5 Prince William and Kate Middleton: $34 Million
Although nowhere near as expensive as the wedding of his parents, Charles and Diana, Prince William’s wedding to Kate Middleton still cost a pretty penny at approximately $34 million. Held in London’s Westminster Abbey in 2011, the spouses-to-be enjoyed $800,000 worth of flowers, $600,000 wedding reception and $80,000 wedding cake. Middleton’s wedding dress was also a huge expense, costing more than $400,000. However, the greatest expense of all may have been security, which is estimated to have cost around $32 million.
4 Vanisha Mittal and Amit Bhatia: $58 Million
Indian steel tycoon Lakshmi Mittal spared no expense when it came time for his daughter Vanisha to marry Amit Bhatia, an investment banker, in 2006. The extravagant affair took place in multiple locations, including London’s 16th century chateau Vaux le Vicomte, and lasted approximately five days. Invitations were delivered in silver boxes and the couple’s 1,000 guests were flown in on chartered jets and put up in a five-star hotel. The festivities included a Bollywood reenactment of how the couple met and fell in love and a performance by Kylie Minogue. A Prada or Gucci handbag was also given to each female guest as a parting gift. Total cost of the celebration was $58 million.
3 Prince Charles and Lady Diana: $115 Million
In 1981, Prince Charles, the oldest son of Queen Elizabeth II, married Lady Diana Spencer in the “Wedding of the Century.” Held in St. Paul’s Cathedral in London, the festivities cost a reported $115 million, $600,000 of which went to security, $100,000 for a pre-wedding celebration and $40,000 for a five-foot high wedding cake. In comparison, Lady Diana’s wedding dress with a 25-foot train was a bargain, costing only $13,000. The ceremony was attended by numerous royals, internationally televised to 750 million people and watched in-person by two million spectators.
2 Seemanto Roy and Chandni Toor & Sushanto Roy and Richa Ahuja: $123 Million
In 2004, Seemanto and Sushanto Roy, sons of Indian industrialist Subrata Roy, participated in a double wedding totaling $123 million. Held in Sahara, Luchnow, Seemanto Roy married Chandni Toor and Sushanto Roy married Richa Ahuja. The elder Roy reportedly spent $62 million per couple. Approximately 11,000 guests feasted on more than 100 types of culinary entrees, including Indian, Lebanese, Italian and American, while the British Symphony Orchestra played live music, including 20 Indian songs, throughout. Entertainment also included professional dancers from the U.K. who performed tap, flamenco and ballet for the couples’ guests.
1 Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid al Maktoum and Sheikha Hind Bint Maktoum: $137 Million
The most expensive wedding of all time is the one between Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid al Maktoum and Sheikha Hind Bint Maktoum, with a total price tag of $137 million. When the ruler of Dubai married his cousin back in 1979, there wasn’t a place big enough to host the lavish affair, so a stadium hall was built from scratch to accommodate the couple’s 20,000 guests. In honor of the wedding, a five-day holiday was declared, during which Sheikh Mohammed rode his horse to every village and fed everyone. The festivities also included entertainment from local dancers and musicians.