King Juan Carlos In Cuba For Castro Funeral

King Juan Carlos is in Cuba this week to attend funeral services for former Cuban President Fidel Castro.

Spain has long had ties with its former colony and, now that the island is becoming more open, Spain wants to secure its position there.

Don Juan Carlos has been a point-person for King Felipe in Latin America. Don Felipe used to be that point-person when he was Prince of Asturias.

King Juan Carlos with Cuban President Raúl Castro. © Casa de S.M. el Rey

King Felipe, meanwhile, has spent recent days on a state visit to Portugal, a key Spanish ally.

The King and Queen have dinner with the Portuguese president. © Casa de S.M. el Rey

King Felipe and Queen Letizia have made several stops in the country and met with several local and national leaders.

The King and Queen before Don Felipe addresses the Portuguese Assembly. © Casa de S.M. el Rey

Tomorrow the King is scheduled to meet with the president of the European Commission in Madrid.


Busy Pre-Holiday Agenda

Members of the Spanish Royal Family have packed their agenda ahead of the upcoming holidays.

© Casa de S.M. el Rey

King Felipe and Queen Letizia visited Valencia last week to hand out the Rey Jaime I awards, which focus on research and discovery.

The King and Queen also visited the eastern Spanish city’s main marketplace, and spoke with vendors and visitors.

© Casa de S.M. el Rey

On Friday, Queen Sofia was at the Royal Palace in Madrid handing out awards in Ibero-American poetry.

© Casa de S.M. el Rey

She then visited Mallorca to help mark the 700th anniversary of the death of Ramón Llull, a Catalan writer and philosopher.

Queen Sofia at the Palma de Mallorca Cathedral. © Casa de S.M. el Rey

King Juan Carlos was also on the agenda in recent weeks. He was at Bank of Spain headquarters giving out an award on the economy named after him.

© Casa de S.M. el Rey

On the agenda in the coming days are a swearing-in and an official trip to Portugal.

King Opens Parliament, Calls For New Era

King Felipe called for a “new era of prosperity” during the opening of the Cortes Generales this week.

The King attended the solemn ceremony with Queen Letizia, Princess Leonor and Infanta Sofia.

Protocol for the occasion includes opening the Door of the Lions and a brief military parade.

The King said, “Our recent history has not been free of difficulties. We have overcome them and will continue to overcome. I am convinced that the Spanish people has a profound desire to open a new era of prosperity centered on coexistence and understanding.”

King Delays Saudi Trip

King Felipe has delayed a trip to Saudi Arabia because of the death of King Salman’s brother.

Don Felipe and Queen Letizia had already delayed some major foreign trips, including a visit to the United Kingdom, because of political uncertainty in Spain.

The King and Queen at the Royal Palace of Aranjuez. © Casa de S.M. el Rey

The King and Queen, and their daughters, including the Princess of Asturias, will attend the opening of parliament on the 17th.

King To Appear Before Parliament

King Felipe is set to appear before parliament in the coming days for what Spaniards call the Solemn Opening of the Cortes, according to media reports.

© Casa de S.M. el Rey

Last week the King swore in members of Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy’s new government, including incoming Defense Secretary Maria Dolores de Cospedal.

The King attends an event to honor veterans. © Casa de S.M. el Rey

The opening of the Cortes, as parliament is called, has been delayed because of a months-long political stalemate.


The Congress of Deputies Palace dressed for a previous Solemn Opening.


The ceremony involves plenty of pomp and symbolism, including opening the ceremonial Door of the Lions.