A flat-screen TV and a monkey fit for a princess

Crown Princess Victoria's 30th birthday celebrations kicked off at the Royal Palace in Stockholm on Saturday. And the government's gift was every princess's dream - a flat-screen TV.

The birthday party began with a present-opening ceremony at the palace. Dressed in a lilac knee-length skirt and a white jacket and with flowers in her hair. the princess received representatives from parliament and the government as well as various other organisations.

Victoria was on good form as prime minister Fredrik Reinfeldt – attending the ceremony with his wife Filippa and their seven year old daughter Ebba – handed over a heavy blue package. It tuned out to be a flat-screen TV, intended for her office at the palace.

“Oj, oj, not bad,” exclaimed the princess as she opened the present.

“She seemed satisfied. We have used well-informed sources to find out what she wanted,” said Reinfeldt after the ceremony.

The Friends of the Nordic Museum and Skansen also delighted the princess with their gift.

“Is it a monkey? I’ve always wanted a monkey,” laughed Victoria.

And she had guessed right.

“No! It is a monkey! What fun,” said the princess.

As the head of Skansen’s zoo, Jonas Wahlström, handed over a framed picture of the monkey, which is actually a lion tamarin, he explained that it is one of the world’s most threatened species.

The monkey will not be moving into Drottningholm with the princess, however. Instead it will remain at Skansen, where a sign will inform visitors of the monkey’s royal connection.

Täby Racecourse gave a donation of 100,000 kronor to the Crown Princess Victoria fund, while the Duchy of Västergötland gave her highness a nature centre which is to be built near Läckö Manor and will be named after the princess. A restaurant and conference building will be linked to it.

“Now you’ll be a restaurant boss,” laughed the king.

After the gift ceremony the crown princess’s birthday celebrations continued in the palace courtyard, where the military and the public were waiting patiently. The cheers echoed between the stone walls as Victoria met thousands of well-wishers.

A salute was fired from Skeppsholmen before the royal family left to continue the festivities on Öland.