In May 2014, Prince Harry accompanied Prince William on a trip to the United States for the wedding of his close friend Guy Pelly, who was to marry American Holiday Inn heiress Lizzy Smith. After the party in Miami, King Charles III’s two sons flew to Memphis, Tennessee, for the marriage ceremony, costing the British taxpayer about £50,000 for security. During their vacation, they couldn’t resist visiting Graceland, the home of Elvis Presley, along with Princesses Beatrice and Eugenie in their royal entourage. As a result, the general public was removed that day from the second most visited house in the US after the White House, as all of the wedding attendees wore Elvis sunglasses and blue suede shoes at the honor of him However, now in his explosive memoir Spare, Prince Harry criticized the house in which the singer died in 1977. The Duke of Sussex stated that he could not believe that “The King” lived in some place similar to a “badger”. .
Prince Harry wrote: “I remember, despite the busy wedding schedule, finding time to tour Graceland, the former home of Elvis Presley. Actually, he originally bought it for his mother.”
The King was dedicated to his mother Gladys, who died aged 46 in 1958. She is now buried next to him in the Meditation Garden there, where Elvis’s daughter Lisa Marie rests this Sunday. No doubt Diana’s son felt that he at least had something in common in his own adoration of his “mama,” who died at 36.
The Duke of Sussex added: “Everyone was like, ‘Well, well, this is where the King lived.’ ‘Who?’, ‘The King, Elvis Presley’, ‘Oh, The King. Right.’” However, he didn’t really think the house was right for one.
Prince Harry continued: “People called the house a castle, a mansion, a palace. But it reminded me of the badger. Dark, claustrophobic. I walked around saying, ‘The king lived here, you say? In fact?'”
Elvis bought Graceland on his 13.8-acre estate in 1957 for just over $100,000. The mansion has 23 rooms, including eight bedrooms and bathrooms with 14 televisions. It’s not quite the size of the palaces and stately homes the Duke of Sussex is used to, but it’s certainly impressive to much of the public.
He added: “I stood in a small room with noisy furniture and shag carpets and thought: ‘The King’s interior designer must have been on acid.'”
READ MORE: Graceland Above: Elvis’ Bed Modified by Priscilla to Prevent Injury
Prince Harry added: “In honor of Elvis, all members of the bridal party wore blue suede shoes. At the reception, there was a lot of kicking up those shoes. Young British men and women drunkenly dancing and singing happily without tune or rhythm. It was wild, ridiculous. And Guy seemed happier than he had ever seen him.”
Following Lisa Marie’s death last week, her three daughters Riley Keough and Harper and Finley Lockwood will inherit Graceland, which has been open to the public since 1982.
Although the house is a museum, it is still home to the Presley family, who occasionally have family meals in the dining room on special dates like Thanksgiving.
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