The Duke and Duchess of Sussex touched down in Fiji late yesterday afternoon (their time – for our purposes it was the middle of the night) and have had a busy first few hours on the second leg of their 16-day tour. Arrival shots tend to set the tone for a tour, and become the images by which said tour is most recognizable – we didn’t formally get that moment in Australia, but we definitely did in Fiji.
Harry and Meghan flew yesterday from Sydney to Suva, Fiji, where they will remain until the 25th when they decamp to Tonga.
Upon arrival, the couple were greeted with a traditional welcome ceremony. Per custom, Harry took a sip of kava and was offered roasted pig and a whale’s tooth, the latter being a sign of wealth. Both then watched the ceremony from a platform in Albert Park, while Harry made brief remarks:
“Bula venaka! The Duchess and I look forward to meeting as many of you as possible during the next two days and celebrating the links and close friendship between Fiji and the United Kingdom.”
A stop to Borron House included a meeting with the President of Fiji, Jioji Konrote, and the presentation of gifts.
Harry and Meghan are staying at the Grand Pacific Hotel, which is where the evening’s reception was held (see next post). They waved to crowds upon arrival, stepping out onto the balcony before settling in and changing for the black tie event.
Meghan, meanwhile, made a costume change en-route. She departed Sydney in her Outland jeans, a J.Crew white linen shirt and Aquazzura mules, but arrived wearing a white Zimmermann dress with a Stephen Jones fascinator. The shoes are the Tabitha Simmons we’ve seen a few times this tour, while I would note that her bracelet is believed to be a gift from the Prince of Wales.
I’ll admit I didn’t love this look on Meghan, and I absolutely adore Zimmermann. The cut of this dress wasn’t a flattering cut – combined with the undone hair and the black shoes, it just felt very thrown together. The trick of these descents into a new country is to, frankly, appear completely streamlined and elegant even if everything has come together in the middle of a plane ride. It’s something that the Duchess of Cambridge executes flawlessly, which is less to draw up a point of comparison, and more to point out that what seems effortless, in fact takes a quite deal of planning.
This look didn’t provide that “wow” factor for me, though there is nothing inherently wrong with it. And with that we’re leaving this here, because the banquet that occurred hours later was a completely different story!