Meghan Markle is spending a cozy family Christmas with her fiance, Prince Harry, and the royals.
Meghan Markle is spending a cozy Christmas with her fiance, Prince Harry, and the royal family.
The former Suits actress is celebrating the holiday at Queen Elizabeth II's country estate, Sandringham, ET previously reported, and now ET has also learned that Meghan will be spending quality time with her future brother-in-law Prince William and Kate Middleton as well.
A source tells ET that Meghan and Harry are expected to stay at William and Kate's country home, Anmer Hall in Norfolk -- which is close to Sandringham -- so they can see 4-year-old Prince George and 2-year-old Princess Charlotte open their stockings from Santa on Christmas morning.
Another event the couple will attend is the Queen's pre-Christmas lunch at Buckingham Palace on Wednesday of this week-- which the Queen throws to spend time with relatives who aren't invited to the more exclusive celebration at her estate -- where Meghan will presumably meet more of Harry's extended family.
Meghan already joined Harry for a pre-Christmas staff party at Windsor castle -- her future wedding venue -- last week, delighting many of the staff members who got a chance to meet her, our source notes.
While Meghan was invited to tea with the Queen privately at Buckingham Palace in October, the upcoming holiday celebration will be her first official event at the Queen's London residence. Meghan has clearly been embraced by the royal family since her engagement to Harry was announced in November. In an unprecedented move by the Queen, she's the first royal fiancee to be invited to Sandringham.
ET recently spoke to royal commentator Richard Fitzwilliams, who talked about the significance of Meghan spending Christmas with the Queen.
"Firstly, it's important to stress that this is a completely new departure from Christmas with reference to the royal family," he noted. "Normally, the protocol is pretty strict. In the past, when Kate Middleton was engaged to William and also when Mike Tindall was engaged to Princess Anne’s daughter, Zara Phillips, they didn’t, as [an] unmarried [couple], spend Christmas with the Queen."
"Obviously Meghan’s parents are in the United States, but the main reason [Markle is invited] is clearly that it’s what Harry wished," he continued. "But I wouldn’t be at all surprised if it wasn’t the queen’s idea, simply because, it’s so important to make a new member and a future senior member of the royal family feel welcome, feel at home, and Christmas is the perfect time to do it."