Infanta Cristina of Spain married Iñaki Urdangarin on 4 October 1997. At the time, Cristina was the first member of the Spanish royal family to hold a salaried job; she prepared photographic exhibitions for a savings bank foundation. Her new husband was a professional handball team player. They met at the 1996 Summer Olympics in Atlanta, where his team won the bronze medal.
Their wedding paid tribute to Spain’s diverse regions. The service – held in Barcelona Cathedral – was mostly in Spanish but also used Catalan and the Basque language. The three languages also appeared on flags that were being waved by the crowds that lined the route of the procession.1
Cristina wore a long white wedding dress by Spanish designer Lorenzo Caprile, and her veil was held in place with a floral headband. Afterwards, her bridal bouquet was brought to the Basilica of Mercy, which is dedicated to the patron saint of the diocese of Barcelona. Finally, the banquet and reception took place at the Palacio de Pedralbes. Cristina was created Duchess of Palma de Mallorca for life, with her husband holding the male form of her title.
Foreign royal guests included Crown Princess Victoria of Sweden and the future Grand Duke Henri and Grand Duchess Maria Theresa Of Luxembourg.
The couple went on to have four children together: Juan (born 1999), Pablo (born 2000), Miguel (born 2002) and Irene (born 2005). Cristina and her husband were prosecuted for tax fraud charges in 2015, and that same year, King Felipe VI officially deprived his sister of her dukedom. In 2017, Cristina was acquitted of the charges, while Iñaki was convicted, and he received a prison sentence of six years and three months. This was lowered to five years and ten months the following year.
Cristina and Iñaki officially separated in January 2022. The following statement was released: “By mutual consent, we have decided to end our marriage. Our commitment to our children remains intact. Since it is a private decision, we ask for the utmost respect from all those around us. Cristina de Borbón and Iñaki Urdangarin.” They have not yet officially divorced.