27 APRIL 2009

Two months ago Salma Hayek and her French billionaire love Francois-Henri Pinault were married in a low-key civil ceremony on Valentine's Day witnessed only by key family members. This week it was a different story as a roll call of the couple's A-list friends descended on Venice for a weekend of celebrations to mark their nuptials.

Festivities, which were attended by the likes of Academy Award-winning actress Charlize Theron, Spanish couple Penelope Cruz and Javier Bardem and British designer Stella McCartney - began on Friday with a masquerade ball-style rehearsal dinner at the 15th-century Punta Della Dogana art museum.

The following day 42-year-old Salma and Francois-Henri renewed their vows in a romantic ceremony at La Fenice opera house. With 150 family members and friends looking on, Salma – gorgeous in a white Balenciaga wedding gown by Nicholas Ghesquiere – walked down the aisle. In her hands she held a bouquet of orchids and stephanotis with crystals.

Acting as flower girls at the ceremony were Valentina Paloma - the couple's 19-month-old daughter - and Francois-Henri's eight-year-old from his first marriage, Mathilde. His ten year-old son Francois was a page boy.

The wedding party - which also included model Lily Cole and her American boyfriend, Without A Trace actor Enrique Murciano, and U2 singer Bono and his wife Ali Hewson – then moved onto the Palazzo Grassi for the reception, which went on into the early hours of Sunday morning.

Mexican beauty Salma changed into a hot pink dress for dinner at the palace, which holds a special significance for the couple as it was where they first met.

While the weekend of lavish celebrations clearly didn't come cheap, From Dusk Till Dawn actress Salma has denied reports she and her 46-year-old husband spent $2 million.

"I think a wedding is about love, friends, family and fun," she says. "I think spending millions of dollars on a wedding is ridiculous and it has never been my dream. I would never do that."

Photo: Getty Images
The Mexican actress - stunning in a white Balenciaga wedding gown - and her French billionaire love Francois-Henri Pinault renewed their vows during three days of celebrations in the romantic Italian city
Photo: Getty Images
Flame-haired model Lily Cole – elegant in a floor-length sapphire blue gown split to the knee - was accompanied by her actor beau Enrique Murciano
The post-wedding party was celebrated in the billionaire businessman's stunning Venetian palace overlooking the Grand Canal