Recently, I got to take a special tour of the Royal Mews Hovstallet – the stable, carriage house and garage that houses the transportation options for the Royal Court of Sweden. And in charge of all this is the Crown Equerry Mertil Melin. It was Melin who gave us the tour and provided all the details of his role: “Historically, the equerry was in charge of breeding horses for the king. Now, I transport the king and his family in cars and by horses.”
The army officer of 40 years greeted us with some glögg and ginger cookies as he told us about two of the cars in the collection – a 1950 Daimler limousine and a 1969 Cadillac Fleetwood. Both were black and decked out with crowns and the royal insignia. Mertil told us that the limo is now driven only about 50 miles a year for such special events as Princess Victoria’s royal wedding.
From there, we got to check out the collection of 19th century carriages, the stables, horses, riding hall and harness room. Then we ended the evening with a glass of wine and canapes as we watched some of the royal carriage processions on video. All in all, it was a unique and interesting evening.
And I couldn’t help but think that if I had the option, I would be perfectly happy with being taken to work or events in any one of the horse-drawn carrriages. Then again, the 1950 Daimler limousine would not be bad either.