The warmth was reciprocated by the Dutch monarch, Willem-Alexander, who reflected on a strong relationship between the two countries, saying: ‘We realize that Sweden is going through a special time, such as its membership in NATO, which we fully support. Queen Máxima and I are very much looking forward to the visit in the coming days.’

This afternoon, the Dutch couple will spend time with Swedish politicians, and also visit the Vasa Museum in the city, which exhibits the country’s naval history.

It’s thought the royals will return the ship’s bell of a Swedish ship, Prinsessan Sophia Albertina, which was lost off the Dutch coast in the 18th century.

Good neighbours! King Willem-Alexander, third from left, and Queen Maxima, third from right, of The Netherlands pose for a photo with Queen Silvia and King Carl XVI Gustaf of Sweden, far left, Princess Estelle of Sweden, centre, and Princess Victoria and Prince Daniel of Sweden, far right, on the first morning of their three-day state visit

Good neighbours! King Willem-Alexander, third from left, and Queen Maxima, third from right, of The Netherlands pose for a photo with Queen Silvia and King Carl XVI Gustaf of Sweden, far left, Princess Estelle of Sweden, centre, and Princess Victoria and Prince Daniel of Sweden, far right, on the first morning of their three-day state visit

Välkommen! King Willem-Alexander and Queen Maxima of The Netherlands took the short flight to Stockholm this morning ahead of an official three-day state visit to the Scandinavian country

Välkommen! King Willem-Alexander and Queen Maxima of The Netherlands took the short flight to Stockholm this morning ahead of an official three-day state visit to the Scandinavian country

The Dutch King co-piloted the government plane to Stockholm's Arlanda airport for the short flight north to the Scandinavian country

The Dutch King co-piloted the government plane to Stockholm’s Arlanda airport for the short flight north to the Scandinavian country

Slipping on a suit jacket, the Dutch King stepped back into monarch mode, and looked delighted to see the Swedish royals awaiting them, as Queen Maxima also offered a smile to her fellow European royals

Slipping on a suit jacket, the Dutch King stepped back into monarch mode, and looked delighted to see the Swedish royals awaiting them, as Queen Maxima also offered a smile to her fellow European royals

Bond: The Dutch royals and the Swedish royals embrace ahead of the three-day visit, which is designed to cement already strong relations between the two European royal houses

Bond: The Dutch royals and the Swedish royals embrace ahead of the three-day visit, which is designed to cement already strong relations between the two European royal houses

Good neighbours: At the airport, the couple were warmly welcomed by Crown Princess Victoria and Prince Daniel of Sweden, with the European royals offering hugs

Good neighbours: At the airport, the couple were warmly welcomed by Crown Princess Victoria and Prince Daniel of Sweden, with the European royals offering hugs

Later, the Dutch royals enjoyed a horse carriage procession to the Royal Palace in Stockholm, where they were greeted by Sweden's Queen Silvia and King Carl XVI Gustaf (Pictured left to right: Swedish Prince Daniel, Sweden's Crown Princess Victoria, Queen Silvia of Sweden, Dutch King Willem-Alexander, Sweden's King Carl XVI Gustaf and Queen Maxima of The Netherlands)

Later, the Dutch royals enjoyed a horse carriage procession to the Royal Palace in Stockholm, where they were greeted by Sweden’s Queen Silvia and King Carl XVI Gustaf (Pictured left to right: Swedish Prince Daniel, Sweden’s Crown Princess Victoria, Queen Silvia of Sweden, Dutch King Willem-Alexander, Sweden’s King Carl XVI Gustaf and Queen Maxima of The Netherlands)

King Willem-Alexander of the Netherlands and King Carl XVI Gustaf of Sweden, right, walk side-by-side during a welcome ceremony at the Royal Palace in Stockholm on Tuesday

King Willem-Alexander of the Netherlands and King Carl XVI Gustaf of Sweden, right, walk side-by-side during a welcome ceremony at the Royal Palace in Stockholm on Tuesday

Well-wishers waving Dutch flags lined the streets close to the Royal Palace in Stockholm this morning, with Queen Maxima, showing off her stylish nude dress coat with matching clutch, gloves and heels, as Queen Silvia of Sweden, elegant in green, walked closely behind her

Well-wishers waving Dutch flags lined the streets close to the Royal Palace in Stockholm this morning, with Queen Maxima, showing off her stylish nude dress coat with matching clutch, gloves and heels, as Queen Silvia of Sweden, elegant in green, walked closely behind her

The couple began their reunion with a press conference where the two sovereigns and their wives exchanged pleasantries ahead of the three-day visit

The couple began their reunion with a press conference where the two sovereigns and their wives exchanged pleasantries ahead of the three-day visit 

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