Three of the Most Lavish Weddings of All Time
Weddings are a notoriously expensive affair for many people. Both sides of the family and, increasingly in the modern day, both the bride and groom themselves are expected to contribute financially. So, if this is true for most people, the richest and most famous people in the world take this to the next level. From £80,000 dresses, to million-pound crowns, astonishing banquets, public processions and performances from the musical stars of the day – these three marriage celebrations cost more than the vast majority of us will earn in our entire lives.
Said Gutseriev & Khadija Uzhakhovs (2016)
The world’s first ‘billion-dollar wedding’, it was mostly financed by father of the groom oil billionaire Mikhail Gutseriev. With an estimated net worth of 9 billion dollars, we’re sure no expense was spared by the Gutseriev family on Said’s big day. Held in the luxurious Safisa event space in Moscow, the whole arena was decked out with floor to ceiling flowers and the bride’s gown was so heavily jewelled she reportedly found it difficult to walk in. Guests were treated to live performances from Jennifer Lopez and Sting, as well as a 10-minute firework display and jewelled gift boxes worth thousands of dollars each.
Prince Charles of Windsor & Diana Spencer (1981)
Costing a cool £48 million, which is just over £110 million today when accounting for inflation, this British Royal family celebration remains one of the most watched television events of all time. 3500 selected guests were assembled in St Paul’s Cathedral, London, where they were treated to performances by the London Philharmonic Orchestra and the Bach Choir among others. Diana’s wedding ring was made from the traditional Welsh gold and contained a 12-carat sapphire surrounded by 12 diamonds as the centrepiece. Today it’s estimated value is over £500,000. Her dress featured a 25-foot train and diamond encrusted horseshoe sewn into the waistband.
Interestingly, security concerns of the time also bumped up the cost of this legendary event – with the ongoing threat of IRA terrorism due The Troubles in Northern Island, over £600,000 was spent on security alone.
Margaret of York & Charles of Burgundy (1468)
‘I have no wit nor remembrance to write to you, half the worship that is here,’ wrote one commentator of the time on this, the most luxurious of medieval weddings and one that would not be outdone for at least 600 years. With 24-hour wine fountains in the shape of Cherubs, white horses carrying golden litters, street parades and a huge jousting tournament – English Margaret of York and French Duke Charles of Burgundy’s nuptials were the most talked about event in Europe for the best part of a decade. People flocked from all over the continent just witness some of the celebrations. Interestingly, the ceremony itself was a small and private affair – but the post marriage celebrations lasted for over a week.
By all accounts their marriage was a political one, and not particularly happy. Charles was often drunk when with his wife, and if not, he was often off fighting wars – one of which got him killed, at the Battle of Nancy in 1477.