Leona Lewis and her long-time boyfriend Dennis Jauch married in a romantic ceremony in Italy on 27 July – and they chose Sting and Trudie Styler's stunning 16th-century Tuscan home, Il Palagio, as the backdrop for their special day. The singer, songwriter, and actress walked down the aisle to Ave Maria, watched by 180 family members and friends, including Sugababes star Keisha Buchanan, and The Voice UK winner Jermaine Jackman, who sang at the ceremony. There were also three stunning looks for her big day – a full-length white tulle gown for the ceremony, a beaded blush dress for the reception and a crystal-embellished jumpsuit for the party.
The newlyweds married in the Buddhist chapel in the grounds of Sting and Trudie's home, which they said was a "beautiful" location with great acoustics. Leona exclusively told HELLO!: "It was so beautiful. The room already held so much good energy and having all that love in there was really powerful."
Leona and Dennis have been together for nine years
Sting and Trudie's villa also features a cypress-lined driveway, lakes, woods, a five-acre kitchen garden, olive and orange trees, a vineyard and views of rolling hills, the 865-acre estate, which has been a haven for Sting, Trudie, and their family since 1997, is undeniably grand. It also boasts an outdoor pool, a giant chessboard on the terrace and a dining room with a frescoed ceiling.
Leona and Dennis revealed the special reason behind their choice of wedding venue, with the new bride explaining: "We wanted to marry somewhere that felt like home and that’s how this place feels."
The couple held their reception in Sting's recording studio, which has high vaulted beamed ceilings and open fireplaces - Sting's grand piano was even used on the evening.
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When it came to their wedding cake, Leona and Dennis spared no expense, bringing in Sicilian dessert stylist and pastry chef Marco Failla to create an extraordinary version of the traditional Italian cake, the millefeuille. Speaking to HELLO! Marco said: "I'm a dessert designer so I wanted to revisit the design of the millefeuille, transforming it into a tired cake decorated with fresh flowers, berries, and 24k gold leaf. I called it 'millefeuille extravaganza'. A millefeuille with my nonna's (grandmother) salted dark chocolate cream and a dash of Sicilian caramelized almonds. I was born and raised in Sicily, so I wanted to use the ingredients from my land like the Modica Chocolate and the almond."
Marco explained that, along with the rest of the wedding menu, Leona and Dennis' wedding cake was actually vegan. "Of course everything was vegan and without artificial flavours," he said. "Vegan butter, raw sugar, and organic flour were the main ingredients for the puff pastry. For the filling, I used a recipe of my nonna (grandmother) with homemade almond milk, coconut oil, finest Modica dark chocolate, and sea salt flakes. I also made a brittle with the traditional Sicilian almond brittle to ad crunchiness to the filling.
The couple exchanged vows on 27 July
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The pastry chef also revealed that Leona and Dennis actually had a helping hand in making their own wedding cake. He said: "It was very special for me as a cake designer because it was actually a cake made not only for the newlyweds but also WITH the newlyweds. Together we put the puff pastry layers, I filled them with the chocolate cream while Leona was sprinkling the almond brittle and Dennis was adding the berries. At the end, we decorated the top with some more berries, some flowers and a bit of 24k gold leaf."
Leona met German-born choreographer and creative director Dennis in 2010 when he was a backing dancer on her The Labyrinth tour and he proposed on their eighth anniversary last year. Dennis is a hip-hop world champion who won Germany's version of So You Think You Can Dance?. After moving to London, he worked with the likes of Beyoncé, Kylie Minogue, Alicia Keys, and Pitbull.
Leona exclusively told HELLO! ahead of the wedding: "We're so ready to do this. Dennis is the most kind, considerate person I've ever met. He's been my rock through my crazy ups and downs and everything I've gone through in my life."
Leona and Dennis's wedding album and interview will appear exclusively in HELLO! magazine from Monday 5 August.
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