The East Falls home where the late Princess Grace of Monaco grew up was back in the spotlight Friday morning, as the former Grace Kelly’s son gave NBC’s Today show a tour of the recently restored house, which he bought in 2016.
“I remember rolling on this carpet” as a child on visits to his mother’s family, Prince Albert told Today coanchor Hoda Kotb as they sat in one of the main rooms of the 4,000-square-foot house, located at Henry Avenue and Coulter Street.
The tour included the childhood bedroom where Kelly, who was an Oscar-winning actress before her marriage to Prince Rainier of Monaco in 1956, slept in a twin bed, as well as the room where Albert had stayed as a child and that once struck the boy who’d grown up in a palace as “too big of a space” for just him alone.
Most touching of all, he showed Kotb the inside of a closet door on which the Kelly children’s heights were recorded, including a line, drawn in 1931, for a 2-year-old future princess.
“Can you believe that nobody painted over this door?” Kotb asked.
“I think they realized it was part of the family’s history,” replied the prince.
Asked if he had advice for Britain’s Prince Harry, who on May 19 will also marry an American actress, Suits star Meghan Markle, Albert suggested that if asked by the couple, he’d tell them to make sure to keep some moments just for themselves.
The prince said that “of course” he will bring his own children to visit the home of their grandmother. (Princess Grace died in 1982 after suffering a stroke and driving off the side of a steep road.) Rather than turn the house into a museum, he plans to use the house for family gatherings, for some events that will be open to the public, and to house the offices of the Princess Grace Foundation.
Though Kotb only hinted at the house’s previous condition, saying it had been restored to its “1950s glamor,” it likely took some work to bring it back to the place the prince remembered so fondly. Built by the princess’ father, John B. Kelly Sr., in 1929 and sold in 1954, it was purchased by Prince Albert for a reported $754,000, considerably below the original $1 million asking price.
The home’s previous owner, Marjorie Bamont, had lived there for more than 40 years, and died in April 2016 at age 84. In 2014, she had pleaded no contest in Philadelphia Common Pleas Court to animal-cruelty charges for keeping a number of cats and a dog in unsanitary conditions in the East Falls home.
Here’s a look at what the home looks like now, courtesy of NBC’s Today show.
The show also offered a 3-D tour here.