Tuesday, June 22, 2021

King Felipe & Queen Letizia - Christmas Reply (2020)

A lovely reply arrived back in March from Spain. I had written to King Felipe & Queen Letizia to wish them a Merry Christmas. 

The front of the envelope is the usual from the Spain Royals. The blue circle with "Household of HM the King - Protocol" is printed on, not stamped. 

The back of the envelope features the King's Coat of Arms in Blue. 

Inside is the family's Christmas card. The card is basically the same each year, with a new photo and copy of handwritten message and signatures. 

The front of the card, like always, features King Felipe's coat of arms in red. 

Inside the card is a photo and message. The photo is of Princess Sofia (Left) and Princess Leonor (Right) in Somao, Spain in October 2020 as part of the Princess of Asturias Awards.  One of the Princess of Asturias Awards categories is "Exemplary Town of Asturias." The winning town is given €25,000 and a Royal Visit. Somao, in Asturias, Spain was the 2020 winner. 

The text under the photo says, "Somao (Pravia), Exemplary Town of Asturias Award 2020." (Pravia is the municipality in Asturias where Somao is located.)

The right side inside the card has a bi-lingual typed message. Along with a copy of a handwritten note and signatures that are printed onto the card.  

Each year they are two versions of this card. One with the handwritten note in English and one with the note in Spanish, which they send out according to the language of the recipient. However, once they run out of one, they will start sending out the other to everyone, which is why I received the card with the Spanish handwritten message. 

The card says,
"May this Christmas bring us a specially hopeful New Year 2021. 
Much thanks for the well-wishes,
Felipe R 
Letizia R
Leonor, Princess of Asturias 
Sofia, Infanta de EspaƱa"

In past years, the typed line on the card says simply "Merry Christmas & Happy New Year 20xx." The change this year is obviously a reference to the pandemic. 

The back of the card features King Felipe & Queen Letizia's joint monogram.  

King Juan Carlos & Queen Sofia of Spain - Christmas Reply (2020)

I received this reply, or should I say replies from King Juan Carlos & Queen Sofia of Spain back in April & May. This is the 2nd time I've received a Christmas reply in April and the 1st time I've received one in May. 

The two replies I received are pretty much exactly the same. I have received a double reply a few times over the years. 

The two envelopes are identical. Printed on the envelope is a circle with "Office of HM the King - Protocol" along with the King's coat of arms. The envelope is franked with a generic blue "Postage Paid, Letter."

While there is no postmark with a date from Spain, the mail forwarding sticker for the two envelopes are more than a month apart. 

The two letters are identical, except for the way my address is written. On one it is written in all caps and on the second with the first letters capitalized. The letters are dated February 24th, which doesn't seem to line up with the dates I received the replies. As this is a generic letter that they just swap the recipient's name and address, it is likely they just forgot to update the date (that is a common error we see). 

The letter reads: 

House of HM the King
The Chief of Protocol

Zarzuela Palace
Feburary 24th, 2021
Miss Gertrude Alexandra Daly 
[My Address]

From Chief of Protocol of the House of His Majesty the King, 

Their Majesties King Don Juan Carlos and Queen Sofia entrust me to convey their most sincere thanks for the kind Christmas greetings they have received, while they convey their best wishes for this year 2021.

I take this opportunity to send you my best wishes, 

Alfredo Martinez Serrano

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