Monaco's royal couple will head to a luxury resort on the Indian Ocean, say sources

By Karen Nickel Anhalt Peter Mikelbank
June 09, 2011 08:30 AM
The Red Carnation Hotel Collection; Amedeo M.Turello/Palais Princier Monaco

What could possibly follow a fairy tale wedding? How about a magical honeymoon at a seaside resort at the other end of the world?

Monaco’s Prince Albert and his bride-to-be, Charlene Wittstock, are planning to honeymoon beside the Indian Ocean after their July 1-2 wedding in his principality, say sources at the landmark Oyster Box Hotel in Umhlanga, South Africa.

The royal couple will attend a July 7 International Olympic Organizing Committee banquet in their honor at the hotel, say sources.

‘There’s no other place like it anywhere in South Africa,” a source familiar with the couple’s plans tells PEOPLE. “‘South Africans have been coming here for generations for wedding celebrations, and it attracts international celebrities as well. It is a very special place.”

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The a family-run, luxury hotel in the Umhlanga Rocks is 20 minutes north of Durban. “Constructed in 1869 and originally used as navigational beacon, a beach cottage known as the ‘Oyster Box,’ was first converted into a hotel in the 1930s,” according to its Web site.

In terms of accommodations, the President’s Suite encompasses two floors, an ornate gold-leafed bed, a private swimming pool and a freestanding marble bath overlooking the Indian Ocean. Its terrace and private dining area can hold 10 guests. Price: $7,500 per night.

Dubbed South Africa’s “garden district,” the country’s northeastern coastline holds special meaning for Wittstock. The Rhodesian-born swimmer, moved to Durban at age 17 to train for her Olympic bid while also teaching swimming to children in the nearby port of Richard’s Bay.

Since becoming engaged, the princess-to-be has returned twice to the Durban area – most recently in February, when she flew to the KwaZulu-Natal province to participate in the world’s largest swim event, the Midmar Mile, in support of Special Olympics.

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