The Queen’s former Malta residence has gone up for sale.
If you want to buy a slice of royal history, it’ll cost you €5.9 million to buy Villa Guardamangia.
The once grand house in Pieta, which is listed as a Grade 2 monument, is in a sorry state after decades of neglect.
The villa, which served as the residence of Princess Elizabeth between 1949 and 1951, is being sold by Frank Salt Real Estate.
The Prime Minister’s office at Castille is said to have been in talks with Buckingham Palace about buying the property and transforming it into a Royal Malta museum.
It still enjoys sea views over Marsamxett Harbour from the roof terrace, has six bedrooms, three bathrooms, a grand ‘sala nobile’, and various rooms leading to a large mature garden.
Josienne Degaetano from Frank Salt Real Estate said: ‘The interior rooms are spacious with high ceilings and the main house is further complemented with stables, various guest/servant quarters, cellars, shelter and more.
‘The property is just crying out for a great conversion and will make a superb residence or possibly a commercial venue.’
Princess Elizabeth and the Duke of Edinburgh spent the first years of their marriage living at this villa when the Prince was in the stationed in Malta with HMS Chequers.
She has fond memories of her time on the Mediterranean island, living as a naval officer’s wife.
‘Visiting Malta is always very special for me. I remember happy days here with Prince Phillip when we were first married,’ she said during a visit to the country in 2015.
Malta was truly a different world for the Princess.
She handled cash for the first time and enjoyed the novelty of driving around the Maltese countryside and visiting her local hairdressing salon in Hamrun.
Lady Pamela Hicks, one of The Queen’s bridesmaids, said: ‘The Queen really loved living in Malta because she was able to lead a normal life, wander through the towns and go shopping.
‘It was the only place that she was able to live the life of a naval officer’s wife, just like all the other wives.
‘They were magical days of endless picnics, sunbathing and waterskiing.
‘It was wonderful for her and it’s why they have such a nostalgia for Malta.’
The Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh have returned to Malta several times since then – most recently in 1992 for a state visit, in 2007 for their diamond anniversary and in 2015 for the Commonwealth summit in Valletta.