by Sarah Grossbart | Wed., Oct. 17, 2018 3:00 AM
There were no throngs of photographers waiting outside the Lindo wing of London's St. Mary's Hospital Monday afternoon, no town crier done up in all of his Union Jack glory, no ceremonial gold easel set up outside Buckingham Palace to announce the pertinent details of the birth. And when Pippa Middleton welcomed her baby boy with husband James Matthews at precisely 1:58 p.m., we're guessing Queen Elizabeth II wasn't on her call sheet.
But the eight-pound, nine-ounce bundle's arrival was no less celebrated by the royal family with Kate Middleton and Prince William announcing through a Kensington Palace spokesperson that they were absolutely "thrilled for Pippa and James."
And thanks to Mom and Dad's impressive pedigrees, Baby Matthews' life will be no less gilded than that of his cousins Prince George, Princess Charlotte and Prince Louis, minus, of course, the HRH title and the occasional bilby or yacht named in his honor.
Apart from baby's first photo shoot—a extraordinarily taxing ritual we'd guess Pippa was all too happy to skip—the new little one began life much the same way as his cousins, warmly ensconced in the upscale surroundings of St. Mary's tony Lindo Wing where suites rent out in the neighborhood of $10,000 and come equipped with small luxuries such as a gourmet menu, wine list, afternoon tea service and satellite TV.
And once the bouncing baby boy, whose name has yet to be revealed, is released, he has a palace of his own to call home. Pippa and James' $22 million, five-story townhouse in London's chic Chelsea neighborhood was recently renovated to include a new bathroom and his-and-hers dressing rooms along with the in-home gym and underground movie theater which will doubtlessly be playing a loop of The Lion King and other Disney fare soon enough.
It may be too early for Pippa, 35, to accept designer hand-me-downs from her older sis, 36, (Prince Louis is not quite 6-months-old, after all). But between the author's six-figure book deals, columnist fees and stake in the family's multimillion-dollar party planning business, Party Pieces, and her 43-year-old husband's hedge fund manager wealth, they were able to trick out their son's nursery (one of the mansion's six bedrooms) just fine on their own.
Thanks to James' well-honed investment skills (last year, David Friedman, co-founder at WealthQuotient estimated to E! News that the race car champion-turned-Eden Rock Capital Management CEO's net worth was close to a billion) Baby Matthews' future vacation plans are looking pretty sweet. And unlike his cousins, he won't have to patiently pose for an endless stream of pictures in his Sunday best each time he checks out a new country.
Dad has already proven himself a top-notch vacation planner, what with the round-the-world getaway he and Pippa enjoyed after their May 2017 vows and their recent Italian babymoon. But should the tyke tire of venturing to new places, he can always kick back at the family's 10,000-acre Glen Affric Estate in Scotland or soak up sun and celebrity sightings at the five-star Eden Rock in St Barths. Since Grandpa David and Grandma Jane own the Caribbean resort it shouldn't be too hard to reserve some time in, say, the 16,000-square-foot Villa Rockstar, which comes complete with a private chef and round-the-clock butler service.
And, of course, there's an open invitation to hang at Kensington Palace. In addition to 1-month-old Theodore Matthews, the son of James' brother Spencer Matthews and his wife Vogue Williams ("I think it will be great for the kids to kind of grow up together," the Made in Chelsea star told UK's This Morning earlier this year), the new addition has built-in playmates in 5-year-old George, 3-year-old Charlotte and baby Louis. Throw in Prince Harry and Meghan Markle's future heir and you can just imagine the tangle of bikes, tennis rackets and soccer balls that will soon be lining the grounds of Kensington, located conveniently just a mile down the road from Pippa's flat.
With such a short distance between them since William and Kate decamped from their Norfolk home, Pippa has been able to make the most of Kate's child-rearing prowess, with one insider bragging to Us Weekly that the mom of three is "a walking baby encyclopedia at this point."
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And she's been all too happy to download Pippa with her wealth of information. The sisters, not quite a year and a half apart, have remained intrinsically close over the years with Pippa providing a source of normalcy as Kate dove deeper and deeper into life in The Firm. "I mean, obviously she has pressures that she's taken on and things," Pippa told NBC News in 2014. "But we spend a lot of time together. We still do a lot together as a family. And I think that's really the heart for all of us is having a really close family that we can sort of be normal with each other, treat each other normally. And that's sort of kept us all, you know, affixed to the ground."
Maintaining what she calls a "normal, sisterly relationship," through all the madness means, "We're very close," Pippa added. "And, you know, we support each other and get each other's opinions and things."
Like, perhaps about what type of pram to buy, when to start sleep training or the perfect present to gift a newborn for his very first Christmas.
Assuming William and Kate intend to stick to their every-other-holiday schedule, they will be spending this December with the Middletons at their Bucklebury estate, forgoing Christmas at Sandringham with the Queen. While it may be far too soon for the littlest ones to make cards, hang wreaths or prepare brandy butter and peppermint creams as Kate and Pippa once did as kids, it's never too early for fun, new family traditions. (Because can you imagine the cuteness of all four Middleton grandkids dressed in reindeer-themed footie pajamas?)
And though Pippa's son is likely to get spoiled by Auntie Kate—after all, she reportedly commissioned silver-cast sculptures of George's hands and feet for an $11,000 christening present in 2013 and bought out London baby boutique Amaia when Charlotte came along in 2015—she seems more interested in teaching her guy the true spirit of the season.
"No matter how much we may adapt other celebrations, come December we tend to repeat our own familiar customs year after year—and this is perhaps key to the magic of Christmas," she wrote in her 2012 planning guide Celebrate. "Looking back, I don't remember the presents I received, nor whether the sprouts were overcooked or the turkey dry. But what I do remember are all the small rituals."
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