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Sunday 15 December 2019

Son of developer Dunne ties the knot in Clane

180 guests and close friends party in the K Club

FATHER OF THE GROOM: Sean Dunne beams on son Stephen's
wedding day
FATHER OF THE GROOM: Sean Dunne beams on son Stephen's wedding day
Bride Nivek is shielded by umbrellas as she emerges from a black Mercedes. Photo: Gerry Mooney


The eldest son of the man who was once Ireland's most successful developer married his girlfriend of six years in Co Kildare yesterday.

Media-shy Stephen Dunne, himself a property developer, is a past pupil of Ireland's leading boarding school, Clongowes Wood College, near Clane, Co Kildare, where he yesterday married Nivek Begley, from Blackrock, Co Dublin.

"Clongowes chapel was an obvious choice for the mass," said one source, referring to the fact that his father, Carlow developer Sean Dunne had paid out €1m to build Ireland's first all-weather rugby pitch when his sons attended the school.

The groom Stephen Dunne, 28, and his best man arrived first at the church in a minibus with three bridesmaids wearing black shimmering dresses following behind.

The bride Nivek Begley, 26, when alighting from the wedding car was immediately surrounded by guests with black umbrellas.

The 26-year-old had stayed the previous night in a house in Churchfield's -- private accommodation owned Sean Dunne in the K Club.

She looked stunning in a white dress with a black cummerbund as she stepped from the Mercedes at the church in Clane, which was decorated in a mass of white hydrangeas.

After the service, family members and guests were whisked to the nearby K Club in the idyllic Irish countryside for the wedding reception. About 180 guests were invited to a sit-down meal in the classical surrounding and opulent atmosphere of the five-star hotel.

Tight security was on the gate from early morning with a heavy presence of security guards at the entrance to the private lane to the K Club in the pretty village of Straffan, a 10-minute drive from the picturesque church in Clane.

Guests enjoyed a glamorous champagne reception and canapes on arrival at the 19th Century mansion and had their meal in the Legacy Suite, the main function room in the hotel which caters for over 300 people.

The wedding photos took place in the late afternoon in the perfectly manicured gardens and beside the blue crystal lake which is located adjacent to the two golf courses.

The newlyweds then spent the night in The Imperial Suite in the hotel.

Sean Dunne, with his second wife Gayle Killilea, was in attendance having flown home from the US -- where he and Ms Killilea are now based -- especially for the occasion.

The groom's sister Elaine and younger brother John, as well as Sean's first wife Jennifer Coyle, who divorced the Carlow-born developer in 2001, were also there.

Nivek's father Kevin who she is named after (Nivek is Kevin spelt backwards) gave the beautiful bride away.

Her mother Lorraine, her partner Peter Bunbery and her uncle Brian Begley, a former dual Munster rugby and golf interprovincial were in attendance, alongside Clongowes' headmaster Fr Leonard Maloney.

Friends from private secondary school Alexandra College in Milltown, south Dublin, from where the now events services professional Ms Begley graduated in 2004 were in abundance, driving an array of Mini Coopers.

Stephen is familiar with the protocol for weddings, having acted as his father's best man when he married the glamorous blonde socialite Ms Killilea in July 2004.

Sunday Independent

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