King Felipe of Spain ascended to his throne during a very tumultuous time for the monarchy. His father, King Juan Carlos, abdicated after being involved in several scandals, and so it fell upon Felipe to bring Spain into a new royal era.
The luxurious lifestyles of royal families worldwide are upsetting to some, while others argue that they do much good in their roles. But while the various members of royal families might live in luxury, there are actually huge differences depending on which family we’re talking about.
Now, for the first time, King Felipe recently revealed his personal wealth. And, well, it might not be exactly what you’d expect. Here’s all you need to know about the Spanish King!
An echelon of celebrity exists whose members live arguably even more spectacular lives than those of the biggest Hollywood stars. Of course, we’re talking about royals.
Who is King Felipe of Spain?
Worldwide, there are currently more than 20 existing monarchies. One of the most well-known ones is the British Royal Family, where Queen Elizabeth yet reigns, having sat on the throne for an astounding 70 years. There are others in Sweden, Norway, and Denmark, for example.
Across Europe, there are plenty of other royal families. But one, in particular, has found itself cast in a negative light of late: the Royal Family of Spain.
King Felipe of Spain took over from his father, King Juan Carlos, in 2014, after the latter abdicated. Today, however, the family lives a calmer life, and King Felipe has become quite the popular monarch.
King Felipe of Spain was born on January 30, 1968, the son of former King Juan Carlos and former Queen Sofia of Greece.
He is the only son of Juan Carlos, though he has two elder sisters. In Spain, the monarchy used to be passed through the male line, meaning that Felipe was crowned despite not being the most senior. However, that has changed in recent years, and Felipe’s eldest daughter is now in line to become Queen after him.
As a child, King Felipe got to see much of the world alongside his siblings. He studied in Canada, at the Lakefield College School in Ontario, in 1984 and 1985. According to Huffington Post, other notable alumni from the school include Prince Andrew and actor Will Arnett.
Competed in the Olympics
“Those whom God has chosen to be kings and to be at the head of the destiny of a country do not have any other choice than to start to understand the importance and the special characteristics of the position because one can say that they start to become adults long before other boys of their age,” the King’s first letter home read, as reported by the Telegraph.
After studying in Canada, Felipe undertook three years of military training in Spain’s armed forces academy. Later, he earned a law degree in Madrid. He continued his studies, earning a Master’s Degree in international relations from Georgetown University in Washington DC.
“His goal, his only goal, is to serve Spain. It has been deeply ingrained in him that he must be the country’s main servant,” his mother, Queen Sofia, once said, as reported by The Guardian.
Felipe proved to be very popular among the Spanish people. In 1992, his popularity grew even more, as he competed in sailing in the Summer Olympics in Barcelona – Prince was even the flag bearer for the Spanish team. He and his sailing partners came sixth overall.
As Spain headed into the 2010s, the Royal Family was struck by a scandal. Juan Carlos’s reputation took a massive blow due to a corruption investigation and accusations of tax fraud. As a result, Juan Carlos became the first Spanish royal to stand trial, according to Reuters.
Scandals within the Spanish Royal family
However, since a Spanish monarch is immune to prosecution, he couldn’t be sentenced.
Moreover, he went on an elephant-hunting trip to Botswana in April 2012, right in the middle of Spain’s financial crisis, which caused outrage among the people.
Two years ago, the Spanish press reported that Juan Carlos had received about $68 million from Saudi Arabia in 2008 via an offshore account. As a result, he was once again questioned about his activities.
Tax authorities in Switzerland later provided information to the Spanish judicial system about Juan Carlos’ finances, and the former King decided to flee the country and move into exile. At the time, Juan Carlos said the decision was made in light of “certain past events” in his private life and had been taken with “deep feeling but with great serenity.”
In 2014, Juan Carlos decided to abdicate. After 44 years, Prince Felipe became King Felipe of Spain on June 19, 2014. His wife, Letizia, officially became Queen.
“I want to put into practice my firm and constant desire to adapt the institution to the times we are living in at each moment, leading a project that links our history with the future and that encompasses our traditions with a forward-thinking, progressive spirit,” Felipe said in Barcelona in 2011.
King Felipe renounced his inheritance
At the time King Felipe ascended the throne and became King, public support for the monarchy was severely damaged. He decided to act against his father after the 2020 scandal appeared.
It was a historic decision, as King Filipe renounced his inheritance in an attempt to distance himself from the financial scandals of his father.
Until that point, Juan Carlos had received what one might call an “allowance” of $215,000 each year. But King Felipe decided to cancel the payments and take away his father’s annual state pension. That was, reportedly, something the former king had agreed to, as presented in a statement from the royal palace.
Today, King Felipe is still struggling to repair the Royal Family’s image. Things didn’t exactly get better when it was revealed that his two sisters – Elena and Christina – had received the Covid-19 vaccine before their turn prior to visiting Juan Carlos in Dubai.
When he took over in 2014, Felipe had the goal of restoring prestige and trust in the monarchy. So he issued a “code of conduct” for the royal household’s members, and ordered an audit of all its accounts.
It wasn’t until recently that he revealed a most significant and perhaps most private detail about his life; his own personal wealth.
King Felipe – personal wealth, net worth
This came after the Spanish government had announced plans to pass a decree to “strengthen the transparency, accountability, efficiency” of the Royal Family. That left the royal house with no other option than to publish quarterly financial statements (this also applied to senior civil servants serving the Royal Family).
But mere hours before the new law was to be revealed, King Felipe decided to unveil his personal wealth. It amounts to about $2.2 million, fairly paltry when compared to that of Queen Elizabeth of England. According to the most recent edition of the Sunday Times Rich List, the Queen of England is estimated to have a personal wealth of around $461 million, per Yahoo.
Reportedly, most of King Felipe’s fortune is in deposits in either cheques or saving accounts. According to a statement from the royal palace, the rest consists of antiques, art, and jewelry.
So, where does King Felipe’s fortune come from? Well, most is from various remunerations he’s received over the last 32 years, first as a prince and now as King.
“His Majesty the King, guided by this spirit of service and civic commitment, added today to his constitutional responsibilities his personal decision to make public his assets,” the statement read.
“Today, more than ever, citizens rightly demand that moral and ethical principles inspire — and exemplary preside over — our lives public,” King Felipe added to the statement.
Who is King Felipe’s wife Queen Letizia?
So, King Felipe now has revealed his wealth, and his family can continue to strive for a life wherein his father’s scandals don’t cast a shadow over them.
Unlike many other royals, King Felipe and his wife Quen Letizia do their utmost to live normal, everyday lives. Well, as close to normal as can be achieved given the circumstances.
So who is Queen Letizia? Well, she’s one of very few royals who aren’t of royal blood.
As a student, Letizia – born on September 15, 1972, in Oviedo, Spain – began working at several newspapers and news agencies. She became a very popular journalist, reporting for a series of newspapers, and ultimately worked within Spanish broadcast television.
Letizia became the anchor for the nightly news program Telediario, and even covered the 2000 U.S. presidential election. Furthermore, she was awarded the Larra Prize by the Madrid Press Association for that year’s most outstanding journalist under 30.
The story goes that King Felipe had wanted to meet Letizia, and eventually managed to invite her to a dinner party through a journalist friend.
Dated in secret
Reports stated that Letizia handed over her number to the Prince. However, the two didn’t start dating until after a few more months had passed.
In the following years, Letizia and Felipe started dating more seriously, but they decided to keep things a secret since he was the heir to the throne and she was a journalist.
In 2003, Letizia said she was going on a vacation “with a friend.” This coincided with Prince Felipe rarely being seen at his royal summer residence in Mallorca.
It turned out that the two were spending time with each other in secret. Then, in early November of 2003, a bombshell statement from the Royal Family was made public: Felipe and Letizia were engaged.
Queen Letizia’s engagement ring features a white gold band and 16 baguette-cut diamonds. In return, she gifted the King white gold and sapphire cufflinks.
On May 22, 2004, the couple tied the knot at the Santa María la Real de la Almudena Cathedral in Madrid, with many royal guests in attendance.
Encourages the family to live a normal life
Through their marriage, Letizia became one of the few non-royals to get engaged and become a member of a royal household. However, it turned out that the former king, Juan Carlos, wasn’t too happy about the couple marrying.
The two have often taken their daughters – Leonore and Sofia – on trips to the cinema. Contrary to the former king, Juan Carlos, who frequently held private screenings at their residence, Felipe and Letizia reportedly take their daughters to a public cinema.
El País reports that Letizia encourages their family to live a more normal life.
What do you think about royals having so much money? Do you think they should have to reveal details regarding their personal wealth or not? Please, give us your thoughts in the comment section.
Meanwhile, share this article on Facebook with friends and family if you enjoy reading about royals!