Queen Máxima of the Netherlands traded her signature oversized and plumed hats for a dazzling tiara as she and husband King Willem-Alexander attended a State Dinner at Rideau Hall in Ottawa on Wednesday (May 27), hosted by Canadian Governor General David Johnston and his wife, Sharon. Clad in a tiered, fringed fuchsia gown and with her blond locks in a loose updo, the Dutch royal chatted delightedly with fellow attendees, including her hostess, who wore a nude gown with star appliqués.
The three-day trip to the Great White North is a first for Máxima and Willem-Alexander, who will be carrying on to the United States after a few days in various cities in Ontario, including Toronto. Upon arriving, the charming couple greeted crowds - he in a pinstriped navy suit with yellow tie, she in a pink-and-white striped dress with navy lace overlay and a beautiful deep-blue textured sun hat.
A visit to Parliament Hill and the National War Museum were the fist outings on the couples' agenda, where Máxima met one particularly taken Ottawa veteran - 92-year-old Elsa Lessard, who worked decoding messages during World War II.
"When I met her, she got my hand and she didn't let go," Elsa told the Ottawa Citizen. "She was just down to earth."
While this is the couple’s first official visit to Canada, they met Prime Minister Stephen Harper earlier this year when he visited Holland to commemorate the 70th anniversary of the Netherlands’ liberation. There he paid tribute to the Canadian soldiers that died during the conflict and reinforced Canada's commitment to a solid relationship with the country.
On today's roster the couple will unveil a new scholarship program at the University of Waterloo, tour an orchid farm in Beamsville, Not. and meet with delegates from Dutch agricultural companies. Their final day, May 29, will take them to the Legislative Assembly of Ontario in Toronto, a trip to the Toronto Islands, a speech at the Canadian-Netherlands Resilient Cities Seminar and, finally, a reception at the Art Gallery of Ontario.