King Felipe VI and Family Attend Princess of Asturias Awards 2022 in Oviedo, Spain

Spanish royals attend Princess of Asturias Awards

It was a glamorous night for the Spanish royal family as they came together in Oviedo, the capital of the Principality of Asturias in Northern Spain, for the annual awards night of the Princess of Asturias Foundation. 

On a rare occasion, Queen Sofia joined her son's family to grace the ceremony. She wore a silky cobalt blue top and black pants coordinating the hues of the dresses of the three royal ladies - Queen Letizia, Princess Leonor, and Infanta Sofia.

We love how the two royal sisters wore gorgeous sequined dresses during the ceremony. The Princess of Asturias, who will turn 17 this October 30, wore a sequined mini dress in black and white from Michael Kors with her favorite black slingback pumps from Carolina Herrera.

Spanish royals attend Princess of Asturias Awards

Spanish royals attend Princess of Asturias Awards

Infanta Sofia, 15, donned a dark blue sequined mini dress from El Corte Ingles, which she paired with her navy blue pumps from Lodi shoes. She already wore this pair of shoes in the morning while receiving the recipients of the awards. And royal watchers were thrilled to see her finally wear heels for the first time.

Spanish royals attend Princess of Asturias Awards
Infanta Sofia beamed in a deep blue sequined dress

Spanish royals attend Princess of Asturias Awards
Queen Sofia with her granddaughters, Leonor and Sofia

Spanish royals attend Princess of Asturias Awards
King Felipe VI, Infanta Sofia, Princess Leonor, Queen Letizia

Queen Letizia was in her usual element of glamour as she donned a midi dress from Carolina Hererra and a pair of slingback black pumps from Isabel Abdo shoes. But it's the stunning sight of her two daughters who caught our attention as they exuded sophistication, loveliness, and grace.

Spanish royals attend Princess of Asturias Awards
Queen Letizia and her equally glamorous daughters, Leonor and Sofia

Spanish royals attend Princess of Asturias Awards

The Princess of Asturias Foundation

The Princess of Asturias Awarding Ceremony every October is one of the highlights of the Spanish Royal Family's Calendar of the Year. The awards are handed by The Princess of Asturias Foundation, in which King Felipe VI currently held the chairmanship position while the Princess of Asturias, Leonor, is still a minor.

Leonor, the Princess of Asturias
HRH The Princess of Asturias

Spanish royals attend Princess of Asturias Awards

The foundation was originally named The Prince of Asturias Foundation and was helped established by King Juan Carlos in September 1980 for his only son, Prince Felipe, the Prince of Asturias, who was only 12 years old at that time. It was changed to Princess of Asturias in 2014 when Felipe ascended the throne because his heir-presumptive is a female.

Spanish royals attend Princess of Asturias Awards

According to the official website of the foundation: The Princess of Asturias Foundation aims are to contribute to promoting scientific, cultural, and humanistic values that form part of the universal heritage of humanity and to consolidate the existing links between the Principality of Asturias and the title traditionally held by the heirs to the Crown of Spain.

The Awards Night

This year's awarding ceremony was held on October 28, 2022, at the Campoamor Theater in Oviedo. King Felipe VI presided over the awarding ceremony supported by his wife, Queen Letizia, his two daughters, Leonor, the Princess of Asturias, and Infanta Sofia, and his mother, Queen Sofia.

Spanish royals attend Princess of Asturias Awards

His Majesty delivered a speech highlighting the essence of the awards, "a magnificent opportunity to continue knowing stories of effort and excellence, of hope and illusion, through the work and trajectories of who really illuminate these Awards. Likewise, it allows us to continue discovering the beauty of this land, and the soul and generous heart of Asturians. For this reason, we appreciate your affection and your hospitality."

Princess Leonor delivered a speech
Princess Leonor delivered a speech during the awards night

One of the highlights of the evening was the speech delivered by Leonor, the Princess of Asturias, who is expected to take over the chairmanship of the foundation next year. Here's her full speech:

"I am very happy to return to Asturias yet another year to present these Awards, which show that excellent work, constant effort, and a sense of responsibility lead to great results.

In a few days, I will be 17 years old. And I assure you that discovering the work of our Laureates helps me better understand the world around us. Their work spurs me –spurs everyone really– to keep learning. I have read about each one of them and I am impressed with what they have achieved. I care and am interested because I know that your work, and your efforts, look to the future while influencing the present.

I care that two exceptional artists remind us that flamenco is a living, rich, powerful, universal art… our art. A refined art in which María Pagés and Carmen Linares achieve the harmony of those who evolve and at the same time maintain the essence of tradition.

It matters to and has an impact on me that Adam Michnik is not afraid to practice responsible, rigorous journalism. The fact that, despite his stark personal experiences, this journalist, historian, and a great advocate of Democracy works for reconciliation between his fellow citizens and the most optimistic Europeanism demonstrates his exemplary spirit.

It matters to me that the anthropologist and archaeologist Eduardo Matos Moctezuma has devoted his life to reconstructing and documenting with great scientific rigor what life was like for the inhabitants of pre-Hispanic Mexico. He reveals the past to us so we may understand what we are and what ancient and current societies have in common.

I care that the playwright and academic Juan Mayorga thinks that theatre is the art of gathering together –and so the art of the actor-spectator relationship– and that theatre helps us examine real as well as possible lives. It is also important to me that this Award serves so that art, culture, and Mayorga’s special philosophical and mathematical perspective may be afforded the value they deserve and help us ask ourselves questions.

It matters to me that our Laureates in Science research Artificial Intelligence because these are technologies that are already with us today and which will continue to allow us to advance in this field; so that machines may be Humanity’s allies and make life easier for us. Hinton, Hassabis, Bengio, and LeCun have shown that the social impact of Artificial Intelligence needs resources and attention.

I also care and am very concerned that athletes cannot train or advance their careers because they have been forced to flee their countries. That is why it is such a great initiative that, thanks to the Refugee Olympic Team and the Olympic Refuge Foundation, athletes in this situation have had the opportunity for some years now to continue their pursuits in order to compete in the Olympic Games.

And it matters to me that architect Shigeru Ban cares about people who have lost their homes as a result of war, hurricanes or earthquakes; and that he provides them with solutions to live without having to give up the right to privacy and dignity. He is also a reference in terms of sustainable materials.

And I also care that Ellen MacArthur has managed to get governments, scientific institutions, major companies, and society to work together to make better use of natural resources, propose solutions to avoid the loss of biodiversity, and explain to us how a circular economy works and what its advantages are.

It matters to me, in short, that we are all here celebrating and learning, and that we recognize our Laureates in the best spirit that these times need. That is why I thank all of you who support the Princess of Asturias Foundation in so many, many ways for your efforts and support.

We, young people, are aware that the current situation is not easy, that the world has changed and continues to change, and that the best way to move forward is to maintain the enthusiasm to learn, to equip ourselves with a sense of responsibility and a capacity for effort; to learn from those who know, those who do what they do impeccably, often silently. For this reason, on days like today, listening to, admiring, and recognizing the excellence of our Laureates makes us feel that things can always change for the better. Thank you very much".

Photos from Casa Real, the Spanish royal family's official website

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