THE DEATH OF DIANA, PRINCESS OF WALES
(August 31, 1997 — Paris, France)
The Official Story
HARRODS DEPARTMENT STORE
Harrods Limited is a department store located on Brompton Road in Knightsbridge, London, England. It is currently owned by the state of Qatar via its sovereign wealth fund, the Qatar Investment Authority. The Harrods brand also applies to other enterprises undertaken by the Harrods group of companies, including Harrods Estates, Harrods Aviation and Air Harrods.
The store occupies a 5-acre (2 ha) site and has 330 departments covering 1.1 million sq ft (100,000 m2) of retail space. It is one of the largest and most famous department stores in the world.
The Harrods motto is Omnia Omnibus Ubique, which is Latin for “all things for all people, everywhere”. Several of its departments, including the Seasonal Christmas department and the Food Halls, are well known.
Harrods was also a founder of the International Association of Department Stores in 1928, which is still active today, and remained a member until 1935. Franck Chitham, Harrods’ president at the time, was president of the Association in 1930.
Since the deaths of Diana, Princess of Wales, and Dodi Fayed, Mohamed Al-Fayed’s son, two memorials commissioned by Al-Fayed have been erected inside Harrods to the couple. The first, located at the base of the Egyptian Escalator, was unveiled on 12 April 1998, consisting of photographs of the two behind a pyramid-shaped display that holds a wine glass smudged with lipstick from Diana’s last dinner as well as what is described as an engagement ring Dodi purchased the day before they died.
The second memorial, unveiled in 2005 and located by the escalator at door three is entitled Innocent Victims, a bronze statue of the two dancing on a beach beneath the wings of an albatross, a bird said to symbolise the “Holy Spirit”. The sculpture was created by William Mitchell, a close friend of Al-Fayed and artistic design advisor to Harrods for 40 years. Al-Fayed said he wanted to keep the pair’s “spirit alive” through the statue.