01.17.13 2:53 PM ET
Beatrice and Eugenie - The Mini Princesses Take Berlin
Princesses Beatrice and Eugenie swept into Germany today for their mini-adventure - a two-day tour of the country promoting the UK.
The well-dressed pair buzzed around the trendy German city in a Union jack-branded Mini on the first day of a tour which has been funded privately by their father, Prince Andrew, and is widely perceived as an attempt by the Yorks to fightback against Prince Charles efforts to cut them out of the royal picture.
A 'government insider' told the Daily Telegraph that the event was "launching them not us" and the paper's writer says: "The trip was entirely at the behest of the girls’ father, Prince Andrew, I understand, and Government sources seem fairly keen to distance themselves from it. “You have to understand with the Royals: they do exactly what they like,” one exasperated insider told me, adding that when it came to Prince Andrew, “it’s totally uncontrolled”. Is it possible that Prince Andrew wants to ensure he and his offspring get to share some of the limelight? He’s clearly keen to retain his status on the world stage, despite stepping down as the UK’s special representative for trade in 2011 after criticism of his association with a convicted underage sex offender, Jeffrey Epstein."
Regardless of behind-the-scenes controversy, the young royals appeared to go down well in Berlin. At the British School in the city, the Daily Mail reported that Beatrice was questioned by one cheeky youngster about the famous Philip Treacy hat that she wore to the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge's wedding, which she later sold hat for charity for £81,000.
They drove the Union Jack-branded Mini the short distance from the Brandenburg Gate to the British Embassy. Tomorrow they will be visiting ancestral royal palaces in Hanover.