CONTROVERSIAL TOPICS

CONTROVERSIAL TOPICS

Monday, July 14, 2014

PRINCESS DIANA

 

 

 

 

 
 

Taken in 1990, the throwback Thursday snap was posted on Instagram by Mr Giammetti - captioned: 'Summer is here TBT princess Diana on the TMblue 1990.'

In it, Diana looks as impossibly stylish as she always did; sporting a printed bikini, an over-sized purple shirt tied effortlessly in a knot above her stomach, and a pair of black sunglasses.

Effortless cool: Princess Diana has appeared in a rare candid photo, posted to Instagram for throwback Thursday, which was taken aboard fashion designer Valentino's yacht in 1990 (pictured)

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Effortless cool: Princess Diana has appeared in a rare candid photo, posted to Instagram for throwback Thursday, which was taken aboard fashion designer Valentino's yacht in 1990 (pictured)

The people's princess: The summery photo of Diana (pictured here in 1997) was shared by Giancarlo Giammetti, her former friend and the partner of Valentino, who frequently dressed her

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The people's princess: The summery photo of Diana (pictured here in 1997) was shared by Giancarlo Giammetti, her former friend and the partner of Valentino, who frequently dressed her

The photo, taken on board the Valentino-owned T.M.Blue One yacht, also depicts pals Rosario Saxe-Coburg, wife to the Prince of Preslav, Bulgaria, and a young boy presumed to be Prince William as a child. The doe-eyed former princess was known to frequent the luxury yachts of her rich and famous friends, partly because they offered her relative freedom from the prying eyes of the paparazzi, who hounded her relentlessly for most of her adult life.

Mr Giametti was with Diana seven years later, on August 31 1997 - mere hours before the car crash that ended her life - as she languished on her boyfriend Dodi Al Fayed's Jonikal yacht, which was anchored next to the T.M.Blue One.

'She knew the paparazzi were there, but she didn't care,' he later told Harpers Baazar, recalling that he invited her for lunch that fateful day.

 

Swimwear x x

Swimwear Savvy: A true summer style icon, Diana is pictured (left) in 1991 on vacation in Sardinia, (center) in the South of France in 1997, a month before her tragic death, and (right) also in France

Daydreaming: Diana (pictured in St. Kitts in 1993) is remembered as one of history's most iconic royals; revered for her compassion, style and charisma

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Daydreaming: Diana (pictured in St. Kitts in 1993) is remembered as one of history's most iconic royals; revered for her compassion, style and charisma

Diana, dubbed 'the people's princess' in her native Britain, is remembered as one of history's most iconic royals. Mother to princes William, now 32, and Harry 29; she was revered for her compassion, style and charisma, and was the long-suffering target of intense media scrutiny.

She first entered the spotlight after marrying Prince Charles in 1981, but the couple were rocked when, in 1992, Charles was exposed as having an affair with Camilla Parker-Bowles - now his wife. Charles and Diana split as a result, and divorced in 1996.

Diana struck up a romance with Egyptian mogul Dodi Fayed in 1997, but both their lives were tragically cut short later that year, when they were killed in the infamous Paris car crash.

Kate Middleton, wife to Prince William, today wears Diana's engagement ring as a tribute to the mother-in-law she never met. 

 

Prince Charles and his bride Diana, Princess of Wales, march down the aisle of St. Paul's Cathedral at the end of their wedding ceremony on July 29, 1981 in London. (AP Photo) #

From the Archive: Royal Weddings

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Prince Charles and Lady Diana Spencer are shown on their wedding day at St. Paul's Cathedral in London on July 29, 1981. (AP Photo) #

From the Archive: Royal Weddings

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Prince Charles and his new bride Diana, Princess of Wales, pose for a family portrait with other members of the royal family, in the Throne Room of Buckingham Palace, on their wedding day July 29, 1981. (AP Photo) #

From the Archive: Royal Weddings

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Prince Charles and his bride Diana, Princess of Wales, pose in the Throne Room of Buckingham Palace for this picture made after their wedding at St. Paul's Cathedral today. Back row, left to right: Edward van Cutsem, Lord Nicholas Windsor, Sarah Jane Gaselee, Prince Edward, Prince Charles, The Princess of Wales, Prince Andrew and Lady Sarah Armstrong-Jones. Front row, left to right: Catherine Cameron, seated, India Hicks, standing, and Clementine Hambro, seated. (AP Photo, BIPNA, Pool) #

From the Archive: Royal Weddings

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Prince Charles and his bride Diana, Princess of Wales, are shown on their wedding day on the balcony of Buckingham Palace in London, July 29, 1981. Children are unidentified. (AP Photo) #

From the Archive: Royal Weddings

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Lady Diana Spencer arrives with her father, the Earl Spencer, at St. Paul's Cathedral in London on July 29, 1981, for her wedding ceremony. (AP Photo) #

From the Archive: Royal Weddings

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Prince Charles and his bride Diana, Princess of Wales, march down the aisle of St. Paul's Cathedral at the end of their wedding ceremony on July 29, 1981 in London. The bride's maids and the groom's brothers Prince Andrew, top left, and Prince Edwards, top right, march behind them. (AP Photo) #

From the Archive: Royal Weddings

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Prince Charles and his wife Diana, the Princess of Wales, walk down the steps of St. Paul's Cathedral in London July 29, 1981, after their marriage ceremony. (AP Photo/Press Association/Pool) #

From the Archive: Royal Weddings

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Lady Diana Spencer waves to crowds of well-wishers from a horse-drawn carriage en route to St. Paul's Cathedral, London, where she will marry Britain's Prince Charles, heir to the throne, July 29, 1981. (AP Photo/Pool) #

From the Archive: Royal Weddings

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Prince Charles motions to lend a hand to the former Lady Diana Spencer as they enter their carrriage outside St. Paul's Cathedral at the ed of their wedding ceremony in London, July 29, 1981. (AP Photo/Pool) #

From the Archive: Royal Weddings

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Prince Charles and Lady Diana Spencer are shown at their wedding at St. Paul's Cathedral on July 29, 1981, in London. (AP Photo) #

From the Archive: Royal Weddings

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The formal wedding portrait of Prince Charles and Diana, Princess of Wales, taken at Buckingham Palace on July 29, 1981, after their marriage at St. Paul's Cathedral, London. (AP Photo)

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Prince Charles and his bride Diana, the new Princess of Wales, wearing a coral silk dress and matching hat, ride toward Waterloo Station in an open carriage on their way to their honeymoon at Broadlands, July 29, 1981. (AP Photo) #

The echoes of a royal wedding from an earlier era are difficult to ignore.

The backdrop is the same: the opulent red-and-gold decor of the grand Throne Room at Buckingham Palace. And the mischievous smiles on the faces of some of the bridesmaids and page boys – and endearingly bewildered expressions on the others – are strikingly similar.

But, 30 years after the wedding of Prince Charles and Lady Diana Spencer, the official wedding picture of Prince William and Kate Middleton also reflects the differences between the two couples' relationships. Lot number 09 Page 1 of Lady Diana Spencer handwritten letter to Margaret Hodge, dated July 29th 1986Lot number 09 Page 2 of Lady Diana Spencer handwritten letter to Margaret Hodge, dated July 29th 1986.

Lot number 04 Page 2

Pen pals: Diana writes about her 'cosy nest', left, and the 'happiness William brought them'

Signing herself as ‘Miss Diana’, the letters provide a glimpse into the private life of the couple, whom she dubbed simply ‘Mr & Mrs Wales’. In a poignant echo, her son Prince William and his new bride are also said to call each other Mr and Mrs Wales in private.

Diana wrote about her ‘heavenly’ honeymoon in Balmoral and her plans to make Highgrove a ‘cosy nest’.

And she confided to a friend her nerves over a  visit to Wales – one of her earliest royal duties  – and, with William’s arrival, described the joy of becoming a mother.

But the image conjured by the hand-written letters is starkly at odds with Diana’s later claims that she was desperately unhappy. Years later, she would reveal she had thrown herself down stairs while pregnant with William, and had attempted suicide several times before 1986.

Lot number 05 Lady Diana Spencer handwritten letter to Margaret Hodge, dated September 3rd 1982Lot item: The collection of letters will form part of a Royal Memorabilia auction

In 1986 she wrote to Mrs Hodge to thank her for sending a card to mark her fifth wedding anniversary.

‘The five years have flown by,’ she wrote. But she was later to confess to beginning an affair with Major James Hewitt in 1986, and Charles said he rekindled his affair with Camilla Parker Bowles in the same year.

Mrs Hodge, 69, said: ‘I know she was very much in love with Prince Charles and she just wanted to be loved in return.’

The letters are expected to sell for around £20,000 when they go up for auction in Colchester on June 21.

Lot item: The collection of letters will form part of a Royal Memorabilia auction

Mrs Hodge's collection will be sold by auctioneers Reeman Dansie in a Royal Memorabilia auction, which also includes letters Diana wrote to her late financial adviser Joseph Sanders thanking him for a pair of Chanel earrings.

Reeman Dansie Royal specialist James Grinter said: 'This is a charming collection of personal letters and cards written by Diana to Mrs Hodge after they worked together at the Young England kindergarten and went on to become close friends.

'The Princess' letters give a fascinating glimpse into her life in the early years of her marriage to Prince Charles and we are expecting a lot of interest from collectors from around the world.'

Mrs Hodge added: 'I was very privileged because my friendship with Diana continued after her wedding and we were in contact until her death in 1997.

'She was a very busy lady, but she took time to meet up in a coffee shop a couple of times and she also invited me to tea at Kensington Palace.

'I know she was very much in love with Prince Charles and she just wanted to be loved in return.

'And I know Diana would have been so proud when Prince William married Catherine and the fact he gave her his mother's own ring when they got engaged.'

Happy: William and Kate surrounded by, clockwise bottom right, The Hon. Margarita Armstrong-Jones, Miss Eliza Lopes, Miss Grace van Cutsem, Lady Louise Windsor, Master Tom Pettifer, Master William Lowther-Pinkerton

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TALKING brightly of nest-building and the joy of time alone with her husband, these  are the letters of an apparently  blissful bride.

Yet as was to become all too clear, Diana’s marriage to Prince Charles was riddled with tensions from the start.

Despite this, the previously unpublished personal correspondence reveals the Princess of Wales was, in those early years at least, able to keep up appearances.

Enlarge its heavenly im off to hug my other half.jpg

On sale: Mrs Hodge's collection will be sold by Colchester auctioneers Reeman Dansie

On sale: Mrs Hodge's collection will be sold by Colchester auctioneers Reeman Dansie

Lot number 9: Lady Diana Spencer handwritten letter to Mrs Hodge, dated July 29th 1986

In her letters – which are littered with exclamation marks and the odd spelling mistake – Diana wrote of the pride she felt about her ‘two little men’, her young sons William and Harry. One note is daubed with inky smudges, which Diana said were William’s fingerprints.

The correspondence was revealed for the first time yesterday as it was put up for sale by its recipient, retired school principal Margaret Hodge.

The two women became friends when they worked together at the Young England kindergarten in Pimlico, London, before Diana’s marriage. It was a friendship that continued until the Princess of Wales’s death in 1997.

Flashback: Picture of Lady Diana in 1981, as a teaching assistant at the Young England nursery in Pimlico, London with teacher and close friend Margaret Hodge

Flashback: Picture of Lady Diana in 1981, as a teaching assistant at the Young England nursery in Pimlico, London with teacher and close friend Margaret Hodge

 

 

 

 

 

 

Scotland Yard  said they were assessing the credibility of new information relating to the deaths of Princess Diana and Dodi Fayed including an allegation that they were murdered by a member of the British military.

It said it was 'scoping' the information, which surfaced in the second court martial of Sergeant Danny Nightingale, the SAS sniper convicted of illegally stashing a pistol and 338 bullets in his bedroom.

The allegation was contained in a letter from the parents-in-law of Soldier N, Sgt Nightingale's former housemate, which was sent to the SAS's commanding officer in September 2011.

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Police have said they are 'assessing' information it has recently received in relation to the deaths of Princess Diana and Dodi Al Fayed

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Police have said they are 'assessing' information it has recently received in relation to the deaths of Princess Diana and Dodi Al Fayed

It is understood the information was passed to the Metropolitan Police through the Royal Military Police.

The letter says Soldier N claimed the SAS 'was behind Princess Diana's death' and it had been 'covered up', the Sunday People has reported.

The letter said: 'He (soldier N) also told her (his wife) that it was XXX who arranged Princess Diana's death and that has been covered up.'

A statement issued by Scotland Yard said: 'The Metropolitan Police Service is scoping information that has recently been received in relation to the deaths and assessing its relevance and credibility. 'The assessment will be carried out by officers from the specialist crime and operations command.

'This is not a re-investigation and does not come under Operation Paget.'

Police said they are not prepared to discuss the matter further, while a royal spokeswoman said there will be no comment on the matter from Prince William or Prince Harry, or from Clarence House.

Police said the deaths of Diana and Mr Al Fayed were 'thoroughly investigated' and examined by an inquest led by Lord Justice Scott Baker at the Royal Court of Justice in 2007 to 2008

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Police said the deaths of Diana and Mr Al Fayed were 'thoroughly investigated' and examined by an inquest led by Lord Justice Scott Baker at the Royal Court of Justice in 2007 to 2008

Diana, Dodi and chauffeur Henri Paul died after their Mercedes crashed in the tunnel, which left the Ritz Hotel on the morning of August 31 1997.

The hearing into the deaths of Diana and Dodi lasted more than 90 days with evidence from around 250 witnesses.

The inquests concluded on April 7, 2008, with a jury returning a verdict that the 'People's Princess' and her boyfriend were unlawfully killed.

After the hearing, Metropolitan Police said they had spent £8 million on services arising from the inquest and the Operation Paget investigation from 2004 to 2006.

Diana, Mr Al Fayed (pictured) and chauffeur Henri Paul died after their Mercedes crashed in a tunnel in Paris on the morning of August 31, 1997

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Diana, Mr Al Fayed (pictured) and chauffeur Henri Paul died after their Mercedes crashed in a tunnel in Paris on the morning of August 31, 1997

That money includes the cost of the legal team which represented the force's commissioner at the inquest, police protection for the inquest jury and paying for the Paget inquiry, reported to have cost £3.6 million.

Former Met Police Commissioner Lord Stevens's Paget investigation was launched in 2004 at the request of Michael Burgess, the Royal Coroner, who was then overseeing the future Diana inquest.

The former top policeman published his report in December 2006, rejecting the murder claims voiced by some, including Dodi's father Mohamed al Fayed.

Lord Stevens's investigation found that Diana was not murdered by British spies nor by the Duke of Edinburgh and she was not pregnant nor engaged to boyfriend Dodi.

Operation Paget concluded, just like the French investigation in 1999, that driver Henri Paul was drunk and driving at excessive speed.

The investigation dismissed the endless conspiracy theories sparked by the fatal accident.

Mr Paul had an alcohol level of around 1.74 grams per litre at the time of the crash - about twice the British drink-drive limit.

The black type S280 Mercedes was being driven through the Pont de l'Alma tunnel in Paris at around 61 to 63mph - twice the speed limit for that section of road.

Lord Stevens said allegations that Diana was murdered were 'unfounded' and that he found nothing to justify further inquiries with members of the Royal Family.

A spokesman for Mr al Fayed yesterday said he had no comment to make, but said he will be 'interested in seeing the outcome', adding that he trusts the Met will investigate the information 'with vigour'.

The Ministry of Defence said tonight it was not commenting on the matter.

Police assessing new information into Princess Diana's death

The jury in the 2008 inquest concluded its verdict as 'unlawful killing, grossly negligent driving of the following vehicles and of the Mercedes', the Met said

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The jury in the 2008 inquest concluded its verdict as 'unlawful killing, grossly negligent driving of the following vehicles and of the Mercedes', the Met said

Timeline of events leading to the Diana report

Princess Diana and Dodi al Fayed wait at the rear service exit of the Ritz Hotel in Paris on August 31, 1997

Princess Diana and Dodi al Fayed wait at the rear service exit of the Ritz Hotel in Paris on August 31, 1997

August 31, 1997 -  Diana, Dodi and their chauffeur Henri Paul die when their S280 Mercedes crashes in the Pont de l'Alma tunnel in Paris after leaving the Ritz Hotel. Bodyguard Trevor Rees-Jones is badly injured but survives. A number of photographers and a press motorcyclist are held for questioning.

September 1, 1997 - Analysis of blood samples indicate Paul was drunk.

September 2, 1997 - French prosecutors open an official inquiry headed by Judge Herve Stephan. And Dodi's father Mohamed al Fayed files a civil action in Paris and asks for a widening of the inquiry to include possible charges of violation of privacy against Dodi and Diana.

September 6, 1997 - Diana's funeral is held at Westminster Abbey, watched by millions around the world. Her son Princes William and Harry walk through the streets behind her coffin.

September 17, 1997 - Examination of debris found at the scene of the crash suggests the involvement of a white Fiat Uno. Identity checks are carried out on 40,000 Fiat Uno owners, but it is never found.

March 1998 - Mr al Fayed tells investigators he believes the crash was part of a plot to kill Diana by MI6

July 1999 - A French appeals court rejects a request by Mr al Fayed for further official inquiries into the crash.

September 1999 - Judge Herve Stephan’s reports finds that that Diana and Dodi were killed because their chauffeur, Henri Paul, was driving at high speed under the influence of drink and anti-depressant drugs. The photographers and press motorcyclist are formally cleared of manslaughter charges. Mr al Fayed announces he will appeal.

July 2000 - Mr al Fayed loses his High Court battle for joint, or concurrent, inquests into the deaths of Diana and Dodi.

In July 1999 a French appeals court rejected a request by Mohammed al Fayed for further  inquiries into the crash

In July 1999 a French appeals court rejected a request by Mohammed al Fayed for further inquiries into the crash

November 2001 - Mr al Fayed loses a £100,000 claim for damages over what he had called a ‘flawed’ part of the inquiry into Diana's death.

October 2003 - Three photographers who snapped pictures of Diana and Dodi at the crash scene go on trial in Paris accused of invading the couple's privacy. They are cleared a month later.

November 2003 - A privacy violation civil case, brought by Mr Fayed against three of the photographers who were following the Princess's car on the night she died,

Lord Stevens released his report after three years of investigation - it concludes the couple and their chauffeur died in a traffic accident in a Paris underpass in August 1997

Lord Stevens released his report after three years of investigation - it concludes the couple and their chauffeur died in a traffic accident in a Paris underpass in August 1997

January 6, 2004 – Separate inquests into Diana and Dodi’s deaths are finally opened and adjourned. On the same day, the Daily Mirror publishes a letter from Diana to her butler Paul Burrell 10 months before her death in which she claimed her former husband, the Prince of Wales, was plotting to kill her in a crash.

January 7, 2004 - Former royal coroner John Burton, who was present at the princess's autopsy, says she was not pregnant when she died. The Scotland Yard inquiry - codenamed Operation Paget - is stepped up.

July 6, 2004 - The Diana memorial fountain opens in Hyde Park.

August 2004 - A French court orders a new investigation into the alleged falsification of alcohol and drug tests on Henri Paul, his parents have always rejected the original post-mortem examination's findings.

May 2005 - Detectives are said to have quizzed Britain's two most senior spy chiefs John Scarlett, the head of MI6, and Eliza Manningham-Buller, the MI5 director general.

July 2005 - The wrecked Mercedes is brought to Britain for forensic examination..

December 2005 - The Prince of Wales is finally questioned by Lord Stevens, signalling that the investigation is drawing to a close. He is said to have been asked if he ever plotted to assassinate the Princess.

July 2006 - Royal coroner Michael Burgess quits the inquests, blaming a ‘heavy and constant’ workload. He is later replaced by Britain’s top female judge Lady Butler- Sloss

December 2006 - Lord Stevens finally releases his report after three years of investigation – it finds that there was no conspiracy to murder the Princess lover and no cover-up afterwards. Instead it concludes that the couple and their chauffeur Henri Paul died in a simple traffic accident in a Paris underpass in August 1997. Lord Stevens stressed that if the Princess had been wearing a seatbelt she might have survived the crash.

 

       

It is the luxury Spanish villa where the young Diana Spencer spent summers and now the so-called 'Mallorcan Castle' is for sale.

And despite its staggering £30million price tag, Madonna is said to be interested in buying the luxury bolthole.

The grand villa is where the young Diana enjoyed summers before marrying Prince Charles and the Material Girl is reported to be interested even though she is yet to see the property.

But the wealthy owner who snaps up the villa will also get a private cave and a pontoon for 30metre yachts included.

The 1,400 square metre property includes a sauna, gym, piano lounge and billiards room.

Guest houses, a swimming pool, gardens and terraces also feature in 6,000 square metres of land.

The Puerto de Andratx property, 20 minutes from Palma, is the most expensive in Mallorca.

Neighbouring properties have previously sold for £21,500 per square metre.

Other former guests include ex-German chancellor Christian Wulff.

Grand design: The property known as Castilla Mallorca - Mallorca Castle in English- is on sale for a whopping £30million

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Grand design: The property known as Castilla Mallorca - Mallorca Castle in English- is on sale for a whopping £30million

 

Interested? Madonna is said to be considering the exclusive property Plain sailing: Diana frequently holidayed on the Spanish island of Mallorca

Celebrity bolthole: Princess Diana (R) used to spend her summers at Castillo Mallorca and Madonna is reportedly interested in buying the property

Pool with a view: The property overlooks the sea and comes with gardens and terraces as well as its own cave and a yacht pontoon

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Pool with a view: The property overlooks the sea and comes with gardens and terraces as well as its own cave and a yacht pontoon

Precarious setting: With sea views on both sides of the property, and a staircase straight down into the water, the luxury villa is billed as the most expensive on the Balearic island

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Precarious setting: With sea views on both sides of the property, and a staircase straight down into the water, the luxury villa is billed as the most expensive on the Balearic island

Royal hat trick: Princess Diana, Prince Charles and former Spanish Queen Sofía spent a summer holidaying on the Balearic Island, where Diana also spend many childhood summers

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Royal hat trick: Princess Diana, Prince Charles and former Spanish Queen Sofía spent a summer holidaying on the Balearic Island, where Diana also spend many childhood summers

Dine in style: Guests can enjoy stunning views of the Mallorcan coastline from the villa's open-air dining room

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Dine in style: Guests can enjoy stunning views of the Mallorcan coastline from the villa's open-air dining room

Room with a view: The villa's many bedrooms are decorated to a high standard and, of course, offer sweeping views of the coast

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Room with a view: The villa's many bedrooms are decorated to a high standard and, of course, offer sweeping views of the coast

Hefty price tag: The Puerto de Andratx property - which is located 20 minutes from Palma - is the most expensive in Mallorca

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Hefty price tag: The Puerto de Andratx property - which is located 20 minutes from Palma - is the most expensive in Mallorca

On the waterfront: The luxury villa covers 1,400 square metres and its location is second to none

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On the waterfront: The luxury villa covers 1,400 square metres and its location is second to none

 

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