EXCLUSIVE: Jennifer Gates and equestrian millionaire fiancé Nayel Nassar secretly married in a Muslim wedding YESTERDAY: Will walk down aisle today for SECOND civil ceremony with both parents and Coldplay will perform at reception
- Microsoft heiress Jennifer Gates married Egyptian equestrian Nayel Nassar in a secret ceremony Friday night
- The couple will hold a civil ceremony with some 300 invited guests on Saturday afternoon in New York
- Bill and Melinda will both walk her down the aisle, wearing a dress custom made by Vera Wang
- Coldplay will perform at the reception and Georgina Bloomberg is on the guest list of friends and family
- An elaborate tent city has been erected on the family’s 142-acre estate in North Salem, New York
- Workers scrambled Saturday morning to make everything perfect, debating over the proper climate setting
- Curious passersby marveled at the vast scale of the preparations as workers raced to add finishing touches
- At the rehearsal dinner on Friday, Bill and Melinda were seen together for the first time since their divorce
Microsoft heiress Jennifer Gates has married Egyptian equestrian Nayel Nassar in a secret ceremony held the night before the announced wedding date, DailyMail.com has exclusively learned.
The private Muslim ceremony was held on Friday night in the garden of the family’s 142-acre estate in North Salem, New York where a larger civil ceremony with 300 guests is scheduled for Saturday afternoon.
Parents Bill and Melinda Gates will jointly walk 25-year-old Jennifer, whose dress was custom made by Vera Wang, down the aisle at Saturday’s ceremony. Coldplay will perform at the reception, as will folk rock star Harry Hudson.
Saturday’s guest list mostly consists of friends and family, with few celebrities or politicians invited. Georgina Bloomberg, the daughter of billionaire Michael Bloomberg and a fellow professional equestrian who owns a horse farm nearby, is invited.
Friday night’s rehearsal dinner — which secretly served as a reception for the private religious ceremony — was catered by Jean-Georges and included a lobster dish and pasta.
The extravagant two-day event costing an estimated $2 million was orchestrated by famed wedding planner Marcy Blum, whose elite client list includes Kevin Bacon, LeBron James and Billy Joel.
At the rehearsal, father of the bride Bill Gates and his daughter could be seen sitting on the outdoor deck of her Westchester mansion with the pair laughing and joking before appearing deep in thought.
Bill and Melinda Gates, who divorced in August after 27 years of marriage, were also seen mingling with guests at the dinner in their first appearance together since separating.
Just hours before the second, larger ceremony on Saturday, workers were racing to put the finishing touches in place.
As dark clouds formed overhead on Saturday morning, with a line of storms bearing down on New York, an acapella group was heard rehearsing ‘Shine Your Light on Me’ at the wedding venue.
On Friday night, Jennifer Gates married Egyptian equestrian Nayel Nassar in a secret ceremony (left), the day before the announced wedding date, DailyMail.com has learned. After the secret ceremony she was seen speaking with father Bill (right)
The private Muslim ceremony (above) was held on Friday night in the garden of the family’s 142-acre estate in North Salem, New York where a larger ceremony with guests is scheduled for Saturday afternoon
Friday night ‘s rehearsal dinner (above) secretly served as the reception for the intimate Muslim religious ceremony
Wedding staff line up in all black, wearing black face masks, and enter the wedding venue Friday. Preparations are swiftly underway and appear far from done on the morning of Jennifer Gates’ and Nayel Nassar’s official wedding day
A green truck from French luxury bakery Ladurée brought the massive wedding cake in separate tiers for assembly, with a wooden dowel through the center to prevent it from toppling
Workers hauled in white flowers in orange Home Depot 5-gallon buckets, to be placed along a walkway leading into the ceremony
A last-minute flower delivery arrives at the venue ahead of the ceremony on Saturday
An elaborate tent city resembling greenhouses has been erected on the family’s 142-acre estate for the wedding
Workers prepare the reception venue of Jennifer Gates’ wedding, which will take place on Saturday afternoon
On Saturday afternoon, a man in a dark suit walked a German Shepherd dog into the event venue to sniff around, possibly checking for explosives
The canine had a black vest reading ‘working dog-do not pet.’ No uniformed police were spotted, so there was no suggestion of an actual threat and the precaution was likely routine
On Saturday afternoon, a man in a dark suit walked a German Shepherd dog into the event venue to sniff around, possibly checking for explosives.
The canine had a black vest reading ‘working dog-do not pet.’ No uniformed police were spotted, so there was no suggestion of an actual threat and the precaution was likely routine.
Meanwhile, trucks kept rolling in, including a Gallucci Catering truck filled with trays of food for the event.
Jennifer will marry Nayel Nassar on Saturday afternoon
The owner wouldn’t reveal the menu but their prime offerings include Eggplant Imbottito, Chicken Campagna and scallops with bacon, as well as less chichi offerings such as franks in a blanket.
A green truck from French luxury bakery Ladurée brought the massive wedding cake in separate tiers for assembly, with a wooden dowel through the center to prevent it from toppling.
As the clock ticked down to the civil vows Saturday, workers were scrambling to make last second adjustments. This included a debate over climate control.
‘I’m not sure what temperature to leave the venue so the dance floor doesn’t bubble, and so we don’t kill the trees,’ one crew member warned.
As if on cue, one of the newly-erected trees toppled over onto the dance floor.
‘It’s a bloody mess down here,’ one staffer laughed.
‘I’m on it,’ another replied.
Later on, someone was heard asking to cut the air conditioning down in the artist tent, noting ‘they’re freezing in there.’
Workers were hauling in white flowers in orange Home Depot 5-gallon buckets, to be placed along a walkway leading into the ceremony.
The workers brought in their own catering, boxes of Dunkin Donuts and gallons of coffee.
Wedding staff line up in all black, wearing black face masks, and review the final preparations for the wedding
The workers brought in their own catering, boxes of Dunkin Donuts and gallons of coffee as they prepared the venue on Friday
Preparations are swiftly underway and appear far from done on the morning of Jennifer Gates’ and Nayel Nassar’s wedding
A forklift transports cases of audio equipment in preparation for Coldplay’s performance on Saturday night
The preparations involved significant logistics to prepare a vast venue complex for the 300 invited guests
Workers wearing face masks prepare to arrange candlelight lanterns in the venue on Saturday
Five ladies who call themselves ‘the Sisterhood of the Walking Pants’ strolled by the event, where a loud bandsaw hurt their eardrums, as they marveled at the vast preparations underway in the tent city
‘Here it’s hours before the wedding and so much still to be done,’ a neighbor told DailyMail.com. ‘If I was the mother of the bride, I’d have so much angst.’
Five ladies who call themselves ‘the Sisterhood of the Walking Pants’ strolled by the event, where a loud bandsaw hurt their eardrums.
‘Here it’s hours before the wedding and so much still to be done,’ Diane, 70, told DailyMail.com. ‘If I was the mother of the bride, I’d have so much angst.’
The curious neighbors were cracking jokes about crashing the party.
Amy, 62, took out a necklace of cultured pearls and placed it over her Hard Rock Cafe t-shirt. She was on crutches.
‘She came out of rehab for this,’ quipped her friend Joan, 56.
Amy was feeling the love, if not totally thrilled that an open field on the Gates estate has been transformed into a tent city.
‘We’re happy for them,’ Amy said. ‘We just want to have nature preserved.’
‘The only thing I don’t like are the fake trees,’ Diane noted. ‘They’re green and they’re hideous. The trees should have looked like they’re fall trees and not summer trees. Somebody wasn’t thinking.’
Diane whipped out her weather app to see the forecast. Clouds are blocking the sun, with storm clouds expected later in the day. ‘Look at that, a line of thunderstorms coming in at 5:15 pm.’ Diane remarked. ‘Bad timing.’
Preparations are swiftly underway and appear far from done on the morning of Jennifer Gates’ and Nayel Nassar’s wedding
Workers prepare the venue where Coldpaly will perform after the reception on Saturday night
Huge deliveries of flowers arrived for the event, which will cost an estimated $2 million
Preparations for the multi-million dollar wedding of Jennifer to Nayel Nassar have been underway for much of the week
The outdoor wedding is set to be held on Saturday afternoon on the family’s 142-acre estate in North Salem, New York
Gates wore an elegant white bridal dress while the groom wore a grey suit for the couple’s pre-wedding photos on Friday. It later emerged that the photo shoot was part of a secret Muslim wedding ceremony
They posed as a happy couple, laughing and strolling down the scenic, tree-lined driveway
Earlier, on Friday, Melinda French Gates could be seen speaking to a man on the driveway of the estate as she carried her heels in her right hand
Melinda could be seen wandering along the private driveway on the North Salem, New York estate on Friday evening
At the rehearsal dinner on Friday, Bill, 65, was seen in a dark suit while Melinda, 57, was seen in a colorful dress at the home in North Salem, New York.
The pair, who were among the most prominent couples in global business, having once worked together, could be seen welcoming guests to the Jennifer’s sprawling estate as a weekend of celebrations began in earnest.
The proud parents of Jennifer could also be seen smiling while wedding photographers took pictures of the occasion.
Earlier on Friday, Jennifer and her dashing groom-to be Nayel also stepped out on the deck of their home to enjoy a quiet moment will Bill and Melinda, together with her younger brother.
They were seen posing for pictures on the deck before moving down to a scenic, tree-lined driveway, where the pair walked as a couple, danced and kissed.
An elaborate tent city has been set up on the property, and on Thursday potted trees were hauled in to block views of the venue from the roadway and give them some semblance of privacy.
Bill Gates could be seen smiling with just hours to go before he will be giving his daughter away in a wedding hosted at her sprawling estate
Beaming bride Jennifer Gates spent a few moments having a heart-to-heart conversation with her father, billionaire Bill Gates on Friday evening before her rehearsal dinner began at her Westchester estate
The pair got to spend some daddy-daughter time ahead of what is going to be an exceptionally busy weekend for the family
Jennifer Gates is pictured with family and guests ahead of her wedding ceremony in North Salem, New York at her rehearsal dinner
Beaming bride Jennifer Gates and her dashing groom stepped out on the deck of their home to enjoy a quiet moment on Friday with her recently divorced parents Bill and Melinda Gates, and her little brother
An eighteen-wheel truck and vans hauled in equipment, while golf carts shuttled staff around the site and down the road to where another set of tents were erected to handle catering.
The police chief, fire chief and town officials stopped by to see the progress. Several cops were stationed alongside the property, along with private security officers who were on hand to protect VIP guests and keep traffic flowing.
The family let out a big cheer as the groom pulled up to the stables around 6 p.m. in a black van, and joined his soon-to-be in laws for a wedding eve celebration.
Bill shared a moment with his daughter Phoebe, sitting on a sofa on the lower deck facing the equestrian area. Then son Rory came and sat down with them, before joining his mother Melinda.
The groomsmen stood on one side, while the bridesmaids gathered on the other. The couple of honor stood in the center, doing a dry run of their ceremony. A woman in a green dress stood between them.
Developing story, more to follow.
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