Japan’s former Princess Mako now works as an UNPAYED volunteer at the Met in NYC

Japan’s former Princess Mako is now reportedly an unpaid volunteer at New York’s Metropolitan Museum of Art after giving up her titles – and a $ 1.3 million payout – to marry her ‘regular’ college sweetheart.

Mako Komuro, 30, works in the iconic museum’s Asian art collection and helps put together an exhibition of paintings inspired by the life of a 13th-century monk who introduced Buddhism to Japan, according to the Japan Times.

The Upper East Side Museum is a 10-minute drive from the luxurious studio in Hell’s Kitchen, which she shares with her husband and aspiring lawyer Kei Komuro, 30.

The couple were engaged for eight years before they bonded in October last year at a small civic ceremony in Tokyo.

Because only male members of the Japanese imperial family are allowed to marry non-royals, Mako’s decision to marry out of love means she is no longer considered a princess and any future sons will not be inherited by the empire.

Mako and Kei met in 2013 when they were both studying at International Christian University outside Tokyo, where she studied art and cultural heritage. She continued to work as a specialist researcher at the Tokyo University Museum.

Japan’s former Princess Mako, pictured above, embarks on a trip to South America in July 2019, now working as an unpaid volunteer at New York City’s Metropolitan Museum of Art

Mako, 30, gave up his royal titles after marrying his 'regular' girlfriend Kei Komuro in Tokyo last October.  Above, the couple announces their engagement in 2017

Mako, 30, gave up his royal titles after marrying his ‘regular’ girlfriend Kei Komuro in Tokyo last October. Above, the couple announces their engagement in 2017

Mako reportedly works in the museum's Asian art collection.  She studied art and cultural heritage at International Christian University outside Tokyo, where she met her husband

Mako reportedly works in the museum’s Asian art collection. She studied art and cultural heritage at International Christian University outside Tokyo, where she met her husband

She also studied art history at the University of Edinburgh in Scotland and received a master’s degree in art museum and gallery studies at the University of Leicester in England in 2016, reports People.

‘She is qualified and probably handles pieces in the collection. In general, it is a job that requires a lot of preparation and often means spending a lot of time at the library, ‘said a former Met curator about his new concert.

Representatives of the museum did not immediately respond to questions from DailyMail.com.

Mako is the daughter of Crown Prince Fumihito and the niece of the reigning Japanese Emperor Naruhito.

The ex-princess and Kei Komuro were ‘unofficially engaged’ in 2017 and planned to tie the knot in November 2018.

Initially, the news was received with joy in Japan, but then a scandal grew when it was discovered that Kei’s widow, Kayo, had not repaid a $ 35,000 loan from a former fiancĂ© who had to partially pay for her son’s tuition. .

This led critics to suggest that Komuro only married the princess for money or fame.

Komuro issued a 24-page explanation of the money – claiming it was a gift and not a loan. Eventually, he said he would repay it, even though it is not known if the money has been returned.

Despite the unrest, Kei and Mako’s love persisted. In 2020, she asked the Japanese public to support her decision to marry the ordinary.

Princess Mako, above at Emperor Naruhito's enthronement ceremony, relinquished her titles because only male members of the Japanese imperial family are allowed to marry non-royals

Princess Mako, above at Emperor Naruhito’s enthronement ceremony, relinquished her titles because only male members of the Japanese imperial family are allowed to marry non-royals

Mako left his home in Akasaka Estate in Tokyo on October 26 above and landed in New York City's JFK on November 14.

Mako left his home in Akasaka Estate in Tokyo on October 26 above and landed in New York City’s JFK on November 14.

The former princess has been seen shopping for the essentials for her luxury one-bedroom apartment she shares with her new husband in Hell's Kitchen

The former princess has been seen shopping for the essentials for her luxury one-bedroom apartment she shares with her new husband in Hell’s Kitchen

Mako, on November 20, rejected the $ 140 million ($ 1.3 million) payment she was entitled to to leave the imperial family, palace officials said.

Mako, on November 20, rejected the $ 140 million ($ 1.3 million) payment she was entitled to to leave the imperial family, palace officials said.

“We are irreplaceable to each other – someone to trust in both happy and unhappy times,” she said, announcing that the wedding would begin.

“So a marriage is a necessary choice for us to live while cherishing and protecting our feelings.”

The couple got married in October last year, and the Imperial Household Agency explained that the couple did not want a big wedding, ‘because their marriage is not celebrated by many people.’

Before landing in the United States on November 14, Mako declined the $ 1.3 million payment she was entitled to to leave the imperial family, palace officials said.

The newlyweds have lived in an apartment in Manhattan’s Hell’s Kitchen neighborhood.

While the unit is a bedroom, the building is a luxury residential tower offering a fitness center equipped with Peloton bikes, a yoga studio, a screening room, an in-house spa, a golf simulator department, landscaped terraces with barbecue and table tennis, a library curated by Strand Book Store and a 24-hour lobby.

According to the building’s website, one-bedroom apartments are available for rent for $ 4,809 per room. month. A two-bedroom apartment in the building would put the tenant back $ 7,085 a month.

The couple got married in October last year, when the Imperial Household Agency explained that the couple did not want a big wedding, 'because their marriage is not celebrated by many people'

The couple got married in October last year, when the Imperial Household Agency explained that the couple did not want a big wedding, ‘because their marriage is not celebrated by many people’

The couple's apartment - close to Mako's new concert at the Met Museum - has one-bedroom units that can be rented for $ 4,809 a month

The couple’s apartment – close to Mako’s new concert at the Met Museum – has one-bedroom units that can be rented for $ 4,809 a month

Mako’s husband Kei is now trying to pass the New York State law degree to become a lawyer after failing last summer.

He first sat for the test in July last year, three months before his wedding to Mako, but it was revealed in November that he had failed.

He took the test again in February, but the results have not been released.

Komuro’s latest attempt at a law degree came less than a year after he first took part in the test last July, where he had the opportunity to take the test at a distance.

This time, no remote selection was available for applicants.

Kei Komuro, 30, is trying to become a lawyer and went to New York's law degree for the second time in February after dumping the test last year

Kei Komuro, 30, is trying to become a lawyer and went to New York’s law degree for the second time in February after dumping the test last year

Like he did last year, Komuro will now face a painful wait of several months before figuring out whether his second attempt at the exam was successful or not.

According to Japanese television station NHK, Komuro called lawyer Okuno Yoshihiko, head of a firm in Japan where he previously worked, to tell him he did not pass the first exam.

If he fails again, Komuro will have to wait until July to take the exam again, which is only offered twice a year.

He is able to take the test as many times as he wants until he passes – as the state of New York does not impose a limit on the number of attempts a candidate can make.

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