July 20, 2024

The Royal Family’s official social media account has shared behind-the-scenes clips of the lavish state banquet held in honour of the President and First Lady of the Republic of Korea at Buckingham Palace.

The King and Queen hosted Yoon Suk Yeol and his wife Kim Keon Hee for the first incoming state visit since the King’s coronation and the second of his reign.

Clips posted on X from the Royal Family’s account showed people hard at work preparing floral centrepieces modelled after South Korea’s national flower.

President of South Korea Yoon Suk Yeol listens to King Charles III at the state banquet at Buckingham Palace

(WPA Rota)

Floral centrepieces modelled after South Korea’s national flower

(Royal Family X/Twitter account )

The delicate pieces are seen in the clip being rolled out and finely crafted to perfection.

“The kitchens have been busy putting finishing touches to dishes that will be served at tonight’s State Banquet,” the caption on the post said.

“These centre pieces, crafted out of sugar, represent the Hibiscus Syriacus, the national flower of the Republic of Korea, and will be presented alongside petit fours.”

The Korean rose appears in national emblems in South Korea and the country is compared to the flower in the national anthem.

Guests seated at the banquet as The King made his speech on Tuesday


The flower’s symbolic significance also stems from the Korean word “mugung”, which translates to “eternity” or “inexhaustible abundance”.

The account also posted footage of the decadent table setting, flower arrangements and clips of Charles and Camilla observing the dinner table – a tradition from the late Queen who would personally inspect the table before events.

Palace florists also created displays of vibrant purple, red and pink blooms which will be donated to Floral Angels, a charity of which Camilla is a patron.

After the banquet, the flowers will then be delivered to hospices, elderly care homes and shelters.

“One final glimpse ahead of tonight… This evening, The King and Queen are hosting a State Banquet for the President and First Lady of the Republic of Korea at Buckingham Palace,” the post said.

There were more than 170 guests on the night, which included K-pop stars Blackpink, Birmingham City footballer Cho So-hyun and prime minister Rishi Sunak and his wife Akshata Murty.

The royals pictured with South Korean president and the First Lady

(2023 Getty Images)

The menu for the night included a warm tartlet of soft poached egg and spinach puree, breast of Windsor pheasant with a croquette of celeriac and calvados sauce and salad, with a mango ice cream bombe for dessert.

During his speech on Tuesday evening, the King said “Koreans have created a miracle” in their journey from wartime devastation to a thriving country.

“Through their own sweat and toil, and under the shadow of tyranny and the ever-present threat of aggression, over seven decades Koreans have built a bastion of democracy, human rights and freedom,” he continued.

“In a world where these values are challenged, sadly, as rarely before in our lifetimes, the Republic of Korea and the United Kingdom stand shoulder to shoulder in defence of all that we hold dear.”

South Korean girl band Blackpink ahead of the State Banquet (Yui Mok/PA)

(PA Wire)

The King also praised South Korean pop group Blackpink for their role in protecting the environment.

He said: “I applaud Jennie, Jisoo, Lisa and Rose, better known collectively as Blackpink, for their role in bringing the message of environmental sustainability to a global audience as ambassadors for the UK’s presidency of Cop26, and later as advocates for the UN sustainable development goals.

“I can only admire how they can prioritise these vital issues, as well as being global superstars. Sadly, when I was in Seoul all those years ago, I am not sure I developed much of what might be called the Gangnam Style!

“Your country’s concern for the natural environment is matched by an appreciation of your unique built environment,” he added.


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