While big, lavish nuptials hold limited charm for me (I eloped, and recommend it for its romance and intimacy), plenty of people are mad for all things wedding, and especially all things William and Kate. Even Dunkin Donuts, friend of the common man, is offering a heart-shaped tribute to the royal couple.
If you’re looking to celebrate the Royal Wedding with something more decadent than a doughnut, we’ve gathered some hotel package options.
- The Athenaeum has a $699 Royal Treatment homage to the royal couple. The package includes overnight accommodations, two spa treatments for the price of one, two tickets to a special Enchanted Palace tour at Kensington Palace, and two afternoon teas for the price of one. A very sweet detail, literally and figuratively, is that the tea’s menu will feature items made with honey produced by bees in Royal Gardens in Regents Park. For more information or to book, please visit the Athenaeum.
- Down by the Thames, the Hilton London Tower Bridge is offering a Royal Wedding package, which features three nights’ accommodations, a bottle of Champagne and selection of scones, then a post-wedding 3-course dinner at the hotel’s Larder Restaurant. The package runs £999.00 ($1,622 at today’s exchange rate, or $541 a night) and can be booked by visiting Hilton Tower Bridge.
- The Milestone Hotel, opposite Kensington Palace, has more than just location in its favor. Its Royal Occasion package will treat you to four nights’ accommodations with daily breakfast, a ‘Royal Champagne Afternoon Tea,’ a 7-course banquet dinner, two tickets to Kensington Palace, private roundtrip airport transfers, and a wedding souvenir in the bone china. Rates start at £2,418 ($3,926 at today’s exchange, or $981.50 a night). For more information or to book, visit the Milestone.
- The Royal Wedding package at the popular Royal Horseguards Hotel costs £375 ($609 a night, based on a two-night booking). What you get: overnight accommodations, daily breakfast, afternoon tea on the day of the wedding, and a commemorative item. Visit the Royal Horseguards to book.
- The Mandarin Oriental Hyde Park (pictured below) is blowing out all the stops with a Tuesday-Sunday extravaganza for the well-heeled Anglophile, their Royal Wedding Tour. The lavish itinerary includes visits to the ancestral homes of Princess Diana and Winston Churchill, a trip to Westminster Abbey, dinner at Kensington Palace, lunch and a chat with the director of the British Museum, dinner with an unnamed member of the royal family in their townhome (black sheep, no doubt, letting commoners in to sniff around), plus an opportunity to witness Friday’s wedding events from a lofty perch on the ICA’s roof terrace. For more over-the-top details, please visit the Mandarin Oriental Hyde Park. To book, please plunder your coffers (to the tune of $18,120 for one person and $30,146 for two; or $3,020 a night) and call +44 (0) 207 201 3618, or email email@example.com.
Your options on the homefront:
- The Trump International Hotel & Tower, at the corner of NYC’s Central Park, has a Trump Royal Wedding Experience (of course, the Donald would slap his brand on someone else’s wedding) in which you get one night’s accommodations in a suite, and then 5 a.m. breakfast downstairs at Jean Georges. Monitors will be placed around the dining room so that guests can toast the royal couple with sparkling mimosas. All this can be yours for prices that start at $1,075. For more information or to book, please call (212) 299-1000 or visit the Trump International Hotel & Tower.
- In Denver, the JW Marriott Denver Cherry Creek’s Royal Wedding package includes a room (which our editor calls “some of the cushiest rooms in town”), a 3:45 a.m. wake-up call, and $25 credit towards room service or a breakfast at the hotel’s Second Home Kitchen + Bar. You’ll also get a ‘Royal Tote bag,’ and Champagne and strawberries. The rates start at $329. To book, please call (866) 706-7814 and refer to rate code UY7, or visit the JW Marriott Denver.
- San Francisco’s Kensington Park Hotel is running a royal wedding package entitled “Shag Like Royalty” the cutesy-poo, randy details of which I’ll spare you. If you actually are interested in hearing the sophomoric details of the $189 overnight package, please visit the Kensington Park Hotel, or call (800) 553-1900.
- In Miami, you’re more assured of good weather than the royals will be, and in Miami-style, you can celebrate their wedding day by paying attention to yourself. The Acqualina Resort & Spa will indulge you to a “Royal Treatment” spa package with a two-hour $429 menu of head to toe treatments. They’ll also put you up for the night for an additional $429. To book the spa treatment, please call (855) 750-2740. For more info on the property, please visit Acqualina.
- At New York’s Waldorf-Astoria (pictured below), booking the one-of-a-kind Royal Wedding package means an overnight in the Royal Suite (there’s only one, and it’s the former residence of the Duke and Duchess of Windsor, playing host/hostess at a cocktail party for 40 with passed hors d’oeuvres and white liquids (no stains!). Book this package for $20,000 by calling (212) 355-3000. For more about the hotel itself, please visit the Waldorf-Astoria.
- The Four Seasons Chicago has another only-one-can-book-it Royal Suite Retreat package, featuring an overnight stay in their Royal Suite, roundtrip Rolls-Royce hotel transfer from the airport or a Chicago location, afternoon tea in the Seasons Lounge, a five-course dinner for two in the Seasons Restaurant, a 24-carat gold facial in the hotel spa, English breakfast in bed on the morning of the wedding, and a Champagne toast to the royal couple. The package is available for $5,500 a night, and you can book it by calling (312) 280-8800.
- The Fairmont Empress in Victoria, B.C. is so giddy about the Royal Wedding that throughout the entire month of April, you can participate in all sorts of festivities, including royalty-themed spa treatments, teas, dinners, pastry classes, and picnics. To see the schedule of offers and events, please visit the Fairmont Empress.
So far, the Royal Wedding donut seems the most sensible item of the bunch.
If you’re thinking of a last-minute trip to London, a search on Kayak.com currently turns up fares from New York as low as $662, roundtrip, during the last week of April.
For the top-end of travel specials on offer, check out the BBC's Royally Ridiculous Royal Wedding Packages:
Alert the treasury: The Mandarin Oriental Hyde Park and the Hyatt Regency London The Churchill are currently duking it out for the priciest royal wedding packages. In one corner we have the Mandarin's $30,000 package for two guests with royal-family led tours of historical sites, private dinners at stately homes, and a champagne lunch overlooking the royal wedding parade. In the other corner is the Hyatt's $48,000 package for up to six guests with luxury chauffeur and butler service, a private chef, a lecture from Will & Kate's royal biographer, and the same amenities you'll find in Buckingham Palace (Moyse Stevens flowers, Floris toiletries, Prestat truffles). But the true king's ransom is the Mayfair Hotel's Suite and Sapphire package, including a three-night stay in the Fendi-adorned Azure Suite and an 18-carat sapphire and diamond ring for the princely sum of $336,268.
[UPDATE 4/5/2011: The over-the-top royal wedding deals keep rolling in...]
New York's Pierre, a Taj Hotel, already has a royal air, so where better to partake in your own romantic celebration? The hotel is offering a Pierre Rajput Celebration Romance Menu through July 1, some lucky guests can still coincide their stay with Kate and William's wedding festivities between April 28-30. Guests partaking of the package will have two all-inclusive nights in the lavish suite with the services of a private Romance butler, an in-room couples massage, a picnic in Central Park and a carriage ride, dinner at Le Caprice, nightly turndown service with romance in mind, and lots of flowers. Want to book this royal treatment? Set aside the princely sum of $14,500 and call the Pierre at (800) 743-7734.
Ann Shields is Online Senior Editor at TravelandLeisure.com.