Prince Albert and Princess Caroline of Monaco grew up with two of the most famous people in the world as their parents — Prince Rainier and film star-turned-princess Grace Kelly. But, in a new book, Caroline confesses that she and her brother were closer to their beloved nanny as children.
In the book, titled Albert II of Monaco, The Man and The Prince, by Isabelle Rivère and PEOPLE contributor Peter Mikelbank, which features interviews from Caroline, Albert, and Albert’s wife, Princess Charlene, Caroline speaks about the royal siblings’ closeness to their nanny, Maureen Wood.
“For my brother and I, Maureen was the key figure in our life,” she said. “When we were little, we were probably closer to our nanny than to our parents.”
They were so close to Maureen that when she left every summer for her annual vacation, Albert and Caroline would cry and beg her not to go.
“When she was leaving Roc Agel, Albert and I would yell ‘Don’t go, don’t go!’ ” she said. “We were sad for days. Most often than not, our mother would end up calling her to ask her to come home earlier than planned.”
Wood was also interviewed for the book, and recalled an evening when she, Albert and Caroline threw their a “gala dinner” of their own when Rainier and Grace were out of town for the wedding of fellow royals King Constantine and Queen Anne-Marie of Greece.
“I decided that we would have our own gala dinner at the Palace,” she said. “The Chef cooked a special menu, Caroline wore one of her mother’s gown, Albert wore a uniform, and I wore a gown too. Then we put on music, and we danced.”
Prince Albert and wife, Princess Charlene
Today, Albert, who has four children of his own, including Prince Jacques and Princess Gabriella, says he views his relationship with his sisters (he also has a younger sister, Princess Stephanie) and their position in the royal family as a model for his own children in the future.
“She is not the heir to the throne, but she too will have her part of the job to do,” he said. “My sisters do a lot of things, a day will come when they will necessarily be less present, less active. And where someone else will have to assume their responsibilities.”