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When one is a member of the British royal family, only the very best will do - especially when one is throwing a Royal Wedding.
For centuries, successive royal households have kept a list of the companies deemed worthy of supplying goods and services to the Monarch. Today, around 800 companies hold this distinction, known as a Royal Warrant. It can only be granted by the Queen, the Duke of Edinburgh or the Prince of Wales —and only after at least five consecutive years of service.
As well as being a great honour, companies can declare their royal connection by displaying the Royal Arms on their logo and goods. But who’s in this uber-exclusive club? Well, you’ll find everything from the Queen’s soft drink provider to the supplier of Prince Charles’ toothpaste.
So, who on that list might our newest Royal-to-be, Meghan Markle, be contacting in the coming weeks?
A Great British brew
She’ll no doubt be feeling some jitters as the day approaches so what better (or more English) way to calm those nerves than with a hot cup of tea? Fortnum & Mason has been a London fixture since 1707 and was granted its tea merchants and grocers Royal Warrant by the Prince of Wales in 1955. We can already picture Meghan sipping their Royal Brew – originally blended for King Edward VII - before her nuptials.
Dressed for the occasion
It’s yet to be revealed who’ll be dressing Meghan on her big day, but what we do know is she’s spoilt for choice. One of those choices is couturier Stewart Parvin. Renowned for his elegant tailoring and timeless made-to-measure bridal designs, Belgravia-based Parvin received his Royal Warrant from Queen Elizabeth in 2007, making him a suitably regal choice for our blushing bride.
It’s Leicester florist Rosemary Hughes who creates the scented nosegays – the fragrant bouquets carried by royals before Easter – for the annual Maundy Thursday service, including the posies carried by the Queen. She also specialises in wedding arrangements… could she be tasked with Meghan’s bridal flowers?
Finding the ring
In Mayfair, central London, stands House of Garrard, the world’s oldest jewellery house. It was their artisans who created the Imperial State Crown worn by Queen Elizabeth on her Coronation Day, as well as the tiara she borrowed when she married Prince Phillip. More recently, they crafted Lady Diana’s sapphire and diamond engagement ring, since passed down to the Duchess of Cambridge. With such a pedigree, Meghan could well be wearing Garrard jewellery on her big day too.
Why content yourself with eau de toilette when you can wear your own bespoke perfume? Floris, in its original Jermyn Street location near London’s St James Square since 1730, is the oldest independent family-run perfumer in the world, and was given its first Royal Warrant in 1820. If Meghan chooses a signature fragrance, she’ll have at least three consultations in order to create a one-of-a-kind scent — although she’d best get a wriggle on as the process takes around six months.
A toast to the big day
If Meghan is to truly integrate into British society, she’d be wise to include two classic drinks at their reception – gin and tonic, and Pimm’s. Gordon’s Gin first received its Royal Warrant in 1925 and to this day remains a supplier to the Royal Household. James Pimm mixed his first summer cocktail in the 1840s, and Pimm’s, his secret mix of gin, botanicals, caramelised orange and spices, remains a quintessential British tipple to this day; it received its Royal Warrant in 2011.
With such esteemed luxury suppliers to choose from, it seems Meghan is set to enjoy a wedding day fit for a princess.
NB to Editors: The businesses included in this editorial were selected by VisitBritain on a hypothetical basis; inclusion does not suggest these companies will, or will not, have an official involvement with upcoming Royal Wedding.
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VisitBritain Media Teampressandpr@visitbritain.com