Royalty and statesmen

Three years down the line and evidently still very much in love, the prince - pictured with his blonde love Charlene at the Amber Fashion Show on Friday - insists he isn't affected by expectations that he wed and produce an heir
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I'm going to follow my own path, says Albert on pressure to marry

25 MAY 2009
Royal watchers might have to wait a while for an engagement announcement from Prince Albert of Monaco.

In a recent interview, the world's most eligible bachelor acknowledged the pressure for him to marry and produce an heir but insists he is travelling down his "own path".

As anyone at Friday's Amber Fashion Show in the principality can testify, the prince is still blissfully happy with his girlfriend Charlene Wittstock – a former South African Olympic backstroke swimmer - after three years.

And while the world waits for the next princess of Monaco to be introduced, the pair continue to take things at their own pace.

"I've got broad shoulders, big enough to support that kind of pressure (to get married)…so you go about your own business and you don't let it get to you, "the 51-year-old royal recently told the Telegraph.

"You follow your instincts and your own path. You go down that path until you see a future with someone. Is that the answer you were looking for?" he said.

Dismissing the suggestion that he has been put off commitment because of the failed marriages of his sisters – thrice-married Princess Caroline, 52, and Princess Stephanie, 44, who has wed twice – the Monegasque ruler admits his bride would inevitably face comparison to his mother, Princess Grace.

"It would be difficult for anybody to follow my mother as the Princess of Monaco," Albert said of his iconic Oscar-winning actress mum, who married Prince Rainer III in April 1956.


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