Christmas has come and gone but we now know where the Duke and Duchess of Sussex spent the holidays while in Canada. Prince Harry, Duchess Meghan, their son, Archie, and Meghan’s mother, Doria Ragland, were on Vancouver Island, in North Saanich, about a half hour north of Victoria.
Harry, Meghan, Archie and Doria reportedly rented out an eight-bedroom, 11,416 square-foot waterfront mansion that sits on four acres, boasts two beaches and has a 2,349 square-foot guest cottage, reports the Daily Mail. Locals told the paper that cameras and fences had been installed on and around the property as early as December 19, and the couple’s royal protection team has been spotted patrolling the roads around the estate.
There have been some royal sightings as well, from hikes and jogs around Horth Hill which, local Bev Koffel told the Vancouver Sun, has “become a very popular place.” Horth Hill Regional Park is a short drive north of where they’re staying, just past Victoria International Airport. According to a local guide, the area is great for people and dogs, takes about an hour to hike around the outer trail and if that’s not enough, the well-marked inner trails through the forest might take another hour. And not that it needed to be said, but the views are obviously incredible.
According to the Mail, the mansion was listed in 2012 for $18,459,645 and aside from all the bedrooms, also features a chef’s kitchen with pizza oven, a two-storey living room, a game room with wet bar, wine tasting room, media space and a conservatory.
Sounds amazing but it hasn’t been all smooth sailing. Harry and Meghan reportedly tried to get a table at the restaurant at the Deep Cove Chalet, which Koffel owns with her husband, chef Pierre Koffel, but he denied them a reservation. According to Bev, Pierre refused because of the security that was required. Disappointing for Bev but she hopes the couple gets the rest and relaxation they were looking for in Canada. “Let them have their peace and quiet,” she added. “For us to be so lucky to have them in the area, how lucky is that? I wish them all the privacy they can possibly get. They deserve it.”
That they do, as once they’re back in the U.K., their weeks-long hiatus will be up and they’ll be back to the royal grind. The couple have officially filed to trademark “Sussex Royal,” which means they’ll be setting their Foundation into motion, if that already hasn’t been in the works. It was earlier this year that Harry and Meghan split from the Royal Foundation, which is now solely under the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge.