Wedding planning tips from the super-rich
Themes On Oct 21st, 2015 1654 0
For most people, the average cost of a wedding still seems a tad extravagant at £20,000. However, it’s utterly dwarfed by the lavish ceremonies enjoyed by those fortunate enough to fall into the “super-rich” category. Let’s take a look at some of the more opulent weddings from around the world and see if we can pinch a few themes for a more modest special day.
The record for the most extravagant wedding ever belongs to the (sadly ill-fated) marriage of Prince Charles and Lady Diana in 1981. It cost a staggering £29 million. Adjusted for inflation, that’s £72 million. When your ceremony takes place in London’s historic St. Paul’s Cathedral and you have 3,500 guests (with TV cameras broadcasting it to 750 million people worldwide), you can expect a high price tag.
It’s not only British Royals who enjoy opulent weddings. Former Lebanese Prime Minister Najib Mikati’s son’s wedding in Marrakech, for instance, reportedly cost £16 million. Over 1,000 people attended this lavish spectacle at Marrakesh’s opulent 16th-century El Badi Palace. The bride appeared adorned in a scintillating dress designed by the premier Lebanese fashion maestro Elie Saab, and guests included the Egyptian singer Amr Diab. Malick’s father, Najib Mikati, co-founded the massively successful Investcom telecommunications company, which he sold to the South African MTN Group in 2006 for £3.6 billion.
In 2005, one of the other most extravagant weddings in history took place: the marriage of billionaire steel magnate Lakshmi Mittal’s beautiful daughter Vanisha to London-born investment banker Amit Bhatia. Invitations were mailed in silver boxes (including flight tickets and rooms at a five-star Parisian hotel), and the festivities stretched over five days, beginning with an engagement ceremony at the magnificent Palace of Versailles. From there, attendees moved on to the ravishing Tuileries Garden for a dinner prepared by chefs flown in from India. The couple were actually married a few miles down the road in the splendour of a 17th-century château, Vaux-le-Vicomte, following which pop star Kylie Minogue was to be the highlight of the reception, performing amidst a spectacular firework display at the Eiffel Tower.
Most people, of course, won’t be able to afford to stage their weddings in fairy-tale castles and fly in top chefs from distant countries to produce sumptuous banquets. However, there are some ideas that can be borrowed to add a certain note of luxury. If your budget won’t stretch to a firework display at the Eiffel Tower or a major international pop star, lighting a collection of Chinese lanterns and watching them float balletically into the night sky may add an enchanting touch. Think about the food – can you find a theme that says something about you? Paul McCartney, for example, commissioned vegetarian food for his wedding to Heather Mills, underlining his commitment to vegetarian values.
Spectacular locations, famous celebrity guests, stunning wedding dresses and fabulous reception banquets are among the defining features of the luxury weddings enjoyed by the world’s super-rich. However, with a little imagination, you can borrow a few of their ideas and incorporate them into your own special day for that extra touch of magic.