First Of Four Court Banquets Underway

First of four court banquets underway

A series of court banquets to celebrate Emperor Naruhito's enthronement is now underway.

The first of four "Kyoen-no-gi" banquets started just after 7:20 p.m. on Tuesday at the Imperial Palace.

It began after Emperor Naruhito and Empress Masako entered the Take-no-Ma Audience Room in the Seiden State Hall.

The other "Kyoen-no-gi" banquets will take place on Friday, next Tuesday, and next Thursday.

The couple had temporarily returned to their residence after the central enthronement ceremony, called "Sokuirei-Seiden-no-gi."

About 400 guests are in attendance on Tuesday. Among them are the heads of state and royal family members from more than 180 nations who attended the "Sokuirei-Seiden-no-gi."

The Imperial couple are scheduled to receive congratulatory greetings from the guests for about one hour.

The Emperor and Empress will then move to the Homei-den State Banquet Hall shortly before 9 p.m., where cuisine will be served.

Crown Prince and Princess Akishino will also take part, as will other Imperial family members.