They may not exactly be our Prince William and Kate Middleton, but later this month the suddenly-in-the-news-again Kelsey Grammar will marry Kayte Walsh at New York’s Plaza Hotel. When celebs get hitched, they often choose private homes and estates to keep security tight and the paparazzi out. But many of the world’s finest hotels have proven they can do this just as well, while at the same time offering readymade luxurious ballrooms and top-end services. Here’s a rundown of some of the world’s most popular properties for superstar unions.
Plaza Hotel, New York
A time-honored celeb wedding classic, the illustrious Plaza hits the spotlight again this month as Kelsey Grammer weds wife number four, 29-year-old Virgin Atlantic stewardess Kayte Walsh, on February 25, with a lavish $100,000 reception (all of which can now proceed thanks to Grammer’s ex-wife Camille, herself a budding celeb on The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills, allowing Grammer a quicky 11th hour divorce on February 10). The Plaza has played host to many top celebrity weddings over the years, including that of Michael Douglas and Catherine Zeta-Jones in 2000, a $1.5 million dollar blowout attended by the likes of Martha Stewart, Jack Nicholson, Goldie Hawn, Oliver Stone and Meg Ryan. Matching that price tag in 1993 (making it one of the 90’s most expensive celeb weddings) were the nuptials of Eddie Murphy and Nicole Mitchell.
Beverly Hills Hotel, California
Few properties in greater Hollywood can match the Plaza’s celeb wedding firepower as the Beverly Hills Hotel, which most recently served as a shuttle origin spot for the December wedding guests of Nicole Richie and Joel Madden (the actual ceremony was at bride dad Lionel Richie’s posh area pad). Ozzy and Sharon Osbourne also famously renewed their vows at the Beverly Hills on New Year’s Eve 2002/03, a wild event caught on tape for the couple’s then-MTV smash The Osbournes. Other BH Hotel weddings have included those of John Stamos and Rebecca Romijn in 1998, and Shaquille O’Neal and Shaunie Nelson in 2002.
Villa d’Este, Lake Como, Italy
Picked by Forbes Traveler as the best hotel in world in 2009, the 15th century Villa d’Este has been luring the moneyed and the famous to Lake Como since it became a hotel in 1873. Last July it served as the idyllic wedding site of Cute Couple of the Century John Krasinski and Emily Blunt. Lake Como’s most famous resident, George Clooney, was among the guests.
Bacara Resort & Spa, Santa Barbara, California
A little farther up the Pacific coast (and further off the public radar) than equally fancy neighbors the Four Seasons Resort Santa Barbara and the San Ysidro Ranch, the 78-acre Bacara Resort & Spa served as the January 2010 site of Josh Duhamel’s surprise (even to her) wedding renewal to Fergie, then his wife of one year. (Duhamel later complained on the Ellen Degeneres Show that hotel staff leaked the surprise.) In 2004 the Bacara was also the setting for the Halloween-themed union of rock star Travis Barker and former Miss USA (and current Bridalplasty host) Shanna Moakler.