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Venice is rocking.
First, though, they celebrated together, along with a group of family and friends including Cindy Crawford and her husband, Clooney’s business partner Rande Gerber, Matt Damon and his wife Luciana, John Krasinski and Emily Blunt, Vogue editor Anna Wintour, Clooney’s parents Nick and Nina, cousin Miguel Ferrer, actor Richard Kind, actress Ellen Barkin, Lisa Shields of the Council on Foreign Relations, actor Thom Mathews, CAA partner Bryan Lourd, businessman Bruce Bozzi, and producer Grant Heslov and his wife Lysa.
Following the group dinner, the bride-to-be arrived via water taxi at the Aman Canal Grande resort in Venice.
Stunning in a red-and-black custom Alexander McQueen gown, the British international attorney, 36, was joined by a group of about 14 women including her sister, Tala, mom, Baria, and fellow London-based lawyer Philippa Webb.
With much of Venice whipped into a wedding frenzy, Alamuddin’s arrival was met with some 30 boats clogging the Grand Canal. The traffic was so high that a second boat – this one carrying groom-to-be Clooney and his guy friends – was forced to maneuver to a side canal before departing for a nearby party of their own at the famed Da Ivo restaurant. The eatery is a longtime celeb favorite and Clooney has dined there often through the years.
The groom’s seven-member group dined on stuffed zucchini flowers, figs and ham, razor clams, fresh tagliolini pasta with thinly sliced truffles and rice with button mushrooms. (Clooney indulged in two servings!)
Of course, no Italian meal would be complete without vino, and the party enjoyed a bottle of Sassicaia wine, one of Italy’s finest, along with their own tequila.
As for the ladies’ night, the luxurious Aman appeared to be well-prepared for a glamorous night, with outdoor lanterns and candles filling the first floor.
• With reporting by PHILIP BOUCHER