Princess Mako formally tied the knot with her college sweetheart Kei Komuro on Tuesday, relinquishing her royal status and bringing closure to a four-year engagement saga marred by scandal and public backlash.

In a much-anticipated, nationally televised news conference Tuesday afternoon, the 30-year-old newlyweds made a joint appearance at a Tokyo hotel to announce their marriage. Having officially registered the nuptials with a municipality earlier that day, Mako, a niece of Emperor Naruhito, became Mako Komuro, leaving the imperial family to reportedly start her new life with him in New York.

“Kei is a precious being for me. Marriage is a necessary choice we had to make,” Mako, wearing a pale green dress and pearls, told the news conference, where she and her husband took turns reading from a script.