Exclusive Photo: Queen Rania and King Abdullah Celebrate 23 Years Together
The parents of four are set to mark their special day on Friday
The charming picture, released by their office exclusively to PEOPLE, comes as the romantic couple marks their 23rd anniversary on Friday.
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For Rania, 45, the attraction to her husband of 23 years is simply put. “The smile that stole my heart,” she has said, “and still does to this day.”
When she married the then-Prince Abdullah in 1993, she told PEOPLE in 2011, “I might have looked like a serene bride in the photos, but that’s because for the journey there, I was largely immobile.
“When my brother-in-law, Prince Faisal, picked me up in a vintage car, its ceiling was so low and my hair was so high, my head jammed and I couldn’t move my neck.”
Since then, the couple has had four children: Crown Prince Hussein, 21, who recently just graduated from Georgetown University in Washington, D.C., Princess Iman, 19 (who joined her mother on a royal outing last summer), Princess Salma, 15, and Prince Hashem, 11. The couple became King and Queen upon the death of Abdullah’s father, King Hussein, in 1999.
Amid the realities of royal life,”We make sure to go to restaurants or go catch a movie somewhere, drive our own cars,” she told PEOPLE in 2005.
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Last year Rania proudly showed off her anniversary gift of a big bouquet of flowers from her husband, writing, “He knows how to brighten my day.”
She has also praised him as “my best friend, my confidant and my role model . . . Happy Anniversary, Your Majesty.”