HRH Princess Benedikte’s 80th birthday

On Monday, 29 April 2024, Her Royal Highness Princess Benedikte celebrates her 80th birthday. The milestone birthday will be marked with a range of official events, while the actual birthday itself will be celebrated privately with family and friends.

Photo: Ida Marie Odgaard, Ritzau Scanpix ©

Princess Benedikte was born during the Second World War during the reign of her grandfather, Christian X. The Princess was the second child of Crown Prince Frederik (IX) and Crown Princess Ingrid, and Frederik VIII’s Palace at Amalienborg was the setting of The Princess’s childhood and adolescence. In 1946, little sister Princess Anne-Marie arrived, and, the following year, the parents became The King and Queen of Denmark. Like her two sisters, The Princess carried out her schooling at Zahles Skole in Copenhagen. Afterwards, Princess Benedikte studied first at Benenden School in Kent, England, and then at Brillamont Ecole in Lausanne, Switzerland. Subsequently, Princess Benedikte concluded her education with a course in dressmaking and design at Margrethe-Skolen in 1965. 

As a 22-year-old, Princess Benedikte became engaged to Prince Richard zu Sayn-Wittgenstein-Berleburg in March 1967. The wedding took place the following year at Fredensborg Palace Church. After the wedding, the couple settled in the north-western German city of Bad Berleburg at Schloss Berleberg, the birthplace of Prince Richard. Here, Princess Benedikte and Prince Richard became the parents of His Highness Prince Gustav in 1969, of Her Highness Princess Alexandra in 1970, and, five years later, of Her Highness Princess Nathalie. After 49 years of marriage, Prince Richard died in 2017.

The birthday will be marked officially with the following events:

19 April: Birthday dinner at Sølyst
The organisation Dressurens Venner and a number of Princess Benedikte’s equestrian sport patronages have joined together to celebrate Her Royal Highness’s 80th birthday with a dinner at Sølyst. Throughout much of her life, Princess Benedikte has been engaged in riding and horses, and The Princess has been the patron of the Danish Equestrian Federation since 1992. In addition, The Princess is the patron of the Danish Warmblood Association, the organisation Hestens Værn and the World Breeding Federation for Sport Horses.

24 April: Official opening of the exhibition “Princess Dresses” at Koldinghus
As honorary patron of The Royal Danish Collection Koldinghus, Princess Benedikte opens the exhibition “Princess Dresses” on the occasion of her 80th birthday. Displayed here is a selection of The Princess’s gala dresses created through the years by Jørgen Bender. On exhibit are more than 20 dresses, which span from birthday dresses, a silver wedding anniversary dress, and a selection of evening gowns to a maternity dress and The Princess’s wedding dress. In addition to providing insight into Jørgen Bender’s detailed craftsmanship, the exhibition also provides a survey of four decades of fashion history, as the dresses selected were created during the period of 1968 until 1999.

2 May: The Princess holds a reception for her patronages at Rosenborg Castle
In the Great Hall of Rosenborg Castle, Princess Benedikte hosts a reception for The Princess’s patronages and others. Princess Benedikte is the patron of a number of Danish and foreign organisations that work for humanitarian or artistic purposes or sports.