Luxembourg's Biggest Royal Event: Prince Guillaume Married Belgian Countess Stephanie de Lannoy

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Luxembourg's Biggest Royal Event: Prince Guillaume Married Belgian Countess Stephanie de Lannoy
Sun 21-10-2012

Luxembourg's biggest royal event in decades has taken place on Saturday. The heir-to-the-throne Prince Guillaume weds Belgian countess Stephanie de Lannoy.

Prince Guillaume, who will become Luxembourg's seventh grand duke, was Europe's last royal bachelor. 

Thousands of people crammed the center of Luxembourg city after the ceremony to see the pair exchange their first kiss in public as a married couple on the balcony of the royal palace.

Europe's royalty were at the Catholic wedding mass at Notre Dame cathedral blending tradition with modernity, the day after the couple tied the knot in an intimate ceremony.

The beautiful countess, wearing an ivory lace gown embroidered with silver filigree, entered the cathedral on the arm of her brother Jehan.

The gown, designed by Elie Saab of Lebanon, featured 3 quarter length sleeves and a silk tulle veil, also adorned with the silver floral motif, that trailed some 4 meters behind her.

The 28 year old bride is a member of one of Belgium's oldest aristocratic families and the youngest of 8 children.

The 30 year old Hereditary Grand Duke of Luxembourg, Prince Guillaume, arrived in full military regalia with his mother, Grand Duchess Maria-Teresa, wearing a bright coral outfit with a silver brooch.

The event, at an estimated cost of 500,000 euros ($650,000) to the Luxembourg taxpayer, included free concerts, street shows and a giant fireworks display in the evening.

Grand Duke Henri of Luxembourg, also in full dress uniform, was accompanied by Stephanie's aunt, the sister of Countess Alix de Lannoy, who died in late August. Saturday's wedding mass began with a minute of silence in her honor.

The couple went on the balcony after the wedding, pretending to have met there by accident as a joke, before exchanging a first brief kiss followed by a longer one to the cheers of the crowd.

Prince Guillaume, will become Luxembourg's seventh grand duke, was Europe's last royal bachelor.

He said ahead of the event: "Our wedding is an international event, meaning it's a good excuse to show Luxembourg's festive side."