After spending just one night in Kensington Palace with their baby son, new mom and dad, Kate Middleton and Prince William headed off to stay with the Duchess's parents at the Middleton home in Bucklebury.
Their decision to leave the royal residence came as a surprise to many — traditionally royal babies call the palace their first home.
And the modern couple once again surprised the nation by posting the first photographs of Prince George on Twitter on Monday. If that wasn't enough, the natural, relaxed photos include both Lupo and the Middletons' pet dog, and were taken by Kate's father Michael in the grounds of the Middleton family home, a place that will evidently play a key part in the beginning of the baby Prince's life.
Carole and Michael seem to have prepared for the moment when their home would be in the spotlight. They bought the £5 million country mansion in 2012 after deeming their £1.5 million house in the same Berkshire village to be too visible to passers-by.
Now, their Bucklebury Manor estate in the picturesque village of Bucklebury is set in 18 acres of land and boasts its own tennis court, swimming pool and library. The sprawling grounds mean more privacy for the parents of the Duchess of Cambridge in their day-to-day lives, and especially for the Duchess herself, her husband Prince William, and their baby, when they are residing there.
Upon the birth of the Prince, Palace officials said they were keen to enjoy some "private time together, like any new family," adding, "They just want to get to know their son." And to do that, they chose the intimate family setting of the Middleton home, a far cry from the formalities and regal surroundings of Kensington Palace.
Carole, who was spotted shopping with her pregnant daughter ahead of the birth, is even reported to have been busy redecorating a "nursery-style" room for her first grandchild.
With seven bedrooms, the Grade II-listed Georgian property in the leafy village of Bucklebury can perfectly accommodate William, Kate and baby George, as well as offer space to build special accommodation for royal protection staff in the future.
Planning permission has already been granted for an outbuilding, with a flat and garage on the ground floor, and a storage area and workshop above. Security has of course been installed around the grounds.
The local council has imposed no-stopping regulations on roads near the Georgian home where a team of armed royal guards, who accompany Kate and William everywhere, are also stationed.
The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge will soon move into their new country retreat in Anmer Hall on the Queen's Sandringham estate in Norfolk, where they will reside until renovations are completed at Kensington Palace. Apartment 1A, formerly Princess Margaret's abode, will then become their primary residence.
Photos: Getty Images
A version of this article appeared at hellomagazine.com with the headline "Why Prince William and Kate Middleton have chosen Bucklebury as Prince George's first home."