A property in Malta that the Queen and Duke of Edinburgh once called home has been put up for sale for more than £5 million.
Villa Guardamangia, a palazzo-style mansion on the outskirts of the Maltese capital Valletta, served as a royal residence during the early years of their marriage.
Then a Royal Navy wife, Princess Elizabeth lived on the island for periods between 1949 and 1951 while Philip served on HMS Chequers with the Royal Navy Mediterranean Fleet.
But the rented palatial property offered the newlyweds more than just a Mediterranean base – it gave them their only real taste of life as a relatively ordinary couple before her coronation in 1953.
With six bedrooms, three bathrooms, a grand “sala nobile” living room – not to mention “various guest/servant quarters” – the property has “great historical value”, according to estate agents Homes of Quality.
The home’s opulence has faded into dilapidation in recent decades, with images showing overgrown gardens and a weathered facade.
Nevertheless, the firm is marketing Villa Guardamangia, which sprawls over 1,560sqm, at 5.95 million euros (£5.3 million).
The Queen has spoken of her “deep affection” for Malta, the country she once called home.
During a visit to the country in 2015, she said: “Visiting Malta is always very special for me. I remember happy days here with Prince Philip when we were first married.”
Former Maltese president Marie Louise Coleiro presented the Queen and Duke of Edinburgh with a watercolour of Villa Guardamangia during the trip.
During their time living at the villa, the Queen divided her time between England, where a young Charles remained with his grandparents, and Malta, leaving in 1950 to give birth to the Princess Royal.