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lilibet diana© Photo: Twitter

Inside Meghan Markle and Prince Harry's daughter Princess Lilibet's Montecito birthday bash at $14 million mansion

Lilibet Diana Mountbatten-Windsor was born in California after Prince Harry and Meghan stepped back from their royal duties

Faye James
Senior Editor
June 4, 2024
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Meghan Markle and Prince Harry's little princess, Lilibet, is celebrating her third birthday! The Duke and Duchess of Sussex marked this special milestone with an early pre-birthday bash over the weekend, held at their home in Montecito, California

People reported the intimate celebration included close friends, family, and some of Lilibet's young pals.

Lilibet Diana Mountbatten-Windsor was born in California after Prince Harry and Meghan stepped back from their royal duties and relocated to the U.S. with their son, Prince Archie, now 5, in 2020. 

The birth announcement, shared on the Archewell Foundation website, revealed that Lilibet was named after Queen Elizabeth’s family nickname, while her middle name honors her beloved late grandmother, Princess Diana.

Princess Lilibet learns to walk
Princess Lilibet celebrated her 3rd birthday at her Montecito mansion

Affectionately called "Lili" by her parents, Prince Harry and Meghan have continued to use this endearing nickname for their daughter. 

In March 2023, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex began using their children's royal titles in public, starting with the announcement of Lilibet's christening. 

Prince Harry and Meghan walk hand-in-hand with Princess Lilibet

Following King Charles's ascension to the throne in September 2022, Archie and Lilibet were officially given the titles of prince and princess. Their new titles were promptly updated on the royal family's official website and reflected in their parents' biographies on, launched in February.

In keeping with royal tradition, Harry and Meghan have adopted "Sussex" as the family surname for their children. This practice mirrors the historical use of titles by members of the royal family. 

Prince Harry carried Lilibet on his shoulders
Prince Harry carried Lilibet on his shoulders

Last June, the family traveled to the U.K. for Queen Elizabeth’s Platinum Jubilee festivities, coinciding with Lilibet's first birthday. The Sussexes celebrated with a gathering at Frogmore Cottage, their U.K. residence until last year.

During the birthday party, a spokesperson described the event as a "casual, intimate backyard picnic." 

Meghan Markle, Prince Harry, Archie and Lilibet blowing a birthday candle© Netflix
The whole family helped Lilibet blow the candle on her cake

The couple released the first portrait of Lili, taken by photographer and friend Misan Harriman. The adorable photo showed Lilibet smiling in a blue dress with a white bow in her red hair, a charming feature she shares with her brother Archie and dad Harry.

Fans got a further glimpse of the celebration in the docuseries Harry & Meghan, which premiered on Netflix in December 2022. Since stepping back from their royal roles, Harry and Meghan have kept their children's lives relatively private. The world first saw Lilibet in the Sussexes' 2021 holiday card, which joyfully announced, "This year, 2021, we welcomed our daughter, Lilibet, to the world. Archie made us a 'Mama' and a 'Papa,' and Lili made us a family."

Prince Harry Meghan Markle Princess Lilibet blowing cake© Netflix
Prince Harry and Meghan Markle with Princess Lilibet on her first birthday

Harry and Meghan have shared sweet details about Lilibet over the years, from her "very chilled" nature to her determination to "keep up" with her big brother. Archie turned 5 on May 6, and the Sussexes celebrated his birthday privately before embarking on an official trip to Nigeria. This journey marked their first international trip since stepping back from royal duties.

Though Archie and Lili didn’t join the tour, they were very much on their parents' minds. While visiting a school in Abuja, Meghan revealed that "singing and dancing" is Lili’s "favorite class," likely due to "all the jumping around." 

She also shared that Archie has a keen interest in construction, as shown by the children's robotic projects in a STEM class.

meghan markle prince archie princess lilibet montecito home© Instagram
Harry lives in Montecito with Meghan and their children, Prince Archie and Princess Lilibet

At a women’s leadership event on May 11, Meghan described her kids as "very chatty, sweet children" and expressed how much she was "missing my babies" on May 12, Mother’s Day in the U.S. 

LISTEN: Love the royals? Check out the latest episode of HELLO!'s A Right Royal Podcast, where we're discussing King Charles' new portrait, Harry and Meghan's Nigeria visit and who will attend Prince George's godfather's wedding this week.

In his memoir, Spare, released in January 2023, Prince Harry recounted the moment he helped bring Lilibet into the world. He wrote: "I slid my hands under the tiny back and neck. Gently, but firmly, as I’d seen in films, I pulled our precious daughter from that world into this, and cradled her just a moment, trying to smile at her, to see her, but honestly, I couldn’t see anything. I wanted to say: Hello. I wanted to say: Where have you come from? I wanted to say: Is it better there? Is it peaceful? Are you frightened? Don’t be, don’t be, all will be well. I’ll keep you safe."

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