Celebrity weddings have a way of captivating and enchanting us. As soon as celeb engagement news breaks, we are already curiously questioning what kind of party will ensue. These days, many celebrities are opting for the more low-key and private eloping option, passing on frivolity, lavishness, and sometimes, guests.
On the other side of the coin are the celebs who make a very big splash when they say “I do.” For these famous guys and gals, going big is the name of the game. We’re talking about the throwing-all-sense-of-a-budget-to-the-wind style gatherings that can cost millions of dollars.
For these celebrities, there was no monetary limit when it came to showing off and celebrating their love. Brad Pitt and Jennifer Aniston, Victoria Adams and David Beckham, and Madonna and Guy Ritchie all had million-dollar weddings. Believe it or not, they are on the lower end of the spectrum, with some celebs forking over close to $10 million for their special day. The royal wedding of Kate Middleton and Prince William reportedly cost a whopping $3.1 billion USD including all of the security fees. Holy moly!
These figures are definitely not the norm, and many of these marriages crumbled, proving that money can’t buy love! Justin Timberlake and Jessica Biel’s Wedding Cost $7 Million: Here Are 15 Other Stars Who Splurged On Their Nuptials
15. Brad Pitt And Jennifer Aniston: $1 Million
Brad and Jennifer were our favorite celebrity couple for the longest time. This seemingly perfect match were married on July 29, 2000, in Malibu, just two years after being set up on a “blind date” by friends. The $1 million beachfront wedding attracted 200 guests. Their biggest splurges? Over 50,000 flowers, four bands, and a firework display at the end of the night. After the ceremony, guests nibbled on mini pizzas and shrimp served with Dom Perignon while a live Latin jazz band played. Jennifer’s custom glass-beaded silk and satin gown was designed by Lawrence Steele and definitely added to their overall costs! Sadly, their picture-perfect romance fizzled out by 2004, when Brad strayed and had a fiery affair with seductive Angelina Jolie. He is now divorced from her, as well.
14. Madonna And Guy Ritchie: $1.5 Million
Madonna and Guy Ritchie were not fated to stay together forever, but they certainly hosted a lavish wedding back in 2000. The party was hosted at Skibo Castle in the Scottish Highlands and featured an intimate gathering of 55 near and dears. A smaller crowd didn’t mean a smaller budget, however, as they spent a reported $1.5 million on the event. Sting sang, the guests drank champagne, and feasted on delicious food, but the real expense was the accommodations. All guests were treated to suites in the castle for 5 nights leading up to, and including, the wedding night. Madonna’s Stella McCartney gown and Edwardian diamond tiara definitely racked up a hefty price as well. The couple split in 2008.
13. Michael Douglas And Catherine Zeta-Jones: $1.5 Million
Michael Douglas and Catherine Zeta-Jones are one of the few couples on this list who are still going strong, after an incredible 18 years married. Their 2000 marriage cost close to $1.5 million, with a big chunk of the budget going toward Catherine’s wedding dress. Her Christian Lacroix dress was $140,000, and her princess-style tiara was a whopping $300,000! With 350 guests to feed and cater to, it didn’t take long before they were in the million-dollar range. The Plaza Hotel NYC event also featured a Welsh choir and a 10-tier vanilla and buttercream wedding cake. The meal was clam chowder, foie gras, lobster, and Welsh lamb. These lovebirds spared no expenses, but since their love is still going strong, it seems to have been a great and worthwhile investment!
12. Pierce Brosnan And Keely Shaye Smith: $1.5 Million
Pierce Brosnan and Keely Shaye Smith tied the knot in a lavish ceremony in Ireland, on August 4, 2001. A total of 120 guests were treated to a traditional Catholic ceremony, followed by a James Bond worthy reception at the famous Ashford Castle. Bagpipers played as the guests entered a room filled with Dutch imported flowers. The meal included caviar, lobster, and a massive carrot cake to finish off. There was even a three-quarter ton ice sculpture rendition of Rodin’s “The Kiss” on display for guests to enjoy. The romantic evening ended with a ceremonious fireworks display, over the water that surrounds the castle premises. The couple dished out $1.5 million for their big day, but it was a worthwhile investment. After 16 years of marriage, they are still together and very much in love.
11. Elton John And David Furnish: $2 Million
Shortly after the United Kingdom legalized same-s*x unions, Elton John and his long-time partner, David Furnish, eloped at the Windsor Guildhall, but their real wedding was only in 2014. The beautiful and lavish ceremony was a testament to the couple’s long-lasting love and commitment to each other. An incredible 600 guests attended the emotional ceremony . After over two decades of partnership, they had a right to want to celebrate in style! The classic black and red décor was paired with a classic menu of beef short ribs, onion pie, and roasted potatoes. The star-studded event included guests Ed Sheeran, Hugh Grant, and Elizabeth Hurley, and reportedly cost the couple close to $2 million.
10. Christina Aguilera And Jordan Bratman: $2 Million
In 2005, pop princess Christina Aguilera wed music producer Jordan Bratman in a $2 million winter-wonderland themed wedding. The party included 150 guests and was hosted on a private Napa Valley vineyard, where suites cost as much as $3,500 a night. Christina’s Spanish-inspired Christian Lacroix gown was the epicenter of the wedding ceremony and she later changed into a mini dress for the reception. The guests snacked on lobster bisque, short ribs, and roasted chicken and the side dishes included a comfort-food buffet of mac and cheese, mashed potatoes, and onion rings. An after party was hosted in an underground wine cavern where DJ AM played tunes until 5 a.m. for happy guests wanting to dance the night away. Although the couple divorced in 2011, the wedding goes down as one of the most expensive in celebrity history.
9. Elizabeth Hurley And Arun Nayar: $2.5 Million
Supermodel Elizabeth Hurley and textile heir Arun Nayar started dating in 2002 and got married in 2007 at Sudeley Castle in England. They had a second Hindu celebration in India afterward, accumulating a $2.5 million bill for both parties. Their first wedding reception featured a Bollywood style screening of a mini love film that they created for the 200 guests. A 5-course gastronomic meal followed by a 4-tier cake was one of the main features of the night. Despite sparing no expense to celebrate their romance, the pair were not successful when it came to longevity. In 2010, 8 years after first meeting, Liz filed for divorce, citing “unreasonable behaviour” which is, apparently, a legitimate reason for divorcing in the UK.
8. Tom Cruise And Katie Holmes: $2.7 Million
Famed actor and Scientologist Tom Cruise made a splash back in 2005 when rumours start to circulate that he was dating Dawson’s Creek star Katie Holmes. Within months, the rumours were confirmed, with the pair officially appearing together in Rome. At first, many thought that their union was a publicity stunt, but the two went on to marry in a lavish ceremony in November 2006, just months after their daughter, Suri, was born. The estimated $2.7 million nuptials took place in an Italian castle where they hosted approximately 150 guests. The Scientology ceremony was followed by dinner, catered by Roman restaurant Dal Bolognese. After dinner entertainment included an elaborate fireworks ceremony, live classical music, and a special performance by Jennifer Lopez. In 2012, Katie filed for divorce.
7. Paul McCartney And Heather Mills: $3 Million
When you’re one of the most successful and famous musicians of all time, you can afford to dish out a cool $3 million for your wedding! In 2002, McCartney wed second wife Heather Mills, a former model, in a huge celebration in Ireland. The pair, with 25 years age difference, hosted 300 guests on the grounds of a private castle, where champagne, vegetarian snacks and live music were enjoyed. Although they splurged on the wedding, their divorce was even more costly. After six years of marriage, they divorced and ended up in a nasty fight while trying to settle their estates. McCartney ended up paying close to $50 million dollars to Heather, who had originally requested $250 million, and stated that his marriage to her was one of the worst decisions of his life. Yikes! They do have a child together, so hopefully they are on better terms now!
6. Liza Minnelli And David Gest: $3.8 Million
Liza Minnelli’s fourth marriage, to music producer David Gest, coast over $3.8 million and lasted for about a year and a half. The over-the-top event featured the members of Jackson Five as groomsmen, along with 16 bridesmaids, ranging in ages from 26 to 78 years old. Elizabeth Taylor was the maid of honour and Michael Jackson was the best man. The NYC affair was by far the biggest wedding of 2002, with media willing to pay close to $500,000 to capture photos of the bride and groom. The 500 guests indulged in a seafood and filet mignon buffet served with vintage champagne. A 50-piece orchestra provided musical interludes while they chowed down on a 6-foot-tall wedding cake. After dishing out all of this money for a short-lived marriage, the pair jumped directly into a very costly and nasty divorce.
5. Justin Timberlake And Jessica Biel: $7 Million
Long-term sweethearts Justin Timberlake and Jessica Biel had one of the most anticipated weddings in celebrity history. After dating seriously since 2007, the cute couple tied the knot on October, 19, 2012. The fantasy wedding took place in Italy where the bride wore an unconventional pink princess dress designed by Giambattista Valli. The star-studded event was held in a private Pugliese estate where the paparazzi had no chance of getting snaps of their many celebrity guests. Justin serenaded his bride as she walked down the aisle in front of 100 close friends and family members. They didn’t skimp on their food budget, offering a delicious appetizer and cocktail hour, followed by a 4-course meal which featured sea bass, lobster, and steak. The party went on until 5 a.m. with guests dancing until the wee hours of the morning.
4. Michael Jordan And Yvette Prieto: $9.2 Million
Michael Jordan has an estimated net worth of $1.3 billion, so spending a cool $9.2 million on his 2013 marriage to model Yvette Prieto was not breaking the bank! The 300-guest wedding took place in Palm Springs, Florida, kicking off with a traditional church ceremony. The reception was hosted at a 40,000-square-foot private golf course. They splurged on candlelit crystal candelabras for their tables, a huge white chocolate and rum wedding cake, and performances by Usher and Robin Thicke. The bride wore a stunning French silk gown with Swarovski crystals and lace. The elaborate fete ended with a magical fireworks show, and the couple donated all of the tulips, peonies, and roses used to a medical center afterward.
3. Kim Kardashian And Kris Humphries: $9.2 Million
Kim Kardashian spared no expense for her wedding to Kris Humphries back in 2011. The reality star and her basketball star ex spent a reported $9.2 million on their special day. The theme of the wedding was “black and white” with all decorations, flowers, and guests outfits staying in the bold hues. Kim wore three separate Vera Wang dresses throughout the event, and naturally, there was no shortage of bling. The fairytale wedding was preceded by elaborately elegant wedding invitations, encrusted with crystals. Unfortunately, a near $10 million wedding did not do much to solidify their romance. Kim filed for divorce a mere 72 days after they were married, citing irreconcilable differences. She is now married to Kanye West, whom she started to date before her divorce from Humphries was finalized.
2. George Clooney And Amal Alamuddin: $13 Million
George Clooney was our favorite bachelor for decades, but when he met the love of his life, he didn’t hesitate to fork over millions for their wedding day. An estimated $13 million was spent on the Venetian event, where his bride, Amal Alamuddin, stunned guests with her gorgeous $350,000 Oscar de la Renta gown. The wedding ceremony was followed by a 3-day fiesta, in which guests were treated to accommodations, food, and plenty of drink. Clooney had several cases of expensive tequila flown in for the event, and there was no shortage of champagne and vodka, either. Exclusive photos of their wedding were sold to People and Hello! for upward of a million. The money they earned was donated to charity.
1. Prince William And Kate Middleton: $34 Million
It’s no surprise that the most expensive wedding on this list is handed to the Royal Family. The wedding of Prince William and Kate Middleton in 2011, racked up an incredible bill of $34 million, with $32 million going toward security. The party expenses included $600,000 for food and drinks for their two receptions, an $80,000 wedding cake, a private performance by a wedding band led by Ellie Goulding, and of course, a fireworks show at the end of the evening. All in all, the wedding really was the wedding of the century; we’ll see if little brother Prince Harry’s upcoming wedding to American Meghan Markle can compete!
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