Meghan Markle’s birthday date night with Prince Harry! Smiling Duchess of Sussex celebrates turning 42 at trendy Montecito restaurant after couple’s pals blasted claims of ‘tensions’ in their marriage

Harry and Meghan enjoyed a date night out in Montecito to celebrate the Duchess’ birthday – a day after the couple made their first public appearance together in months.

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex were seen in good spirits, smiling and laughing, as they were pictured leaving the trendy Italian restaurant Tre Lune, a favourite among A listers including Kourtney Kardashian and Ellen DeGeneres.

It is the first time the couple have been seen in public together amid mounting speculation about their future in Hollywood and rumoured strains behind the scenes.

Meghan, who turns 42 today, looked glamorous wearing a strapless column-style black and white Posse dress, priced at £188, paired with her beloved Cult Gaia bag and flat strappy black sandals. The Prince accompanied her wearing a linen blue shirt and white trousers on Wednesday night.

The pair entered the popular eatery, where musician Travis Barker was spotted earlier that night, and they were joined by their good friend Matt Cohen, husband of the Duchess of Sussex’s friend of many years Heather Dorak.

It is the Californian-based royals’ second public appearance within days, after weeks of not being seen together, showing the pair are determined to present a united front and combat swirling rumours about strains behind the scenes.

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle were spotted leaving the trendy Montecito restaurant of Tre Lune, on the eve of the Duchesses 42nd birthday

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Prince Harry and Meghan Markle were spotted leaving the trendy Montecito restaurant of Tre Lune, on the eve of the Duchesses 42nd birthday

The pair, who made their first public appearance together in months on Wednesday night, seemed in good spirits as they left the eatery

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The pair, who made their first public appearance together in months on Wednesday night, seemed in good spirits as they left the eatery

Meghan looked glamorous wearing a strapless black and white Posse dress, priced at £188, paired with her beloved Cult Gaia bag and flat strappy black sandals

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Meghan looked glamorous wearing a strapless black and white Posse dress, priced at £188, paired with her beloved Cult Gaia bag and flat strappy black sandals

Tre Lune is a popular restaurant in Montecito that is frequented by Kourtney Kardashian and her husband Travis Baker, among other A-listers

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Tre Lune is a popular restaurant in Montecito that is frequented by Kourtney Kardashian and her husband Travis Baker, among other A-listers

The Tre Lune restaurant where Harry and Meghan were spotted on a date night as the duchess celebrated her 42nd birthday

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The Tre Lune restaurant where Harry and Meghan were spotted on a date night as the duchess celebrated her 42nd birthday

The mains at the Italian restaurant range from £33 to £51

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The mains at the Italian restaurant range from £33 to £51

The group appeared to have a laugh over an inside joke as they walked to the car

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The group appeared to have a laugh over an inside joke as they walked to the car

Meghan is then seen smiling and talking to someone as she walks towards the car waiting for them

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Meghan is then seen smiling and talking to someone as she walks towards the car waiting for them

The trio looked relaxed as they left the trendy Italian restaurant

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The trio looked relaxed as they left the trendy Italian restaurant

Meghan looked glamorous leaving the restaurant in a striped strapless maxi dress

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Meghan looked glamorous leaving the restaurant in a striped strapless maxi dress

The celeb friendly restaurant is one of Kourtney Kardashian and Travis Baker's favorites

A source told The Sun: ‘There hasn’t been any outreach to them.’

Meals at the Italian restaurant range from $24 (£19) to $61 (£48). Italian-lovers can also choose from 24 different pasta and risotto meals, while an array of meat and fish dishes on offer, from salmon fillets $44 (£37) to filet mignon steak $65 (£55).

Photographs show the couple walking out of the restaurant front, before Meghan is seen pointing at something in the distance. They then jump in a car that appears to have been waiting for them.

The Duchess kept her jewellery simple for the outing, opting to go without any necklaces in order to allow her décolletage to remain on full display in the strapless dress design. She chose chunky gold hoop earrings, as well as a stack of bracelets on one wrist, to add a bit of sparkle, however.

This included her favorite $5,427 Cartier Love bracelet and what appeared to be her £3,736 Jennifer Meyer Gold Mini Bezel Tennis Bracelet.

The pair have been faced with mounting speculation about their future in Hollywood, after their deal with audio giant Spotify was axed and one their planned Netflix shows was quietly dropped.

Their celebratory outing comes after the couple appeared to combat their falling popularity and quash any negative rumours by appearing in a happy two-minute, 40 second clip released on Wednesday.

They were seen surprising US recipients of the first Responsible Technology Youth Power Fund (RTYPF) grants with phone calls to congratulate them. Their Archwell Foundation is a founding member of the initiative that will help fund 26 youth-led projects.

Harry, 38, also mentioned their children Archie, four, and Lilibet, two, telling one winner in a call: ‘Thank you for doing everything that you do. Our kids especially are incredibly grateful.’ Meghan then added: ‘They don’t know it yet, but they will!’

The Sussexes are thought to be in danger of losing millions after their lucrative Spotify deal was axed and further concerns were raised over the future of their Netflix deal.

Further questions were raised over the future projects of ‘Brand Sussex’ after Hollywood powerhouse Jeremy Zimmer dismissed Meghan as ‘not a great audio talent, or necessarily any kind of talent’.

The dismissal followed the scathing remarks made by one of Spotify’s podcast chiefs, who branded the couple ‘f***ing grifters’.

The Californian-based royals once again put on a united front despite a series of swirling rumours

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The Californian-based royals once again put on a united front despite a series of swirling rumours

Meghan is seen pointing into the distance as she leaves the boutique restaurant

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Meghan is seen pointing into the distance as she leaves the boutique restaurant

The pair were joined at the popular eatery by their good friend Matt Cohen, husband of the Duchess of Sussex's friend of many years Heather Dorak

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The pair were joined at the popular eatery by their good friend Matt Cohen, husband of the Duchess of Sussex’s friend of many years Heather Dorak

Their celebratory outing comes after the couple appeared to combat their falling popularity and quash any negative rumours by appearing in a happy two-minute, 40 second clip released on Wednesday

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Their celebratory outing comes after the couple appeared to combat their falling popularity and quash any negative rumours by appearing in a happy two-minute, 40 second clip released on Wednesday

The Duke and Duchess have been plagued by a series of rumours since their last public appearance in May

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The Duke and Duchess have been plagued by a series of rumours since their last public appearance in May

Sources close to the couple insisted they were both ‘fine’ despite becomingly increasingly ‘fed up’ by the rumour mill, adding that the pair were determined to make their move to America a success.

The Duke and Duchess have been plagued by a series of gossip-fueled claims since their last public appearance in May.

The pair had been at an awards ceremony in New York but ended chaotically with opposing reports that they were chased by paparazzi through the city.

One suggestion was that the couple had stepped back from joint projects and were instead focusing on solo ventures.

The rumour came after Meghan was signed to power agency William Morris Endeavor, and Harry, 38, working on a Netflix series with a trip to Botswana.

The couple have since become increasingly irritated by the speculation swirling around them.

One source told OK! Magazine: ‘The Sussexes’ marriage is fine,’ adding that unfounded online snipes had stemmed from Harry’s upcoming solo trip to Africa.

‘That’s a work trip. It’s not a sign of trouble.’

Similarly, an ‘insider’ told PageSix last month that the rumours were categorically ‘not true. It’s literally made up’.

Others close to the Californian-based royals said that their struggle to make a mark on Hollywood and have their new careers take off was simply a result of ‘growing pains’.

The pair signed multi-million-pound deals with both Spotify and Netflix after moving across the pond in 2020, but these since stagnated.

Meals at the Italian restaurant range from $24 (£19) to $61 (£48). First course options include antipasto della casa (cold cuts, grilled vegetables, cheese and olives) at $28, bruschetta and asparagus at $20 and calamari alla griglia salad at $32

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Meals at the Italian restaurant range from $24 (£19) to $61 (£48). First course options include antipasto della casa (cold cuts, grilled vegetables, cheese and olives) at $28, bruschetta and asparagus at $20 and calamari alla griglia salad at $32

Meghan appeared to jump in the car first before the two men accompanied her in the back seat

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Meghan appeared to jump in the car first before the two men accompanied her in the back seat

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle were set up to fail by Spotify and were 'given no formal lay of the land', insiders claimed

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Prince Harry and Meghan Markle were set up to fail by Spotify and were ‘given no formal lay of the land’, insiders claimed

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex's lucrative Spotify project was pulled last month after they produced one 12-episode podcast and a festive special over three years

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The Duke and Duchess of Sussex’s lucrative Spotify project was pulled last month after they produced one 12-episode podcast and a festive special over three years

Sources close to the duchess were also at pains to say that she was looking to take her Archetypes series to another streaming platform

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Sources close to the duchess were also at pains to say that she was looking to take her Archetypes series to another streaming platform

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex’s lucrative Spotify project was dramatically pulled last month after they produced one 12-episode podcast and a festive special over three years.

The couple also reportedly did not produce enough content to receive the full pay-out from the reported £18million deal they signed after stepping down as senior working royals.

But sources have said that the deal ended early because there was too much ‘red tape’ and they were ‘given no formal lay of the land’, which set them up to fail.

There were claims that the couple had ‘lots of ideas and did pitch them’ but none of them ever took off and ‘things moved very slowly on both ends’.

One of those ideas, Bloomberg reported, was Harry’s suggestion to interview ‘controversial’ guests such as Vladimir Putin and Donald Trump about their childhoods.

Another one of the Prince’s ideas reportedly touted was to interview the Pope on fatherhood – despite not having children.

Meanwhile their Netflix docuseries Live to Lead failed to take off, while a Meghan-driven animation called Pearl, about a girl inspired by female leaders, was quietly dropped.

But an industry executive told People that there was still time for the couple to turn things around, adding: ‘Has their final chapter been written? Absolutely not…Hollywood loves a comeback.’

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