International film icon Sophia Loren made a glamorous appearance at the star-studded MSC Bellissima naming ceremony in Southampton. The 84-year-old actress was there fulfilling her role as official 'godmother' to her 14th MSC Cruises' ship.
Ahead of the evening, Sophia sat down with HELLO! to chat about her extraordinary life, which has seen her mix with everyone from famous actors to the royal family. And while Sophia has met Prince Charles in the past, there is another royal that the actress wouldn’t mind meeting – the Duchess of Cambridge. "I would like to meet the wife of Prince William, very much so. She's really wonderful and when the royal family are altogether it's very nice. The family soothes me, it's wonderful," she said.
Sophia is also just as much of a fan of the Duchess of Sussex, Meghan Markle. "She's beautiful and has a lovely smile, she’s very big – maybe she's going to have twins, I don't know," she smiled. Despite her Oscar win and worldwide success, Sophia is extremely down-to-earth, and nothing makes her prouder than her family. The star shares two sons, Carlo and Edoardo with late husband Carlo Ponti, and has four grandchildren. When asked about her career highlight, she said: "When I received prizes for what I have done in films it is nice. And when people congratulate me on my family, as they say I have beautiful children. And like all mum's I'm very proud."
The actress – who was chatting to HELLO! in the luxury Yacht Club on board the ship – is used to travelling around the world, and has homes in Geneva, Naples and South Florida. But the one place she loves the most is Pozzuoli, where she lived as a child. "A lot of travelling is sometimes good as sometimes you have been to places you have never been, but sometimes it's a bit too much," she said, "My favourite city - it's a little town where I was born in Naples, old dialect, everything comes back. It's wonderful for me, it's beautiful."
Sophia also couldn’t go anywhere without her phone. When asked about her essential travel item, she replied: "My telephone, absolutely. Because I like to feel connected with people when I travel. Without a telephone you feel a bit lonely."
Both during the interview and at the evening Naming Ceremony for MSC Bellissima, Sophia looked absolutely beautiful. But while the rest of us are desperate to know the secret to her youthful complexion, the Italian native made it quite clear that there wasn’t one. "There is no secret. This is the face I was born with. I like to keep myself as I was born, no secrets otherwise."
To discover more about MSC Bellissima and MSC Cruises’ fleet of luxury ships and cruise holidays, visit the website.