On Monday, November 27th, Kensington Palace announced the engagement of Prince Harry to Meghan Markle, an American actress and philanthropist. The happy couple are set to marry in spring 2018—and are keeping mum about any further details so far!
Now that one of the world’s most eligible bachelors is off the market, people want to know everything about his bride-to-be. Who is this 36-year-old actress soon moving into Kensington Palace? How did the ridiculously attractive couple meet? And most importantly, what is her favorite type of wine?
Here’s everything you want to know about Prince Harry’s fiancée Meghan Markle ahead of their big day:
1. She grew up in Hollywood—sort of.
Born August 4, 1981 as Rachel Meghan Markle, she grew up in Los Angeles and considers herself a California girl at heart. Although she is not Catholic, according to Vanity Fair, she graduated from a Catholic high school in L.A..
Her father, Thomas Markle, was a successful lighting director for “General Hospital” and “Married … With Children.”
She told Vanity Fair, “Every day after school for 10 years, I was on the set of ‘Married … With Children,’ which was a really funny and perverse place for a little girl in a Catholic school uniform to grow up.” We can imagine!
2. She’s best known for her role on “Suits.”
Since 2011, Markle has starred as Rachel Zane on the USA Network show “Suits” and lived in Toronto, where the show films. She recently announced that she would be leaving the show after seven seasons, which sparked rumors of an impending engagement between her and Prince Harry.
3. She once worked in Argentina.
After studying theater and international relations, Markle graduated with a Communications degree from Northwestern University in Illinois in 2003. During her senior year of college, she worked at the U.S. Embassy in Buenos Aires, Argentina.
4. She did some odd jobs trying to support herself as an actress.
While auditioning for roles, Markle worked as a hostess in a restaurant and writing calligraphy on wedding invitations, she told Vanity Fair. According to Tatler, she did the calligraphy for Robin Thicke and Paula Patton’s wedding invitations in 2005. She said her father, in particular, is proud she “beat the odds” to become a working actress.
5. Her mom is her best friend.
Her mother is a yoga instructor and social worker named Doria Ragland, whom Markle calls her best friend.
Markle’s parents broke up when she was 2 years old but remained so close that the family went on vacations together. “What’s so incredible, you know, is that my parents split up when I was two [but] I never saw them fight,” she told Vanity Fair. “We were still so close-knit.”
6. She’s got (celebrity) friends in high places.
Markle is good friends with “Quantico” star Priyanka Chopra, with whom she saw the Broadway musical “Hamilton” last year:
She is also friends with tennis champ, Serena Williams, according to her Instagram page:
7. She ran a lifestyle blog called The Tig.
Until last year, Markle ran a lifestyle blog called The Tig, which mainly covered food and travel—her two passions. She named the blog after her favorite wine, Tignanello. She’s a self-professed foodie and isn’t afraid to post photos of herself on Instagram enjoying food with pals or a glass of wine. Our kind of girl!
8. She has two rescue dogs.
Markle is the dog mama to two rescue dogs named Bogart and Guy. She posts photos of them often on her Instagram page!
9. She was previously married.
From September 2011 until May 2013, Markle was married to producer Trevor Engelson, 41. They had a no-fault divorce, citing irreconciable differences, according to Newsweek.
In September, Engelson made headlines after Deadline Hollywood reported that Fox is developing a show with him. The program will imagine what happens when a couple divorces and tries to share custody of the children the woman remarries someone in the British royal family. (Markle and Engelson did not have any children during their marriage.)
Prince Harry would be the second member of the royal family to marry a divorcée: King Edward VIII (later known as the Duke of Windsor) abdicated, or gave up, the throne so he could marry American divorcée Wallis Simpson in 1937. At that time, a monarch marrying a divorced woman caused a huge scandal, but today, the Queen has given Prince Harry her blessing to marry Markle.
10. She’s deeply involved in philanthropy.
Markle and Prince Harry very sweetly share a commitment to using their privileged positions to make the world a better place. In 2016, Markle visited a school in Rwanda with the organization WorldVision, where she taught students how to paint with watercolors.
Earlier this year, Markle visited India with WorldVision to learn more about bringing latrines to girls’ schools.
Markle is also an advocate for UN Women, which involved shadowing a senior advisor to the organization, according to the BBC.
11. She and Prince Harry met last year.
In a Vanity Fair profile published in October, Markle said she and Prince Harry met through mutual friends in July 2016. The couple were able to keep their relationship a secret from the media for several months before it became publicly known. During a photo call with press today after announcing their engagement, Harry said he knew his fiancée was the one “from the very first time we met.” Awwww.
12. She used to be a briefcase model on “Deal or No Deal.”
One of Markle’s first jobs in Hollywood was holding a briefcase as Model #24 on the game show “Deal Or No Deal,” hosted by Howie Mandel. She appeared on the show for 34 episodes and later appeared as an actress on “90210,” “Fringe,” “Castle” and “CSI: Miami.” Markle has also appeared in the comedies “Get Him To The Greek” and Horrible Bosses.”
Learn more about their engagement here: