Thursday, Oct. 11, 2012 | 3:05 p.m.
There’s no place in the world quite like Las Vegas for weddings. We can handle a “quickie.” We’re all organized for Elvis lookalikes to legalize vows. We can lay on as many showgirls as you wish for a glitz and glamour extravaganza. We can even throw the biggest and best the world has ever seen.
With 120,000 licenses a year, we’re the undisputed Wedding Capital of the World where everybody from Elvis and Priscilla, Angeline and Billy Bob, Frank and Mia and Paul and Joanne were hitched here, and how can we forget Mickey Rooney, who had seven of his eight marriages celebrated in Las Vegas.
With today’s magical date of 10/11/12 and the looming 12/12/12, we’re going to have a bigger rush of matrimonial memories than the thousands who were wed five years ago on 7/7/7. Even with today’s atrocious weather, think of it as the sky on fire with spiritual sounds of thunder and lightning courtesy of Mother Nature to celebrate the ceremonies.
It’s a 12:01 a.m. to 11:59 p.m. rush at the Chapel of Flowers on the Strip. The chapel, named Best Destination Venue by the Wedding Industry Expert Awards, has seen it all in 60 years of providing weddings, but this dream day and the one that follows in December are extra busy because of the specialty dates.
Aimee Stephens of Chapel of the Flowers, where Miranda Lambert was a bridesmaid a month ago, told me: “At this minute, we are back-to-back in all three chapels from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. today.”
These are wedding dates or vow renewals that even a nervous groom will never forget its anniversary. And 12/12/12 is the last date of its kind for 100 years. Back on 11/11/11, there were 3,500 advance license applications in a single day compared to the normal thousand in a month.
BarBack USA, who is planning weddings in Las Vegas in December, points out that the ceremonies could eclipse any previous numbers because in Chinese numerology, 1 is considered a yang number and 2 is considered a yin number, so combined it offers new couples the best of luck, harmony and balance.
Tim Haughinberry of BarBack USA has a wedding extravaganza planned for Caesars Palace on Dec. 12. For $3,750, couples receive the Dom Perignon Vintage package, which includes the bubbly upon check-in, an overnight honeymoon suite, a limo to the court house for the license, a bridal prep lounge, bouquets, the private Caesars wedding chapel, photos and video of the ceremony -- and all broadcast online for family and friends who can’t make it. Plus, the limited-edition logo crystal flutes for the Dom Perignon toast.
“We are so excited to work with Dom Perignon hosting what will become part of the rich wedding history of Las Vegas considering we won’t see another 12/12/12 for another century,” Tim said.
But he’s upping the ante and going one step beyond -- with a million-dollar-plus package, $1,212,120 to be precise. It’s a one-of-a-kind dream wedding, with unlimited Dom Perignon champagne from the minute you grab the private jet from home to Las Vegas, and the free flow doesn’t end until you return home four days later.
There’s three nights in a “Hangover”-styled super suite, dinner with chef Guy Savoy, plus matching watches for the groomsmen and earrings for the bridesmaids. Our Frank Gehry-designed Cleveland Clinic Lou Ruvo Center for Brain Health will be used for the wedding and reception, as our beloved charity Keep Memory Alive charity receives a portion of the fee, and a Las Vegas chef contingent will add a special touch to the wedding cake and dinner.
For more details of the money-is-no-object wedding, go to 121212weddingslasvegas.com and for Chapel of the Flowers it’s littlechapel.com, one of the oldest in town and where Dennis Rodman wed Carmen Electra, “Therapy Couple” Courtney Stodden and Doug Hutcheson exchanged rings and vows and UFC’s Mark Scanlon delivered his KO promise.
It’s an only-in-Vegas story, the one-stop city for bachelor/bachelorette parties, wondrous weddings and now even with the Glynda Rhodes’ divorce party service if things don’t last.
Robin Leach has been a journalist for more than 50 years and has spent the past decade giving readers the inside scoop on Las Vegas, the world’s premier platinum playground.
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