Amidst the raging coronavirus pandemic that’s forced thousands of couples around the globe to cancel their nuptials, Princess Beatrice finally tied the knot with her businessman boyfriend, Edoardo Mapelli Mozzi, in July 2020. Mozzi — or Edo, as he’s affectionately called — is the son of an Italian aristocrat and is a building tycoon in his own right. In other words: he’s a total catch, but it cost Bea some major heartbreak just to find him.
Princess Beatrice’s wedding may have not been the fairy tale affair she imagined — but the problem with real-life princesses is that it’s real life and things beyond our control happen. But their love certainly appears to be the kind that could inspire a Disney film. She just didn’t have to give up her voice — or her castle, in the case of Prince Harry — to get there. Despite all the antiquated royal traditions that surround this pair’s marriage, Beatrice still found a way to march to her own drum and ultimately prove that love perseveres in even the darkest times. And we bet these strange things about this happy royal couple will make you say awww!
Princess Beatrice suffered major heartbreak before finding her prince
Princess Beatrice had to endure a major heartbreak before she finally found her prince. For a decade, the royal was in a relationship with American tech executive Dave Clark. According to The Daily Beast, things only fell apart when she allegedly gave him an ultimatum to either tie the knot or end things for good. Honestly, after 10 years, you should kind of know if the person you’re dating is the one, right?
Well, Clark definitely wasn’t the one. And apparently, the royal family wasn’t so fond of him to begin with. The outlet claims that Prince William, who reportedly introduced the pair after meeting Clark at St. Andrews University, didn’t « like or trust » the tech exec. Clark wasn’t invited to his wedding, largely because Wills supposedly believed he was « indiscreet » (a.k.a. the worst offense for a Windsor).
« It’s fair to say that if Beatrice had asked the Queen for permission to marry Dave, and she in turn asked William privately for his view, she may not have been given a glowing report, » a source told the Daily Mail in 2015, the year before their split. Beyond that, Clark — who appeared notably apprehensive about marrying Beatrice — quickly moved on with New York advertising executive Lynn Anderson. According to the publication, the pair started dating just as his royal relationship ended and were married two years later. Meanwhile, Bea had been waiting a decade.
Did Princess Beatrice break up Edo’s engagement?
Princess Beatrice wasn’t alone when she found love after leaving her ultra-serious, 10-year relationship with Dave Clark. It just took her a little longer than it took Edoardo Mapelli Mozzi, who had to break up an engagement of his own before he got serious with Bea. According to The Sun, Edo had been engaged to Chinese-American architect Dara Huang when he started falling for the princess in late 2018. The pair had been together for three years and share a son named Christopher Woolf, affectionately known as « Woolfy. » Apparently, there may have been some awkward overlap in Mozzi’s relationships.
According to sources who spoke to The Sun, Edo reportedly called off his engagement in the weeks after he started seeing Princess Beatrice. During the early days of their relationship, he was allegedly still living with Huang. « Dara did not take the news well, » the insider claimed. « Although she has come to terms with the situation now, but initially, she felt very let-down. »
Mozzi and Huang split sometime after Princess Eugenie’s wedding in October 2018. According to The Sun, Beatrice started referring to Edo as her boyfriend the following month, and they embarked on a « jet set lifestyle » that saw them traveling on a string of holidays, including one to Mozzi’s home country of Italy.
Edoardo Mapelli Mozzi has always been on the sidelines
In many ways, it seems like Princess Beatrice’s relationship with Edoardo Mapelli Mozzi was written in the stars — a true Disney fairy tale with a real-life princess. The pair have known each other since they were children. According to People, Edoardo’s step-father, Christopher Shale, was a longtime pal of Bea’s parents, Prince Andrew and Sarah Ferguson. When Shale suddenly passed away at Glastonbury Festival in 2011, the princess attended the funeral alongside her mom and dad.
« Our family has known Beatrice for most of her life. Edo and Beatrice are made for each other, and their happiness and love for each other is there for all to see, » Edo’s parents, Nikki Williams-Ellis and Alessandro Mapelli Mozzi, told BBC News. « They share an incredibly strong and united bond, their marriage will only strengthen what is already a wonderful relationship. »
Edo appeared to be on the sidelines for much of Princess Beatrice’s life, but it took a wedding to ramp up the romance. According to The Sun, the longtime friends realized they had feelings for each other when Bea’s sister, Princess Eugenie, tied the knot in October 2018. The tabloid claims that Princess Beatrice previously didn’t consider the property tycoon an option because he was a « taken man. »
From princess to contessa
Princess Beatrice is already a royal, but she may get an additional title from her property tycoon beau. According to the BBC News, Edoardo Mapelli Mozzi — who was born in London — is actually an Italian aristocrat, which shouldn’t be surprising considering those in high society generally roll in the same circles. Edo’s dad is Count Alessandro Mapelli Mozzi, an Olympic alpine skier and, y’know, a count. This means that Bea won’t become a duchess like Kate Middleton or Meghan Markle. Instead, she’ll be an Italian Contessa, as Count Alessandro told the Daily Mail that both Edo and Bea will inherit his status.
We’re not sure how it’s possible, but as the Daily Mail points out, Beatrice married into a family that’s actually posher than her own. As it stands, the couple are from two of the oldest families in Europe. Edo’s lineage dates back to the 10th Century, and the pair will « inherit one of the grandest villas in Italy » as a result of their prestige. That’s nothing compared to Edo’s alleged multi-million-dollar fortune, though. As most people already know, Bea (who has a reported $10 million to her name) is ninth in line for the British throne, which doesn’t mean a whole lot — at least compared to her cousins. We’d still take any place in that line.
Edoardo Mapelli Mozzi popped the question less than a year into dating
It’s no secret that Edoardo Mapelli Mozzi fits into the royal family a lot better than Princess Beatrice’s previous beau. According to People, he gets on with the British royals so well that he even held Princess Eugenie’s hand while the sisters were on a double date in London. By most accounts, that’d be weird if it happened with virtually any other set of siblings-in-law.
That being said, when something fits, it just fits. That’s perhaps why Edo was slightly speedy with his proposal. According to the BBC News, the property tycoon popped the question during a holiday to Italy after less than a year of dating. Considering the couple has known each other the better part of their entire lives, why did they even wait that long?
The Sun reports that Edo designed Bea’s stunning 3-3.5 carat engagement ring, which was estimated to cost £250,000 (or about $327,425 USD). Beyond the ring, the princess also allegedly gained « the confidence and happiness she lost after her last big relationship with Dave Clark broke up. » That’s priceless. A source told the outlet, « She’s now glowing with the sort of aura you only get when you’re really in love. »
Prince Andrew’s scandal forced Princess Beatrice to postpone her wedding twice
Before the novel coronavirus pandemic, Princess Beatrice and Edoardo Mapelli Mozzi already had pushed back the date of their wedding twice in the midst of royal turmoil. Though Prince Harry and Meghan Markle made headlines when they essentially quit the monarchy in January 2020, People claims that Prince Andrew’s own scandal was what led his daughter to postpone her nuptials. A source told the tabloid, « The date was changed two times to adjust [around Andrew’s scandal]. It will be smaller than the original plan. »
In November 2019, Princess Beatrice’s father stepped down from his royal duties after delivering a disastrous interview to the BBC about his involvement with convicted pedophile Jeffrey Epstein, where he denied the allegations that he slept with a then-17-year-old Virginia Giuffre (née Roberts). According to People, he was subsequently « removed from his hundreds of charitable patronages » and « his office was forced out of Buckingham Palace. » Prince Andrew even skipped out on his daughter’s engagement party the following month, but he did have plans to walk Princess Beatrice down the aisle.
« Andrew will probably give a toast at the reception like any father of the bride, » a source told People in February 2020. « They will try to normalize this as much as possible. » It should be noted, Beatrice is not responsible for her father’s scandal, even if it caused her to postpone her wedding.
You didn’t see that on TV
Royal weddings are a known money maker for the UK, largely because they boost tourism and British citizens shell out in celebration. The evidence goes well beyond all the Meghan Markle and Prince Harry commemorative memorabilia that flooded airports in 2018 (may the couple enjoy a not-so-royal life going forward).
According to Reuters, the Sussexes’ wedding was expected to generate as much as £500 million (or $654 million USD) for the British economy. Similarly, an additional 350,000 visitors came to England to watch Kate Middleton and Prince William tie the knot in 2011. Both of those weddings were televised, and so was sister Princess Eugenie’s ceremony, but Princess Beatrice was not afforded the same spotlight.
According to Harper’s Bazaar, both the BBC and ITV declined to air Beatrice’s wedding, which is particularly biting considering that the latter network live-broadcast her sister’s ceremony two years prior. The Guardian speculates that this had to do with Prince Andrew’s scandal, but the decision may have actually been made by the couple. According to Express, Bea and Edo made a pointed effort to have a more private wedding. It’s particularly evident in the fact that none of it was funded by taxpayer money, though royal weddings typically use public funds for security costs. Bea’s sister, for example, was met with outrage when she took more than £2 million (about $2.6 million USD) for her ceremony at St. George’s Chapel.
Say what to royal tradition?
The novel coronavirus pandemic forced Princess Beatrice and Edoardo Mapelli Mozzi to cancel their wedding, which had been scheduled for May 2020, after already being postponed twice. When Bea finally got the chance to say « I do, » royal tradition went totally out the window. Unlike past royal weddings — which have star-studded guest lists and months of fanfare and media coverage — Bea and Edo threw a complete surprise affair.
According to People, the couple’s impromptu wedding came together just two weeks after the UK lifted the lockdown wedding ban on July 4th. An alleged friend of the couple told the tabloid, « They swung into action and brought it all together in two weeks, which is quite extraordinary. Beatrice was so excited about it all, and I think they just jumped at the chance when the ban was removed. They were both desperate for it to happen. »
The small, secret affair reportedly included about 20 guests, which is a stark contrast to the crowds that gathered outside Windsor Castle during Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s nuptials or the supposedly 2 billion people who collectively watched Kate Middleton walk down the aisle. People reports that the whole thing was socially distant according to government guidelines. The national anthem wasn’t even sung, but it was played. According to the Mirror, Bea and her beau also spent the night before the ceremony together, skipping out the widespread tradition of having a final night apart.
Princess Beatrice and Edoardo Mapelli Mozzi planned their 20-guest wedding around the queen
Though Princess Beatrice is far enough down the line of succession that she doesn’t need her grandmother’s approval, she still planned her wedding ceremony around Her Majesty. According to People, the couple chose July 17th as their wedding date, because it matched with Queen Elizabeth’s tight schedule. However, she still had to skip out early to knight Captain Sir Tom Moore, a 100-year-old NHS fundraising legend, at Windsor Castle. This also meant that guests had to be extra-careful about social distancing in the days leading up to the event, though there wasn’t mandatory coronavirus testing.
« The Queen was the guest of honor, and it was very important that she was there, » a source told People. « It was planned for some time, and everyone had to be extremely cautious leading up to the big day because the Queen was in attendance. They had to make sure everyone who was attending was in perfect health. »
The Sun reports that Beatrice’s ceremony kicked off at 11 am in The Royal Chapel of All Saints at the Royal Lodge in Windsor. According to the Mirror, a small reception followed with a « bouncy castle, glamping pods, and a pop-up pub. »
Princess Beatrice changed her wedding dress last-minute
It didn’t take Princess Beatrice a long time to find the one. No, we’re not talking about husband Edoardo Mapelli Mozzi. We’re talking about her wedding dress. By all accounts, Say Yes to the Dress would not be a thing if brides didn’t typically spend weeks — even months — scrutinizing over what to wear to their nuptials, but Bea ended up finding her gown in the 11th hour thanks to the queen.
Let’s be clear: wedding dresses — particularly wedding dresses worn at royal weddings — are thought out to a level of detail that would impress a brain surgeon. According to Cosmopolitan, Kate Middleton reportedly received numerous sketches from designers like Karl Lagerfeld, Gucci, and Valentino before landing on Alexander McQueen designer Sarah Burton. The dress warranted a novella on the royal wedding website, which explained how workers washed their hands every 30 minutes to keep the lace pristine. Similarly, Meghan Markle’s custom, 16-foot veil was painstakingly stitched to include the « signature flowers » from every country in the British Commonwealth, per Harper’s Bazaar. That doesn’t happen overnight, but Bea is the exception, not the rule.
Per People, Princess Beatrice had a last-minute change of heart about her dress, and asked her grandmother if she could borrow a hand-me-down. Queen Elizabeth happily obliged, and it became Bea’s something borrowed. The royal also reportedly wore the same tiara her grandmother donned when she married Prince Phillip in 1947.
Princess Beatrice and Edoardo Mapelli Mozzi took a pre-honeymoon, honeymoon
Oh, to live in the life of luxury that’s only afforded when you marry a multi-millionaire aristocrat and come from the most famous family in England next to the Beckhams. Princess Beatrice and Edoardo Mapelli Mozzi didn’t just schedule one honeymoon to celebrate their nuptials — they’re going on two.
According to People, the pair opted for a low-key honeymoon that matched their low-key wedding. That entailed a so-called « laid-back trip to France, » but it’s still France. It’s not like they’re taking a quiet weekend holiday to the quaint seaside town of Brighton, which rests just an hour and half from Buckingham Palace. They went to France … and that’s just the first stop. A source cited by the magazine claimed that the couple have « a longer more luxurious honeymoon planned for August. » It is unclear what’s decidedly more luxurious that sipping wine while overlooking the French seaside and its majestic white cliffs, but what do we know?
Princess Beatrice is the first ‘blood princess’ to become a stepmom
According to People, Edoardo Mapelli Mozzi is a dedicated father to Woolfy, which perhaps has something to do with his own upbringing. Tatler claims the building tycoon doesn’t have a close relationship with his aristocrat dad. Rather, he called his stepfather « the only father I have ever known. » Meanwhile, Woolfy is such a fixture in this couple’s life that he served as Edo’s best man.
When Princess Beatrice and Edo made things legally official, she became a stepmother. According to Express, this made her the first « blood princess » to ever do so — and it looks like she’s taking the job quite seriously. An insider told People that Edo « is so involved, he is so committed to this little boy, and Beatrice is already showing that she’s a fantastic step-mummy already. They’ve been on family vacations together already. They are really happy, there’s no better person they could have for a step-mummy. »
Woofly reportedly stays with the royal couple when his mom, Dara Huang, is working in Asia. The former fiancés share joint custody and Beatrice has reportedly « really gotten to know » the little boy.