maria singh: 1988-2020

Houston's Princess Maria Galitzine, a Hapsburg descendant, passes away suddenly at 31

Houston's Princess Maria Galitzine, Hapsburg descendant, dies at 31

Princess Maria Galitzine, from left, Prince Piotr Galitzine and Archduchess Maria Anna Galitzine
Princess Maria Galitzine (left), with her parents, Prince Piotr Galitzine and Archduchess Maria Anna Galitzine.  Photo by © Michelle Watson/

Maria Singh, born Princess Maria Galitzine, has passed away in Houston at the age of 31. The princess died from a sudden cardiac aneurysm on Monday, May 4, according to an obituary in the Houston Chronicle. The family states in the obituary that Singh was laid to rest in the Orthodox section of Forest Park Westheimer cemetery on May 8.

She wed noted Houston executive chef, Rishi Roop Singh, in 2017. Their 2-year-old son, Maxim, “was the apple of her eye,” according to the obituary.

Maria was born in 1988 to Prince and Princess Piotr Galitzine in the city of Luxembourg, Grand Duchy of Luxembourg. She returned with the family to Russia as a five-year old in 1993, attending the German School of Moscow.

After graduation, she moved to Belgium to attend the CAD school. Later, she lived and worked in Brussels, Chicago, and Houston, specializing in interior design and furnishing, before starting her family with Rishi.

Maria had royal blood on both sides of her family. She was a great-granddaughter of the last emperor and empress of Austria, Karl and Zita, the Habsburg dynasty that ruled parts of Europe for nearly 600 years. They were deposed in 1918 at the end of World War I. Maria's mother is Princess Anna Maria Galitzine, an archduchess, and her father, Prince Piotr Galitzine, is part of Russian aristocracy; royals there fled the country in the Russian Revolution, the Chronicle reported.

Life for the Galitzines wasn’t overtly regal, according to Maria’s sister, Tatiana, who told the Chronicle: “My life is completely normal unless we are invited to royal weddings. My mail sometimes says ‘Princess Tatiana.’ What was weird was when I went from ‘Princess’ to ‘Mrs.’ I had been a princess all my life.”

In addition to Rishi, Maxim, her sister Tatiana, and her parents, Maria is survived by sisters Xenia Galitzine de Matta and Princess Alexandra, and her two brothers, Prince Dmitri and Prince Ioann.