IT’S not often that royalty pops up in the Capital to declare the most important of buildings officially open – let alone a restaurant.
The William Street restaurant is owned by Austrian-born Clemens Hoss-d’Estenfeld, 43, who has known the two members of the former royal family of Hesse all his life.
The Mulroy is thought to be the first restaurant in the city to be officially opened by royalty.
Around 70 guests attended the launch party, which saw the Princess and Mr Hoss-d’Estenfeld arrive in a 1947 Rover, while the Prince and Mr Hoss-d’Estenfeld’s wife, Patricia Macdonald, pulled up in a 1950s Wolseley.
World champion piper, Pipe Major Brian Donaldson, then piped all four across the threshold.
Mr Hoss-d’Estenfeld said: “I wanted the Prince and Princess to open the restaurant because I’m so close to them and because my parents are no longer alive, otherwise they would’ve done it. It certainly made it all very special for me.”
The Princess’s husband, Prince Karl, is the Duke of Edinburgh’s nephew. Prince Philip and Prince Karl’s mother were brother and sister. Prince Karl is also the Queen’s cousin.
Mr Hoss-d’Estenfeld said if Germany still had a monarchy, Prince Karl would be the Grand Duke of Hesse.
The restaurant, which opened in September, has a maximum of 55 covers.
Head chef, Damien Rolain, who trained in his native France, served up a buffet and canapes at the official launch.
Mr Hoss-d’Estenfeld, who said Prince Christoph was his closest friend, spent his childhood in Austria and Germany but has always regarded the UK as his home.
He moved to Britain in 1984, reaching Scotland two years later.
Mr Hoss-d’Estenfeld said: “We are delighted by the warm reception The Mulroy has received from locals, and also from visitors.”