Original name: Charlene Lynette Wittstock
birth place: Bulawayo, Rhodesia (today Zimbabwe)
birth date: 25 January 1978
zodiac sign: Aquarius
Feet size: US 8.5
Dress size: US 6
Occupation: Athlete, Socialite
Languages: English, French
Charlène, Princess of Monaco is a former South African Olympic swimmer and currently wife of Prince Albert II of Monaco.
Charlene Lynette Wittstock was born in Bulawayo Africa and the family relocated to Transvaal Prince South Africa in 1989. Wittstock was passionate about swimming from a very young age and she gave up study to concentrate on competitive swimming and at 18 won the Championship of South Africa for juniors.
In 2000, Wittstock represented South Africa at Sydney Olympics, with her team finishing fifth in the 4 × 100 metre medley relay. Wittstock retired from competitive swimming in 2007 due to shoulder injury.
Wittstock met Prince Albert at the Mare Nostrum swimming competition in Monte Carlo, Monaco, in 2000 and they went public at the opening ceremony of the 2006 Winter Olympics in Turin, Italy.
In June 2010, Prince Albert and Charlene Wittstock announced their engagement, the future princess's engagement ring (reported to be created by Parisian jeweller Repossi) features a pear-shaped three-carat diamond at the center and round diamond brilliants surrounding it.
Since then Charlene Wittstock accompanied him on many of his official duties and engagements such as the weddings of the Crown Princess of Sweden in June 2010 and the Duke of Cambridge in 2011.
Charlene, who was raised a Protestant, converted to Roman Catholicism for the preparation of her role as royal consort, even though this is not a requirement of the Constitution of Monaco. She was also instructed in the French language and the Monégasque dialect, as well as European court protocol.
On 1 July 2011 the couple were married in a civil ceremony in the Throne Room of the Prince's Palace. Charlene wore a powder blue jacket with long dress by Chanel, cocreated by her and Karl Lagerfeld.
And the religious ceremony was held in the Palace courtyard, with the bride wearing white silk Duchesse wedding gown of Giorgio Armani Prive, with a 15-ft veil made of tulle anchored by a "Diamond Spray" tiara by Lorez Baumer that featured eleven encrusted diamond pears. The gown was embellished with 40,000 Swarovski crystals, 20,000 mother of pearl teardrops, and 30,000 stones in gold shades. It took 2,500 hours to make, with the embroidery taking 700 hours, on 130m of off-white silk.
After the wedding ceremonies, Charlene Wittstock became Her Serene Highness The Princess of Monaco replacing her mother-in-law, Grace Kelly.
After her marriage, Charlène, Princess of Monaco devoted herself increasingly to charity and humanitarian works and is involved in various organizations: Princess Charlène of Monaco Foundation, Ladies Lunch Monte-Carlo, Special Olympics, Nelson Mandela Foundation, asfAR, The Giving Organisation, and Monaco Against Autism.
On 10 December 2014, Charlène, Princess of Monaco gave birth to fraternal twins Princess Gabriella and Hereditary Prince Jacques.
In 2016, Princess Charlène accepted to become the patron of the South African Red Cross Society and attended the World First Aid Day in Geneva, as ambassador of the event.