EXCLUSIVE: 'Do you know Meghan Markle? I'm her dad!' Thomas Markle, 73, lives in a very un-royal beachfront hideaway in a Mexican resort where he boasts to friends about being the father of Prince Harry's fiancée
- Thomas Markle, 73, was photographed exclusively by DailyMailTV outside his home in Rosarito, Mexico
- The man who will become Prince Harry's father-in-law is living in a small beachfront house which is perched on a 120-ft cliff overlooking the Pacific?
- Ramon Moreno, 61, the owner of a local storage complex, where Thomas rents a unit, told DailyMailTV the actress's father 'has spoken about Meghan and Harry'
- 'He loves his daughter very, very much. He says they talk regularly. He's just a regular guy in regular clothes,' Moreno said?
- Thomas is said to spend his time relaxing at home, drives a silver Volvo S70 and a red Ford Escape, and is a regular at a local branch of Walmart
- Rosarita, Mexico is just 10 miles south of the border, in an area populated by many expatriates?
- When Markle does make his forays north of the border, the destination is usually Los Angeles, where he owns an apartment in the city's Los Feliz suburb
The man who will become Prince Harry's father-in-law lives a secluded life in a little yellow house perched high on a 120-foot cliff overlooking the Pacific Ocean, DailyMailTV can reveal.
Thomas Markle, 73, is seen in exclusive DailyMailTV pictures at his home in Rosarito,Mexico just south of the border with the U.S., where he lives in a peaceful retirement.?
It is a lifestyle far removed from the family into which his daughter is marrying.?
His red-tiled home sits on a cobblestone street, with plywood covering the windows that face inland.
But on the other side, he enjoys sweeping views of pelicans flying low over the Pacific and curlews and other wading birds strutting on the shore.?
The outline of the Coronado Islands, eight miles out to sea, can be seen in the distance.
Thomas's family recently confirmed that he will be attending his daughter's wedding to Prince Harry.
When approached by DailyMailTV he said: 'I can't speak out of respect for my family. I just can't.'
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Thomas Markle, 73, is seen in exclusive DailyMailTV pictures at his home in Rosarito, Mexico just south of the border with the U.S., where he lives in a peaceful retirement. He told DailyMailTV he could not comment 'out of respect for my family'
Markle is said to spend most of his time at home, but when he does he walks with a limp that stems from a leg injury two years ago?
The 73-year-old, a retired cinematographer from Los Angeles, is said to spend his time relaxing at home, drives a silver Volvo S70 and a red Ford Escape, and is a regular at a local branch of Walmart
Thomas's small, yellow house (right) is perched on a 120-foot bluff which looks over the Pacific Ocean. A large four-bedroom vacation property at the complex, can be rented for as little as $159 per night
Thomas's red-roofed home sits on a cobblestone street, with plywood covering the windows that face inland. When he makes trips back to the US, he heads to his apartment in LA's Los Feliz suburb?
Rosarita, Mexico, which is located just 10 miles south of the border, is populated by thousands of expats. Pictured above is Thomas's two cars parked outside his home?
Directly below his house is a long sandy beach which is almost always deserted. He has no steps down but can drive the quarter mile to the shore instead.
When he does leave home he walks with a noticeable limp.
The Markle family says it stems from a leg injury two years ago, but will not stop him from walking his younger daughter down the aisle of St George's Chapel in Windsor next spring.
Markle's life in Rosarito could hardly be more different from the world his daughter has entered by becoming engaged to Prince Harry, fifth in line to the British throne.
In Rosarito, his neighbors are a mix of locals and Americans and many of the apartments in the complex are let to vacationers. California license plates far outnumber those from Mexico.
Residents and visitors have access to a park dotted with royal palm trees and a quiet beach club bar.
The complex also houses a small supermarket, a sushi bar, and a communal tennis court and swimming pool.
But Markle, who likes to spend his days relaxing at his small home, is not normally seen at them.
He drives both a silver Volvo S70 and a red Ford Escape and instead he is a regular at a local branch of Walmart, five miles away, where he shops for groceries.
A guard at the supermarket told DailyMailTV: 'He likes to come here about once every few weeks, usually in the morning.
View from the front: Thomas Markle's home is one of the smaller in the area, with others boasting multiple sun decks and steps down to the beach
Over the ocean: Thomas Markle enjoys views over the Pacific but lives a tranquil life, shopping at WalMart and enjoying his retirement
Thomas had not been seen in public since Meghan, 36, began dating Harry, 33. Before moving to Rosarita, he lived in a Los Angeles and previously worked as a cinematographer
Meghan is the daughter of Thomas and his ex-wife Doria Ragland, who lives in Los Angeles and the two are on friendly terms. His family confirmed he will be attending his daughter's wedding next year?
'He drives here in his car, gets what he needs, then goes and we don't see him again for a while.'
Markle, a former Emmy-winning lighting director who worked on shows including Married…With Children and General Hospital, has moved twice since relocating to Rosarito after his 2011 retirement.
He keeps many of his possessions in a storage complex nearby and has struck up a friendship with the owner.
Ramon Moreno, 61, says Markle loves to chat about his famous daughter.
Speaking exclusively to DailyMailTV, Moreno said: 'Tom is a good man and a good customer. I last saw him less than a month ago.
'He rents a storage unit here. Just the one. We have 100 units in total. He came to us about a year ago and my wife Lourdes and I have got to know him over the weeks and months.
Above is the Walmart, located five miles away from his home, where Thomas frequently shops.?A guard at the supermarket told DailyMailTV: 'He likes to come here about once every few weeks, usually in the morning'
'One of the first things he said was: "Have you heard of Meghan Markle?" I said, "Yes, that name rings a bell. I know she is on television." He said, "I am her dad."
'He was proud of her when she was in Suits, even before she was with the Prince. I am sure Tom will be there at the wedding. He will want to be there. He will be so happy.'
Moreno says Markle often speaks with him about his daughter's royal romance, telling DailyMailTV that the future royal in-law is 'very, very happy' about the relationship.
'Yes, he has spoken about Meghan and Harry,' he said. 'He talked about her and Harry before it was news all over the world.
Thomas is said to be living a secluded, simple life in the resort town. He drives a silver Volvo S70 ?(pictured) and a red Ford Escape, and is a regular at a local branch of Walmart
'He loves his daughter very, very much. He says they talk regularly.' He added: 'When he comes here he's not smartly dressed, he's just a regular guy in regular clothes. He's a big, tall guy.
'As far as I know she [Meghan] has not visited Rosarito. He comes and goes. He goes back to the States for a while, then comes back here.'
When Markle does make his forays north of the border, the destination is usually Los Angeles, where he owns an apartment in the city's Los Feliz suburb.
His ex-wife Doria Ragland lives in Los Angeles and the two are on friendly terms. Last week they issued a joint statement telling of their happiness at Meghan's engagement.
Occasionally, Markle travels further, spending time in Oregon in October with his oldest brother Michael, 78, who has since moved to Palm Bay, Florida.
According to Moreno, he rarely talks about his Tom Jr, 51, who also lives in Oregon, or his older daughter Samantha Grant, 53, who lives in Florida.
Markle Sr does not appear to have found love in Mexico.
Moreno, the storage unit owner said: 'I don't remember him talking about his other children. I don't know if he has a wife or girlfriend here, he has not mentioned anything like that. I think he lives alone.
'He shows up from time to time, always unannounced. He's a very quiet guy. Very unassuming. I get the impression he does not mix with other expats, other Americans.
'There are plenty of expats in this area. About 80 to 90 per cent of the units I rent out are to Americans.
'Tom does speak some Spanish and he is very friendly. We always speak in English. He's the best guy and a good person.
'I think that shows in Meghan, too. She's good with people and I think that's down to him.'
Thomas Markle and Doria Ragland released a statement on her daughter's upcoming nuptials in the wake of Prince Harry and Meghan's engagement. Both parents will be present at the wedding next year?
Meghan's mother Doria Ragland (pictured in 2015) 61, divorced Thomas in 1988?
Rosarito is a slightly run-down seaside town of 65,000 people, of whom approximately 15,000 are American expats drawn to the city by the year-round sunshine and the low cost of living.
Just 10 miles south of the border, Rosarito has long been a magnet for tourists.
The majority of locals work servicing the tourist trade, whether in one of the town's hundreds of neon-lit bars or servicing one of Rosarito's 24 hotels.
Rosarito Beach Hotel, the most famous one, was once frequented by Hollywood stars, including Marilyn Monroe and Lana Turner, as well as luminaries such as Orson Welles and the Aga Khan.
At the complex where Markle lives, large four-bedroom vacation properties can be rented for as little as $159 per night.
And the same goes for long term accommodation: spacious three-bedroom properties can be rented for as little as $1,250 per month.
Purchasing a similar property in the same complex would cost around $187,000 – a snip compared to Los Angeles, where prime oceanfront homes are priced in the millions of dollars.
Living costs are low and Rosarito is awash with restaurants and bars where a beer can be had for a dollar and a freshly cooked plate of tacos for $3.
But Rosarito does have a dark side – a bloody gang war that has lasted a decade and sometimes spills over into residential areas.
As a result, with 80 murder victims in a city of 65,000 people last year, the town also has one of Mexico's highest homicide rates.
Nearby Tijuana fares even worse and was recently named the second most lethal city in the world – tying for the dubious honor with the resort of Acapulco.
Whether Prince Harry, who Markle is yet to meet, will visit him in Baja California remains to be seen but in the meantime, the retiree continues to live an ordinary life in his Mexican hideaway.
According to older brother Michael, a retired diplomat, that is something that is likely to continue – encouraged by Kensington Palace.
He said: 'Tom is trying to comply with the royal directive to keep a low profile, so that's where he's coming from. He doesn't want to upset the Royal Family.'?
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