Today, Sheikha Moza of Qatar celebrates her 63rd birthday. In honor of that anniversary, we’re looking back today at the sparkling jewels worn for the Qatari state visit to the United Kingdom in October 2010.
Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani, who served as Emir of Qatar from 1995 until 2013, arrived at Heathrow for a three-day state visit to Britain on October 25, 2010. He was accompanied by his second wife and consort, Sheikha Moza, for the trip. She wore a chic black ensemble with pearls for their arrival at the airport. For years, Moza has been recognized as one of the best-dressed royals in the world, with a particular affinity for haute couture and fine jewels, and her wardrobe on this trip showcased both. This particular look comes from Jean Paul Gaultier.
On October 26, the Qatari royal couple arrived at Windsor Castle for the official start of the state visit. They were welcomed to the country and the castle by the Queen, the Duke of Edinburgh, the Prince of Wales, and the Duchess of Cornwall.
Here, the Queen and the Duke accompany their guests inside the castle’s quadrangle. Sheikha Moza wore dove gray Dior for the occasion.
She accessorized with a lovely pair of diamond and pearl earrings…
…and several strands of elegant, classic pearls.
The Queen wore red for the welcome ceremony, plus her usual pearls and the exuberant Jewellers and Silversmiths Brooch. The gold, diamond, and ruby brooch was one of her wedding presents, given to her by the Jewellers and Silversmiths of Great Britain in November 1947.
Inside the castle, both royal couples exchanged gifts and viewed a special exhibition of objects curated from the Royal Collection. You’ll note that the Queen wore a different brooch on her dress her: the Queen Mother’s Australian Hibiscus Brooch.
That afternoon, Sheikh Hamad and Sheikha Moza traveled to London, where he delivered an address at the Palace of Westminster. Check out the incredible diamond earrings that Moza wore with her impeccably tailored dark suit.
Back at Windsor Castle that evening, the Qatari royals were the guests of honor at a grand state banquet. They posed ahead of the dinner with the Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh.
Sheikha Moza chose a stunning red Valentino gown and jacket for the banquet. The red color of her ensemble coordinated nicely with the ribbon of her decoration, the Order of the British Empire. She also wore the order’s star pinned to her jacket. The Queen wore her Qatari decoration, the golden Collar of the Order of Independence.
Moza accessorized with diamonds and rubies, including a pair of statement earrings and a lovely bracelet on her left wrist.
The Queen glittered in diamond and pearl jewels. She wore the original pearl setting of the Vladimir Tiara, paired with the pearl earrings and necklace that she received in 1979 from the then-Emir, Sheikh Khalifa bin Hamad Al Thani (father of Sheikh Hamad), during an official visit to Qatar.
The Queen also wore a pearl bracelet on her right wrist for the dinner. In this photo, taken during the speeches, you can also spot tiaras on both the Princess Royal (Princess Andrew’s Meander Bandeau) and the Duchess of Cornwall (the Greville Tiara).
On the second day of the visit, October 27, the Qatari royals were in London for a private tour of Westminster Abbey and an event at Clarence House. Sheikha Moza was in head-to-toe Chanel, including a very interesting pair of furry boots!
Here, the Prince of Wales welcomes the royal couple to Clarence House, where they met with students from the Prince’s School of Traditional Arts.
With her Chanel ensemble, Moza wore a stunning pair of diamond, gold, platinum, and ruby earrings from Buccellati.
She also wore a fabulous diamond bracelet on her left wrist. The Duchess of Cornwall wore the Queen Mother’s Rock Crystal Brooch for the occasion.
Later the same day, the couple held meetings with government leaders at Buckingham Palace. Sheikha Moza wore an eye-catching jacket and trousers from Armani Privé, plus a pair of button-style earrings.
On the second evening of the visit, the royals attended a traditional banquet at the Guildhall in London. Here, they’re pictured with Nick Anstee, who served as Lord Mayor of London from 2009-10, and his wife, Claire.
Sheikha Moza was radiant in a custom evening gown by J. Mendel for the occasion, but it was her incredible Cartier serpent necklace that really caught the eyes of most royal watchers. The Duchess of Gloucester also wore fantastic diamond pieces, including the Iveagh Tiara, for the banquet, but nothing could top that necklace!
Here’s another look at the Cartier necklace from the banquet. Just look at the size of those diamonds!! You also get a glimpse here of a fantastic bejeweled ring on Moza’s left hand.
On the final day of the state visit, October 28, the Qatari royals said their farewells to the Queen at Windsor Castle before continuing on to London for a few more engagements. The Queen wore one of Queen Victoria’s Diamond Bow Brooches for the occasion.
And here’s a look at the Christian Dior ensemble that Sheikha Moza chose for the last events of the visit, which included a stop at the British Library in London. She accessorized with fantastic diamonds, including a gorgeous necklace and an enormous diamond ring. It’s easy to see, after surveying the clothes and jewels that Moza wore for this visit, why she’s celebrated as a fashion icon!