A right royal send-off! Here’s how Prince William and Kate Middleton spent the night before their wedding

The last Royal Wedding gives us a sweet clue as to how Prince Harry and Meghan Markle will spend their final night before tying the knot.
Loading the player...

The night before your wedding is considered one of the most exciting parts of the countdown.

In 2011, Prince William and Duchess Catherine stuck to the age-old tradition of spending their final night as an unwed couple in separate accommodation.

William, who was 28 at the time of his nuptials, stayed at Clarence House on the Mall with his younger brother Prince Harry, father Prince Charles and stepmother the Duchess of Cornwall.

Obsessed with the royals? Like our Facebook page Now To Love Royals for the latest news on your favourite royal family members!

On the eve of his wedding, a “nervous” Prince William surprised devoted royal fans by going on an unannounced meet-and-greet, shaking hands with hundreds of well-wishers camped outside Buckingham Palace.

“All I’ve got to do is get the lines right,” William told the crowd at the time.

William later revealed he didn’t sleep a wink that night, too excited for the magical day ahead.

“[The crowds] were singing and cheering all night long, so the excitement of that, the nervousness of me and everyone singing — I slept for about half an hour,” William explained on the documentary Elizabeth: Queen, Wife, Mother.

Just a few days before D Day, Wills let off some pre-wedding steam by riding his motorbike to South London to play five-aside soccer with his mates.

During the match, one of the prince’s friend’s joked it was his “last day of freedom.”

WATCH IN THE PLAYER ABOVE: William greets crowds on the night before his wedding

Prince William surprised fans by doing an impromptu walkabout on the eve of his wedding.

Meanwhile the shocked locals couldn’t believe they were playing soccer with the royal groom.

“When we spotted him we thought it was just someone who looked like him, because it never occurred to us he would be playing park football, especially the week before his wedding,” Phil Noyce said at the time.

“But as the game went on it dawned on us that it really was the Prince, particularly as his team-mates were all calling him Wills. I suppose he was just trying to take his mind off the royal wedding for a couple of hours.”

As for the royal-bride-to-be, she spent her final 24-hours as a single civilian with her family including sister Pippa Middleton, brother James Middleton, and parents Carole and Michael Middleton at the London’s five-star Goring Hotel.

The Middletons booked out the entire Goring Hotel for the wedding.

On April 28th 2011, Kate checked in with her loved ones dressed in a polka-dot sundress, cream cardigan and her trademark wedges as she waved to the crowds.

The Middleton clan stayed on the fifth floor of the luxury suites and booked out all 71 of the hotel rooms, which go for a cool £5,000 ($AUD9, 009) a night, for their friends and family!

Earlier that, the Duchess-to-be headed to Westminster Abbey for a final wedding rehearsal with best man Prince Harry and the flower girls and bridesmaids, however Prince William couldn’t make it due to being on duty at RAF Valley.

According to reports at the time, best man Harry partied at the Goring Hotel til 3am, just eight hours before the wedding. Insiders claim he left the establishment by jumping out of one of the hotel’s balconies, which ended up with him landing badly on his ankle.

Oh how things have changed!

Best man Prince Harry, pictured with Kate at the wedding rehearsals, partied til 3am the night before the wedding.

Kate, Pippa and Carole check into the Goring Hotel on April 28th – the night before the main event.

Ahead of their nuptials, which were watched by 23 million, the couple released an unprecedented statement thanking everyone for their support.

The statement read:

“We are both so delighted that you are able to join us in celebrating what we hope will be one of the happiest days of our lives.”

“The affection shown to us by so many people during our engagement has been incredibly moving, and has touched us both deeply.”

“We would like to take this opportunity to thank everyone most sincerely for their kindness.”

Want more celebrity goss? Listen to the latest episode of the Woman’s Day Uncensored podcast, where the team discuss everything about Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s Royal Wedding extravaganza!

How will Prince Harry and Meghan Markle spend the night before their wedding?

Kensington Palace have confirmed that the soon-to-be-married pair will lodge at separate hotels in the Windsor area on Friday evening.

Harry will stay at the Dorchester Collection’s Coworth Park, a five-star country house in Ascot, and will be joined at the luxury hotel by his best man and older brother, the Duke of Cambridge.

Rooms rates at the exclusive location start at £318 (A$AUD572), but there’s a good chance the prince will opt for one of the hotel’s spacious suites, which cost around £1,270 ($2284).

The party-prince-turned-devoted-husband-to-be could also spring for the Dower House – a house set within beautiful private gardens in the grounds of the countryside estate. The stand-alone residence has three en-suite bedrooms, a fully-equipped kitchen with a personal chef on request (!!), as well as a private gated entrance and parking.

Meghan, meanwhile, will stay at Cliveden House Hotel, on The National Trust’s Cliveden Estate in Berkshire. She will be joined by her mother, Doria Ragland, who will accompany her daughter to the St George’s Chapel ceremony.

Here, a classic room will set you back around £525 ($944) a night on weekends during the summer months. However, it’s thought the duchess-to-be and her mum will chose to stay in the more private Spring Cottage — a three bedroom residence nestled near to the banks of the River Thames on the estate.

Just like Kate in 2011, the world will be given the very first glimpses of Meghan Markle’s wedding dress when she leaves her hotel to drive to St George’s Chapel.

We can only hope they follow in the footsteps of Prince William and Duchess Catherine and greet the crowds the night before!

Can’t wait for the Royal Wedding? See our full coverage of the event right here and be sure to check back in on Saturday night as Now To Love brings you every moment as it happens!

We’ll hopefully get a glimpse of the husband and wife-to-be this Friday!

Related stories