Last updated on June 10th, 2018 at 08:23 am

Felipe VI is the present King of Spain, having ascended the throne on 19 June 2014 as the successor of King Juan Carlos I. He had been an heir to the Spanish throne since 1975 i.e. for more than 40 years. King Felipe is a philanthropist as well.

Early Life and Education

Born on 30 January 1968 to father King Juan Carlos and Greek-Danish Princess Sofia, Felipe VI – just 49 now – was raised in the Royal Palace of Madrid. Baptised within a few days of birth, he follows Christianity and is baptismally titled as Felipe Juan Pablo Alfonso de Todos Los Santos.

Felipe VI went to Santa Maria de los Rosales and Lakefield College School for complete high school education. Graduating from the school years, he joined the Autonomous University of Madrid to study law. Later, Felipe VI attended Georgetown University for a Master’s degree in foreign service.

Personal Life

The King of Spain, Felipe VI, is a married man with two daughters. He and his wife, Letizia Ortiz Rocasolano, tied the sacred knot in 2004. Subsequently, they had daughter Leonor, Princess of Asturias in 2005 and Infanta Sofia of Spain in 2007.

King Felipe VI with his wife Letizia Ortiz.

Prior to marrying Queen Letizia, King Felipe dated famous Isabel Sartorius and model Eva Sannum. His current life partner was a television journalist.

Titles and Arms

Titles

  • 30 January 1968 – 22 January 1977: His Royal Highness Infante Felipe of Spain
  • 22 January 1977 – 19 June 2014: His Royal Highness The Prince of Asturias
  • 22 January 1977 – 19 June 2014: His Royal Highness The Prince of Girona
  • 22 January 1977 – 19 June 2014: His Royal Highness The Prince of Viana
  • 19 June 2014 – present: His Majesty The King

Arms

  • Arm as an heir
  • Arm as a King

Career

Military

An heir to the Spanish throne, Felipe VI joined the national military as an honorary member. After turning 17, he joined the General Military Academy and commenced special regulated military training. A year later, he went to Pontevedra and Juan Sebastian Elcano, a training ship, to learn naval protocols. Felipe VI also learned to fly an aircraft, which gave him the position of Lieutenant in Air Force. Likewise, he also became a Lieutenant in Army and an Ensign in the Navy by 1989. In the following years, he continuously got promoted to different positions before finally acquiring the position of Captain General as the King of Spain.

As an heir

As an heir to the Spanish throne, Felipe VI made significant contributions to the Spanish economy and politics. Starting in 1995, he made numerous state visits to hold diplomatic talks. In 2002, he even met the Russian President Vladimir Putin. Likewise, Felipe’s frequently visited countries include European nations, Middle East, Australia and Latin America. On a trip to South America, he met Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff. If we add all his state visits, they add up to as much as 200.

Besides a Prince, Felipe VI is also a former Spanish Olympian. He represented Spain in sailing at the 1992 Barcelona Olympics. Although the team couldn’t win, it indeed acquired an Olympic diploma. Felipe has always been interested in football as well – he supports La Liga team Atletico Madrid. In addition, Felipe VI is also a social worker. In 2001, he was a ‘UN-Eminent Person’ and has made contributions to promote global cooperation ever since.

As the King

After King Juan Carlos abdicated the throne, Prince Felipe VI succeeded him on 19 June 2014 and became one of the youngest monarchs in the world. To start with, Felipe VI recognized the royal palace LGBT organizations and altered the protocols in oath-taking ceremonies of any offices. To follow up, he also met Pope Francis and Cardinal Secretary of State Pietro Parolin.

After cutting kingship salary by 20%, Felipe VI was all over the media in 2015. The following year, however, the fame turned into an infamous after a release of text messages between the royal family and businessman Javier Lopez Madrid. Though Javier had been in the rumors of corruption, the royal family apparently supported him. This biased support from the head of state led to an unsuccessful election in 2015. As the parties couldn’t grab enough seats, new elections were declared to be held in June, the same year.

Trump and King Felipe VI

US President Donald Trump and King Felipe VI haven’t confronted each other on any occasions yet. However, being the head of states of two of the largest NATO members, they do need to be cooperative on any issues, especially the military-related matters. However, it doesn’t seem Trump will be a great US representative at NATO as he has frequently boycotted the organization for being unfair.

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Categories: Biography