Crown Prince Hussein of Jordan's royal wedding: Prince William, Kate Middleton join VIPs at lavish ceremony

U.S. first lady Jill Biden and U.K. Princess Beatrice were among those who attended the wedding of Crown Prince Hussein and Rajwa Alseif Thursday

Crown Prince Al Hussein bin Abdullah II, heir to the throne in one of the oldest monarchies in the Middle East, is officially married to Rajwa Alseif.

On Thursday, the couple tied the knot in an Islamic marriage ceremony at Zahran Palace in Amman, Jordan. It followed a reception at Al Husseiniya Palace with over 1,700 guests. The glitzy event was the biggest royal wedding in years.

Britain’s Prince William and wife Kate Middleton were among the numerous royals from various palaces across the globe who attended the wedding.

Jordans Crown Prince Hussein (R) and his wife Saudi Rajwa al-Seif waving

Jordan's Crown Prince Hussein and his wife Saudi Rajwa Alseif wave as they leave the Zahran Palace in Amman June 1, 2023, following their royal wedding ceremony. (Khalil Mazraawi/AFP via Getty Images)

Others in attendance included Crown Prince Frederik and Crown Princess Mary of Denmark, Crown Princess Victoria and Prince Daniel of Sweden, Princess Hisako and Princess Tsuguko of Japan, Crown Prince Haakon of Norway, King Philippe and Princess Elisabeth of Belgium and King Willem-Alexander, Queen Máxima and Princess Catharina-Amalia of the Netherlands. 

William’s cousin, Princess Beatrice, was also spotted with her husband, Edoardo Mapelli Mozzi.

Kate Middleton in a blush gown next to Prince William in a blue suit

Prince William and his wife Kate Middleton attended the royal wedding. (Royal Hashemite Court)

Middleton’s mother, Carole Middleton, and older sister Pippa Middleton were at the reception.

U.S. first lady Jill Biden was among numerous VIPs in attendance.


Jordans Crown Prince Hussein (R) and his wife Saudi Rajwa al-Seif in their car

The ceremony was held in the mid-century Zahran Palace, the site of other key royal weddings, including that of King Abdullah II to Queen Rania. (Khalil Mazraawi/AFP via Getty Images)

"This wedding is a huge deal," Shannon Felton Spence, royal expert and former head of communications and politics at the British Consulate in Boston, told Fox News Digital.

Jill Biden being accompanied by a guest at the royal wedding in Jordan

U.S. first lady Jill Biden (left) also made an appearance at the royal wedding. (Royal Hashemite Court)

"They are a super tight-knit family unit," she said of Jordan's royal household. "Lots of diplomatic influence, and they have two royal weddings this year, this one being the bigger deal because it is their son, the crown prince. William and Kate's attendance shows how important it is diplomatically. It's their counterpart in Jordan. That's how big of a deal that royal wedding is."

William and Kate greeting the king and queen of Jordan

King Abdullah II (not seen) and Queen Rania greet Prince William and his wife, Kate Middleton, before the marriage ceremony of Crown Prince Hussein and Saudi architect Rajwa Alseif June 1, 2023, in Amman, Jordan. (Royal Hashemite Court via AP)

"Sending the Prince and Princess of Wales is a demonstration by the British Head of State (King Charles) that this is a strategic and important relationship to the U.K. for the long term," she continued. "Jordan is a stable ally for the West. Sending the Prince and Princess of Wales to the wedding demonstrates the strength of the friendship and the importance of Jordan."

Jordans King Abdullah II Ibn Al Hussein in a suit next to queen rania in a yellow dress

Jordan's King Abdullah II bin Al Hussein and Queen Rania arrive at Westminster Abbey in central London May 6, 2023, ahead of the coronation of Britain's King Charles III and Queen Camilla. (Paul Ellis/AFP via Getty Images)

The British royal family has a close connection with Jordan. Hussein’s mother, Queen Rania, is on the council of William’s Earthshot Prize. Middleton lived in Jordan from ages 2 to 4 while her father Michael Middleton worked for British Airways. In 2021, the Prince and Princess of Wales took their three children — Prince George, Princess Charlotte and Prince Louis — on a family trip there.

Prince William in a blue blazer and light blue shirt

Britain's Prince William, center, and Jordanian Crown Prince Hussein bin Abdullah, right, visit the Jerash archeological site about 50 kilometers north of the Jordanian capital of Amman June 25, 2018. (Ahmad Abdo/AFP via Getty Images)

Hussein’s parents were also guests at the coronation of King Charles III and Queen Camilla May 6 in London. In 2018, William, who is heir to the British throne, made an official visit to Jordan, where he spent much of his time with Hussein.

The bride and groom are destined to become a power couple as they forge a new bond between Jordan and Saudi Arabia.


King Abdullah, Queen Rania

Crown Prince Hussein's proud parents are beaming during the big day. (Royal Hashemite Court)

The celebration is a joyous time for Jordan’s ruling family, which has gone through a rough patch in recent years due to economic troubles and some public infighting. It deepens the ties between two countries in a turbulent region. Additionally, the ceremony gave the world a first glimpse of the man tapped to one day rule the desert kingdom.

Princess Rajwa in a white blouse and colorful skirt next to Crown Prince Hussein in a light blue shirt

Princess Rajwa comes from a prominent Saudi family. (Royal Hashemite Court)

In May, Hussein told Vogue Arabia he met his bride "through an old friend from school." It’s unclear whether he was referring to his high school years at King’s Academy, Jordan, college at Georgetown University in Washington, D.C., or the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst in the U.K.

placeholder"I consider myself lucky because it is not every day you meet someone like Rajwa," the 28-year-old said.
Princess Rajwa in a traditional beige and green dress next to Crown Prince Hussein in traditional regalia

Princess Rajwa and Crown Prince Hussein met through mutual friends. (Royal Hashemite Court)

The couple announced their engagement in August 2022. They got engaged at the home of Rajwa’s parents in Saudi Arabia with Hussein’s parents, King Abdullah II and Queen Rania, in attendance. They made their first public appearance in October 2022. Most notably, they attended the wedding of Hussein’s sister, Princess Iman, in March of this year.

"Jordan is an important ally," Jonathan Sacerdoti, a royal expert and British broadcaster, told Fox News Digital. "It is a relatively stable presence in a tense neighborhood, bordering war-torn Syria and Iraq, as well as Israel and the disputed territories claimed by the Palestinians. The future king and his bride have strong Western sensibilities.

A band in Jordan playing outdoors during the royal wedding

The motorcade traveled through Amman to the Al Husseiniya Palace, a 30-minute drive away, for the reception. (Royal Hashemite Court)

"The wedding has great significance because the bride is the scion of a powerful Saudi dynasty, strengthening ties between the two countries," he added. "Jordan is quite a poor country which relies on international aid, so the royal wedding is likely to help it strengthen its ties with oil-rich Saudi Arabia. ... Rajwa is the daughter of one of the richest people in Saudi Arabia."


Prince Hashem at the wedding

In a nod to unity and family, Crown Prince Hussein's younger brother, Prince Hashem bin Abdullah, accompanied his sister-in-law for her arrival. (Royal Hashemite Court)

Crown Prince Hussein was born June 28, 1994. His path to succession became clear when his father, the king, stripped his half-brother, Prince Hamzah, of the title of crown prince in 2004. Hussein was formally named heir to the throne five years later, at the age of 15. Hussein is the oldest son of the king, 61, who has ruled Jordan as a reliable Western ally and voice of moderation through more than two decades of turmoil in Israel, the Palestinian territories, Syria and Iraq.

The royal bride and groom sitting together in front of a table with flowers

Crown Prince Hussein and Princess Rajwa are expected to be a power couple in the Middle East. (Royal Hashemite Court)

The Hashemites, as Jordan’s ruling family is known, trace their lineage to the Prophet Muhammad. They dwelled in the Hejaz region of what is now Saudi Arabia for centuries before King Abdul-Aziz Al Saud’s forces drove them out in 1925. The Hashemites had led the Arab revolt against the Ottoman Empire during World War I, a rebellion dramatized by the 1962 film "Lawrence of Arabia." The crown prince is named after his grandfather, King Hussein, who ruled Jordan for 46 years until his death in 1999 and remains a beloved figure for many Jordanians.

Queen Rania and her daughter-in-law Princess Rajwa wearing burgundy gowns at a henna party

In this handout photo issued by The Royal Hashemite Court, Her Majesty Queen Rania and Princess Rajwa attend a henna party before the wedding.  (The Royal Hashemite Court via Jordan Pix/Getty Images)

Rajwa, 29, was born in Riyadh April 28, 1994, the youngest of four children from a prominent Saudi family. Her billionaire father, Khalid Alseif, is the founder of El Seif Engineering Contracting, which built Riyadh’s Kingdom Tower and other high-rises across the Middle East. Her mother, Azza Al Sudairi, is related to Hussa bint Ahmed Al Sudairi, who is said to have been the favorite wife of Saudi Arabia’s King Abdul-Aziz Al Saud.

Crown Prince Hussein and Princess Rajwa in a car surrounded by red Land Rovers

Crown Prince Hussein and Princess Rajwa rode in a 1984 Range Rover that was customized for the visit of the late Queen Elizabeth II to the country in the same year. (Jordan Pix/Getty Images)

Rajwa studied architecture at Syracuse University in New York, where she graduated with a bachelor’s degree in 2017. The year before, she led a spring break architecture symposium in Dubai, in the United Arab Emirates, that was funded by her father’s company. She earned a degree in visual communications from the Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising in Los Angeles.

The bride arrived at Zahran Palace in a 1968 Rolls-Royce Phantom V custom-made for the crown prince’s late great-grandmother. The crown prince was in full ceremonial military uniform with a gold-hilted saber. The look was inspired by the same suit his father wore when he married the queen in 1993.

The prince and princess of Jordan cutting their cake

The Crown Prince of Jordan and his bride cutting the cake at their wedding on Thursday. (Royal Hashemite Court)

Vogue Arabia reported that the curve-hugging, long-sleeved bridal gown was designed by Lebanese designer Elie Saab. The bride completed the look with a diamond tiara, a sweeping veil with embroidery and pointed flats.


Ceremony of Crown Prince Hussein and Princess Rajwa

Crown Prince Hussein's bride was officially declared a princess Thursday. (Royal Hashemite Court)

The families and their guests gathered in an open-air gazebo surrounded by landscaped gardens for a traditional Muslim wedding ceremony known as "katb al-kitab." The crowd erupted in applause after the signing of the marriage contract. About 140 guests were in attendance.

The royal bride and groom of Jordan looking at each other in a bridal gown and military suit

The families and their guests gathered in an open-air gazebo decked with flowers and surrounded by landscaped gardens for a traditional Muslim wedding ceremony known as "katb al-kitab." (Royal Hashemite Court)

Several miles away, a crowd gathered at an ancient Roman amphitheater as they watched the couple seal their vows and exchange rings on a widescreen set up for the occasion. After several minutes of stillness, thousands were on their feet, waving flags and shrieking with excitement at one of several viewing parties held across the nation. After the service, by royal decree, the Royal Hashemite Court announced that Rajwa was officially a princess.

placeholderThe couple’s red motorcade was a nod to the traditional procession of horse riders clad in red coats during the reign of the country’s founder, King Abdullah I. It consisted of eight bright red Land Rover vehicle. Thousands of well wishers attended free concerts and events in honor of the festivities.
Guests at the wedding of Crown Prince Hussein and Princess Rajwa

More than 1,700 guests attended the wedding reception. (Royal Hashemite Court)

The Four Seasons Hotel in Amman was filled with Saudi wedding guests and tourists. The men wore white dishdasha robes while the women appeared in brightly colored abayas. Congratulatory banners of Hussein and his beaming bride adorned buses and hung over hillside streets. Shops had competing displays of royal regalia.

Palace officials turned to social media to showcase the nuptials, even creating the wedding hashtag #CelebratingAlHussein. Thursday was declared a public holiday, giving crowds the chance to gather and celebrate.

Royal family of Jordan walking to the side on their wedding day

Royals and massive crowds gathered across the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan, and other VIPs from around the world attended the ceremony.  (Hashmeti Kingdom of Jordan/Handout/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images)

The reception highlighted performances from local artists, a choir group and the national orchestra. It concluded with the bride and groom cutting the cake below a display of fireworks. Guests were welcomed with foraged wildflowers that represent the native landscape and traditional Arabic coffee and music. The reception space was surrounded by olive trees, representing hospitality in both Jordanian and Saudi cultures. The tables were adorned with traditional clay pottery and hand-blown glass.


Crown Prince Hussein in royal regalia

The kingdom declared Thursday a public holiday so crowds of people could gather to wave at the couple’s motorcade amid a heavy security presence across the city. Tens of thousands attended free concerts and cultural events. (Royal Hashemite Court)

The palace’s archways featured blooming, fragrant jasmine. Sacerdoti shared that the previous night the king hosted a dinner where Jordan's national dish mansaf, lamb cooked in a sauce of fermented dried yogurt, was served to over 4,000 Jordanians.

Sacerdoti, who was in Jordan when the engagement was initially announced, noted that the union is the real deal.

Princess Rajwa wearing a blue dress next to Crown Prince Hussein in a dark suit and blue tie

"It's a fairy tale, according to the royal court," Jonathan Sacerdoti, royal expert and British broadcaster, told Fox News Digital. (Royal Hashemite Court)

"I was sitting with a representative of the royal court, and I said, ‘Is this a political arrangement designed to sort of soothe tensions and reset ties?’" he recalled. "And the response I got was, 'No, no, this is true love.' So, it's a fairy tale, according to the royal court."

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