Anant Ambani and Radhika Merchant’s pre-wedding: one luxurious party after another

Nothing is too good for one of the world’s most powerful couples. As Anant Ambani and Radhika Merchant, both descendants of India’s financial elite, prepare to marry on 12 July, a host of celebrations have been taking place over the past few months in the run-up to their union.


Given the lavish ceremonies organised by their families, the wedding between Anant Ambani and Radhika Merchant, scheduled for 12 July, promises to be a colossal affair. In the run-up to the wedding, the families are orchestrating impressive ceremonies, supported by the respective fortunes of the Ambani and Merchant families.


A private party over three days, a pre-wedding weekend with a musical performance by Rihanna, a luxury cruise, the privatisation of Portofino… The folly of grandeur does not seem to frighten the couple and those close to them.



An exceptional three-day party


Last year, Anant Ambani, youngest son of billionaire Mukesh Ambani, CEO of Reliance Industries, proposed to Radhika Merchant, daughter of multi-millionaire Viren Merchant, CEO of Encore Healthcare. After an official engagement ceremony, a dinner was organised with the immediate family, from parents to grandparents and siblings. Then, at the Ambani family home in Mumbai’s Antila Tower, a first party was held with members of the extended family and friends.


It was not until a year later, on 1 March, that the pre-wedding weekend and hastakshar, a traditional Indian event preceding the nuptials, took place over three days at the Ambani home in Jamnagar, in the state of Gujarat. The 300-hectare estate includes a mango orchard, a large animal rescue centre called Vantara, and a glass palace reminiscent of the Palm House in the Brooklyn Botanic Garden (the bride’s favourite spot when she was a student in New York) set up by Anant Ambani’s mother for her daughter-in-law.


1,500 guests were invited to dine and then admire India’s largest drone show, a ballet of no fewer than 5,500 flying objects. Afterwards, the iconic Rihanna took to the stage, delivering a captivating and exclusive show. On the second day, Indian singer Diljit Dosanjh took to the stage. Finally, Akon brought the three days of festivities to a close. On the style front, the couple wore a number of outfits from top fashion houses, including Versace, Dolce & Gabbana and Ashish, all selected by designer Rhea Kapoor.


A luxury cruise


At the end of May, 1,200 guests embarked on a highly luxurious four-day cruise. Friends, families, employees of the Ambani and Merchant companies, residents of the Vantara animal sanctuary… The guests were varied and of all ages. Once again, the bride and groom and their nearest and dearest were dressed by renowned designers such as Robert Wun, Grace Ling, Schiaparelli, Versace and Dolce & Gabbana. Not to mention the rare jewellery worn by the guests, such as a blue opal and diamond necklace by Lorraine Schwartz. There were also musical surprises in store, with shows by Katy Perry, David Guetta, Pitbull and the Backstreet Boys.


The maritime escapade began in Palermo, Sicily, then travelled along the Italian coast from Rome (for a toga party) to Cannes (for a masked ball at the Château de la Croix des Gardes) before ending in Portofino.



The privatisation of Portofino


On 1 June, the cruise ended in Portofino. The families privatised the small village on the Italian Riviera to welcome all their guests in a setting and stalls enhanced by tomatoes, pizzas and vespas in the style of a Mediterranean market. Radhika Merchant wore an ultra-rare Yves Saint Laurent piece for Dior. Italian tenor Andrea Bocelli sang “Can’t Help Falling in Love” and “I Found My Love in Portofino”, before being joined on stage by his son Matteo.


The privatisation of Portofino did not fail to stir the web. While locals were stranded in their own homes and tourists were denied access to the port, some members of the public were critical of this opulent party, which came on the heels of celebrations that were certainly magnificent but also cost tens of millions of dollars.



As if to appease the critics and make a social contribution, on Tuesday 2 July, Indian tycoon Mukesh Ambani announced that he was financing the wedding of 52 underprivileged couples. Each couple received gold and silver wedding jewellery, 1,200 dollars in cash and provisions “sufficient for one year”, said his company.


Read also : Gautam Adani, the richest man in Asia

Featured photo : © IG Radhika Anant Ambani

Thanks to its extensive knowledge of these sectors, the Luxus + editorial team deciphers for its readers the main economic and technological stakes in fashion, watchmaking, jewelry, gastronomy, perfumes and cosmetics, hotels, and prestigious real estate.


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