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The Most Expensive Wedding Ever (Cost WAY More Than You Think)

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Most Expensive Wedding Ever

For many of us, dreaming about the intricate details of our Special Day is just that: a dream. But some people have more money than they know what to do with, and for them this (hopefully) once in a lifetime occasion is a great excuse to funnel vast amounts of it towards creating as preposterously lavish and outlandishly fancy an event as they possible can.

Some people long for simplicity. A barebones, stripped-back, relaxed affair. Closest friends and family only. A limited bar tab. Maybe the whole ceremony takes place in a field next door to a farmer you met once, and with a herd of cows as your neighbors. That’s lovely, sure, but it didn’t float the respective boats of any of the couples in our list. Pour yourself a glass of something, sit back, and weep with that odd mixture of envy and relief that you’ll never have this much money or be quite this bad at spending it responsibly. Here is a list of the most expensive weddings ever.

Catherine Zeta-Jones and Michael Douglas

Catherine Zeta-Jones and Michael Douglas

If you haven’t been following celebrity gossip for the last three decades like the rest of us, it’s easy to forget that Michael Douglas (you know, the one from all those films people pretend to have seen) and Catherine Zeta-Jones (the Welsh actress who suddenly forgot what accent she was supposed to have) were married. True, they certainly don’t look like a natural pairing. But variety, as they say, is the spice of life.

This wedding took place in 2005 and was estimated to have cost a cool, casual $1.5 million. It’s worth keeping in mind that 2005 was ages ago now, so that probably seemed like even more in a pre-iPhone world. Dreadful, dreadful times.

Tom Cruise and Katie Holmes

 Tom Cruise and Katie Holmes

Everyone’s favourite Scientologist and man who runs in movies, Tom Cruise, was sure to splash a lot of cash on his wedding. Katie Holmes was significantly less well known unless you were a big fan of Dawson’s Creek or had an oddly specific memory of Batman Begins, but that’s by the by.

The couple spent a measly $2 million on their big day, and celebrity guests included the Beckhams, Will Smith, and Jennifer “Jenny From the Block” Lopez. We hear that Tom Cruise also opted to perform his own cover of “You’ve Got That Loving Feeling” which we can’t help but feel was a bad move across the board. What a time to be alive.

Elizabeth Hurley and Arun Nayar

 Elizabeth Hurley and Arun Nayar

Liz Hurley is a British model who you’ll be forgiven for not having heard of. She and her partner, the Indian businessman Arun Nayar, actually got married twice which seems excessive. They dropped around $2.6 million on the weddings: one was at a castle in England, and the other was at a palace in India. 'Low-key' is not a concept either had a great sense of, so they flew Elton John over to bang out a few tunes.

If it makes you feel any better, they got divorced in a proceeding which took 92 seconds of court time.

Paul McCartney and Heather Mills

Paul McCartney and Heather Mills

Everyone’s favourite (living) Beatle broke the hearts of many of his fans when he and Vegetarian Food Connoisseur Linda McCartney split. Heather Mills, an entrepreneur, married Paul in 2002 in the idyllic setting of an Irish castle. The menu, of course, was entirely vegetarian, and the guest list exceeded 300 people. The wedding cost $3 million.

Liza Minelli and David Gest

Liza Minelli and David Gest

This extravagant couple married in 2002 in a lavish ceremony in New York City. The guest list was about as eclectic as it gets and included people like Liam Neeson, the entire Jackson Five, Anthony Hopkins, and Michael Jackson as best man. The wedding cost $3.5 million.

It did not last long: they divorced within a year.

Chelsea Clinton and Marc Mezvinsky

Chelsea Clinton and Marc Mezvinsky

Imagine a President walking you down the aisle. Kind of steals the limelight, right? Bill Clinton did it anyway when his daughter married an investment banker in 2010. Unlike many of the pairings on the list, this one is still together. And they’re expecting their first baby! The wedding cost $5 million.

Prince William and Kate Middleton

Prince William and Kate Middleton

In the UK, Brits got a day off work for The Royal Wedding. In a way, then, this is the most the monarchy has done for anyone in quite a long time. The future King married a 'commoner' who he met at university in Scotland, and the world went crazy with excitement.

The $34 million price tag on this wedding may sound extreme, but a lot of it was to do with security measures and the pageantry which has to accompany a royal wedding.

Vanisha Mittal and Amit Bhatia

Vanisha Mittal and Amit Bhatia

If you have not heard of either of these people, you’re far from alone. Vanisha is the daughter of a man called Lakshmi Mittal who is one of the richest people on the planet. As you’d expect, this was a pricey affair coming in at an estimate $66 million.

Kylie Minogue was booked to perform for half an hour and she alone received almost $350,000. Casual.

Prince Charles and Lady Diana

Prince Charles and Lady Diana

At $110 million, this is the most expensive wedding we have on record. Witnessed by nearly a billion people worldwide (both in direct attendance or watching on television), this was a defining moment in the early 1980s which was experienced by the international community at large. The couple got divorced in 1996, and Lady Diana sadly died the year after.

Khadija Uzhakhova and Said Gutseriev

Most Expensive Wedding

This is another couple you probably have not heard of. And as is often the case, that is because they are the relatives of some of the richest people alive. Said Gutseriev is the son of an oligarch with an estimated net worth of over $6 billion!

Jennifer Lopez, Sting, and Enrique Iglesias were booked to perform among a whole host of entertainers and celebrities from all across the world. The event was documented on Instagram, so you can experience a lot of it for yourself. Although not confirmed, the wedding is rumored to have cost $1 billion!

Most Expensive Wedding Ever


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