Though the Duke of Edinburgh may be enjoying his retirement, it has caused him and Queen Elizabeth to live apart for weeks at a time, leading several royal watchers to claim that the pair are "leading separate lives," according to The Daily Express.
Prince Philip, who recently celebrated his 98th birthday, retired two years ago after more than half a century of public service as the queen's consort. A source close to the royals claims that the queen's desire for the duke to be able to relax is the cause for the separation.
"The Queen feels the Duke has earned a proper retirement. She knows him too well, if he was still at the center of royal life he'd feel he had to be involved."Instead of staying at Buckingham Palace, where Queen Elizabeth lives, the duke currently resides at Wood Farm on the Sandringham Estate. He also spends some time at Windsor Castle, though a majority of his time is spent in Norfolk.
It has been reported that the royal couple have settled into the "new rhythm" of time apart from one another. However, despite the physical distance, a source claims that they communicate daily.
"He is away from the Queen for weeks sometimes, but they speak every day on the phone.""Being at Wood Farm means that he's not too far away, but far enough to be able to relax," the source added.
Though some might raise eyebrows at the fact that the duke chooses to live apart from his wife, Charlie Proctor, editor of Royal Central, explained that Buckingham Palace is an "official working residence" and thus not an optimal spot for the peace and quiet desired in retirement.
"Buckingham Palace has always been viewed as a workplace by the Duke," he said. "It is in the middle of noisy Central London, and perhaps doesn't offer the same peaceful tranquility as Windsor Castle or Sandringham House."
Meanwhile, one place where neither Prince Philip nor Queen Elizabeth will be staying is their old house on the island of Malta. Their former abode, named Villa Guardamangia, is currently up for sale, with the asking price a cool $6 million.
According to Architectural Digest, the palazzo style villa spans 5,000-square-feet and boasts six bedrooms, three bathrooms, a grand living room, and scenic views over the ocean from the villa's rooftop terrace.The couple lived on the Mediterranean island during the early years of their marriage, when Elizabeth was still a princess and Philip was stationed with the Royal Navy Mediterranean Fleet. The queen has often spoken of her fond memories living on the small island.