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Prince Albert of Monaco mourning family death

The pair shared a close bond

Danielle Stacey

Baroness Elisabeth-Ann de Massy has died at the age of 73. In a statement released on its Facebook page, the Palace of Monaco confirmed that Elisabeth, who was the first cousin of Prince Albert II, passed away at the Princess Grace Hospital Centre in Monaco on Wednesday. The baroness's funeral will take place at the Cathedral of Monaco in the middle of next week. 

READ: How the Queen will mark her official birthday with low-key ceremony in Windsor

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Albert with his cousin, Elisabeth-Ann (right) and her daughter Melanie 

Elisabeth-Ann de Massy was born on 13 January 1973 to Princess Antoinette (the late Prince Rainier III's older sister), and international tennis champion Alexandre-Athenase Noghès. She was married twice - firstly, to Baron Bernard Alexandre Taubert-Natta, with whom she shared a son, Jean-Léonard Taubert-Natta de Massy. Her second husband was choreographer Nicolai Vladimir Costello, with whom she had a daughter, Mélanie-Antoinette Costello de Massy.

She was renowned for her charity work and was president of the Monegasque Tennis Federation, as well as the Monte-Carlo Country Club. Elisabeth was often joined by her daughter Mélanie-Antoinette and cousin Prince Albert at tennis tournaments, including the Monte-Carlo ATP Masters Series. She was also godmother to Prince Albert's younger sister, Princess Stéphanie of Monaco and Prince Albert is godfather to Elisabeth's son Jean-Léonard.

MORE: See inside Prince Albert of Monaco's incredible office that once belonged to Grace Kelly

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Melanie, Prince Albert and Elisabeth-Ann in 2015

Monaco's royal family recently appeared on a BBC Two documentary Inside Monaco: Playground of the Rich, which took viewers behind-the-scenes of the lavish country and gave rare access to the House of Grimaldi, including interviews with Prince Albert and his wife Princess Charlene

Albert became head of state in 2005 following the death of his father Prince Rainier III. His investiture took place in front of his closest family members, including his sisters Princess Caroline and Princess Stephanie, as well as his paternal aunt Princess Antoinette and his cousin Elisabeth-Ann.

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