Oh, the Places You'll Go ... to Get Hitched! The Coolest Places Star Got Married in 2016
CIARA & RUSSELL WILSON
The princess of R&B stepped into a real-life fairytale when she wed her Seattle Seahawks quarterback beau at Peckforton Castle in Cheshire, England. Ciara’s custom-made Cavalli gown outshined the historic stone castle as her groom looked at his beautiful bride in the photos they released of their big day.
The couple’s bridal party added to the royal affair, as they all donned black in a candid photo of the bridesmaids and groomsmen. “God Is So Good. Thanks To @DennisLeupold For Capturing This Special Moment Of My Husband@DangeRussWilson and I at The#PeckfortonCastle With Our#BridesmaidsandGroomsmen. #DreamsComeTrue,” the singer wrote on Instagram.
But Wilson’s best moment of the day wasn’t their king-and-queen photo shoot. “The best part of the wedding was watching her walk down the aisle,” the groom told PEOPLE. “I had so many [thoughts], but to see her gracefully walk down the aisle in that long train … and to realize I was going to spend my life with her gives me the chills.”
MICHAEL PHELPS & NICOLE JOHNSON
In one of the more shocking pieces of couples news this year, the legendary Olympian revealed he had secretly married Johnson before scoring six more medals in Rio.
Though Johnson was identified as Phelps’s “fiancée” throughout the Olympics, the knot had already been tied. “I’ve been married for a while. A couple months. I had to keep it a secret from y’all,” Phelps said in an October Facebook Live video. In the two pictures shared from their (second) big day, the couple — who welcomed their son Boomer in May — enjoyed a beachside ceremony with a larger group of friends and family in Cabo San Lucas, Mexico, in October.
“My best friend…. I love you!!” Phelps wrote in an Instagram post of the couple walking down a white rose petal-lined aisle soon after becoming husband and wife. Johnson also took to Instagram to share love — and that stunning backdrop in Mexico — from their wedding day. “Truly the happiest day of my life @m_phelps00 thank you @boonestudios for capturing this day,” the bride wrote in one post.
ADAM RODRIGUEZ & GRACE GAIL
The Magic Mike XXL star and his model fiancée tied the knot among the trees at Borgo Pignano, a 750-acre hilltop estate in Tuscany. The couple’s ceremony was full of whimsy, as they exchanged vows in the middle of a forest, surrounded by white, purple and pink flowers and an intimate gathering of family and friends.
Gail’s sister shared several photos of the Italian getaway, which also featured a long weekend of sightseeing in Florence and Siena. Soon after their wedding, the couple — who recently announced they are expecting baby No. 2! — jetted off to the seaside in Positano for their “Family honeymoon” with their daughter Frankie, who was born in 2014.
EVA LONGORIA & JOSÉ ANTONIO BASTÓN
Longoria’s marriage to Bastón was celebrated with a sunset ceremony in Valle de Bravo, Mexico, a lakeside town approximately 90 miles from Mexico City. In a photo captured by Longoria’s longtime pal, hair guru Ken Paves, the couple exchanged vows underneath a flower-filled canopy in front of a breathtaking backdrop. The bash took place at Bastón’s home and finished with fireworks.
Longoria’s best friend Victoria Beckham designed her elegant bridal gown, and the day after the nuptials (and lots of grooving and shaking), the blushing bride showed off the amazing view of their lakeside escape in a photo with the caption, “Morning after foot attire…Me and VB relaxing by the lake #YesIGotHerToWearUggs.” Paves and Beckham revealed even more of Longoria’s Mexican matrimony location in a video of the pair dancing at sunset, which was posted to both of their Instagram accounts. “Adios Mexico,” Beckham wrote. “Encontramos nuestro ritmo en Mexico X #Howmuchtequilla #electicslide #flashmob I [heart] @davidbeckham @evalongoria @kenpaves X VB.”
For more of the biggest moments from 2016, check out PEOPLE's 2016 Yearbook, on newsstands and amazon.com Dec. 22.