Did the Duchess of Cambridge conceive while on Asia Pacific 'second honeymoon'?
The news that Britain's Prince William and Kate are to become parents has sent the world's media into overdrive. But one question that hasn't yet been asked is where the royal couple conceived the child that will be third in line to the throne.
Speculation among some news organisations - including the Guardian in London - is that the Duchess of Cambridge isn't quite past the 12-week mark, when it is considered safe to announce the pregnancy. According to Buckingham Palace, the pregnancy is in its "very early stages".
So is it possible that Kate conceived the child during the couple's 'second honeymoon' tour of Asia Pacific?
The tour took place between September 11 and 18, with the 11th being 12 weeks ago.
The nine-day trip through Singapore, Malaysia, the Solomon Islands and Tuvalu featured sentimental stops as well as the former Kate Middleton’s first overseas speech as she settled into her duties with the British monarchy. A stay at a resort popular with newlyweds on the private island of Tavanipupu led to their trip being billed as a second honeymoon.
The pair also stayed at the Raffles Hotel in Singapore where the Presidential Suite has a private balcony and many antiques.
The confirmation of her pregnancy caps a jam-packed year of highs and lows for the young royals, who were married in a lavish ceremony at Westminster Abbey last year.
They have travelled the world extensively as part of Queen Elizabeth's diamond jubilee celebrations and weathered the embarrassment of a nude photos scandal, after a tabloid snapper published topless images of the duchess.
Back in Britain, the press barely withheld its excitement as it closed the door on a week that featured the results of the Leveson Inquiry into press conduct.
Popular tabloid The Sun ran with “Kate Expectations” as its front-page headline,
The Daily Telegraph said the news of Catherine’s pregnancy was cause for national celebration.
“Who would not be delighted at the prospect of a mother’s first child, especially a mother who has won affection with her natural beauty and straightforward character?” said its editorial.
The palace said Catherine was admitted on Monday afternoon to the King Edward VII Hospital in central London with “hyperemesis gravidarum”, which it defined as “very acute morning sickness”, which requires extra hydration and nutrients.
The Telegraph’s headline asked “Could it be twins for the Duchess?” pointing out that the condition is more often experienced by women expecting twins.
The Sun called the sudden announcement “fantastic news”.
“As William and Kate embark on this new journey, the nation wishes the nervous Royal couple well,” said its editorial.
“But as well as being an immensely happy period in any couple’s life, pregnancy is also a nerve-wracking experience... so it’s worrying that Kate has been diagnosed with hyperemesis gravidarum.
“We can be sure, however, that she’ll be given the best possible care in the months ahead,” it added.
The Times splashed “We’re Expecting” above its front-page story, but warned that the couple were facing a new level of press scrutiny.
“If the Duke and Duchess, who have always been protective of their privacy, felt that they lived their lives in a goldfish bowl beforehand, that is as nothing to what will happen to them now,” wrote columnist Valentine Low.
“For the Duke and Duchess... the rather rushed announcement on a dull Monday afternoon represents a pivotal moment in their lives.
“Their emotions are just the same as any young parents-to-be: happiness, excitement, apprehension. Just with the added factor that their baby will one day be King or Queen,” he added.
The Daily Mail summed up the mood with its headline, “A nation’s joy, a husband’s nerves” while tabloid the Daily Mirror speculated on its front page that the Duchess could be hospitalised “for days”.
And what will the baby be called?
If Kate and William did conceive in Asia, will they follow Victoria Beckham’s lead and name the child after the place of conception?
Mrs Beckham famously named her son Brooklyn after the area in New York.
And if the baby was conceived in the Solomon Islands, Britain could have a King Solomon.
Here are some other stars who named their children after places:
- Gwen Stefani's youngest son, Zuma, is named after Zuma Beach, CA
- Chris Hemsworth named his firstborn India Rose after the country he admires
- Mariah Carey named one of her twins Morocco
- Alicia Keys named her son Egypt
- Ron Howard gave each of his children a middle name to commemorate their conception, such as Bryce "Dallas" Howard
- Guitarist Slash named his son London
- Ethan Hawke's daughter is called Indiana
- Reese Witherspoon's son is called Tennessee