Movies and Celebrities

A billionaire's daughter weds at Venice's San Clemente Palace hotel

San Clemente Palace Hotel and Resort Chapel

Interior of chapel at San Clemente Palace

ABOVE AND BELOW: Two views of the Chiesa di San Clemente at the San Clemente Palace Hotel & Resort, plus photos of the island and the hotel's main building.

Isola di San Clemente - Laguna di VeneziaVenice has long been a popular spot for destination weddings, but the coming weekend's 3-day wedding extravaganza for the daughter of Pramod Agarwal, a UK-based billionaire, promises to raise the bar for over-the-top Venetian nuptials. The wedding will take place on the 17-acre private island of San Clemente, which is home to the San Clemente Palace Hotel & Resort. (In earlier incarnations, the island served as a mental hospital and a sanctuary for stray cats.)

According to WeddingSutra.com, the bride and groom--Vineeta Agarwal and Muqit Teja--will have 800 guests. The ceremony and reception are being organized by teams of wedding planners and chefs from India. Entertainment will include performances by Shakira and a "grand show" on day 3 of the festivities.

For more information about the wedding, see WeddingSutra's report. And to learn more about the venue, read our illustrated San Clemente Palace Hotel review, which includes a page on the hotel's wedding and honeymoon facilities.

Update: The San Clemente Palace was shut down in fall, 2012. With luck, the hotel will find a buyer in the future, but for now, cross it off your list of destination-wedding venus.

San Clemente Palace Hotel & Resort

Bottom photo: San Clemente Palace Hotel & Resort

Johnny Depp's palazzo in Venice (video)

Johnny Depp's palazzo in Venice

ABOVE: Johnny Depp's Palazzo Donà Sangiantoffetti (center) is dwarfed by its neighbors on the Grand Canal. 

Italian news media are now reporting that Johnny Depp has forked over 10 million euros (about 13.5 million U.S. dollars or 8.5 million pounds sterling) for the Palazzo Donà Sangiantoffetti, a 17th Century building next to Ca' Pesaro, a larger and arguably more beautiful palace that houses the city of Venice's Museums of Modern Art and Oriental Art.

Compared to its neighbors, the Palazzo Donà is barely more than a cottage, albeit an expensive one. Still, that's adequate for a weekend pied-à-terre, and we suspect that the actor's new digs on the Grand Canal will be more than comfortable enough for his family and entourage once renovations are complete.

Below is a video (shot today) that shows the Palazzo Donà, views from an adjacent pier on the Grand Canal, the tiny corte behind the palazzo, and the narrow pedestrian passages that connect the house and its neighbors to the heart of Venice's sestiere or district of San Polo.

(The Bearded Collie in the video is Maggie, star of the Maggie in Venice dog blog, who has been on the trail of Johnny Depp since he filmed The Tourist in Venice with Angelina Jolie last year.)


Is Johnny Depp buying a palazzo in Venice?

Johnny Depp's yacht VAJOLIROJA in Venice

ABOVE: Johnny Depp's yacht Vajoliroja in Venice last year.

Johnny Depp may have bombed at the box office with The Tourist, a Venice-based thriller that he starred in with Angelina Jolie last year, but that unhappy experience hasn't dampened the actor's enthusiasm for Venice--at least if we're to believe a report in La Nuova di Venezia e Mestre, which claims that Depp is ready to offer 10 million euros for a holiday home on the Grand Canal.

According to La Nuova, Depp wants to purchase the Palazzo Donà Sangiantoffetti, a 17th Century mansion that he visited with his wife while The Tourist was being filmed during the late winter and early spring of 2010.

For a Google-translated version of La Nuova's story in English, click here.