"The Queen and I are delighted that Princess Märtha Louise and Durek Verrett have announced their wedding plans today," King Harald V said in a statement
Princess Märtha Louise of Norway is getting married!
On Wednesday, the only daughter of King Harald V and Queen Sonja announced her wedding date to her fiancée, Shaman Durek. Märtha Louise, 51, revealed her relationship with the Los Angeles-based spiritual guide and healer in May 2019 and got engaged to him in June 2022.
“Durek Verrett and I are pleased to announce that our upcoming wedding will take place at the historic Hotell Union in Geiranger on 31 August 2024,” the bride-to-be wrote in Norwegian on Instagram. The update came with a professional portrait of the couple, where they posed together against a soft backdrop.
“Geiranger is known for its spectacular fjord and dramatic mountains,” she continued of the village in western Norway. “The Geiranger Fjord is on the UNESCO World Heritage List and represents Norway's rich culture and natural beauty. We are incredibly happy to be able to celebrate our love in Geiranger's beautiful surroundings. It means a lot to us to gather our loved ones in a place that is so rich in history and intense nature experiences. Geiranger is the perfect place to embrace our love.”
Shaman Durek shared the same photo and message on his own Instagram page, calling his fiancée "my beloved Princess Märtha Louise."
While the bride-to-be was born a princess, the Royal House of Norway announced in November that she was officially stepping away from her royal role. The palace said the decision was made so Märtha Louise could more freely pursue other interests without the restrictions of being affiliated with the crown. The royal retains her princess title and remains welcome at family events, the statement said.
"The King and Queen wish to thank Princess Märtha Louise for the important work she has carried out in her official capacity for several decades. She has performed her duties with warmth, care and deep commitment," courtiers wrote on behalf of Harald and Sonja, both 86.
In an interesting twist, Princess Märtha Louise's royal exit does not affect the Norwegian line of succession. Though she is two years older than her brother, Crown Prince Haakon, he was always destined to inherit the Norwegian throne. Absolute primogeniture (the right to rule regardless of gender) was not constitutionally adopted in Norway until 1990, the Royal House states. The places of King Harald's two children in the line of succession remain dictated by the male-preference cognatic primogeniture previously enforced, and the precedent was set only for those born after 1990.
Crown Prince Haakon is followed in the line of succession by his daughter, Princess Ingrid Alexandra, 19, and son Prince Sverre Magnus, 17, whom he shares with his wife, Crown Princess Mette-Marit.
The Royal House of Norway shared well-wishes on behalf of the King and Queen as well as the Crown Prince couple following the announcement of the wedding date.
“The Queen and I are delighted that Princess Märtha Louise and Durek Verrett have announced their wedding plans today. We are happy to include Durek Verret in our family and look forward to celebrating the big day with them. We wish Märtha and Durek all the best,” a statement from King Harald and Queen Sonja said.
“We congratulate Princess Märtha and Durek Verrett on their wedding in August next year. We are happy for them and look forward to celebrating with them in Geiranger. We wish Märtha, Durek and the girls all the best for the future,” echoed Crown Prince Haakon and Crown Princess Mette-Marit.
Princess Märtha Louise is mom to daughters Maud Angelica, 20, Leah Isadora, 18, and Emma Tallulah, 14, whom she shares with ex-husband Ari Behn. The couple split in 2016 after 14 years of marriage, in a divorce finalized the following year. Behn died by suicide at age 47 in 2019.
The mother of three was open about dealing with depression following her ex-husband's death.
A few years later, she found love again. In May 2019, Princess Märtha Louise went Instagram official with Shaman Durek, a guide and healer with a loyal celebrity fan base. At the time, she described Durek, 47, as her "twin flame" and pledged to love him for a lifetime — a promise made official when they got engaged in June 2022.
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Exclusively speaking to PEOPLE, Märtha Louise said that it meant the world when her sweetheart proposed. Durek popped the question with an intricate emerald-and-diamond ring at an equestrian estate in San Juan Capistrano, California. The center emerald is hugged by three diamonds on each side, symbolizing her three daughters.
"I was shocked, and this massive wave of emotions went through me, making me tremble. It was so moving and wonderful that the man I love more than anything in this world was down on one knee and asking for my hand in marriage,” Princess Märtha Louise told PEOPLE in 2022.
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