Prince Rainier & Princess Grace laughing

The marriage of Grace Kelly with Prince Rainier is truly an enduring testimony to love, beginning with a whirlwind romance  and long-distance courtship where hand-written letters were still the primary source of communication. Prince Rainier of Monaco was considered at the time to be one of the most eligible bachelors in the world,  who was not only seeking the ideal wife for himself, but he also sought the right marriage for his country. Grace Kelly would make the perfect Princess of Monaco, and the irony of her playing a princess in one of her last films, The Swan, foreshadowed her destiny. Grace Kelly found true love with her prince that prevailed through 26 years of marriage until her untimely death. 

Prince Rainier declaring his love to Grace Kelly



Insights into the marriage of Prince Rainier and Princess Grace

Much has been written over the years about the marriage of Prince Rainier and Princess Grace – but the true story has often been kept private out of respect.  Only after death have details been revealed to set the record straight.  Joan Dale and her husband, Martin (an American Diplomat who later became Privy Counselor to Prince Rainier) were the closest of friends with Prince Rainier and Princess Grace, enjoying the rare bond of two couples with newly emerging families.  The recent book “My Days with Princess Grace of Monaco” gives a real insight into Grace and Rainier’s marriage throughout the decades, including a personal diary of Princess Grace’s last vacation with her husband just weeks before her untimely death. (link here)    

Princess Grace’s Goddaughter, Pamela Grace Dale,  has chosen to share her mother’s personal memoirs in order to defend the memory of Princess Grace and Prince Rainier after the Grace of Monaco movie:


Princess Grace and Prince Rainier had the first televised “Wedding of the Century”, with 1,500 reporters descending on the tiny Principality. Since the news of their engagement, they were hounded by paparazzi everywhere they went, even on vacation, which only grew worse as the years went on.

Theirs was one of the world’s great love stories, but this world does not seem to want people to truly live happily ever after. Princess Grace and Prince Rainier were one of the earliest tabloid “super couples”, and their every move made headlines… however, it seems that happy couples don’t sell newspapers, therefore they were constantly being rumored to be unhappy – but this is simply not true. It really should not come as a great shock to people to hear that tabloids foster rumors, gossip, and lies in order to sell more papers – what is shocking is that if these lies are repeated often enough, people actually start to believe them, and the script for the Grace of Monaco movie has turned this fiction into “biographical fact”. The creators of this film seem to believe that unhappy couples make for better drama, and the entire movie is based on this lie – please don’t believe what you see in this movie!

The truth is that Princess Grace and Prince Rainier loved each other very much, right from the beginning. He courted her long distance at a time when people still wrote letters, and he wrote very poetically. He was a tremendously charming man who was captivated by her warmth and beauty – she was a star on the rise who fell for a handsome prince, who although quite shy, was truly fascinating with a great sense of humor. She truly married for love, and although it was challenging to give up her acting career just when she was hitting her stride, her greatest joy and priority in life was to be a loving wife and mother. They were a wonderful team, both publicly and privately, complementing each other perfectly.

Princess Grace and Prince Rainier were married for 26 years, and loved each other to the tragic end. They were together the month before Grace died on a 17-day cruise to the Arctic, and my mother’s diary from that trip attests to their affection. My mother, Joan Dale, was one of their closest friends for decades, and her intimate memoir “My Days with Princess Grace of Monaco” gives eyewitness testimony to their love from the first years of their marriage to the last days of her life:

Princess Grace - Joan Dale

Tuesday, August 17, 1982 – At Sea (on the family’s last vacation together)
After five hours of sleep, I heard Grace knocking on my door at 8 a.m. to do exercises with her tape. We were the only ones who showed up, and it was delightful. Our little fitness group swelled and waned according to the activities of the previous night, until finally only she and I were left. I took a photo of Grace climbing on a ladder marked “Do Not Glimb Up” – the spelling error made us both giggle, as Grace mischievously said that she was not “climbing”.

We then went to the dining room for breakfast, where we talked in depth. I have felt a real closeness with Grace on this trip, as if we are a happy family. We have been enjoying chatting about everything under the sun in the friendly manner born of long acquaintance. Grace and I have a true friendship that has grown as the years have passed. It is the kind of friendship that often needs no words. We are so similar in many respects that understanding seems to happen effortlessly.

People at the top are never sure whom to trust, and unfortunately, they are often betrayed. It is easy to forget that those in exalted positions – sometimes not by their own choosing – are real people with needs, wants, and feelings, just like everyone else.

Although she and the Prince have a good marriage, it is difficult for them to find quiet time together, due to their hectic schedules. As partners, they complement each other in every way, even to their respective fair and dark looks. Where one leaves off, the other fills in, without effort or words necessary, whether in their roles and duties or in their personal lives.

Being in the public eye also presents its own set of stresses, tensions, and difficulties. Sometimes, as with any couple, they have a tug-of-war, but they quickly go on to the resolution of the problem. Rainier, being European, has the final say in the family, but he listens to her wise words before making a decision. Grace has often said that couples married for many years deserve an award. She and Rainier have had their problems just like everyone else, but Grace turned to me, and, looking directly into my eyes, she said, “You know, Joan, I know that Rainier loves me.” She said it so sweetly that it brought tears to my eyes.

Prince Rainier & Princess Grace together


Until Death do us Apart

Prince Rainier never recovered from the loss of Grace, and never remarried. People often speculate on the gossip and rumors regarding their marriage, but my parents were eyewitnesses that theirs was a true love story… and Prince Rainier’s own words to my mother at the time of Grace’s death express his great love for her, and his profound grief.

Prince Rainier grieves Princess Grace - My Days with Princess Grace

Get this book at


More on Princess Grace Wedding


The Wedding in Monaco – Official Grace Kelly Wedding Video


Exclusive look at behind the scenes of the Grace Kelly wedding with Prince Rainier on April 19, 1956 in Monaco


See rare footage of Princess Grace Wedding Video


Princess Grace & Prince Rainier 60th Wedding Anniversary


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