Chances are, if you are like the majority of us, you weren't lucky enough to snag an invite to the "wedding of the century." The April 29 nuptials of Prince William of Wales and girlfriend of eight years Kate Middleton, have already been named the travel event of the year, and many hotels around the world are cashing in on the event. Billions are expected to watch the ceremony live as the BBC broadcasts from the historic Westminster Abbey, but instead of simply watching the "I do's" on your television, why not make a trip out of it? Hotels in London and US alike are offering Royal Wedding packages that include everything from dinner with a member of the royal family to special spa treatments and lavish meals fit for a king.
Here are some of the best royal wedding packages hotels have to offer that will make you feel like the first family even if you're not on a first name basis with William and Kate.
Mandarin Oriental Hyde Park, Hyde Park
Perhaps the most extravagant royal wedding package to date belongs to London's Mandarin Oriental Hyde Park. For about $18,000 for one or $30,000 for two, travelers can experience a six-day fun fest filled with spa treatments, lavish meals, and tours to some of the most important places in the history of the royal family led by family members themselves. The "special access" tours are arranged by the Windsor's and their associates and take them to Kensington Palace, Westminster Abbey, Spencer House which is the home of Princess Diana's family, and Althorp, Diana's ancestral home since 1508 and her final resting place. They'll also visit Winston Churchill's family home in Kent and receive a special greeting from a member of the Churchill family. As if the tours weren't enough to entice eager travelers, the package also includes the holy grail of all selling points -- dinner with a member of the royal family in their town home. As this person is unnamed, it is sure to be someone farther from the immediate royals than not, but is still a once-in-a-lifetime experience for royal enthusiasts. Finally, guests will get to watch the April 29 events unfold from a perch atop the Institute of Contemporary Arts, literally a front row seat to the major event of the year.
Swissotel The Howard London, Covent Garden
While many of Royal Wedding packages are geared towards adults, The Howard London seeks to make every little girl's dream come true. Get a glimpse of what it's like to be a real live princess with their "Pretty Little Princess" promotion. For around $4,740 a person, the hotel offers little girls aged three to eight, a night of luxury in a Grand River View Room, an elegant full breakfast with non-alcoholic champagne, a special "princess" afternoon tea, and a trip in a horse-drawn carriage to see where Ms. Middleton will become Mrs. Windsor. Girls will also get to play dress up with a princess dress with matching fur cape, handbag, glitter shoes and silver tiara, that is suspected to be ordered from Ms. Middleton's family party planning business Party Pieces with plenty of souvenirs to take back to the castle. Talk about a fairly tale come true.
Hyatt Regency London The Churchill, West End
If you're looking for a royal wedding that allows you to bring along your own wedding party, the Hyatt Regency London can accommodate your entourage to share the experience. For around $49,000, you and six of your closest friends can enjoy the "Royal Opulence Package," which includes a four-night stay in the hotel's Royal Suite -- one of the largest in London. The package also includes a chauffeured limo and an in-suite butler, both at your disposal for up to eight hours a day. Dine in style as a private chef prepares all your meals in the room and bask in a special Royal Banquet Dinner that is catered for up to 10 guests. Not to forget the entertainment factor, the package also includes a trip to the Royal Opera House to see The Tsar's Bride on the royal wedding day and historic Royal Palace tours that will take you to the Tower of London, Kensington Palace, and Hampton Court. A final perk for royal enthusiasts is a private talk with the Royal Biographer who authored William and Kate: A Royal Love Story.
The Milestone Hotel, Kensington
If you want a hotel that will transport you into the world of royalty, look no further than the Milestone Hotel, ideally located right across from Kensington Palace. The hotel's Royal Occasion package will treat you to four nights accommodation with a daily full breakfast starting at a mere $3,926 a person. You will dine like the future king and queen with a seven-course banquet dinner prepared especially for you by the hotel's executive chef and can delight in a "Royal Afternoon Tea." The package also includes two tickets to Kensington Palace, private roundtrip airport transfers, and a wedding souvenir of a superbly designed and crafted commemorative bone china plate or two mugs by Royal Worcester. A range of optional extras include midnight Feasts, Champagne with mouth-watering canapés, picnics in Hyde Park, access to the Royal Gallery and Royal Mews, and a deluxe luncheon hamper on the day of the wedding.
The Waldorf-Astoria, New York City
Just because you can't make it across the pond doesn't mean you can't celebrate London's first family. New York City's historic Waldorf-Astoria is offering a special one-time-only night of luxury in the Royal Suite on April 28th. The suite is the former residence of the Duke and Duchess of Windsor, and for just $20,000, it can be yours. Let all your closest friends join in on the fun, as the package also includes a soiree for up to 40 guests with a custom British wedding menu on the eve of the Royal Wedding. After your lavish affair, head to New York's Palace Hotel where they will be holding a viewing party in the Drawing Room for $150 per person. Guests can view the ceremony on flat-screen televisions, enjoy a traditional English breakfast and receive keepsake New York Palace slippers. The festivities start at 6 a.m. to correspond with the 11 a.m. London ceremony and conclude with a champagne toast.
Trump International Hotel, New York City
It might not be a seat in Westminster Abbey, but the Trump International Hotel still wants to make you feel like you are part of the action. Enjoy an overnight stay in a newly renovated guest room designed by Ivanka Trump herself and feast on a special tasting menu fit for a prince or princess that includes tasty treats like scrambled eggs with caviar and pains au chocolat. When the festivities begin at 5 a.m. the next morning, all you have to do is walk downstairs to view a private showing of the royal wedding on oversized monitors while being served breakfast at the acclaimed restaurant Jean Georges. Costing just $1,425 per person, it is significantly more reasonable than a flight across the pond, and with a 4 p.m. checkout time, you have plenty of time to relax in your lavish suite after watching the "I dos."
Four Seasons Hotel, Chicago
If you're looking for the ultimate luxurious royal wedding experience in the U.S, the Four Seasons Chicago presents you with The Royal Retreat package. Pulling out all the stops, your day starts with a chauffeured Rolls Royce ride from the airport and a welcome from the champagne butler. After you're settled in, enjoy an afternoon English tea for two in the Seasons Lounge and a five-course chef's tasting menu in Seasons prepared by the hotel's executive chef. Besides wining and dining, you'll be pampered with a complimentary 24-Karat Gold Facial that will leave you feeling like a princess. Guests will then be given a proper wake-up at 4:30 a.m. to ensure that they capture the entire live broadcast, while enjoying a traditional English breakfast in bed.