Meghan Markle stood watching as her handler aggressively pressed a maître d to get them a table, according to a new book. The aide allegedly told staff Meghan was “about to be a Duchess” during the 2017 incident.
The alleged encounter took place at Michelin-starred Le Coucou in New York City when Meghan and her handler showed up 20 minutes before their reservation.
Her aide demanded a private table because “it’s for someone who is dating a Prince”, according to maître d’ Michael Cecchi-Azzolina in his new book ‘Your Table Is Ready: Tales of a New York City Maître D’.
However, Mr Cecchi-Azzolina – who had worked at the restaurant for two years – said: “I still don’t have a private table for you.”
In the new book, Mr Cecchi-Azzolina quotes Meghan’s handler: “Are you aware my guest is dating Prince Harry and about to be a duchess? Don’t you have a private area for us to wait?”
Mr Cecchi-Azzolina was unmoved by the comments. “My first impulse was to laugh. I could give two s**** about Prince Harry’s date, and by the attention the escort was drawing from the crowd at the bar, nor did anyone else,” he told the New York Post.
He described Meghan, who was totally silent during the encounter, as “aloof”.
He added: “We get the most powerful people in the world that come here – no one really cares about you.”
Mr Cecchi-Azzolina’s book, which comes out December 6, reportedly also details other high profile customers he found “rude” and “horrid”.
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“So if James Corden lets me host his Late Late Show for nine months, I’ll immediately rescind his ban from Balthazar. No, of course not.
“‘But….anyone magnanimous enough to apologize to a deadbeat lay about like me (and my staff) doesn’t deserve to be banned from anywhere. Especially Balthazar.”
Meghan and Prince Harry married in 2018, the year after the alleged incident at Le Coucou.
In 2020, the couple stepped down from royal life and moved to Montecito, California where they live with their two children Archie, three, and Lilibet, one.