on July 2, 2011 - 3:08pm
A day after the couple tied the knot in a civil ceremony, Prince Albert II and Charlene Wittstock wed in a Catholic ceremony today in Monaco. The couple exchanged vows in the courtyard of the prince's royal palace, rather than the cathedral where his parents Prince Rainer III and Grace Kelly said "I Do" in 1956. The Princess of Monaco made her way up the aisle accompanied by her father and six flower girls.
The former Olympic swimmer was stunning in an off-white duchess silk Giorgio Armani Privé gown with long train and veil made from off-white silk tulle. The bride, 33, wore an elegant off the shoulder dress which was encrusted with thousands of tiny Swarovski crystals and mother of pearl teardrops in white and gold hues. The groom, 53, wore the white dress uniform of Monaco's Carabinieri royal guard and was adorned with three medals, including the French Legion of Honor and the Order of the Grimaldi. Many celebrities attended the service including supermodels Naomi Campbell and Karolina Kurkova, fashion designers Karl Lagerfeld and Giorgio Armani and actor Roger Moore.
The couple exchanged vows in French, pledging loyalty and love to one another. While slipping the ring on his bride's finger, Prince Albert winked at Charlene and she giggled sweetly. The couple took communion and Andrea Bocelli sang Ave Maria as the pair made their way to sign the official registry with their witnesses.
As the couple exited the palace to the sound of ringing bells, they were greeted with cheers and showered with flower petals. The royal couple rode through the streets of the Mediterranean country overlooking the sea en route to the cathedral to place Princess Charlene's floral bouquet in the same place that Princess Grace did many years ago.
The newlyweds will continue the festivities tonight with a wedding dinner for 450 guests prepared by chef Alain Ducasse. A royal ball awaits at the Monte Carlo opera, followed by fireworks. The couple will honeymoon in Charlene's home country of South Africa.
For more photos of Prince Albert and Princess Charlene of Monaco's wedding visit our Facebook page.
~Christy Pastore @christypastore
Images via People