New Swedish royal in focus at birthday show

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New Swedish royal in focus at birthday show
Sweden's Princess Sofia with her husband Prince Carl-Philip. Photo: Jonas Ekströmer/TT

Jubilant crowds turned up to celebrate Sweden's Crown Princess Victoria as she turned 38 – but the birthday girl found herself battling for the spotlight with one of Sweden's newest royal stars.


READ ALSO: Soggy crowds turn out for Princess Victoria's birthday

Tourists and residents alike spent the whole of Tuesday waiting at the Swedish royal family's island residence Solliden Castle on Öland to greet the birthday girl – but also hoping to catch a glimpse of Sweden's new princess, freshly returned from her honeymoon on Fiji.

The day included Sofia Hellqvist's first public royal appearance in her role as 'Princess Sofia'. She was granted the title by King Carl XVI Gustaf after her marriage to his son Prince Carl Philip last month.

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Sofia was not present at the afternoon's low-key celebrations, but royal fans at the annual birthday concert in Victoria's honour held later in the evening were delighted to see the new princess in the audience.

She was there along with the whole family – including the King himself, Queen Silvia, Victoria and her husband Prince Daniel, Carl-Philip, Princess Madeleine and her husband Chris O'Neill – to watch some of Sweden's most famous artists perform on stage at Borgholm on Öland.

Victoria with her husband Daniel and Sweden's King and Queen. Photo: Jonas Ekströmer/TT

Earlier in the day, Victoria had greeted members of the public gathered outside Solliden. The rain had shown no sign of dampening the princess' good mood as the crowds sang the Swedish happy birthday song, accompanied by her husband Daniel, their daughter Princess Estelle (who turned three earlier this year) and the King and Queen.

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And what started out as a soggy day ended in sunshine well in time for the concert, which also saw Victoria's sister Madeleine and her British-American financier husband Chris O'Neill make an appearance. The couple, who have two children, are planning an imminent move to London.

Sofia, Madeleine and Chris sharing a joke. Photo: Jonas Ekströmer/TT

Öland is one of the most popular locations in Sweden for summer vacations. Joined to the Swedish mainland from the city of Kalmar in the south of the country by a 6km bridge, it boasts long sandy beaches and is usually one of the sunniest spots in the country.

The Crown Princess has spent several wet birthdays there in recent years but always attracts a good turnout of onlookers, and 2015 was no exception.


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