Petra’s Dhs35 Million Wedding

The F1 heiress’ super-flash big day bash
Monday , 29 August 2011
Formula One boss Bernie Ecclestone, right, and his daughter Petra, center arrive at the wedding
Formula One boss Bernie Ecclestone, right, and his daughter Petra, center arrive at the wedding
Paris Hilton, her mother Kathy Hilton and her sister Nicky
Paris Hilton, her mother Kathy Hilton and her sister Nicky
Slavica Radic Ecclestone and Tamara Ecclestone
Slavica Radic Ecclestone and Tamara Ecclestone
Sarah Ferguson (L) and her daughter Princess Beatrice
Sarah Ferguson (L) and her daughter Princess Beatrice
A view of the Odescalchi Castle in Bracciano
A view of the Odescalchi Castle in Bracciano

Step aside Kim and Kris. Because when it comes to splashing the cash on your wedding, Petra Ecclestone makes the new Mr. and Mrs. Humphries’ nuptials look like a budget version of her big day.

The 22-year-old daugher of F1 supremo Bernie Ecclestone tied-the-knot with British entrepreneur fiance James Stunt in a lavish 3-day Italian celebration that reportedly cost the motor-racing mogul a whopping Dhs35 million – beating Kim and Kris’ big day bill by a cool Dhs8 million. Ouch!

Kicking off on Friday night with a pre-wedding dinner at Rome’s uber swanky Villa Aurelia, 300 VIP guests including Paris and Nicky Hilton, Sarah Ferguson and Princesses Beatrice and Eugenie enjoyed a luscious Italian feast, washed down with bottles of Cristal champagne before being serenaded by R&B megastar, Alicia Keys.

The big day itself was held at Castello Odelscalchi, the stunning 15th Century Roman castle where Tom Cruise and Katie Holmes got hitched in 2006. Petra and James tied-the-knot in front of their VIP guests in a twilight ceremony inside the medieval landmark, said to cost the bride’s billionaire father Dhs1.86 million.

Looking spectacular in a custom made Dhs480,000 strapless Vera Wang gown, Petra and her father left her Dhs27,600 a night suite at the Hassler Hotel in a white Rolls Royce Phantom, before switching to a vintage white Rolls Royce for her grand entrance at the castle. Meeting Maid of Honour, 27-year-old sister Tamara, and her bridesmaids at the fairytale outdoor venue, the hour-long service was accompanied by a Dhs1.5 million, 18-piece string section from the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, while Andrea Bocelli performed for Dhs900,000 before enraptured guests the moment Petra and James said ‘I Do.’

A vintage champagne-soaked reception in the castle gardens followed, before Eric Clapton, a close friend of the Ecclestone family, played free of charge for the couple’s first dance. But the spend-fest continued with a Dhs9 million performance by The Black Eyed Peas, and a set by DJ David Guetta, who pocketed Dhs3 million for a night on the decks. Rounded off with a midnight firework display that saw Dhs600,000 of Bernie’s cash go up in smoke, Petra and new hubby James left their no-expense spared big day and headed off for their honeymoon on Bernie’s multi-million dirham mega-yacht – for what we’re guessing won’t be a budget newlywed getaway!