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Monday, 4 July 2011

The Princess bride: Monaco comes to a standstill as stunning Charlene and Prince Albert exchange vows in religious ceremony

By DAILY MAIL REPORTER
The Princess bride  Monaco  Charlene and Prince Albert ceremony The Princess bride  Monaco  Charlene and Prince Albert ceremony  1 Just married: Prince Albert II of Monaco and Princess Charlene of Monaco leave the Prince's Palace in Monaco after their religious wedding ceremony


VIP guests include Karl Lagerfeld, Naomi Campbell, Roger Moore and Giorgio Armani
Princess Charlene wears Giorgio Armani silk gown, covered in 40,000 Swarovski crystals

French chef Alain Ducasse is preparing a multi-course dinner for 450 guests

The couple were legally married in an intimate civil service on Friday

A day after the civil wedding that transformed one-time Olympic swimmer Charlene Wittstock into the Princess of Monaco, the South African and her prince, Albert II exchanged vows in the religious ceremony today.

The happy both couple both answered 'oui' (yes) to the Archbishop of Monaco, Bernard Barsi, who conducted the service in front of 850 guests.

Wearing an off-the-shoulder Armani dress, the new Princess Charlene on Monaco looked serene and beautiful as she wed Prince Albert in the courtyard of the Prince's Palace.


The Princess bride  Monaco  Charlene and Prince Albert ceremony The Princess bride  Monaco  Charlene and Prince Albert ceremony  2 A tender kiss: The new Princess Charlene shares a kiss with her Prince after they are pronounced husband and wife


The Princess bride  Monaco  Charlene and Prince Albert ceremony The Princess bride  Monaco  Charlene and Prince Albert ceremony  3 With this ring, I thee wed: Charlene places a 18-carat white gold platinum rings by Cartier on the Prince's finger


The palace said the stunning gown took Armani's team 2,500 hours to prepare, of which 700 hours was spent on the embroidery alone, using 'kilometres' of platinum-coated thread sewn into 130 metres of off-white silk.

The gown would have been heavy for the new Princess, as she would have had to carry the weight of 40,000 Swarovski crystals, 20,000 mother of pearl tear drops and 30,000 'stones in gold shades'.

The dress's crowning glory was the long train made from 20 metres of silk tulle, which took 100 hours to make.


The Princess bride  Monaco  Charlene and Prince Albert ceremony The Princess bride  Monaco  Charlene and Prince Albert ceremony  4 Let us pray: The couple kneel at the altar during their service


The Princess bride  Monaco  Charlene and Prince Albert ceremony The Princess bride  Monaco  Charlene and Prince Albert ceremony  5 Intimate: The couple share a private word with each other during the ceremony


The Princess bride  Monaco  Charlene and Prince Albert ceremony The Princess bride  Monaco  Charlene and Prince Albert ceremony  6 Striking: Charlene's bridesmaid carries her long train as the couple leave the wedding mass


The Princess bride  Monaco  Charlene and Prince Albert ceremony The Princess bride  Monaco  Charlene and Prince Albert ceremony  7 Craftmanship: Danish designer Isabell Kristensen and maid-of-honour Donatella Knecht de Massy hold the Princess' train, made from 20 metres of silk tulle


The groom looked smart in a cream summer uniform of Monaco's palace guards, with his sleeves embroidered with oak and olive leave.

Accompanying the bride was her maid-of-honour Donatella Knecht de Massy and seven young bridesmaids from around Monaco and neighbouring French districts wearing taffeta red and white outfits and straw hats.

During the service, the couple exchanged 18-carat white gold platinum rings by Cartier, with Princess Charlene laughing as she placed the ring on her husband's finger.


The Princess bride  Monaco  Charlene and Prince Albert ceremony The Princess bride  Monaco  Charlene and Prince Albert ceremony  8 Religious ceremony: The Roman-Catholic ceremony follows the civil wedding which was held in the Throne Room of the Prince's Palace of Monaco yesterday


The Princess bride  Monaco  Charlene and Prince Albert ceremony The Princess bride  Monaco  Charlene and Prince Albert ceremony  9 Spectacular, spectacular: The VIPs, royals and dignitaries crowed into the main courtyard for the lavish wedding mass


The Princess bride  Monaco  Charlene and Prince Albert ceremony The Princess bride  Monaco  Charlene and Prince Albert ceremony  10 Jubilation: Monaco locals looked thrilled to be able to share the day with the newlyweds


The Princess bride  Monaco  Charlene and Prince Albert ceremony The Princess bride  Monaco  Charlene and Prince Albert ceremony  11 Wedding mania: Thousands of Monaco residents were invited to join in the ceremony


During the service, Prince Albert's nieces Alexander - daughter of his sister Princess Caroline of Handover - and Pauline - eldest daughter of his other sister Princess Stephanie - both performed readings.

After the mass, the couple went to the nearby Sainte Devote Church to lay down her bridal bouquet in the tradition in honour of the Patroness of Monaco.

As the couple left the church, Princess Charlene was seen wiping away a tear as a choir sang.


The Princess bride  Monaco  Charlene and Prince Albert ceremony The Princess bride  Monaco  Charlene and Prince Albert ceremony  12 Emotional: Princess Charlene wipes away a tear as she leaves the Sainte Devote Church after placing her bouquet inside


The Princess bride  Monaco  Charlene and Prince Albert ceremony The Princess bride  Monaco  Charlene and Prince Albert ceremony  13 Moved: Princess Charlene sheds a tear as she listens to a song as she leaves the Saint Devote Church


The Princess bride  Monaco  Charlene and Prince Albert ceremony The Princess bride  Monaco  Charlene and Prince Albert ceremony  14 All eyes on you: Monegasque citizens watch the couple kiss inside the Sainte Devote church


The Princess bride  Monaco  Charlene and Prince Albert ceremony The Princess bride  Monaco  Charlene and Prince Albert ceremony  15 We did it! The couple laugh as well-wishers throw confetti and rose petals at them


The bride was given away by her father, Michael Wittstock, who wore a black and grey suit.

Also in attendance was her mother Lynette and her brothers Gareth and Sean.

VIP guests at the star studded religious ceremony including Karl Lagerfeld, Naomi Campbell, Roger Moore, Giorgio Armani and former French first lady Bernadette Chirac.


The Princess bride  Monaco  Charlene and Prince Albert ceremony The Princess bride  Monaco  Charlene and Prince Albert ceremony  16 Crowd pleaser: Another kiss from the couple on the steps of Sainte Devote


The Princess bride  Monaco  Charlene and Prince Albert ceremony The Princess bride  Monaco  Charlene and Prince Albert ceremony  17 A wave from the new Princess: Charlene waves to her new subjects as the couple ride through the streets of Monaco


The couple were joined by European royals, heads of state, top models and world-class athletes streaming up the red carpet into the Prince's Palace, with the British royal family represented by Prince Edward and his wife Sophie, Countess Of Wessex.

As guests made their way into the venue, photographers shouted at Czech supermodel Karolina Kurkova, dressed in a sober navy skirt suit, to strike a pose.

And the crowd of thousands of Monegasque citizens following the festivities on giant screens just outside the palace broke into cheers as French musician Jean Michelle Jarre swept by.


The Princess bride  Monaco  Charlene and Prince Albert ceremony The Princess bride  Monaco  Charlene and Prince Albert ceremony  18 Here comes the bride: Michael Kenneth Wittstock escorts his daughter Princess Charlene onto the red carpet at Place de Palais


The Princess bride  Monaco  Charlene and Prince Albert ceremony The Princess bride  Monaco  Charlene and Prince Albert ceremony  19 Elegant in white: The white silk gown designed by Giorgio Armani fell beautifully over her flawless figure


Other household names expected to converge on the princely palace - an Italian Renaissance castle where Monaco's ruling Grimaldi dynasty has resided for centuries - include French President Nicolas Sarkozy, Romanian gymnast Nadia Comaneci, U.S.
soprano Renee Fleming and Armani, the Italian designer who made Charlene's wedding gown.

Celebrated French-born chef Alain Ducasse is preparing a multi-course dinner for 450 guests.

Ducasse, who like many in his tax bracket has taken Monegasque citizenship, is the first chef to earn three Michelin stars in three different cities, including three for his Louis XV restaurant in Monaco.


The Princess bride  Monaco  Charlene and Prince Albert ceremony The Princess bride  Monaco  Charlene and Prince Albert ceremony  20 Taking part: Princess Caroline of Hanover's daughter Alexandra (left) and her cousin Pauline - daughter of Princess Stephanie of Monaco read at the altar


The Princess bride  Monaco  Charlene and Prince Albert ceremony The Princess bride  Monaco  Charlene and Prince Albert ceremony  21 Family affair: Prince Albert was supported by his sister Princess Stephanie and her three children Louis, Pauline (second right) and Camille (far right)


The Princess bride  Monaco  Charlene and Prince Albert ceremony The Princess bride  Monaco  Charlene and Prince Albert ceremony  22 Pride: Princess Charlene's mother Lynette Wittstock with her brothers Sean (left) and Gareth arriving at the Place Du Palais


He has said freshly caught fish and vegetables grown on Albert's farm will be on the menu. A fireworks extravaganza will follow.

The couple was married in an intimate civil service on Friday inside the prince's palace.

Albert's sisters, Princesses Caroline and Stephanie, were among several dozen guests at Friday's ceremony, which was held in the palace's sumptuous throne room where the prince's father, the late Rainier III, wed Hollywood legend Grace Kelly in 1956.


The Princess bride  Monaco  Charlene and Prince Albert ceremony The Princess bride  Monaco  Charlene and Prince Albert ceremony  23 Time to celebrate: Princess Caroline of Hanover attended with her daughter Charlotte Casiraghi


The Princess bride  Monaco  Charlene and Prince Albert ceremony The Princess bride  Monaco  Charlene and Prince Albert ceremony  23 Man for the job: Giorgio Armani - who designed Charlene's wedding gown, attended with his niece Roberta, as did Chanel designer Karl Lagerfeld


The blonde beauty died in a car crash nearly 30 years ago, and this tiny principality on the Riviera has been without a princess ever since.

Known as a notorious ladies man, 53-year-old Albert long eschewed marriage, and many Monegasques had resigned themselves to forever having a bachelor prince.

The constitution was even modified to ensure the continuity of the Grimaldi line, one of Europe's oldest dynasties, in case Albert never produced an heir.

The prince acknowledged having fathered two children out of wedlock, but only his legitimate offspring would be able to succeed him. Rumours have swirled in recent days that a third illegitimate child had surfaced - prompting Charlene to allegedly try to call off the wedding and return to South Africa days before the festivities.


The Princess bride  Monaco  Charlene and Prince Albert ceremony The Princess bride  Monaco  Charlene and Prince Albert ceremony  24 Extravagant ceremony: The religious ceremony of the Royal Wedding of Prince Albert II of Monaco to Charlene Wittstock was taking place in the main courtyard at Prince's Palace


The palace has denied the reports, dismissing them as 'ugly rumours' prompted by spite and jealousy.

Charlene, 33, has told interviewers she would like to have children.

Only Monaco's fewer than 8,000 citizens and their partners were allowed access to the Rocher, the rocky promontory presided over by the palace, to follow Saturday's service on two giant screens.


The Princess bride  Monaco  Charlene and Prince Albert ceremony The Princess bride  Monaco  Charlene and Prince Albert ceremony  25 Preparations: French-born chef Alain Ducasse is preparing a multi-course dinner for 450 guests after the wedding ceremony


The Princess bride  Monaco  Charlene and Prince Albert ceremony The Princess bride  Monaco  Charlene and Prince Albert ceremony  26 The Brits are here: Supermodel Naomi Campbell attended with her boyfriend Vladislav Doronin (left), while the British royal family were represented by Prince Edward and Sophie, Countess of Wessex


The Princess bride  Monaco  Charlene and Prince Albert ceremony The Princess bride  Monaco  Charlene and Prince Albert ceremony  27 Decoration: Campbell wore a pink floral fascinator, while the Countess of Wessex wore a large brown hat


Several thousands of Monegasques came out for the civil ceremony a day earlier, many of them sporting dark suits or evening gowns and heels despite the scorching temperatures.

One of the attendees, 72-year-old Marie Malghreli, was still glowing from her family's brush with royalty.


The Princess bride  Monaco  Charlene and Prince Albert ceremony The Princess bride  Monaco  Charlene and Prince Albert ceremony  28 Whoops: A guard rushes to the aid of Prince Laurent of Belgium, as he falls as he enters the palace


The Princess bride  Monaco  Charlene and Prince Albert ceremony The Princess bride  Monaco  Charlene and Prince Albert ceremony  29 Celebrity guests: Former Bond actor Roger Moore and his wife Kristina (left) and Malaysian actress Michelle Yeoh and her husband, FIA President Jean Todt


The Princess bride  Monaco  Charlene and Prince Albert ceremony The Princess bride  Monaco  Charlene and Prince Albert ceremony  30 Where's Carla? French president Nicolas Sarkozy attended without his wife Carla Bruni-Sarkozy. while Swedish model/actress Victoria Silvstedt looked demure in a pink shift dress


'My husband last night touched the prince's hand and then the princess touched my husband's hand - my husband was touched - and I was standing next to him and I was jealous,' she said. 'She is really pretty, she's delicious.'

Charlene was wearing a blue, ankle-length ensemble press handlers said was designed by the princess herself.


The Princess bride  Monaco  Charlene and Prince Albert ceremony The Princess bride  Monaco  Charlene and Prince Albert ceremony  31 A royal occasion: (L-R) Prince Daniel Westin and Crown Princess Victoria of Sweden, Crown Prince Frederik and Princess Mary of Denmark and Norway's Crown Prince Haakon and his wife Crown Princess Mette-Marit


The Princess bride  Monaco  Charlene and Prince Albert ceremony The Princess bride  Monaco  Charlene and Prince Albert ceremony  32 By royal appointment: (L-R) Prince Carl-Philip and Princess Madeleine of Sweden, Crown Prince Willem-Alexander and Princess Maxima of The Netherlands and Belgium's Crown Prince Philippe and Princess Mathilde


The Princess bride  Monaco  Charlene and Prince Albert ceremony The Princess bride  Monaco  Charlene and Prince Albert ceremony  33 State occasion: (L-R) Sweden's King Carl XVI Gustaf and Queen Silvia, Prince Vittorio Emanuele - Duke of Savoia, and his wife Marina Doria and Prince Henri of Orleans, Count of Paris with his wife Micaela Cousino Quinones de Leon


Monaco's royal couple kiss


Monaco's royal couple walk down aisle


Jean Michel Jarre Live at the Monaco wedding with introduction speech from Prince Albert


source: dailymail

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