Capping off a hectic day of official engagements all over Auckland, Prince Charles and his wife Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall, sat down to a dinner surely fit for a future king.
A thundering Cook Islands drumming group from Liston College in Henderson heralded the arrival of the royals at the SkyCity convention centre for the Diamond Jubilee Trust reception and dinner on Monday evening.
The prince and duchess waved to the crowds gathered on the street as they were greeted by Sir Don McKinnon, chair of the Diamond Jubilee Trust.
Camilla was wearing a floor-length silver chiffon Anna Valentine dress with New Zealand-themed black and white decoration.
Invited dinner guests are New Zealanders who have made significant donations to the trust. Prime Minister John Key is also attending.
In his address to guests, Prince Charles said he's delighted to be back in New Zealand.
He said his wife, who has never visited New Zealand before, is determined to make up for lost time and they're looking forward to meeting Kiwis from all walks of life.
The menu, crafted by acclaimed chef Peter Gordon, includes hot-smoked salmon fish cakes with warm bacon, broad bean and olive salad to start, and a roast fillet of New Zealand beef on roast root vegetables and wilted spinach with bone marrow sauce for the main course.
Dessert is a chocolate passionfruit delice, with vanilla roast rhubarb, runny cream and shortbread.
New Zealand wines have been matched to each course.
Earlier in the day, the heir to the throne and his wife embarked on a damp walk through the Auckland CBD.
Rain didn't deter the crowds, with hundreds of people filling the streets hoping to catch a glimpse of the royal visitors.
But Prince Charles probably got more than he bargained for during his visit to the AUT Millennium sport institute, with New Zealand women's Sevens team member Linda Itunu giving him a sweaty hug.
"I saw him and he just looked like he needed a hug," she said.
"He said he doesn't mind."
Itunu was even kind enough to wipe the prince's face clean afterwards.
Charles and Camilla then headed off to a performance of Kiwi childhood classic Hairy Maclary.
Author Dame Lynley Dodd was warmly greeted by the couple, who laughed heartily during the show.
The duchess also visited East Tamaki Primary School where she cut up a carrot cake and ate a piece herself.
The couple's six-day visit to New Zealand, which also includes visits to Wellington, Feilding and Christchurch, is the final leg of their Diamond Jubilee tour representing the Queen.Tuesday is a rest day for the couple with no official engagements.
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