"The princely house regrets to announce that His Serene Highness Prince Constantin von und zu Liechtenstein passed away unexpectedly on December 5, 2023." With this brief sentence in English, the royal family of the small Central European principality (it has about 40,000 inhabitants) announced on Wednesday the death of Constantine of Liechtenstein, at the age of 51. The statement in the German version was somewhat more extensive about the death of the third of the four children of the current sovereign prince John Adam II, although it did not report the causes of his "unexpected" death.
"The Princely House regrets to announce that H.D. Prince Constantine of Liechtenstein died unexpectedly on December 5, 2023. Prince Hans-Adam II's youngest son leaves behind his wife, Princess Maria of Liechtenstein, née Countess Kálnoky of K'röspatak, and their children Prince Moritz, Princess Georgina and Prince Benedikt. Prince Constantine was Chairman of the Supervisory Board of Liechtenstein Group AG and a member of the Board of Directors of Liechtenstein Group Holding AG," reads the note signed on December 6, one day after his death, at Vaduz Castle.
Liechtenstein, the paradise of unknown and absolute millionaire princes
"It is with great sadness that we bid farewell to His Serene Highness Constantine," begins the message that Liechtenstein Group AG has published on its website. "His death comes as a terrible shock to all those who knew him, and the Liechtenstein Group is in deep mourning. Our thoughts and prayers are with his widow, Princess Marie von und zu Liechtenstein, and his children Moritz, Georgina and Benedikt."
Constantine had been married since July 1999 to Countess Maria Gabriela Francisca Kálnoky of K'röspatak. They were first married civilly in the capital of Liechtenstein, Vaduz, and days later they celebrated the religious wedding in Slovakia. They had three children; Moritz (20 years old), Georgina (18) and Benedikt (15). Among other positions, Constantine of Liechtenstein held the position of chairman of the supervisory board of the principality, located on the banks of the Rhine, between Switzerland and Austria. From that position, who was seventh in the line of succession to the throne, he was in charge of managing the fortune of the family, which owned an important art collection (works by Hals, Raphael, Rembrandt and Van Dyck stand out) and various properties. In fact, the Liechtenstein family is considered the richest royal family in Europe. Bloomberg estimates that his father, owner of the LGT Banking Group — the largest private banking entity in the country, with thousands of employees and offices in Asia, the Middle East, Australia and the United States — is worth close to $9 billion.
According to the local media Vaterland, after the news of his death was known, a minute of silence was observed in the nation's Parliament in its last session, while at three o'clock yesterday afternoon the bells rang in all the parish churches of the archdiocese.
Born on March 15, 1972 in St. Gallen, Switzerland, the prince graduated in 1991 from Liechtenstein High School and went on to study law in Salzburg. Constantine also held the title of Count of Rietberg, was director of the Prince of Liechtenstein Foundation and a member of the Austrian Council for Sustainable Development.
His father Juan Adán, 78 years old and widowed since 2021, has been the sovereign of Liechtenstein since August 1989, when Prince Franz Josef II of Liechtenstein abdicated in his favor; He was 36 years old at the time. Today it is Louis, 55, the heir to the princely throne. Since 2004, however, it has undertaken numerous tasks with a view to facilitating succession, including the country's diplomatic representation abroad. The monarch's other two children are Maximilian (54) and Tatiana of Liechtenstein (50), who in 1995 made the covers of Spanish magazines for her alleged closeness to the then Prince Philip, who was never such. Liechtenstein is one of the most discreet royal families, clearly away from the headlines about their personal lives, as is the case with the royal houses of the United Kingdom, Denmark or Spain.