The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and Prince Harry hosted President Obama and the First Lady for dinner at Kensington Palace on Friday night, and unusually gave the press access to part of their meeting.
William, Kate and Harry greeted the Obamas inside Clock Court, just outside Apartment 1A, the Cambridges London home.
It was a significant night for the young Royals, marking the first time they have hosted a Head of State without other senior Royals present. This type of role will form an important part of their duties in the years ahead, and even more so when Prince Charles ascends the throne. It’s also the first official function held at William and Catherine’s recently renovated home.
Ahead of the dinner, Kensington Palace said: “Their Royal Highnesses are very much looking forward to welcoming President and Mrs Obama.”
William, Kate and Harry have forged a warm relationship with the Obamas in recent years. The Duke and Duchess met the couple at Buckingham Palace shortly after their wedding in 2011, and Kate met Michelle again at the Olympic Opening Ceremony reception in 2012; Mrs Obama also assisted the Duchess with a special mental health editorial for Huffington Post.
William met the President in the Oval Office in 2014 to discuss conservation issues, but talk also turned to more personal matters when the pair discussed children, with William revealing he was so excited when George was born he forgot to ask the gender.
Harry has worked with Michelle in particular, through support of military personnel and work with the Invictus Games. There are so many areas where the royals and the Obamas have shared interests that there was no doubt plenty to chat about throughout the evening.
As the adults entered Kensington Palace reporters and photographers caught a glimpse of Prince George waiting eagerly in the hallway.
The Palace later confirmed that George was allowed 15 extra minutes before bed in order to meet the Obamas and to thank them for the Rocking Horse he was gifted when he was born. It is safe to say he stole the show in his embroidered dressing gown and slippers!