Posts tagged with "Meghan Markle"

‘Megxit’ effect: Could Vancouver Island be the next Martha’s Vineyard?

February 19, 2020

Following  a “battle royal” among  the  members of Britain’s sovereign Windsor family, Prince Harry and his wife—the former (and future?) actress Meghan Markle—and their son, Archie, have been living on Canada’s posh Vancouver Island, located just off the coast of British Columbia.

In taking up residence on the island, either temporarily or permanently, the Sussexes have instantly elevated awareness of the 12,000-square-mile enclave—now trending globally as the next “it” place to buy property or vacation.

“Vancouver Island is now on the map as a place where royals reside and live, similar to Martha’s Vineyard being put on the map by the Kennedys and Kennebunkport by the Bushes,” Eric Smallwood, president of the Apex Marketing Group, told NBC News this week. “The focus will be tourism. A little longer term, it will be real estate.”

Smallwood told the network news outlet thatd all of the buzz is worth more than $38 million in positive brand value for the country, with that number increasing daily based on news coverage and information about the Sussexes’ new life on Vancouver Island, according to an analysis he conducted for NBC News.

Sotheby’s Realty lists 57 luxury homes for sale on the island for anyone who might be interested in living like a royal. One home, billed as a “surfer’s paradise” located on the water is priced at $10.5 million, while another “luxurious oceanfront estate” is on the market for nearly $6.8 million.

Additionally, Levine predicted that the couple’s presence could lead to a new cottage industry: independent, “not-so-royal tours, which highlight the family’s favorite local shops, restaurants and playgrounds,” he said. “There may be a temporary influx of visitors trying to catch a glimpse of the couple out and about.”

“Canada has been trying to advance tourism to British Columbia,” Levine added. “So, if whale watching isn’t working, maybe ‘Markle spotting’ will be a hit.”

George Hanson, president and CEO of the Vancouver Island Economic Alliance, told NBC News he is “continually surprised at how few North Americans are aware of our island,” which is a short trip from Seattle. Hanson said he’s thrilled that the island is now known by people around the world.

“Vancouver Island is one of the most progressive, beautiful, pristine. and spacious destinations in the world,” he said. “We understand why Harry and Meghan might choose to live here and why others not familiar with the island might want to come see this appeal for themselves.”

 “The couple could have chosen to live anywhere in North America and they selected Vancouver Island. That’s a powerful endorsement and is generating positive buzz for the community,” said Andy Levine, chairman of the marketing company Development Counsellors International.

Research contact: @NBCNews

Meghan blabs: Tells friends she found royal life ‘toxic’ and ‘soul-crushing’

January 20, 2020

Life with the Windsors was simply a royal pain, as Meghan Markie is telling friends now—and it was “a matter of life or death” to escape the UK with Harry and baby Archie, The Daily Beast reported at the end of last week.

A friend told DailyMail on January 16 that Meghan felt that living within the royal confines was “soul crushing” and that she didn’t want Archie growing up within such a “toxic environment ….”

According to both newspaper reports, the Duchess of Sussex told her friends that “her soul was being crushed and that the decision to leave was a matter of life or death. Meaning the death of her spirit. She felt she couldn’t be the best mother to Archie if she wasn’t being her true, authentic self. She didn’t want Archie picking up on her stress and anxiety. She felt like it was a toxic environment for him because there was too much tension.”

The Mail also reported that staff at their Windsor home, Frogmore Cottage, are being let go from those positions and reassigned to other jobs within the royal household. Palace sources told the Mail that Meghan will never return to live in Britain in “a meaningful way.”

However, The Daily Beast said, cracks are now appearing in the couple’s delicate plans to move to Canada, amid signs that the royals might have overestimated the willingness of the Canadians to have an unemployed prince and his wife on their hands.

Indeed, The Globe and Mail, billed as Canada’s national newspaper, has spoken out against the Duke and Duchess settling in Canada if they remain tied to the Royal Family professionally. The publisher claimed Canada was not a “halfway house” for the Royals while they “work out their own personal issues”.

In an article posted online, the publisher said: “The Canadian monarchy is virtual; it neither rules nor resides. Our roys don’t live here. They reign from a distance. Close to our hearts, far from our hearths.”

What’s more, findings of a poll conducted on behalf of the nonprofit Angus Reid Institute found that a stunning 73% of respondents said they would prefer Canada not to pitch in as much as a red cent to the cost of keeping the Sussexes safe.

Michael Behiels, an emeritus professor of political and constitutional history at the University of Ottawa and fellow of the Royal Society of Canada, said the Sussexes’ decision to move could end up in the Supreme Court of Canada.

He told The Times of London: “They can visit Canada on behalf of the Queen but they can’t take on any other royal family responsibilities or live in Canada permanently or part-time. I hope that [the] Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and his cabinet fully respect the nature and scope of Canada’s Constitution Acts of 1867 and 1982.”

Trudeau tweeted before Christmas that Harry, Meghan, and eight-month-old Archie “were among friends, and always welcome here,” but he may live to regret the open invitation.

Research contact: @dailybeast

When Harry met Meghan: British media reports that Prince Philip told grandson not to marry actress

June 18, 2019

Prince Philip of the UK’s royal House of Windsor warned his grandson against marrying Meghan Markle, telling Prince Harry: “One steps out with actresses, one doesn’t marry them,” a new report by Britain’s The Sunday Times claims.

The straight-talking nonagenarian, who is Queen Elizabeth’s consort, is said to have made the comment in 2017, after Prince William also had advised Harry to think about whether he was “sure” he wanted to rush into marriage to Meghan, The Daily Beast reported on June 17.

The gossip was aired by society journalist Sophia Money-Coutts, a former writer at Tatler.

Harry ignored the urgings of his family and proposed to Meghan in November 2017, six months before they married.

Other friends, such as Tom Inskip, also urged Harry to progress more slowly, and were punished by being excluded from the after party of Harry’s wedding.

According to sources quoted by Money-Coutts: “Anybody who voiced any kind of reservation about Meghan has been sidelined.”

She also quotes another source on the roots of the feud with his brother: “Harry felt like William and Kate didn’t make enough effort when Meghan arrived at Kensington Palace; that they didn’t roll out the red carpet for her.”

Research contact: @thedailybeast

Kushner is flummoxed on interview questions about Trump’s racism

June 4, 2019

When you work for the family business, loyalty isn’t just a nicety; it’s a rigorous job requirement. So, we weren’t expecting any big reveals from presidential son-in-law and adviser Jared Kushner during his June 2 interview with National Political Reporter Jonathan Swan of Axios on HBO.

Indeed, when pressed by Swan about whether current POTUS, Donald Trump, could be characterized as a racist—judging by his no-holds-barred birther campaign against his predecessor Barack Obama—Kushner was briefly flummoxed, according to a report by The Washington Post.

Here’s a quick transcript, obtained from the news outlet:

SWAN: Have you ever seen him say or do anything that you would describe as racist or bigoted?

KUSHNER: So, the answer is un— uh, no. Absolutely not. You can’t not be a racist for 69 years, then run for president and be a racist. What I’ll say is that, when a lot of the Democrats call the president a racist, I think they’re doing a disservice to people who suffer because of real racism in this country.

SWAN: Was birtherism racist?

KUSHNER: Um, look I wasn’t really involved in that.

SWAN: I know you weren’t. Was it racist?

KUSHNER: Like I said, I wasn’t involved in that.

SWAN: I know you weren’t. Was it racist?

KUSHNER: I know who the president is, and I have not seen anything in him that is racist. So, again, I was not involved in that.

SWAN: Did you wish he didn’t do that?

KUSHNER: Like I said, I was not involved in that. That was a long time ago.

That’s 4-0, The Washington Post noted—Four instances in which Kushner emphasized that he hadn’t personally participated in Trump’s effort to question the legitimacy of the nation’s first black president, and zero instances in which he denied the entire effort was racist.

Kushner’s insistence that this “was a long time ago” is also pretty difficult to digest. For those who might have forgotten the 2016 campaign, Trump’s birtherism charge made a comeback and lingered for weeks before he eventually backed off — kind of, the news outlet said. But not before he had appealed repeatedly to his base.

Michelle Obama reserved some of the harshest words in her 2018 autobiography, Becoming, for this saga. “The whole [birther] thing was crazy and mean-spirited, of course, its underlying bigotry and xenophobia hardly concealed,” she said. “But it was also dangerous, deliberately meant to stir up the wingnuts and kooks.”

According to the Post, “He showed the GOP base, much of which embraced the bogus theory, that he was willing to stick by a birther campaign that riled them up and drove the establishment crazy. It was the first big conspiracy theory of his conspiracy theory-laden political career.”

And that first big success has led to Trump’s more recent disparagement of Muslims, Gold Star parents, Hispanics, Haiti and Africa as “shXthole countries,” “people who were captured in the war,” and even Meghan Markle.

With that in mind, Jonathan Swan’s questions are effectively answered.

Research contact: @jonathanvswan

British public is taken with Meghan Markle

May 15, 2018

Do you take this woman? The British public has said a resounding “yes” to the union of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle, based on findings of a survey by Opinium Research’s Monarchy Tracker and released by the International Business Times on May 12.

Britain’s Royal Family will welcome an American member on Saturday, May 19, at St George’s Chapel in Windsor Castle, at about noon local time. Kensington Palace confirmed that Thomas Markle, Meghan’s father, will walk her down the aisle. However, the bride will arrive at the venue in a car accompanied by her mother.

After the “I dos,” all 600 guests will attend a lunchtime reception at St George’s Hall, which is being hosted by Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II. Later that evening, 200 guests are being invited to the private reception at Frogmore House given by The Prince of Wales, Harry’s father and the next in the line of succession.

Based on survey results, fully 56% of the British people believe that the “Suits” actress is a good addition to the family and 40% have a favorable opinion of the future royal.

“The increase in approval for Meghan Markle this year far outweighs that seen by any Royal Family member, largely through winning over those who were previously unaware of her,” Priya Minhas of Opinium research told The Express.

“And, perhaps more importantly, she has retained this popularity for over six months,” she continued. “And that is not always a given considering the sustained level of press attention that she has garnered.”

Despite the couple’s increasing popularity, 53% of the respondents admitted that they would not watch the royal wedding coverage next week. Only 38% plan to do so.

In the United States, the first footage will be available from CBS This Morning, which airs at 4:00 a.m. on the East Coast. NBC will transport its entire Today show to Windsor for its coverage, beginning at 4:30 a.m.; and ABC News and Good Morning America will begin at 5:00 a.m.

Research contact: @OpiniumResearch