Prince William and Kate Middleton: April 29, 2011. $34 million. The couple, who just thrilled the world by having their first child, got married at London’s Westminster Abbey as viewers in more than 180 countries watched on TV and the internet. The bride’s wedding dress cost $70,000; the flowers $800,000; and the eight-tiered wedding fruit cake with white icing and 900 sugar paste flowers cost $80,000. But William’s parents, Prince Charles and Lady Diana, had a wedding for the ages which would reportedly cost $115 million in today’s dollars (adjusted to inflation).
Michael Jordan and Yvette Prieto: April 27, 2013. $10 Million. Earlier this year, the basketball legend and his model girlfriend reportedly had the most expensive celebrity (non-royal) wedding ever! They walked down the aisle at Episcopal Church of Bethesda-by-the-Sea in Palm Beach, Florida, with more than 300 guests looking on, including Tiger Woods, Scottie Pippen, Patrick Ewing, and Spike Lee. Prieto wore a J'Aton Couture gown with Swarovski crystals. Usher and Robin Thicke performed at the reception.
Justin Timberlake and Jessica Biel: October 19, 2012. $6.5 million. As RadarOnline.com reported last year, the pop star and actress tied the knot in southern Italy and the actual ceremony was preceded by a week of festivities for their wedding guests, including bike rides, parties and a fireworks show, which greatly raised their wedding cost. They also booked an entire hotel, and closed down adjacent buildings to keep paparazzi at bay.
Kim Kardashian and Kris Humphries: August 20, 2011. $6 million. The reality queen and basketball hunk’s wedding at an estate in Montecito, CA–later televised on E!– cost about $6 million, according to her wedding planner. But vendors involved in the big day either discounted or gave their services for free in return for publicity. Some of the wedding costs included: $2 million for flowers, $750,000 for food, including caviar, kobe beef burgers, truffles, and cupcakes; $400,000 in Perrier-Jouet champagne; and $10,000 for Lehr & Black wedding invitations. The over the top event became notorious after Kim and Kris split after 72 days.
Chelsea Clinton and Marc Mezvinsky: July 31, 2010. $4.8 million. The former First Daughter and her investment banker beau had a wedding fit for a queen at a New York estate, where security reportedly was the biggest cost. Guests including Ted Danson and Mary Steenburgen were treated to dinner and a $11,000 wedding cake in air-conditioned tents. Chelsea donned a dress by Vera Wang and expensive bling for the summer affair.
Paul McCartney and Heather Mills: June 11, 2002. $4.2 million. According to Forbes Magazine, the Beatles icon spent a bundle on his wedding to second wife, model and amputee Heather. They said “I do” at the secluded Castle Leslie in Ireland, where the 300-person guest list included Ringo Starr, Elton John and Eric Clapton. The reception featured dancers in authentic Indian dress and a vegetarian feast. Guests also rode on a yacht and cheered for a fireworks display. Sadly, Sir Paul spent much more on the bitter divorce (final in 2008)!
Liza Minnelli and David Gest: March 16, 2002, $4.2 million. The cartoonish couple wed at Marble Collegiate Church in New York City with best man Michael Jackson, maid of honor Elizabeth Taylor, and one thousand guests looking on! The singer/actress and concert promoter’s splashy nuptials featured some high-powered performances from Tony Bennett, Stevie Wonder, and Natalie Cole, as well as a 60-piece orchestra. Party-goers at the hotel reception toasted the happy couple with vintage wines and received boxes filled with parting gifts. But Liza and David had a nasty split a year later and officially divorced in 2007.
Tom Cruise and Katie Holmes: November 18, 2006. $3.5 million. Tom rented the breathtaking medieval Odescalchi Castle in Bracciano, Italy, so he could exchange vows with Katie in fairytale style. The extravagant wedding capped three days of festivities in nearby Rome with such celebrity guests as Jennifer Lopez and Marc Anthony, Jada and Will Smith and Jim Carrey and Jenny McCarthy. The reception featured fireworks, tenor Andrea Bocelli singing love songs, a lavish dinner washed down with 300 bottles of fine wine and champagne, a five-tiered wedding cake, and a castle hall converted into a nightclub for dancing the night away! But the party soon ended -- Tom and Katie divorced last year.
Salma Hayek and François-Henri Pinault: April 25, 2009. $3.5 million. When the star (wearing Balenciaga) married the French billionaire at the La Fenice Theater in Venice, Italy, it looked like a royal wedding. Guests including Charlize Theron and Penelope Cruise enjoyed a carnival-themed masked ball, fine cuisine by famed chef Jose Andres, a 14-piece band, and a reception performance by U2’s Bono. It was actually Salma’s second wedding to Francois-Henri, however, as they had already married in a simple civil ceremony on Feb. 14, 2009. They raise a daughter together.
Elizabeth Hurley and Arun Nayar: March 3 and March 9, 2007. $2.5 million. Model/actress Elizabeth got married to the textile tycoon in an eight- day festival that included two ceremonies -- one in Sudeley Castle in her native UK, and another at Umaid Bhawan Palace in Jodhpur, India, to honor the groom’s heritage. Liz wore a diamond tiara and was accompanied by 16 children in her English wedding, while the Indian festivities featured pre-wedding parties and an all-day cricket match! In 2011, Elizabeth filed for divorce after four years of marriage.
Elizabeth Taylor and Larry Fortensky: October 6, 1991. $2 million. When Liz walked down the aisle for the 8th time at Michael Jackson’s Neverland Ranch in California, no expense was spared. The screen legend wore a yellow gown by Valentino, costing $30,000, when she tied the knot with construction worker Larry Fortensky, 20 years her junior. Jackson gave away the bride. The mismatched couple divorced in 1996.
Elton John and David Furnish: December 21, 2005. $2 million. The pop star and his partner of 12 years wed at the Windsor town hall in England after the U.K. allowed same-sex couples to form civil partnerships. Then more than 600 of Elton and David’s closest friends showed up at the lavish reception at their Windsor mansion to watch Elton serenade his husband! It was reported that the reception cost about $2,500 per head. The happy pair is now raising two children together.
Christina Aguilera & Jordan Bratman: November 19, 2005. $2 million. The pop star wed music executive Jordan Bratman at Napa Valley’s Staglin Family Vineyard. The wedding festivities included a lavish rehearsal dinner at the Auberge du Soleil resort, where the couple stayed at a $3,500-a-night suite complete with fireplace and outdoor hot tub. The 150 guests were awed by Christina’s Spanish-style Christian Lacroix gown. Christina and Jordan had a son, Max, but split in 2011.
Madonna and Guy Richie: December 22, 2000. $1.5 million. Madonna donned a tiara once worn by Princess Grace of Monaco to marry film director Guy at Scotland’s Skibo Castle. The couple booked all 21 rooms of the estate for famous friends including Gwyneth Paltrow, Rupert Everett, Sting and Trudie Styler. In addition to her tiara, Madonna wore a strapless cream silk gown by Stella McCartney while Guy and their son Rocco were outfitted in kilts. Madonna’s daughter Lourdes led the procession in bare feet. Guests danced the night away in a basement converted into a nightclub.
Pierce Brosnan and Keely Shaye Smith: August 4, 2001. $1.5 million. The James Bond actor wed the Unsolved Mysteries hostess in Ballintubber Abbey, a 13th-century Irish castle, and a Midsummer Night’s Dream-themed reception followed at Ashford Castle (where Pierce had put up the 120 guests). Bagpipers performed and everyone feasted on a six-tier carrot wedding cake modeled after the one served at the wedding of John and Jackie Kennedy. A fireworks display concluded the celebration. The couple will soon celebrate their 12th wedding anniversary.
Eddie Murphy and Nicole Mitchell: March 18, 1993. $1.5 million. Funnyman Eddie wed model Nicole Mitchell at New York’s famed Plaza Hotel before 500 guests, including Bruce Willis, Demi Moore and Prince. The hotel’s Grand Ballroom was re-carpeted in white and filled with flowers for the ceremony. The bride wore an off-the-shoulder white gown with French lace and a 12-foot-long train. After a lavish dinner, guests enjoyed dancing in the ballroom, which had been converted to a disco. The pair’s divorce was finalized in 2006.
Tiger Woods and Elin Nordegren: October 4, 2004. $1.5 million. The golf star wed former model Elin in a top-secret ceremony at the exclusive Sandy Lane Resort in Barbados. Woods rented the entire hotel and the island’s only helicopter charter company for privacy. The 120 guests included his basketball player pals Michael Jordan and Charles Barkley, who watched the couple wed in a white-netted pagoda decorated with roses. Highlights of the reception included a performance by Hootie and the Blowfish and fireworks. But the real fireworks were to come, as Tiger suffered an infidelity scandal and Elin divorced him (final in 2010).
Michael Douglas and Catherine Zeta-Jones: November 18, 2000. $1.5 million. The screen stars hosted 350 guests, including Sean Connery, Jack Nicholson and Michael Caine, at New York’s Plaza Hotel. Catherine, 25 years younger than her groom, wore a dazzling Christian Lacroix gown with antique Chantilly lace, accessorized with a tiara. Simply Red frontman Mick Hucknall, Bonnie Tyler, and a 40-person Welsh choir entertained the crowd. The two have stuck together through hard times, including Michael’s throat cancer battle.
Brad Pitt and Jennifer Aniston: July 29, 2000. $1 million. The Friends cutie and movie hunk’s marriage started out with such promise, as they wed on a Malibu estate with 50,000 flowers and a fireworks display. Cameron Diaz and Salma Hayek, plus Aniston’s Friends co-stars Courtney Cox and David Schwimmer were on the guest list. Aniston wore a Lawrence Steele floor-length white gown, accessorized by suede Manolo Blahnik sandals. As the world knows, they split in 2005 and Brad partnered up with Angelina Jolie; sources say Jen is now planning another wedding, to Justin Theroux.
Matt Damon and Luciana Barroso: April 13, 2013: $1 million. Matt and his wife renewed their vows earlier this year on the Caribbean island of St. Lucia Life & Style magazine estimated the cost at $1 million. According to sources, The Bourne Identity star, who first wed Luciana in a modest civil ceremony in 2005, wanted to give her the wedding she had always dreamed of. He rented out the entire Sugar Beach resort and flew in 50 guests, including Ben Affleck and Jennifer Garner and the celebrity officiant, Jimmy Kimmel. Matt and his bride exchanged vows under thatched roofs right at sunset -- with the groom wearing a tan-colored suit and flip-flops and the bride in a cream-colored gown.
Tori Spelling and Charlie Shanian: July 3, 2004: $1 million. It’s no surprise that the daughter of TV mogul Aaron Spelling got a pricey Great Gatsby-themed wedding, marrying actor Charlie Shanian at her parents’ 56,000-square-foot Los Angeles mansion. Spelling wore a Badgley Mischka crystal beaded gown accessorized with a veil and a 1920s’ style diamond and platinum headband. An incredible 400 guests were on hand, including Tori’s former 90210 castmates Jason Priestley and Jennie Garth. Michael Feinstein performed and Wolfgang Puck catered the dinner. But after Tori got close to her TV movie co-star, Dean McDermott, she split from Charlie. The pair divorced in 2006 and Tori married Dean less than a month later.
Donald Trump and Melania Knauss: January 22, 2005. $1 million . It was no problem for the wealthy mogul to splash out for his third bride, model Melania Knauss. They said “I do” at the Bethesda by the Sea Episcopalian Church in Palm Beach, Florida. Melania wore a strapless Christian Dior gown made from 300 feet of satin beaded with 1,500 crystals; her 13-foot train weighed 50 pounds! Trump opened up his Mar-a-Lago estate for the 400 guests, including Rudy Giuliani, Barbara Walters and Regis Philbin, who were served dinner prepared by celebrity chef Jean-Georges Vongerichten. Third time’s the charm? The Apprentice star and Melania remain happily wed.
David and Victoria Beckham: July 4, 1999. $800,000. It was oh-so-posh when the Spice girl and her soccer superstar tied the knot in style, with Victoria wearing a silk gown with a 20-foot train and a matching diamond-encrusted crown for the ceremony at Luttrellstown Castle near Dublin. The 250 guests were treated to a special performance by Elton John -- and fireworks. David and Victoria even sat on red velvet thrones like a king and queen! Four kids later, England’s top couple is still together.
Ashley Judd and Dario Franchitti: December 12, 2001. $750,000. The actress and Scottish race car driver walked down the aisle at the Skibo castle in Scotland. Judd wore an open-back satin empire waist gown by Armani with a full-length beaded lace coat, while Dario donned a kilt. Their 300 guests included Salma Hayek and Ed Norton, as well Dario’s race car driver pals. Guests partied outside in a giant heated reception tent. This January, however, Ashley and Dario announced their plans to divorce.
Celine Dion and Rene Angelil: December 17,1994. More than $500,000. It cost a fortune in ‘90s dollars when the My Heart Will Go On singer wed her manager. The pair tied the knot in front of 532 guests at the Notre Dame Basilica in Montreal, Canada with Celine wearing a 7-pound crystal tiara that was sewn to her head. She needed the help of her eight bridesmaid sisters to handle her 20-foot train. "I love him big-time and I wanted a big wedding," Celine said. Artificial snowflakes fell and a 21-piece orchestra performed during the reception at the Hotel Westin Mont-Royal. Her love HAS gone on; the couple is still married!
Mariah Carey and Tommy Mottola: June 5, 1993. $500,000. The songbird wed music company mogul Tommy Mottola at the St. Thomas Episcopal Church on Manhattan’s 5th Avenue in one of the splashiest weddings of the ‘90s. Carey wore an off-the-shoulder Vera Wang pale ivory dress with a 27-foot-long train and a tiara trailed by a veil sprinkled with rhinestones. Fifty flower girls flanked the pop star. The wedding party and their 300 guests—including Bruce Springsteen, Barbra Streisand and Robert De Niro--then headed for a lavish reception at the Metropolitan Club. They divorced in 1998 with Mariah marrying Nick Cannon a decade later.