The Royal Family enjoy day out at Royal Ascot, with Catherine and Beatrice stunning in matching blue dresses

Royal Ascot opened today (Tuesday June 18), and the Queen and other members of the Royal family were out in full force to celebrate the first day of the races.

Her Majesty looked elegant in a cornflower blue coat with a matching floral hat from her personal designer Angela Kelly.

She arrived at the iconic racing event in a horse drawn carriage, and sitting alongside her was the Duke of York, as well as King Willem-Alexander of the Netherlands and his wife Queen Maxima.

The pair visited the UK for Monday’s Order of the Garter ceremony, but decided to extend their visit so they could watch the Royal Ascot races.

Queen Maxima wore an extravagant floral hat in beige, which stole the show.

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Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge arrived in a Victorian-style blue dress from designer Elie Saab, which matched Her Majesty’s suit perfectly.

Her elegant ankle-length lacy dress featured a bow-tie front and long, semi-transparent sleeves. She paired her classic, vintage look with some simple silver heels and a blue hat from Philip Treacy.

Catherine's stunning dress was strikingly similar to Princess Beatrice's, who also opted for a blue lace dress with a high-neck and front details, also complementing Her Majesty's outfit.

royal ascot

MORE:Why didn’t the Duchess of Cambridge curtsy to Queen Letizia at Order of the Garter?

Kate was sat next to Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall, who was wearing a classic pastel pink dress.

Kate’s husband, Prince William, joined his father Prince Charles in wearing traditional smart attire, with both donning top hats and tails to open the famous event.

Princess Beatrice and Princess Eugenie arrived in their carriage together, with both in blue to complement their grandmother.

Unfortunately, the weather hasn’t been kind to Royal Ascot so far, as the heavens have been opening intermittently on the event, with rain throughout the day.

Royal Ascot is one of the Queen’s favourite events of the year. She’s been attending the event for the past 64 years, only missing it for her coronation in 1953.

She and the other members of the royal family join the Royal Procession at the event at 2pm daily, which is a long tradition unique to Royal Ascot.

The event is expected to attract around 300,000 visitors over the next five days.

Lauren Hughes
Lauren Hughes

Lauren is deputy editor at woman& in the UK and became a journalist mainly because she enjoys being nosy. With a background in features journalism, Lauren has worked on the woman&home brand for four years. Before woman&home Lauren worked across a variety of women's lifestyle titles, including GoodTo, Woman's Own, and Woman magazine. After starting out working for a local paper in Yorkshire, her journalism career took her to Bristol where she hunted out stories for national papers and magazines at Medavia news agency, before landing a job in London working as a lifestyle assistant.

Lauren loves helping people share their stories, bringing experiences to life online, honing her interview techniques with everyone from authors to celebrities, headteachers to local heroes. As well as having a good nose for a story, Lauren has a passion for the English language and years of experience optimizing digital content to reach the widest audience possible. During her time at w&h, Lauren has worked on big brand campaigns like the Amazing Women Awards and assisted in developing w&h expert-approved Buyer's Guides—the place to go if you're looking to splash out on an important purchase and want some trusted advice. In addition to her journalism career, Lauren also has a background in copywriting for prestigious brands such as Inhabit Hotel, eco-development K'in in Tulum, social enterprise The Goldfinger Factory and leading London architect Holland Harvey, using language in all its glorious forms, from detailed guidebooks to snappy social content. 

A big fan of adventure, Lauren is also a keen travel writer and loves sharing tips on where to find the best places to eat, drink, and be merry off the beaten track. Lauren has written a series of travel guides for London hotels and loves sharing her insights into a destination's cultural and culinary offerings. If you need a recommendation on any UK destination, she's more than happy to help. At the weekend, you'll usually find her hanging out with her pet cat (or anyone else's pet she can get her hands on), escaping to the countryside, or devouring a good book. 

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