Alexandre Eric Stephane Coste is the natural son of HSH Prince Albert II of Monaco and former flight attendant from the African Republic of Togo Nicole Coste. He was born on August 24, 2003 as Alexandre Eric Stephane Tossoukpe; his mother changing their last name a year after he was born. Prince Albert II and Nicole Tossoukpe met on an Air France flight in 1997, where their relationship started. After Alexandre was born in 2003 Prince Albert knew about it and has been involved in his life from the start, but in a very low-key way. It is difficult to say exactly what happened but a persistent rumor is that Nicole Tossoukpe heard that Albert was soon going to come clean about his daughter in California and that this prompted Nicole to make the first move and go public with the story that Prince Albert was the father of her son.
Prince Albert II, of course, eventually confirmed that he was the father of Alexandre Coste and his older daughter Jazmin Grace. However, what put many people off of Nicole Tossoukpe-turned-Coste is the time and the way she went about going to the tabloids with her story. She went to the media and went to court, filing a paternity lawsuit against the Prince of Monaco. This media frenzy also almost coincided with the tragic death of HSH Prince Rainier III, which most people thought was a deplorable time to go public with a story like this so soon after Albert had lost his father and the Monegasque had lost their beloved monarch. When the lawsuit was first filed Prince Albert said nothing out of respect of the period of mourning following the death of Prince Rainier III.
After that period had passed, six days before his official enthronement as Sovereign Prince of Monaco, Albert II confirmed through his lawyers that he was Alexandre's father. At the time and in subsequent interviews the Prince and his officials have made clear what should be obvious, that Alexandre has no place in the Monegasque succession and cannot succeed his father; the succession being restricted to direct descendants of legitimate birth. However, Nicole and Alexandre Coste have kept a fairly high profile since announcing themselves to the world. Nicole has posed for many photographs, given a number of interviews and putting her working class past behind her has become a common feature at Paris fashion shows and other societal soirees in France.
Prince Albert II has provided generous financial assistance to his son and Nicole to make sure they want for nothing and has given them the lavish estate of Villefranche-sur-Mer near Monaco for their primary residence and where Prince Albert can be close to his son as he grows up. According to EU laws now on the books, despite the status of his birth, Alexandre stands to inherit a large share of the Grimaldi family fortune when Albert departs this mortal coil. As mentioned Alexandre has a half-sister by his father in America as well as two older half-brothers who live in South America with their father; Nicole's previous husband. Little Alexandre is hardly to be seen without his mother and by all appearances seems to enjoying a happy childhood and looks to be a very bright and vibrant little boy.