Prince Harry and Meghan Markle offer another glimpse inside their $14million Santa Barbara mansion complete with faux fur throws, luxury stone fireplace and palm trees in the garden as they speak to US teenagers for World Mental Health Day podcast
- Duke and Duchess of Sussex recorded the podcast earlier this week in their new hometown of Montecito
- Harry, 36, and Meghan, 39, discussed their own experience of mental health while being in the spotlight
- The couple sat against a backdrop of a large stone fireplace with a wooden shelf holding an ornamental bowl
- Other features of their monochrome design tastes included traditional light shades, cushions and throws
Prince Harry and Meghan Markle offered another glimpse inside their plush California home as they made their podcast debut for World Mental Health Day.
Wearing face masks, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex looked relaxed as they sat beside a fireplace opposite the hosts of the podcasts which was filmed at their $14million 16-bathroom mansion in upscale Santa Barbara.
Prince Harry, 36, wearing a casual grey polo shirt and jeans, and Meghan, 39, wearing a stripy top and cropped-jeans, sat together on a white sofa – opposite the hosts of the podcast, who sat two metres away.
The backdrop was a large stone fireplace with a wooden shelf holding an ornamental bowl.
The podcast, entitled Teenager Therapy, describes itself online as ‘five stressed, sleep deprived, yet energetic teens sit down and talk about the struggles that come with being a teenager’.
They discussed the stigma surrounding the topic and ‘how we can all contribute to a healthier world: physically, mentally, emotionally and holistically’ with high school students from their Santa Barbara villa.
Prince Harry and Meghan Markle offered another glimpse inside their plush California home as they made their podcast debut for World Mental Health Day
The eye-watering costs of running their home
The Sussexes took out a multi-million-pound mortgage to buy their spectacular home.
Sources say the couple are ‘proud’ to have bought the home without help from family.
Deeds show they took out a £7.25million mortgage to be paid back, plus interest, by 2050 – indicating they put down a deposit of around £3.8million.
Mortgage repayments will cost them some £30,000 a month and they will also have a yearly property tax of £220,000.
This is on top of the cost of maintenance, cleaning, staff and security and utilities which could run into tens of thousands of pounds a month.
The couple are also paying back the £2.4million spent on renovating Frogmore Cottage in £18,000-a-month instalments.
It is not clear how the duke and duchess will pay for all of this. When they quit royal duties they made a point of stressing that they wanted to become financially independent
1. Circular two-seater
For the duration of the 30-minute podcast, Harry and Meghan huddled together on a white two-seater circular sofa festooned with large cushions.
Harry perched toward the front with his elbow resting on the arm of the sofa. Meghan took a more relaxed approach as she sat with one leg tucked underneath her.
2. Faux fur throw
The couple’s lavish home shows a love for white furnishings and luxury accents.
The addition of a fluffy faux fur throw draped over the two-seater showed an attention to detail likely added to bring a touch of homeliness.
3. Decorative bowl
The Duke and Duchess had artfully arranged a statement bowl above the mantelpiece to draw the eye in the absence of other artworks.
The stone piece dominated the room with decorative bowls seeming to be a favourite of Meghan’s who used a similar styling trick while working as an actress in Suits and living at her Toronto home.
4. Luxury stone fireplace
The podcast was set against a backdrop of a luxury stone fireplace which boasted an open fire.
Although temporarily obscured behind a fireguard, the hearth appeared to have been recently used with ash lining the stone flagging.
5. Light shades
The wall-mounted lights in the room were topped with hexagonal cream lampshades which were traditionally pleated.
A set of three stone-coloured cushions sat behind the Duke and Duchess on what a rustic window seat tucked into the alcove next to the fireplace.
7. Three-seater sofa
Despite having two dogs with muddy paws and a young toddler, the royals have bravely opted for a white couch in their living space.
It appears to offer a place in the room to relax and recline when not working, or perhaps a space to take meetings similar to that experienced for the podcast.
8. Rattan-style floor covering
The floor was hidden beneath a rattan-style floor covering which spanned the length of the room.
The traditional piece appeared to be loosely frayed at the edges and had rippled in some areas beneath the weight of the equipment stands.
9. Ornate table
Tucked away behind the podcast hosts was an ornately inlaid wooden table which looked to be an antique.
It held another, smaller, decorative bowl – an apparent favourite accessory of the Duke and Duchess.
10. Room with a view
The interview room was drenched in natural light that streamed in from the two windows, located either side of the fireplace, which did not appear to be hidden behind curtains or blinds.
The scene beyond revealed a garden adorned with tropical palm trees in a sea of greens.
Meghan Markle’s Toronto-inspired interiors
The style is very similar to the interior of Meghan’s Toronto home, where she lived before joining the royal family.
The then-actress regularly shared snaps on Instagram of her home’s white colour palette and mid-century modern furnishings.
Despite having two dogs with muddy paws, the then-actress bravely opted for a white couch in her living space with a grey striped throw from the luxury textiles brand Pamuk and Co.
Her dining table was white marble and she placed a full length shabby chic vintage mirror resting on the wall behind it to create the illusion of extra space.
While the star has long favoured mid-century modern furniture and a white colour palette, she added vibrant pops of colour with accessories such as a red striped rug in the hallway.
She has also always been a fan of fresh flowers, especially pink peonies which she has declared are her favourite.
But rather than being a gift from Harry, she reveals that she regularly treats herself to her favourite bouquets.
‘I bought these peonies for myself yesterday because they make me so endlessly happy. Do something sweet for yourself today too,’ she advised her followers.
She’s a fan of a scented candle, including Diptyque’s Figuier with fresh wood, green notes and crushed fig leaves and the Le Labo Santal 26 Classic Candle, £51, with ‘gentle, smokey and leathery tones’.
Meghan is also appreciates fine art, and had a print of one of fine art photographer Gray Malin’s birds’ eye view beach vistas on the the wall of her living area.
Above the bed in the guest room hung a figure study watercolour by New York based artist and illustrator Inslee Fariss, estimated to have cost $650 (£520).
In her own room, Meghan’s bed frame was an oversized wrought iron birdcage design and she continued her white theme with the curtains and bedding.
Meghan artfully arranged her books around the house, turning them into design features by perching them underneath jugs of flowers.
She was a fan of coffee table fashion books, such as former Vogue Paris editor Carine Roitfeld’s style bible and Linda McCartney’s photographic memoir.
The glimpse into the couple’s home came earlier this evening following the release of the Teenager Therapy podcast as the couple talked to hosts Gael, Kayla and Thomas about their own experience of mental health.
Meghan said that the impact of the pandemic had pushed people increasingly toward the internet which she claimed opened up a ‘vulnerability’ and a place for ‘disconnection’.
She said: ‘I can speak personally because I’m told that in 2019 I was the most trolled person in the entire world – male or female.
‘Now eight months of that I wasn’t even visible. I was on maternity leave or with a baby. But what was able to just be manufactured and churned out. It’s almost unsurvivable.’
She added: ‘That’s so big you can’t even think about what that feels like because I don’t care if you’re 15 or 25 if people are saying things about you that aren’t true what that does to your mental and emotional health is so damaging.
‘And so I think from my standpoint, and part of the work that we do from our own personal experience, being able to talk to people and understand that even though our experience is unique to us – and obviously can seem very different to what people experience on the day-to-day – its still a human experience and that’s universal.
‘We all know what it feels like to have our feelings hurt, we all know what it feels like to be isolated or ‘othered’… we are all figuring it out.’
The Sussexes learned about the podcast – which usually features five students from Loara High School in Anaheim, Orange County – after reading a New York Times profile of the teenagers in July.
After listening to a few episodes of the series, they decided they wanted to support the teens’ work. They recorded the episode this week in their new hometown of Montecito, with all the participants wearing masks during the recording.
The Duke has long been open up about his struggles with mental health, and revealed he needed counselling after the death of his mother, Princess Diana.
It was announced last year that Prince Harry was partnering with Oprah Winfrey as co-creators and executive producers of a forthcoming mental health documentary series for Apple.
The multi-part documentary series will focus on both mental illness and mental wellness, and aims to inspire viewers to have an honest conversation about the challenges they face.
Their new podcast appearance comes weeks after reports suggested the Duke and Duchess were set to be offered a seven figure deal to produce podcasts for Spotify.
The streaming giant, which is worth £22billion, are hoping to sign the royal couple following the success of The Michelle Obama podcast which has been a huge ratings hit.
Sources told the Mirror that money is ‘no object’ for Spotify and Meghan would be able to ‘more or less name her price’.
An insider said: ‘The Duke and Duchess have been on their hit list for a while and a detailed proposal is set to be presented to Meghan’s US agent in a matter of weeks.’
Rumours of Harry and Meghan seeking to gain a foothold in Hollywood have run rampant ever since the couple announced their plans to quit as senior royals, seek financial independence and move to North America in January.
The couple, who are breaking away from the monarchy to earn their own money in the US, have had to ditch using Sussex Royal as their brand name.
Meghan and Prince Harry’s new home sits on 5.4 acres of land and immaculately clipped hedges border the estate’s stone-pillared entry gates (pictured)
Meghan and Prince Harry’s new home sits on 5.4 acres of land and immaculately clipped hedges border the estate’s stone-pillared entry gates.
Property listings say the home took nearly five years to build and included a library, office, spa with a separate dry and wet sauna, a gym with a stripper pole, game room, arcade, theater, wine cellar and five-car garage.
The entrance to the property opens onto a wide lane paved with hand-cut Santa Barbara Stone that leads through a grand archway of trees to the main residence, according to Zillow.
The estate has sweeping lawns, tiered rose gardens, tall Italian cypress trees, blooming lavender, century old olive trees, a tennis court, tea house, children’s cottage and a pool.
It also boasts a two-bedroom, two-bath guest house, perfect for Meghan’s mother Doria, who is acting as one-year-old Archie’s nanny. Doria has already been to the house, TMZ reports.
The home’s seller is thought to be Russian tycoon Sergey Grishin who bought the ‘palatial’ mansion for more than $25million in 2009 and had tried to sell the home for up to $34million before eventually accepting a loss.
Grishin is also the former owner of a different California estate – known as the Scarface mansion because it appeared in the 1983 Al Pacino movie – which sold for a similarly cut-price $12million in 2015.
Surrounded by lush green gardens and overlooking the sea, the home has been described as a ‘hidden paradise’.
One estate agent who spent an hour inside said it was ‘designed for someone who never wants to leave home’.
Brett Buschbom said: ‘I went through this house and an hour later I’m coming out like ‘wow’, the whole bottom floor felt like a resort with steam room, massage room, sauna, Jacuzzi, full bar, arcade and one of the most amazing wine cellars and that was just the basement.’
While it is unknown if the couple have plans to transform their new home, the Duke and Duchess previously worked with interior designers to achieve the perfect look.
Last year, Meghan was understood to have enlisted Vicky Charles, former Global Head of Design at Soho House and a favourite of A-list celebrities, to work her magic on Frogmore House.
Speaking previously, Ms Charles has noted her Soho House interiors brought together the ‘grit and the glamour’.
The overall feeling is one that is eclectic yet pulled-together, rooms that feel cohesive but are not overly rigid or matchy.
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