We’re now one step closer to seeing Rihanna collaborate with Meghan Markle on a Fenty Beauty capsule collection and/or with Queen Elizabeth on a line of neon-hued skirt suit–feather boa combos. After befriending Prince Harry several years ago, Rihanna has now earned the respect of Prince Charles, as he shared in a speech during a visit to her home country of Barbados this week.
During Tuesday’s address, part of Charles and Duchess Camilla’s royal tour of Caribbean Commonwealth nations, the prince praised the many powerful women of Barbados, including the country’s Prime Minister Mia Mottley. “Barbados offers an inspirational example through the remarkable number of women in positions of national leadership,” he said, according to The Daily Express. “And then, of course, there is arguably the most famous living Bajan of all. From her childhood in Bridgetown, Rihanna has gone on to be one of the most influential recording artists of her generation and a global style icon,” he continued. “Or so my son Harry tells me, anyway!”
Harry and Rihanna, of course, go way back. They first met in 2016, when they were both tested for HIV/AIDS at an event hosted by the Barbados National HIV/AIDS Commission on World AIDS Day. Though they seemed to hit it off immediately, years later, when Rihanna was asked whether she’d scored an invite to Harry’s royal wedding, she was thoroughly confused by the idea. “Why would you even think I’m invited?” she asked, before challenging the reporter, “OK, you met me. You think you’re coming to my wedding?” To sum up Prince Harry’s relationship with Rihanna: He raves about her influence as a musician and “global style icon” to his dad, but isn’t quite close enough to invite her to his wedding. Tough.
Charles and Camilla’s Caribbean tour has already been rather eventful. Before shouting out Rihanna, the pair met up with Lionel Richie, who was named the first-ever global ambassador of the Prince’s Trust International. While thanking Richie for his support, Charles, further proving his musical prowess, quipped, “It must have been you I was looking for,” referencing Richie’s hit song “Hello,” and prompting the musician to reportedly “burst into laughter.”
The royal tour will also go down in history as the first visit by a member of the royal family to Cuba and, on an entirely different note, as the beachside vacation that produced rare photos of Charles and Camilla in their swimsuits, inspiring not only a potential royal lawsuit, but also a bewildering new nickname for Charles: “His Royal Buffness.”