Last Saturday, June 15, Europe's Gotha gathered in Coburg to celebrate the 70th birthday of Prince Andreas, Head of House Saxe-Coburg & Gotha.
The Prince, who was born in Casel (his maternal grandfather's estate) on March 21, 1943, succeeded his father as Head of House in 1998. Prior to that date, Prince Andreas had been the manager of the family's properties and it is to his business acumen that the Coburgs owe the restoration of their once dilapidated finances, which suffered greatly during and after the Second World War.
Prince Andreas, who was raised in the USA, returned in his early twenties to Germany to begin preparing for his role as administrator of his family's estates. In 1971 he married Carin Dabelstein and one year later she gave birth to their first of three children, Stephanie. In 1975 Princess Carin gave birth to an heir, Hubertus, and two years later, a second son, Alexander, was born.
Some time ago, Prince Andreas retired from actively managing his family's vast properties. He is now retired and leading a peaceful existence in Coburg, while aslo visiting regularly some of the family's other estates, mainly in Austria.
To celebrate his 70th birthday, Prince Andreas invited the Gotha and local authorities to a party at Schloß Callenberg, where a museum is dedicated to the history of his illustrious family. A second museum located there is dedicated to the history of hunting and is maintained by the German National Hunting League.
Among the royalties present at the birthday party were: King Carl XVI Gustaf, Queen Silvia and Crown Princess Victoria of Sweden, the Duke of Brabant and Prince Laurent and Princess Claire of Belgium, Prince Michael Benedict and Princess Dagmar of Saxe-Weimar-Eisenach, the Fürst and Fürstin of Hohenzollern, Perincess Edda of Anhalt and her husband Albert Darboven, as well as several others.