Sarah Ferguson

Sarah Ferguson

Britain's Duchess of York will be spending Christmas in a £17,000-a-week ski chalet.

Sarah Ferguson - ex-wife of Prince Andrew - will celebrate the festive season in the upmarket Swiss resort of Verbier and has invited friends to join her.

Her daughters, Princesses Beatrice and Eugenie, will be spending Christmas at the royal family's estate in Sandringham and they will join their mother for new year.

A friend told Sunday People newspaper: "She knows lots of people in Verbier and will enjoy herself by inviting friends over. But basically she'll be there on her own until her daughters arrive."

Sarah has been excluded from the royal family's Christmas celebrations at Sandringham since her divorce from Andrew in 1996.

The Duke of York has pleaded for her to join them but to no avail and she was not invited to the wedding of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge in April 2011.

She has also struggled with money and last year she admitted: "I'm not just ­emotionally bankrupt, I'm continually on the verge of financial bankruptcy."

Sources say Andrew has not paid for her Christmas holiday and is being put up by friends.