American Riviera Orchard: Meghan Markle’s new California-inspired lifestyle brand explained

Meghan Markle has surprised fans and onlookers this week by launching a new lifestyle brand, complete with a social media page and a website.

On Thursday (14 March), the Duchess of Sussex’s newest venture, American Riviera Orchard, hit the internet, and has set tongues wagging with people trying to figure out what the brand will provide.

As of yet, the brand’s Instagram presence consists of nine grid posts that assemble the brand’s title, seemingly embroidered with gold-beige thread onto a cream cloth.

On Instagram Stories, a short video features Meghan arranging white flowers in a jug, before mixing ingredients in the kitchen, as the song “I Wish You Love” by Nancy Wilson plays in the background.

The website is similarly elusive – so far, the homepage only shows the same logo image with a prompt for interested fans to sign up to the waiting list for further updates.

On social media, people have been speculating over what American Riviera Orchard will offer, and what this indicates for the next chapter of Meghan’s public persona.

Fans have guessed that American Riviera Orchard will be a lifestyle and wellness platform similar to Goop, established by Gwyneth Paltrow in 2008.

Having started as a newsletter, filled with the actor’s luxury recommendations, the brand is now worth a reported $250m (£196m).

American Riviera Orchard logo as it appears on the website homepage

(American Riviera Orchard / screengrab)

What will American Riviera Orchard offer?

It is expected to offer everything from cookbooks, stationery, jams and nut butters, to pet-related items.

A trademark application obtained by Page Six Style links the American Riviera Orchard brand name as a planned distributor for a broad variety of homewares and goods.

An alleged insider told the American publication: “She’s been working on this for over a year and it’s all the things that are close to her heart – all the things she’s passionate about.”

When Meghan was a full-time actor, most known for her role as Rachel Zane in legal drama Suits, she also had a blog, titled The Tig, on which she covered topics such as travel, fashion, beauty and self-love.

Meghan, Duchess of Sussex

(Getty Images)

Meghan has been absent from online platforms for several years, beginning with the closure of her personal Instagram page in 2018 ahead of her marriage to Prince Harry.

As well as this, the couple’s joint Instagram page @SussexRoyal has not posted any new content since 31 March 2020, when they stepped away from their positions as senior royal family members.

Some have found the timing of Meghan’s launch particularly interesting, as it comes during a period of heightened scrutiny of the Princess and Prince of Wales.

Recently, Kate Middleton has been subject to several internet theories over her absence from public life since the start of the year, and her editing of a photo with her children shared on Mother’s Day.

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