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Princess Mako Heading to Altar After 5-Year Romance

Yomiuri Shimbun photos Left: Princess Mako attends a ceremony of the Utakai Hajime (New Year Poetry Reading) in January. Right: Kei Komuro leaves his house in Kohoku Ward, Yokohama, on Wednesday morning.

Left: Princess Mako attends a ceremony of the Utakai Hajime (New Year Poetry Reading) in January. Right: Kei Komuro leaves his house in Kohoku Ward, Yokohama, on Wednesday morning. Yomiuri Shimbun photos

Princess Mako, the oldest daughter of Prince Akishino and Princess Kiko, dated Kei Komuro for about five years before deciding on their upcoming engagement — a happy surprise to her friends and people who have met her during her official visits.

The princess met Komuro, now 25, in June 2012 at a party for Japanese and foreign students to casually exchange opinions at a western food restaurant in Shibuya Ward, Tokyo, according to sources close to Princess Mako. Both were attending the International Christian University (ICU) at the time.

They first dated in July 2012 and have seen each other since then with the consent of her parents.

Princess Mako, 25, and Komuro met mostly on weekends to dine at restaurants in Tokyo, walk in the Minatomirai district in Yokohama, and go to see movies or visit museums. They rarely used a car when on dates, instead taking trains or walking. Security for the young couple was kept to a minimum, in keeping with Prince and Princess Akishino’s wishes, according to the sources.

Princess Mako studied for about a year at the University of Leicester’s postgraduate program from September 2014. She and Komuro maintained their relationship during that time.

Company employee Tomohiko Azuma, 25, from Kawasaki was Princess Mako’s classmate at Gakushuin Primary School for four years. “It’s wonderful news,” he said upon hearing of his former classmate’s plans to get engaged. “It was very unexpected, but I hope she builds a happy family.”

Azuma said Princess Mako had a steady character, and he sometimes saw her cautioning their classmates not to chat during class. “She had the leadership to keep the class together,” he recalled.

When Azuma saw Princess Mako again at a coming-of-age ceremony, he thought she looked grown-up, but they did not discuss the subject of dating or marriage … (read more)

via The Japan News

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