Why might Prince Harry and Meghan Markle marry at Hedsor?
The speculation is intensifying regarding the forthcoming nuptials of Prince Harry and his American girlfriend Meghan Markle and so naturally….the Hedsor team are awaiting the call from the Palace.
Hedsor House has a long and illustrious history with both the Royal family and the United States, where Markle hails from. As Royal wedding experts the Hedsor House team have made our predictions about their special day.
Harry’s brother William and Sister-in-Law Kate, the Duke & Duchess of Cambridge, named their children after King George III and his wife Queen Charlotte whose original portraits hang in the Hedsor House Grand Staircase.
Queen Victoria, used to take the short 10 mile journey to Hedsor, in her carriage for afternoon tea and so if choosing Hedsor House as their wedding venue, Grandmother Queen Elizabeth II will not have far to travel from nearby Windsor Castle.
Hedsor House was gifted as a wedding present in 1934 to Philip & Florence Shephard and in the 1950s the house was leased to the US Air Force where it was used as a spy base during the Cold War. Chosen for its proximity to London and seclusion the House is now a favourite of A-listers including Brad Pitt, George Clooney and Johnny Depp.
With guests likely to be flying in from the US to London Heathrow - private cars would just need to take the short 15 mile journey to the exclusive private estate in Taplow, South Buckinghamshire.
The Itinerary & Details
The Rehearsal Dinner
“Our prediction would be that Harry & Meghan would honour the American tradition of a rehearsal dinner just for family and close friends on the Friday night before the wedding. A long banqueting table set in the Ballroom complete with beautiful floral arrangements potentially like the Autumnal blooms by Amie Bone as pictured below ” says Jennie Hopcroft, Senior Wedding Specialist at Hedsor House.
Traditionally, the groom's parents would be the official hosts of the rehearsal dinner, since the bride's family customarily pays for the wedding. It is likely to be the first time that Harry & Meghan will see most of their close friends and family together, the rehearsal dinner may mean that some members of the two families may be meeting for the first time, especially given that some will be flying across from the the US for the event.
Anticipated costs of Rehearsal Dinner for 50 Guests - £38,000
Floristry: £8,000 || Catering: £20,000 || Wine & Champagne: £10,000
After kissing her Prince goodbye for the night, Meghan would retire to incredible Hedsor House Bridal Suite where she will spend her last night as a Miss before the big day. She will perhaps enjoying a leisurely bath in the onyx marble bathroom with a bottle of Louis Roederer Cristal Reims Champagne (the Champagne fit for royalty created in 1876 for Tsar Alexander II) whilst listening to Spotify and performing her beauty rituals, ready to be in the spotlight the following day.
Harry would more than likely head back to Windsor Castle for his final night as the most eligible bachelor in the United Kingdom.
The Wedding Day
Meghan would begin getting ready in the incredible Bridal Dressing Room with her Bridesmaids & Maid of Honour, rumoured to be close friend Priyanka Chopra.
Meghan's fashion choice for the day is likely to be a nod to Harry's late Mother, Princess Diana. Regardless we know Meghan will be looking absolutely stunning.
Our feeling is that Westminster Abbey or St Paul’s Cathedral may be too public and potentially too ostentatious for the notoriously private and paparazzi hating Prince, so local 12th Century St Nicholas’ of Hedsor Chapel would provide a secluded and beautiful spot for the couple’s special ceremony. We predict a small and intimate Church of England service with closest friends and family.
Just 300 metres from Hedsor House and reached via a private driveway, photographers would struggle to get anywhere near the private Chapel with the Royal security teams on standby.
If the public demands Harry & Meghan give a good show, like older brother William & Kate, then nearby St George’s Chapel at Windsor Castle could provide a better solution.
Our prediction would be that Princess Charlotte and Prince George, Harry’s Niece and Nephew, would play the role of flower girl & page boy and the pews would be elegantly decorated with delicate and understated florals.
The Wedding Breakfast
To accommodate for the 300 person affair we anticipate a glass structure on the South Lawn connected to the house via the parterre. With incredible views across the estate and with the House as the backdrop where guests will dine.
Our expectation is that The Admirable-Crichton, one of Hedsor’s trusted preferred caterers, will provide a £400 meal per head for the lavish affair. Perhaps lobster tail and beef wellington will be on the menu for the expectant crowd.
Over the last 33 years this famous London based caterer have had the privilege of planning events for many members of the British and European Royal Families, and in 2002 they were honoured to be awarded a Royal Warrant to HRH The Prince of Wales providing a strong link to get the honours of feeding this special crowd.
Based on 300 guests
3 Day Hire of Hedsor House plus extras - £38,820 + VAT
Rehearsal Dinner - £38,000
Glass Marquee - £150,000
Catering - £120,000
300 guests at £400 per head.
Luxury Bathroom Facilities - £4,000
Imagine luxurious bathrooms with gorgeous Floris soaps and fresh linen hand towels. For 300 guests, top end mobile toilets will cost at least £4000. Of course The Queen will have her own private Bathroom in the House itself!
Photography - £30,000
Our money is on Mario Testino, one of Princess Diana’s and a Vogue favourite.
Dress - £10,000
Stationery - £9,000
Barnard & Westwood may be lucky enough to get the call as fine printers to the Queen and Prince Charles - no doubt security over these special invitations will be at the absolute maximum to avoid any of the finer details being leaked to the media.
Flower Girls & Page Boy Outfits - £1,698
With Prince George and Princess Charlotte due to be centre stage as flower girl and page boy, Nicki Macfarlane, who provided the flower girl outfits for William & Kate, will likely be back on hand. A page boy outfit will cost around £226 each, and flower girl dresses £340.
Church Fees - £500
Even though his Grandmother The Queen is The Supreme Governor of the Church of England, Harry & Meghan will still need to pay the church their marriage fees.
Decoration & Production - £18,000
For spectacular lighting and production throughout the grounds surrounding the marquee and inside the marquee itself, a top London agency will likely be taking on the job of adding the absolute wow-factor. From bar hire to amazing dance floors, production is key to transforming the blank-canvas of a marquee or the Hedsor Ballroom into something truly jaw-dropping for photos and guests.
Hair & Make-Up - £6,900
No doubt a top team will be on hand to ensure Meghan and the whole bridal party will be looking absolutely stunning. Our guess will be that Meghan will fly her trusted makeup artist across from the US, business class of course.
Entertainment - £25,000
No Royal wedding would be complete without some traditional fanfare, choirs and strings however we imagine things will turn a little more modern for the evening celebrations.
Coldplay and Linkin Park are some of Harry’s favourite bands- we’re sure mates rates will apply.
Wedding Favours - £885
These lovely little gifts for every wedding guest should not break the bank. We expect something low-key and personal, such as a small jar of Hedsor honey.
Alcohol - £30,000
Harry is famed for being a bit of a party animal and with lots of celebrity friends in attendance we expect the bar to be open and free flowing...perhaps a Harry and Meghan inspired Mr & Mrs Cocktail will be on the menu too.
Floristry - £26,000
Most likely to be Lavender Green - the Chelsea based florist who was the florist behind Pippa Middleton’s recent wedding flowers and one of Hedsor’s most trusted and preferred suppliers.
Cake - £2,600
Our prediction here is something bang on trend and not traditional! Perhaps an agate cake…
Security - £60,000
Of course all of the Royal security teams will be on standby however extra reinforcements will definitely be required to line the perimeter of the estate and drive.
TOTAL - £571,403