After stepping back as senior members of the British royal family earlier this year, the couple first went to Canada and then spent several months in the American actress’ native Los Angeles. Most recently, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex purchased their first home in Santa Barbara, Calif.
A royal source told People magazine in this week’s issue that the move marks a “pivotal moment” for the 39-year-old former “Suits” star, the 35-year-old British prince and their 1-year-old son, Archie.
“This is their permanent home,” the insider told the celebrity magazine. “Ever since Archie arrived, everything has been so turbulent, and many things have been up in the air. It has not been easy, necessarily. For the first time in a long time, they have a clear focus.”
The source noted that Santa Barbara would be the perfect place to raise their firstborn and give him a sense of normalcy.
“They both love California, and Santa Barbara has a magic to it — the mountains, oceans, vineyards, flowers, gardens,” the source said. “It’s so beautiful.”
The family is close to Markle’s mother, Doria Ragland.
“Archie is really happy, and he has some space to run free,” the insider explained. “The house came with a play structure that he’ll be climbing in no time. They’re excited to be there and to become part of the community. It’s a really happy time for them as a family.”
Earlier this month, a representative for the couple confirmed to Fox News that they purchased a home in the coastal city.
“The Duke and Duchess of Sussex moved into their family home in July of this year,” a spokesperson said. “They have settled into the quiet privacy of their community since their arrival and hope that this will be respected for their neighbors, as well as them as a family.”
In January, the couple announced they will take “a step back” as senior members of the royal family and instead they will work independently, splitting their time between the United Kingdom and North America.
The Duke and Duchess of Sussex said their decision came after many months of reflection and internal discussions.
“We have chosen to make a transition this year in starting to carve out a progressive new role within this institution,” the duo shared on Instagram at the time. “We intend to step back as ‘senior’ members of the Royal Family and work to become financially independent while continuing to fully support Her Majesty The Queen. It is with your encouragement, particularly over the last few years, that we feel prepared to make this adjustment.
“We now plan to balance our time between the United Kingdom and North America, continuing to honor our duty to The Queen, the Commonwealth, and our patronages,” the couple continued in the post. “This geographic balance will enable us to raise our son with an appreciation for the royal tradition into which he was born, while also providing our family with the space to focus on the next chapter, including the launch of our new charitable entity.”
“We look forward to sharing the full details of this exciting next step in due course, as we continue to collaborate with Her Majesty The Queen, The Prince of Wales, The Duke of Cambridge and all relevant parties. Until then, please accept our deepest thanks for your continued support.”
They have kept their royal titles.