As the world squeals with excitement over the news of Prince William and Kate Middleton’s engagement, a battalion of consultants are getting to work on planning their sure-to-be-monumental wedding — with an estimated budget of $100 million dollars, this event will be watched by an excess of 1 billion people around the world. Here is a glimpse of what the public should expect from the wedding of our century — the invited guests and the ceremonies and events surrounding it.
As many have predicted, the wedding will likely be a colossal event at one of London’s massive Cathedrals. Because we are in an economic recession, with a British government that is imposing strict sanctions, a royal wedding is just what is needed to revive the enthusiasm and mood of the public.
Engagement rumors have followed the couple for years. But the couple needed time to sort out complicated pre-nuptial and legal arrangements.
Kate will perform the same kind of public service work that other royal ladies engage in — from what I know about Kate, she will be quite content with this role. It’s a full time job being a wife to the future king. Kate is well suited for the royal family. Will Kate become a media star and a celebrity, just as Diana was? Given her looks and sense of style, most likely, she will.
Prince William and Kate Middleton’s wedding is set to be one of the most eminent events of this century. Millions of people are already mesmerized about the big day. This article has all of the details of what to expect from the ultimate royal $100 million dollar British wedding.
LOCATION: Westminster Abbey, the famous 1,000-year-old church, which has historically been the site of important occasions such as coronations, weddings and funerals, is the most appropriate venue. British kings and queens were crowned there. Princess Diana’s funeral was held there. It can hold 2,200 guests. The only people allowed to marry there are members of royal heritage, abbey staff and members of the ceremonial Order of the Bath and their families. Only about a dozen or so weddings are held there each year.
ESTIMATED COST: The wedding of Prince Charles and Princess Diana in 1981 cost approximately $45 million dollars. This wedding is expected to cost more than double that amount: A little under $100 million dollars. With this price tag, anticipate seeing a very lavish affair; one with majestic pomp and circumstance of breathtaking proportions.
WHO PAYS? Money for the festivities may come from several sources: the annual government funding given to the royal household to pay for salaries and official functions. (Approximately $12 million annually) The Queen may personally pay for it. Charles is expected to pay some of the bill, and Kate’s self-made millionaire parents might also contribute.
DATE: A Saturday in July or August seems like a reasonable possibility. An awe-inspiring royal wedding of this caliber takes into account the schedules of all the other royal guests, celebrities and heads of state. Schedules are usually planned a year in advance.
June is already full with activities: Trooping of the Color (the Queen’s birthday parade), and Royal Ascot. Prince Philip’s 90th birthday is on June 10, and William’s own birthday is on June 21. We probably won’t have to wait long for the date and venue to be announced.
THE WEDDING PARTY: Prince William’s younger brother Prince Harry is expected to be his best man and Kate’s sister, Pippa, will be her maid of honor.
THE DRESS: Regarding the bride’s dress, Kate is practical and will be more toned down than Diana was. Kate won’t wear a big, billowy, ball gown as Princess Diana did. It will be a beautiful, slimming white dress, with a dramatic train. She will be crowned with a glittering tiara: either Princess Diana’s “Spencer Heirloom” tiara, or another tiara loaned to her by the Queen.
Most haute couture designers would dive at the opportunity to dress the future princess on this momentous occasion, since the gown is sure to be a prototype piece for years to come. This piece of couture will set wedding fashion standards around the world.
HIS SUIT: He will wear a traditional dark colored military uniform, a sash, a ladder of medals across his breast, medallions under his heart, gold-braided cord, fringed epaulets, a sword, gloves and a white cap.
FAMOUS GUEST LIST: Kate is a commoner who will be welcomed into the Royal Family. The guest list will be overflowing with political figures, heads of state, celebrity friends and acquaintances including: Barack and Michelle Obama, Tony Blair, Elton John, and Sir Richard Branson. We can also expect royals from Sweden, Norway, Asia Belgium, Luxembourg, Spain, the Middle East and Jordan.
PRE-WEDDING FESTIVITIES: Prior to the wedding, on a Friday, a select group of guests (mostly European, Asian, and Middle East Royal families) will arrive at a gorgeous castle venue for a luncheon. The dress code will be business chic: pantsuits and blazers.
On the Friday evening prior to the wedding, guests will attend a spectacular pre-wedding concert. Dress code will be black tie and chiffon gowns, with no tiaras, medallions or regalia. After guests are seated in the concert hall, a symphony orchestra will begin to play and the wedding couple will come out on stage. Kate and William will be greeted by the audience’s thunderous applause. They will proceed to sit in a special box and a beautiful classical concert begins. Numerous contemporary pop artists will come on stage, singing songs as the audience claps along. For the grand finale, the bridal couple will be brought back on stage; surrounded by a swarm of children in flowered crowns, who sing and wave colorful royal flags.
WEDDING DAY: Guests will arrive in extraordinary and ornamental costume into a courtyard brimming with uniformed guards; swords drawn in formation. They then walk slowly on a colored carpet, stopping every ten feet or so to pose for photographs. The pageantry and sheer number of military guards is astounding. Guests then enter the church. Their big emerald tiaras, their dazzling necklaces glimmer in the sunlight. Their satin and billowing chiffon gowns move gently in the breeze. Cross-body sashes, adorned with pins, mementos and family memorabilia, finish their outfits.
Many men will arrive draped in military attire, with shoulder epaulets trimmed like a gold-fringed trellis. An overwhelming plethora of military medals, ceremonial ribbons, neck medallions and eight pointed stars might adorn their chest. They usually finish their look with a set of white gloves, a feathered hat and a gleaming sword.
The bride might arrive in a classic stretch Rolls Royce, with her father; serenaded by roving violins, and a children’s choir. Trumpets will blare within the church to sound her appearance.
As the bride enters the foyer, guests usually rotate in their seats and crane their necks to see her. The orchestra will begin a classical marching piece, as seven young children move the bridal procession forward. The bride should tend to move too, with her arm in her father’s; her tiara most-likely glittering.
A long train of pure white fabric will trail behind her, as three bridesmaids monitor it’s movement.
The religious ceremony will commence. After the couple recites their vows, they will place rings on their fingers.
An enormous choir will then bellow out a song of celebration. A pop star might serenade the bride with a romantic song — perhaps something out of a Disney movie.
AFTER THE CEREMONY: Afterwards, William and Kate will get into a horse-drawn carriage, and will travel down the streets of London, probably to the dock.
At this juncture, the streets will be lined with colorful soldiers, situated every three feet. When the couple arrives at the waterfront, they might embark on a royal boat or barge. They will now be under the protection of an array of naval ships, and uniformed personnel. At this point, the air force will send a fleet of ear-splitting jets in tight formation to fly overhead. Sailing around the harbor for a short awhile, they will arrive at another dock. A military procession of Calvary brigades, equipped with beautiful horses and feathered helmets will escort the royal couple in a coach down the Pall Mall towards Buckingham Palace. Citizens are typically lined up on all the procession routes, hoping to get a glimpse of the couple kissing. All through the city streets, stationed on either side of the avenues, are colorful soldiers. When the couple arrives at the royal palace, they normally shake hands with guests and receive congratulations. As with previous tradition, they come out onto a large balcony and wave to the multitudes below. A choir and band perform music in the background.
RECEPTION/BANQUET: A spectacular banquet will be held at Buckingham Palace. Guests are greeted by blowing horns. Each guest is escorted to their seat by a stamping soldier clad in ancient metal armor and feathered hat.
Massive long tables are decorated with ornate silver candelabras, lighted candles, silver and crystal sculptures, gold colored chairs, and spectacular flowers. The budget for flowers will run into the millions of dollars. Each guest is assigned a liveried footman; who will pull out their chair. Speeches and toasts are made in honor of the couple. Blowing trumpets announce every speech by fur-clad musicians.
CAKE: The cake will consist of a multitude of tiers. Probably white creame with a fruit (strawberry or raspberry) filling. After dinner, the couple will approach the towering cake, and cut a slice.
WEDDING DANCE: After the cake ceremony, the orchestra ignites with beautiful music, as the couple dances a waltz. The parents of the couple join in too.
FIREWORKS: A dazzling fireworks display will illuminate the skyline of London.
HONEYMOON: The couple will most likely take a honeymoon on an exclusive private island oasis, such as in Bali, Fiji or Bora Bora.
MARRIED COUPLE: More than likely, the Queen will confer upon William a title such as the Duke of Cambridge. His new wife will then become HRH, the Duchess of Cambridge.
Once William is finished with his RAF duties, the royal couple might conceivably move into a Georgian manor house that Prince Charles built in Herefordshire. It is a very comfortable and fitting residence for a future king and queen.