IT promises to be “Scotland’s version of the Royal wedding”, at which the nation’s most famous sportsman will vow to spend the rest of life by his sweetheart’s side.
Andy Murray will this spring marry his fiancée, Kim Sears, at his luxury hotel in Perthshire, it emerged yesterday.
In what seasoned nuptials experts described as the biggest wedding of the year, the two-time Grand Slam winner will exchange rings with Ms Sears at the five-star Cromlix House Hotel, close to his hometown of Dunblane.
SCOTSMAN TABLET AND MOBILE APPS
The ceremony, scheduled for 11 April, will attract worldwide media attention as the couple become husband and wife nearly ten years after they met.
Yesterday, as news broke of the impending marriage, local businesses in Dunblane said they hoped to help out for the special day of the town’s most famous son.
One of the few people apparently unmoved was Murray himself. In a characteristically solemn remark on his Twitter account, he said: “This is not news.”
His comment, however, could not quell the excitement in Dunblane. Among those celebrating yesterday were staff at Celebration Station in the town’s Station Road. The bakery has supplied Murray’s birthday cakes over the years, and hopes to help out with April’s wedding.
“We’re going to get in touch with Cromlix to see if we can organise the wedding cake,” said manager Angela Harvey. “We’ve done quite a lot of Andy’s birthday cakes since he was a wee boy and Judy comes in and buys things. But because the wedding’s in April, they maybe already have a cake organised.”
The couple are expected to tie the knot in Cromlix’s 19th-century chapel, which will seat up to 30 of their close family and friends. The party will then dine at the Chez Roux restaurant, which is overseen by French chef Albert Roux.
The service will be private and, given Cromlix is wholly owned by Murray’s 77 management company, they will have the full oversight of security. With speculation already mounting as to the kind of wedding Murray and Ms Sears will hold, experts predicted it will not be an outlandish occasion.
Natasha Radhmer, editor of the Scottish Wedding Directory magazine, said: “I think it will be quite an elegant affair. I don’t think they’ll go for any crazy themes, but maybe there will be a wee nod to tennis in the form of the table names.
“Decor-wise, I think it would be kept quite simple and neutral. Cromlix is so gorgeous already it doesn’t need a whole lot of decorating.
“It will be Scotland’s version of the Royal wedding. There will be a huge turnout and lots of coverage around the world.”
Beth Forsyth, editor of The Best Scottish Weddings magazine, said: “Andy spent a lot money getting Cromlix into the shape it is and I don’t imagine he’ll do too much with it. The only thing I’d caution against would be getting his mum to organise the first dance.”
Both Ms Radhmer and Ms Forsyth agreed that Ms Sears is likely to wear a sleek, streamlined dress, perhaps by designer Jenny Packham, but could not agree on what the groom would don.
“I think he would totally be able to pull off the look of tartan trews,” mused Ms Radhmer. “From speaking to a few different groomswear companies not too long ago, it seems they are making a comeback.”
Ms Forsyth, on the other hand, said the wedding could be a “full Scottish shebang,” adding Murray could be a “true Scotsman” in a kilt with nothing underneath.
Murray and Ms Sears got engaged in November. They met at the US Open in 2005. This will not be the first Cromlix wedding they have attended. Five years ago, they were guests at the hotel for the marriage of Murray’s brother, Jamie, and Alejandra Gutierrez.
Mike Robbins, the provost of Stirling, said: “We are delighted that the wedding will take place at Cromlix House and thrilled that Andy and Kim have decided to return to Andy’s hometown to celebrate their marriage. We wish them every happiness.”