Spanish waiter who claims Juan Carlos I is his father

Pub waiter who could be the ‘legitimate king of Spain’: Man, 65, who claims to be Juan Carlos I’s eldest son reveals the ‘whole world’ comes looking for him because people are so convinced

  • Waiter Albert Sola claims his father is former Spanish King Juan Carlos I
  • ‘It’s quite simple: I am the son of the king’, Albert told the New York Times 
  • He explained how his claim has made him quite the celeb in his neighbourhood 

He’s a waiter in the Spanish town of La Bisbal d’Empordà in the hills of Catalonia – yet Albert Sola claims his start in life was a rather more regal beginning, believing he was born to King Juan Carlos I. 

‘It’s quite simple: I am the son of the king’, the 65-year-old told the New York Times, explaining how his claim has made him quite the celebrity in his neighbourhood.

‘The whole world comes looking for me,’ he insisted, after a local newspaper article reported on him moving jobs from a pub called El Drac, which heralded him as the pretender to the throne on its Facebook page. ‘I don’t know if it’s my looks or my story, but they are convinced.’

Orphaned as a child, Albert was first raised on a farm in Ibiza, before moving to a mansion in Barcelona, and always had a sense others were looking out for him; he mysteriously received an expensive motorcycle and a car after learning how to drive.

He has spent his life probing rumours that he is the illegitimate eldest son of the scandal-hit monarch Juan Carlos, who abdicated the throne in 2014 then fled to Abu Dhabi last year amid a tax investigation.

The former King has allegedly bedded almost 5,000 women and is thought to have met Albert’s then 18-year-old mother in the 1950s, six years before he married Sofia of Greece and Denmark and 20 years before he took the throne.


He’s a waiter in the Spanish town of La Bisbal d’Empordà in the hills of Catalonia – yet Albert Sola (pictured left) claims his start in life was a rather more regal beginning, believing he was born to King Juan Carlos (pictured right)

Albert worked at a cafeteria called El Drac, which heralded him as the pretender to the throne on its Facebook page and had a framed copy of his book jacket hanging on the wall 

The former King has allegedly bedded almost 5,000 women and is thought to have met Albert’s then 18-year-old mother in the 1950s, six years before he married Sofia of Greece and Denmark (pictured together) and 20 years before he took the throne

Albert was born under the rule of Spanish dictator Francisco Franco, at a time when the country was extremely conservative and Catholic – meaning babies born out of wedlock were frowned upon.

As such, he was taken to Ibiza as an infant before he moved in with his adoptive family in Barcelona.

According to The Sunday Times, he first believed he had powerful links when a private helicopter arrived to pick him up during his compulsory military service so he could visit his adoptive father.

He was also anonymously gifted an expensive motorcycle and a car after passing his driving test.  

Then in 1982 he visited a base in Barcelona that held local adoption records, but was told by a vague director: ‘This was the most complex adoption in the history of this centre’.

Prince Juan Carlos of Spain and Princess Sofia of Greece pose in Madrid in October 1973

Orphaned as a child, Albert (pictured) was first raised on a farm in Ibiza, before moving to a mansion in Barcelona, and always had a sense others were looking out for him; he mysteriously received an expensive motorcycle and a car after learning how to drive

Living in Mexico in 1999, Albert was told by diplomats that they thought he belonged to a ‘powerful family’.

Moving back to Spain, the waiter made a request in court to see his records and the judge in the case, Jorge Maza, asked to see him.

Albert claimed the judge told him he was the son of King Juan Carlos. Yet, the judge, who has since retired, said in an interview that he never told Albert he was the monarch’s child.

As a result, Albert began to send letters to Zarzuela Palace, the royal residence, demanding a meeting with his ‘father’, but after more than a decade of writing, he never received a reply from the monarch.  

Albert, who believes he looks very similar to the ex-King, also shared his colourful paternity claim, unverified by almost anyone’s standards, says the New York Times, during TV interviews and in a book. 

Juan Carlos and Sofia pictured on June 23, 1988, in Hawaii. Albert has spent his life probing rumours that he is the illegitimate eldest son of the scandal-hit monarch Juan Carlos, who abdicated the throne in 2014 then fled to Abu Dhabi last year amid a tax investigation

However, he’s had requests for royal DNA denied and a paternity lawsuit dismissed. Elsewhere, a spokesman for the royal family didn’t respond to requests for comment for the publication’s piece.

But Rebeca Quintáns, a Spanish author who wrote a biography of Juan Carlos, said: ‘It’s a case that could bring trouble for the monarchy.’

Albert first made headlines in the UK in 2012, having been inspired to share his claim after meeting Belgian Ingrid Saritau, who also insisted the former Spanish king is her father.

Ingrid said her mother Liliane Sartiau first met Juan Carlos in 1956 in France and again in 1966 in Luxembourg, where she was conceived.

In 2012, she said: ‘My mum told me who my father was while we were watching the TV together.’

Initial DNA tests in 2011 showed that Albert and Ingrid were 91 per cent likely to have shared the same father.

After the joyful discovery, Ingrid moved to Girona for a year to spend time with her ‘brother’.

Speaking previously about his search for answers, Albert said: ‘I’ve no choice now but to put pressure on [Juan Carlos (pictured in 2014)]

They became very close and she said she was ‘devastated’ when secondary tests revealed that they were not related.

Adding to his claim, father-of-two Albert also recalled meeting a man who identified himself as a Spanish intelligence agent, and who said he believed the waiter’s story.

During his career, he said he had once seen a photograph of Albert as a child with Juan Carlos’s mother. 

Despite claims to royal heritage, Albert still works in the humble environment of a restaurant – but is somewhat of a well-known face in his town, with customers looking for a snap with the ‘king’s son’ and local newspapers reporting on his life. 

Speaking previously about his search for answers, Albert said: ‘I’ve no choice now but to put pressure on [Juan Carlos].

‘Every Spaniard has the right to know where he is from. I don’t want to hurt the king or country. I wish Felipe (the current King of Spain and Juan Carlos’ son) all the best.’

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