Saturday, 20 December 2014

Carina Axelsson

Carina Axelsson is prince Gustav von Berleburg's longtime fiancée. 

Carina was born in the US in 1968 from a Mexican-American mother and a Swedish father. Her brother Erik and sister Liselott still live in the US.

She grew up in Los Gatos, Northern California. She moved to San Francisco in the late eighties working as a model. When her career took off she left for New York. Clients included Madame Figaro, Vogue and Elle magazine.




This picture of her from her modelling years was taken by Ellen von Unwerth and sold by Christie's in 2011.


Eventually the modelling work brought her to Paris where she enrolled in an evening course in illustration at Ecole Boulle. She illustrated the children's book "Nigel of Hyde park". 

For a short time she worked as a personal assistant for John Galliano.

Around 2005 Carina was a guest at a dinner party in Germany where she first met prince Gustav von Berleburg - crown prince Frederik's first cousin.

According to Gustav in Billed Bladet: "I had accepted an invitation to dinner by some friends in Germany. One friend knew Carina and one knew me. It was a set-up. I had come to meet Carina and her mobile phone immediately rang. All the mobile phones kept ringing throughout the dinner. After the dinner finished, Carina had turned on her phone again. I took her number and called her up from another part of the room and love began."

In 2006 Carina was first remarked by the press as Gustav's girlfriend - at the wedding of Philipp von Hesse and Laetitia Bechtolf. Soon after she moved in with Gustav at Schloss Berleburg.

She now helps in the daily management of the castle, does the occasional illustration job and writes teen detective novels on fashion and modelling ("Model Undercover").



Because of a clause in Gustav's late grandfather's will Gustav is obliged to marry equally, to a protestant if he isn't to loose the castle and family fortune. The will has been challenged before court - without any avail. Marrying Carina would mean the estate passes to the next male Berleburg in line, who has abided grandfather's wishes: prince Bernhart zu Sayn-Wittgenstein-Hohenstein. 

This is probably the reason why Gustav & Carina are not married.

The couple have no children either.

None the less Carina is fully accepted by Gustav's family. She attends royal gatherings, is included in family photos and has as much access to princess Benedikte's  jewellery box as Gustav's sisters.



Carina Axelsson is a close friend of Mary's and moves in the same circle of friends as her Australian-Danish "cousin".

Mary openly supporting the launch of Carina's new book at Copenhagen's book fair 2015. Carina is being interviewed by their mutual friend, Ellen Hillingsø.


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