Kendra Spears is set to become a princess after announcing her engagement to Prince Rahim Aga Khan, the eldest son of billionaire racehorse owner the Aga Khan.
Supermodel Kendra Spears, 24, once dubbed “the next Cindy Crawford”, will marry Prince Rahim Aga Khan, 41, in a Muslim ceremony, though a wedding date has not yet been set.
The engagement was made public on Friday by the Aga Khan in a press release on his website.
The Aga Khan, who is the spiritual leader of the world’s Shia Ismaili Muslims, said he was “delighted to announce the engagement”.
Kendra Spears, who has appeared in campaigns for Diane von Furstenberg and Prada, and walked the catwalk for Calvin Klein, Chanel, Lanvin, Yves Saint Laurent and Givenchy, among many others, thanked well-wishers via Twitter, writing: “Thank you all for the kind tweets! We’re very excited!”
The supermodel is a University of Washington sociology graduate who made headlines in 2009 when she was sued for changing model agencies.
After a two-year legal battle, Kendra Spears was made to pay Ford Models over $150,000 in royalties after switching to Next.
Prince Rahim Aga Khan, who studied in the U.S. at Brown University and the Navarra Business School in Barcelona, Spain, is involved in the poverty reduction efforts of the Aga Khan Development Network.
Kendra Spears, who will likely be converting to Islam ahead of the ceremony, will be marrying into a family with a long-established history of beautiful brides.
Her fiancé’s paternal grandfather was famously married to Rita Hayworth, and Prince Rahim’s British mother, Princess Salimah Aga Khan, was known as supermodel Sarah Croker-Poole before she wed (though she and the Aga Khan divorced in 1995, she continues to be known by her married name.)
The Aga Khan, 74, then married German former pop star Gabriele Renate Homey in 1998, after which she took the name Inaara, though they divorced in 2011.
Prince Rahim will be following in the footsteps of his younger brother, Prince Hussain, who also married an American model.
Prince Hussain, 39, wed New York professor’s daughter Kristin White in 2006 in a fairytale ceremony at a 14th century chateau outside of Paris. The bride converted to Islam and adopted the name Khaliya.
The marriage appears to have been short-lived though as it was reported in 2011 that the pair – who have no children – had split.
The Aga Khan’s daughter, Princess Zahra, 42, also had a failed marriage. She married British male model and farmer’s son Mark Boyden in 1997 – and had two children, daughter Sara, and son Iliyan with him – but they divorced in 2005.