Meghan Markle reveals there's ONE royal she gets on with

‘Our friend Eugenie’: Meghan Markle reveals there’s ONE royal she does get on with as she tells Ellen how Harry’s cousin jetted to Toronto with her husband to join couple for Halloween night out

  • Meghan Markle has revealed  how she and Harry had a incognito night out in Toronto with Princess Eugenie
  • Prince Harry, 37, has always had a close bond with his cousin Princess Eugenie, who is five years his junior
  • Pair were friends growing up and went partying together as young adults while Meghan knew Eugenie before  she met Harry 

Meghan Markle has revealed how she and Prince Harry enjoyed a night out in Toronto with Princess Eugenie and her now-husband Jack Brooksbank – another sign of the warm relationship between the pair. 

Speaking to her friend Ellen DeGeneres in a surprise talk show interview due to air in the US today, Meghan said she and Harry wanted to have ‘one fun night on the town before it was out in the world that we were a couple’.

It’s the latest statement show of closeness between the two royal couples.  Earlier this year, Eugenie wished Meghan a happy 40th birthday, with the underlying message was clear: the bond between Prince Harry and his cousin is as close as ever.

The Duke of Sussex, 37, and Princess Eugenie, 31, grew up playing together in royal parks and frolicking on the slopes on family ski holidays. Although their older siblings Prince William and Princess Beatrice were there too, it was always clear the relationship between Harry and Eugenie was special.   

In a clip tweeted by Finding Freedom biographer and her friend Omid Scobie, Meghan – wearing a white £1,991 Oscar De La Renta blouse and black trousers at the Warner Bros studio in Burbank, California – explained how she and Harry enjoyed a party with Eugenie and Mr Brooksbank days before the news of their relationship broke.

Speaking about the event in 2016, she told Ellen: ‘He came to see me in Toronto and our friends and his cousin Eugenie and now her husband Jack, they came as well, and the four of us snuck out in Halloween costumes to just have one fun night on the town before it was out in the world that we were a couple. It was a post-apocalypse theme, so we had all this very bizarre costuming on, and we were able to just have one fun final night out.’ 

Meghan appears on The Ellen DeGeneres Show – due to be aired today – at the Warner Bros studio in Burbank, California

The Duke of Sussex , 37, and Princess Eugenie, 31, grew up playing together in royal parks and frolicking on the slopes on family ski holidays. Although their older siblings Prince William and Princess Beatrice were there too, it was always clear the relationship between Harry and Eugenie was special. Harry, Meghan, Beatrice and Eugenie are pictured together in 2018 at Royal Ascot

Their connection is rooted not only in their shared experience as young royals and younger siblings finding their own path in life, but also as children of parents whose dirty laundry was aired in the press. 

‘From an early age, Eugenie had to deal with the embarrassing headlines of both her father and mother,’ explained Nigel Crawthorne, author of Prince Andrew. ‘Harry had to deal with his share of headlines, too, and this bond between them was a great consolation for them.’ 

Over the years, Eugenie has been Harry’s close friend, confidante, and even matchmaker. Now she is seen as one of his closest allies within the royal family, remaining steadfast in her support of him and Meghan in the wake of their move to California and string of explosive tell-all interviews. 

But will she be able to play the role of peacemaker and bring her favourite cousin back into the fold?

Despite being born five years apart, Harry and Eugenie often spent time together as children thanks to the friendship between their mothers Princess Diana and Sarah Ferguson, who would pack up the children for joint family holidays. 

Photos from a 1995 ski trip show William and Harry smiling in the snow with the two young York sisters, and trudging up the slope with the girls trailing determinedly behind. Beatrice and Eugenie were also included in the final Christmas card Princess Diana sent out before her death. 

‘Closest of friends’: Over the years, Eugenie has been Harry’s confidante and matchmaker. Now she is seen as one of his closest allies within the royal family. Pictured, Harry shares a joke with Eugenie (left) and Beatrice (right) at Trooping the Colour in June 2012

Despite being born five years apart, Harry and Eugenie often spent time together as children thanks to the friendship between their mothers Princess Diana and Sarah Ferguson, who would pack up the children for joint family holidays.

Growing up together: Prince Harry with Eugenie (centre) and Beatrice (left) at a Buckingham Palace Garden Party in May 2019. The pair remain close even though he lives in California

Childhood bond: Prince Harry (left) and Prince William with Princess Eugenie (left) and Princess  Beatrice on a family holiday to Klosters, Switzerland, in 1995

Public support: When Eugenie wished ‘dear’ Meghan Markle a happy 40th birthday this week, the message was clear: the bond between Prince Harry and his cousin is as close as ever

‘Out of all the Queen’s grandchildren, Harry and Eugenie have one of the most natural connections,’ Omid Scobie and Carolyn Durand wrote in the Sussex biography Finding Freedom. The book also describes them as the ‘closest of friends’.

‘Like Harry, Eugenie is loyal, honest and great fun,’ the book continues. ‘The two had many nights out together in London, sneaking into back entrances of clubs, such as Mahiki, where Jack once was manager, or Tonteria, where in one of the VIP cave areas they downed shots from Mexican skull shaped glasses and a giant frozen margarita (with multiple straws).’ 

The cousins also bonded over their shared difficulty of carving a role for themselves within the royal family, with Eugenie, who is not a working royal, having to seek out her own career path.

Support: Harry and William greet Princess Eugenie (left) and Princess Beatrice at the Service of Thanksgiving for the life of Diana in 2007, marking the 10 year anniversary of her death

Family outing (left-right): Kate Middleton, Prince William, Sebastian Coe, Prince Harry, Princess Eugenie and Princess Beatrice cheer on Zara Tindall at London 2012

Harry has always confided in Eugenie and she was reportedly among the first to know about his relationship with Meghan, whom she already knew through their mutual friend Misha Nonoo.

‘Not only did he trust her implicitly, but friends said that she gives great advice and has always been ‘beyond wise’ for her years,’ Scobie and Durant wrote.  

Eugenie and Jack, who married in October 2018, just six months after Harry and Meghan, went on double dates with the couple in Toronto and London. 

The Princess and her then boyfriend were at a party in Soho House in Toronto in 2016 when Harry and the Suits star were first seen together. Eugenie was instrumental in keeping their relationship secret. 

In the explosive tell-all Oprah Winfrey interview, in which Harry and Meghan criticised the Royal Family, Eugenie was singled out for praise. 


Mutual friends: Meghan and Eugenie are thought to have been introduced through their mutual friend Misha Nonoo. Pictured, Nonoo with Meghan in 2015 (left) and Eugenie in 2019

Rocking the boat: The relationship reportedly came under strain when Harry and Meghan told senior royals they were expecting their first child at Eugenie and Jack’s wedding (pictured)

Meghan said: ‘Eugenie and I had known each other before I had known Harry, so that was comfortable […] We’re friends with them as a couple.’

The Sussexes, Eugenie and Jack were all guests at Misha Nonoo’s lavish Rome wedding in the summer of 2019. 

They also have mutual friends in singer Ellie Goulding and George and Amal Clooney, who were guests at Harry and Meghan’s nuptials. Jack is European Director of Casamigos, the tequila brand co-founded by George.

Harry and Eugenie’s relationship came under strain in 2018 when he and Meghan reportedly told senior royals they were expecting their first child together at Eugenie and Jack’s wedding. 

Eugenie was described as ‘hurt’  when Meghan announced her pregnancy, a friend told the Telegraph at the time, adding ‘It’s fair to say the relationship is not what it was’.

The official announcement came just days later, eclipsing any lingering coverage of Eugenie’s big day. 

However it would seem any bad blood between the cousins was soon washed away.  

In a sign of how close they are, Eugenie and Jack, now live with their son, August, in Frogmore Cottage, the house on the Windsor estate renovated by the Sussexes before they emigrated to North America. 

On both of Harry’s most recent trips back to the UK – for the funeral of his grandfather Prince Philip and the unveiling of the Princess Diana statue – he chose to stay with Eugenie, Jack and August, and form a bubble with them. 

Still close: Eugenie and Harry remain in touch in the wake of Megxit and the Sussexes’ interviews about the royal family. Pictured, Harry and Meghan on one of their final royal engagements in March 2020

Home sweet home: In a sign of how close they are, Eugenie and Jack, now live with their son, August, in Frogmore Cottage, pictured, the house on the Windsor estate renovated by the Sussexes before they emigrated to North America

Meghan also referred to the Duchess of York as ‘Fergie’ during her tell-all Oprah interview, hinting at a friendship that would have surprised many viewers. 

Despite there being five years between Harry and his younger cousin, they married and had children at the same time. 

Meghan and Eugenie reportedly bonded over motherhood and pregnancy and have taken similar approaches to presenting their children on social media – choosing to have photoshoots in the garden but obscuring the little ones’ faces. 

Eugenie is also keen to show her public support for the Sussexes, dedicating an Instagram post to congratulating them on the arrival of daughter Lilibet in June. 

Earlier this year, Eugenie was given the clearest sign yet that she is a trusted member of Meghan’s well-connected girl gang after she was hand-picked by the Duchess for her 40×40 initiative. 

Bringing them closer: Meghan and Eugenie reportedly bonded over motherhood and pregnancy and have taken similar approaches to presenting their children on social media – choosing to have photoshoots in the garden. Pictured, Eugenie and Jack with August

The project, launched to mark the Duchess’s birthday, calls on people to give 40 minutes of their time to mentor women going back into work. 

Eugenie wrote: ‘To celebrate dear Meghan’s 40th birthday, I’m contributing 40 minutes of my time to helping women re-entering the workforce… If you can please join me to commit 40 minutes to community, service or mentorship.’

Commentators are split over whether Eugenie will be able to use this can-do attitude to repairing her cousin’s frayed relationship with his family. 

Writing in the Daily Telegraph earlier this year, Eleanor Steafel said: ‘The Sussexes may be settling into life as a foursome across the pond, but they are sure to have one eye on the family engagements that will draw them back to Britain next year. 

‘The Queen will celebrate her Platinum Jubilee in the summer, with events planned around the country. If Harry and his family are to be part of the celebrations, perhaps after a turbulent few months, Eugenie the peacemaker can help bring her favourite cousin back into the fold.’

Personal message: Princess Eugenie shared a sweet message of congratulations to her ‘dear cousins’ Prince Harry and Meghan Markle on the birth of their daughter Lilibet Diana

However Mr Crawthorne is less convinced. ‘At this moment in time, it is hard to see how anyone could bring Harry and Meghan back into the fold,’ he told FEMAIL. 

‘Prince Andrew is the only royal in almost a hundred years to grow up in the palace and knows instinctively where the red lines are. He was and remains locked in rivalry with his older brother, but he was careful never publicly to say anything that fuelled that rivalry or to leave his role.

‘Prince Harry not only decided to leave both the firm and Britain, but also to give public interviews that are suggestive. In order for Harry, let alone Meghan, to return to the fold a very long time of rebuilding trust would be required. 

‘Undoubtedly, while tempers are flaring it is good to have a neutral go between such as Eugenie who can with absolute discretion pass on messages that aren’t heard by courtiers at large.’

Nigel Crawthorne is the author of Prince Andrew, published by Gibson Square Books.

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