On August 22, Jameela Jamil and her boyfriend, musician James Blake, were photographed strolling the beach in the small Santa Barbara County community of Montecito. Most people might use a day on the beach to disconnect from social media, but instead Jamil used the time to make Twitter comments defending Meghan Markle, herself a recent Montecito transplant, against internet trolls. In a post that also slammed Prince Andrew for his ties to Jeffrey Epstein, Jamil said Meghan was targeted online because of her race, adding “And because she’s smart, strong, opinionated, rebellious, beautiful, happy and has everything they never will.”
That Jamil was sticking up for Meghan while strolling in the duchess’s new hometown initially seemed like a mere coincidence. This weekend, however, the Sun reported that Jamil and Blake did visit Meghan and Prince Harry at their new home on August 23, the day after they were photographed on the beach. “Jameela and James drove up to Montecito from Los Angeles and spent time with Meghan and Harry,” a source told the newspaper. “They also had a stroll on the beach but Meghan and Harry didn’t venture out with them.”
Though Meghan and Harry highlighted Jamil’s Instagram on the @SussexRoyal account in May 2019, the two women didn’t actually speak until Meghan chose her for the cover of the Forces for Change issue of British Vogue later that summer. “Meghan called me herself,” Jamil told Grazia Magazine in August 2019. “I missed the call three times before I finally answered, I wanted to punch myself!” Jamil also said that Meghan was a fan of her show, The Good Place, and made a reference to a line where Jamil’s character, Tahani Al Jamil, claims that she introduced Meghan and Harry. “‘She said she’s grateful to Tahani for introducing her to Harry. I just replied, ‘You’re welcome,’” Jamil said.
It’s unclear if Blake and Jamil’s visit to Montecito was the first time the couples had gotten together in person. The visit would have also been around the same time that Meghan met with Gloria Steinem to discuss the importance of voting.
Until recently, Meghan and Harry were houseguests at Tyler Perry’s Beverly Hills mansion while the producer was at work in Atlanta. In July, the couple bought a nine-bedroom, 16-bathroom home with plenty of luxury amenities in Montecito. According to TMZ, Jamil and Blake aren’t the only visitors Harry and Meghan have attracted to the enclave. Though it has long been considered a paparazzi-free zone, the outlet reports that Meghan and Harry’s arrival has attracted plenty of photographers and tourists trying to get a glimpse.
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