Prince Harry told an interviewer at the Invictus Games he and Meghan have been “welcomed with open arms” in Montecito but locals reportedly say they have been a “no show” since moving in
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Prince Harry and Meghan Markle “haven’t become part of the community” in their US neighbourhood, it has been claimed.
The Duke and Duchess of Sussex are reportedly rarely seen in public in Montecito, where they share a lavish £11million mansion and live among some of Hollywood’s biggest names.
Described as the ‘Cotswolds of California’, the secluded town in Santa Barbara boasts pristine beaches and gated compounds – with locals, famous or not, known for having a zero tolerance policy for paparazzi.
Harry, 37, who has been in Holland with his wife, 40, for the Invictus Games, told NBC’s Today Show last week they have been “welcomed with open arms” in Montecito, adding it was “such a great community.”
But it appears this sort of statement may baffle some of the neighbours.
British gossip columnist Richard Mineards, who writes for the Montecito Journal, said the Sussexes have “been a no-show” since covertly arriving in July 2020, months after stepping down as working royals in the UK.
He told the Times: “Harry and Meghan haven’t become part of the community, and I think a lot of people are bristling about that really.
“It’s such a lovely place to go out and they’ve been a no-show.
“There is this big question of, ‘Where are they?'”
The duke is yet to even visit Old Kings Road, a British-influenced bar on Santa Barbara’s main drag with a sign in the window saying: “No w***ers.”
That being said, he may soon become a little more visible, having joined the Santa Barbara Polo and Racquet Club, according to reports.
It’s thought he’ll play with pal Ignacio ‘Nacho’ Figueras, the Argentinian multimillionaire polo professional and Ralph Lauren model, when the season begins on May 1.
Fellow Etonian Andrew Bossom, who is also a keen polo fan, told the Times such a move “would be a huge step into the local community for him”.
Harry is said to have been practicing on a private polo field owned by hotel magnate Pat Nesbitt.
Many locals are understood to have heard rumours, however, he is keen to sell up and buy somewhere else nearby.
A similar rumor claims Harry and Meghan had recently tried and eventually given up trying to get burgers from fast-food restaurant In-N-Out due to security logistics.
By all accounts, the pair have looked relaxed and happy while watching the Invictus Games – an international sporting event for wounded, injured and sick servicemen and women, both serving and veterans.
It was set up by Harry in 2014 and inspired by the Warrior Games in the US.
This year’s tournament finished on Friday.
A camera crew filming for a Netflix documentary called Heart Of Invictus – a series from Harry and Meghan’s Archewell Productions following people competing at the event – had been seen close to the couple since they arrived on Good Friday.
A drone could be seen hovering above events that the couple were at.
The pair signed a multimillion-pound deal with streaming giant Netflix in 2020.
It was their first public appearance together in Europe since leaving the Firm.
They also made a whistle-stop trip to Windsor on Maundy Thursday to see the Queen, as well as Prince Charles and Camilla.