State visit from Spain

The Kings and Queens of Sweden and Spain with The Crown Princess Couple and The Prince Couple before the gala dinner at the Royal Palace.

The Kings and Queens of Sweden and Spain with The Crown Princess Couple and The Prince Couple before the gala dinner at the Royal Palace. Photo: Jonas Ekströmer/TT

On 24 Wednesday November, Their Majesties King Felipe VI and Queen Letizia of Spain began a two-day state visit to Sweden at the invitation of His Majesty The King.

The King and Queen of Spain were accompanied by Spanish Minister of Foreign Affairs José Manuel Albares.

The King and Queen of Spain were welcomed with flags flown on Norrbro at the Royal Palace.

The King and Queen of Spain were welcomed with flags flown on Norrbro at the Royal Palace. Photo: Henrik Garlöv/The Royal Court of Sweden

The aim of the visit was to further strengthen the excellent relations between the two countries. The visit also aimed to encourage cooperation within recovery from the Covid-19 pandemic, with a focus on innovative, sustainable solutions.

The previous state visit between the two countries took place in 1983, when The King and Queen visited Spain.

The King and Queen welcome King Felipe VI and Queen Letizia of Spain at the Royal Stables.

The King and Queen welcome King Felipe VI and Queen Letizia of Spain at the Royal Stables. Photo: Henrik Garlöv/The Royal Court of Sweden

The Kings and Queens travelled in a cortège from the Royal Stables to the Royal Palace.

The Kings and Queens travelled in a cortège from the Royal Stables to the Royal Palace. Photo: Henrik Garlöv/The Royal Court of Sweden

The Spanish state visit began with the traditional cortège from the Royal Stables to the Royal Palace.

The Kings in one of the Royal Stables' carriages.

The Kings in one of the Royal Stables' carriages. Photo: Mattias Hellström/SPA

The cortège passes Nybroplan.

The cortège passes Nybroplan. Photo: Duygu Getiren/TT

Welcoming ceremony at the Royal Palace

During the welcoming ceremony in the Inner Courtyard, the Kings inspected a guard of honour from the Life Guards and the national anthems were played. The speakers, the Prime Minister and ministers were also present to welcome the Spanish guests.

The Kings arrive at the welcoming ceremony in the Inner Courtyard of the Royal Palace.

The Kings arrive at the welcoming ceremony in the Inner Courtyard of the Royal Palace. Photo: Claudio Bresciani/TT

The Kings inspect the Grenadier Guard during the ceremony at the Royal Palace.

The Kings inspect the Grenadier Guard during the ceremony at the Royal Palace. Photo: Sanna Argus Tirén/The Royal Court of Sweden

The Kings inspect the Grenadier Guard in the Inner Courtyard of the Royal Palace.

The Kings inspect the Grenadier Guard in the Inner Courtyard of the Royal Palace. Photo: Claudio Bresciani/TT

In the Victoria Salon, the King and Queen of Spain were welcomed to Sweden by The Crown Princess, Prince Daniel, Prince Carl Philip and Princess Sofia.

The Kings and Queens of Sweden and Spain with The Crown Princess Couple and The Prince Couple in the Bernadotte Gallery at the Royal Palace.

The Kings and Queens of Sweden and Spain with The Crown Princess Couple and The Prince Couple in the Bernadotte Gallery at the Royal Palace. Photo: Claudio Bresciani/TT

Press statements

In Queen Lovisa Ulrika's Dining Hall at the Royal Palace, The King of Sweden and the King of Spain gave press statements in connection with the beginning of the state visit from Spain.

Read The King's speech in full here Opens in new window..

The King and King Felipe VI during the walk from the Royal Palace to the Nobel Museum.

The King and King Felipe VI during the walk from the Royal Palace to the Nobel Museum. Photo: Sara Friberg/The Royal Court of Sweden

The Nobel Museum and Karolinska Institutet

The state visit from Spain continued during the afternoon with a visit to the Nobel Museum in Stockholm's Gamla Stan. There, the Kings and Queens were given a tour of a special exhibition about the artist and scientist Santiago Ramón y Cajal, the 1906 Nobel Prize Laureate in Physiology or Medicine.

The King and Queen of Sweden and the King and Queen of Spain with Minister Ernkrans outside the Nobel Museum.

The King and Queen of Sweden and the King and Queen of Spain with Minister Ernkrans outside the Nobel Museum. Photo: Pelle T Nilsson/SPA

The Kings and Queens were given a tour of the Nobel Museum in Stockholm's Gamla Stan.

The Kings and Queens were given a tour of the Nobel Museum in Stockholm's Gamla Stan. Photo: Jonas Ekströmer/TT

The Queens then attended a seminar at Karolinska Institutet in Solna. The seminar dealt with issues relating to physical disabilities and rare diseases.

The Queens and The Crown Princess during the seminar at Karolinska Institutet.

The Queens and The Crown Princess during the seminar at Karolinska Institutet. Photo: Claudio Bresciani/TT

The Queens and The Crown Princess at Karolinska Institutet with Minister Hallengren.

The Queens and The Crown Princess at Karolinska Institutet with Minister Hallengren. Photo: Claudio Bresciani/TT

Gala dinner at the Royal Palace

The first day of the state visit concluded with The King and Queen hosting a gala dinner at the Royal Palace for the King and Queen of Spain and the Spanish delegation. The Crown Princess Couple and The Prince Couple also attended the dinner. The dinner was held in a smaller, adapted format in the Royal Palace's ballroom, the Vita Havet Assembly Rooms.

The table of honour, laid with the Brazilian silver service.

The table of honour, laid with the Brazilian silver service. Photo: Henrik Garlöv/The Royal Court of Sweden

The table silver was from the Brazilian silver service. The table linen was the Union Linen, woven in France in around 1890.

The fish course was served on plates commissioned by Queen Josefina during the late 19th century. The meat course was served on plates from a service produced for the Grand Duchess of Baden, mother of Queen Viktoria, in the 1850s. The glassware was a gift to The King and Queen from the Riksdag and the Swedish Government for their wedding in 1976.

The King and Queen greet the dinner guests.

The King and Queen greet the dinner guests. Photo: Sara Friberg/The Royal Court of Sweden

The Crown Princess Couple and The Prince Couple during the welcoming ceremony.

The Crown Princess Couple and The Prince Couple during the welcoming ceremony. Photo: Sara Friberg/The Royal Court of Sweden

The King accompanied the Queen of Spain to the table. The Queen was accompanied to the table by the King of Spain.

The Queen speaks with the King of Spain during the gala dinner in the Vita Havet Assembly Rooms.

The Queen speaks with the King of Spain during the gala dinner in the Vita Havet Assembly Rooms. Photo: Jonas Ekströmer/TT

The menu for the evening.

The menu for the evening. Photo: Henrik Garlöv/The Royal Court of Sweden


MENU

Baked arctic char with roe from Älvdalen,
chives, soured cream and herbed crispbread

*

Fried wild turbot and Swedish octopus
with compôte of leek, butter sauce flavoured
with gooseberry and Kalix vendace roe

*

Juniper-smoked saddle of reindeer with mushroom croquettes,
beetroot baked in coffee and venison gravy with browned butter

*

Autumn apples in salted caramel with rosemary, almond,
puff pastry brioche and ice cream flavoured with Tahitian vanilla


During the dinner, The King gave a speech in which he said:

Right now, our nations and economies face a period of recovery from the pandemic. This past summer saw extreme weather in many parts of Europe, including in Spain and Sweden. These events highlight the need to transition to more sustainable and resilient societies.

"This presents us with challenges, but also with opportunities for innovation and development. The close ties between our nations and people lay the foundations for cooperation and solidarity, and for solving problems – together."

Read The King's speech in full here Opens in new window..

The gala dinner in the Vita Havet Assembly Rooms at the Royal Palace.

The gala dinner in the Vita Havet Assembly Rooms at the Royal Palace. Photo: Henrik Garlöv/The Royal Court of Sweden

Exchange of orders

During the state visit, orders were exchanged between the two royal families. The King of Spain, who was named a Knight of the Seraphim as Prince of Asturias in 1991, was awarded the Chain of the Order of the Seraphim – a special honour. The Queen of Spain was also made a foreign member of the Order of the Seraphim.

In connection with the state visit, the King of Spain also awarded orders to the Swedish Royal Family. The Queen was awarded the Grand Cross of the Order of Charles III, The Crown Princess was awarded the Grand Cross of the Order of Isabella the Catholic, and Prince Daniel, Prince Carl Philip and Princess Sofia were awarded the Grand Cross of the Order of Civil Merit.

The King has held the Grand Cross of the Order of Charles III since 1979. Since 1983, The King has also been a Knight of the Spanish Order of the Golden Fleece.

State visits

State visits are the highest form of visit between two countries, and take place at head of state level. In Sweden, it is therefore The King who invites dignitaries on state visits to Sweden and who carries out state visits abroad.

The previous state visit between the two countries took place in 1983, when The King and Queen visited Spain.

Find out more about state visits here Opens in new window..