Newly weds at an Ice Wedding Palace.Lev Fedoseyev/TASS
A typical Russian wedding consists of a bride in a magnificent white dress and a groom in a suit, a couple of doves that the newlyweds launch into the sky, and drunken relatives joking, "But what is a wedding without a fight?" However, it’s not rare to see loved-up Russians riding in a procession around town and being photographed by the local landmarks. But a new generation of couples are tearing down wedding day stereotypes and thinking outside the box. Here are seven examples.
Kazan Family Center. Source: Max Avdeev
In Turkic the word "kazan" means a cauldron for cooking food. One legend says that the city (about 800 km east of Moscow) was coined after the popular, large pot. The ZAGS (a Russian registry office), which is located in a palace built in the shape of a 30-meter high cauldron (with a flame) registers on average 100 couples a day. Each of the four floors has its own original decoration and on top of the building there’s an observation deck that offers a wonderful panorama of the city.
Wedding palace №1. Source: Press photo
This is the most popular Russian matrimony palace. It’s a sumptuous 19th century manor house transformed into one of the country’s most famous and lavish registry offices. The magnificent marble staircase is the favorite place for wedding photo sessions. Due to its popularity, some couples have to wait for up to six months to marry here, especially given it’s not only St. Petersburg residents who want to get hitched in the palace, but people from all over Russia. Many of the country’s celebrities have also chosen this spot to tie the knot.
Wedding palace in Tsaritsyno. Source: Press photo
The Tsaritsyno ZAGS is one of only a few to hold ceremonial trips to the Tsaritsyno museum and reserve, which has preserved the style of Catherine the Great's epoch. Registration takes place in the Grand Palace, in the Azure Hall. Musicians in 18th century attire play classical music while the guests are met by the master of ceremonies and are accompanied by a lady in waiting.
Tsaritsyno. Source: Press photo
Newly weds at an Ice Wedding Palace. Source: Lev Fedoseyev/TASS
Each February the city of Kirovsk (1,800 km north of Moscow) opens its matrimony palace, which is built of ice and snow. The civil registry book is also made of ice, as are the fishnet champagne glasses. But the marriage certificate that the newlyweds receive is real.
The Bruges embankment in Yoshkar-Ola. Source: Legion Media
The waterfront in Yoshkar-Ola (760 km east of Moscow) is often compared to the vistas in Amsterdam and Hamburg. Several years ago the town built a matrimony palace in the Gothic style. In accordance with tradition, the bride and groom enter from one side of the building and after the ceremony, as husband and wife, leave from another, onto the waterfront - where they hop on a river tram.
A yurt in ethnic style. Source: Ramil Sitdikov/RIA Novosti
In Russia's Far East, in Yamal (3,500 km northeast of Moscow), the locals enjoy weddings in true ethnic style. They are celebrated in tents - the traditional dwellings of the Evenki people. The trend has even reached Europe. Today there’s a growing number of British brides choosing to wed in a nomadic yurt.
Museum of mittens. Source: Press photo
The unusual Palace for the Registration of Warm Feelings at the St. Petersburg Mittens Museum registers matrimonies every day. The bride and groom make vows by uniting their hands in special love mittens and receive the Certification of the Registration of Warm Feelings.
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