Sean Hepburn paid nearly €3,500 to rent out the Palacio de Carlos V at the Alhambra for a concert, but the board in charge of managing and protecting the palaces said that this was just an excuse to celebrate his wedding – an event that is banned from standard public use, newspaper El Pais reported on Thursday.
A security report by Alhambra officials wrote that “Sean Hepburn Ferrer and his companion” had asked for permission on the same day as the concert to make a petalada, or shower of flower petals, but were told that this was prohibited.
“At one point inside the courtyard of the Palacio de Carlos V, with the audience seated for the start of the concert, the Lord Mayor of the City of Granada, along with the Councilman of Culture, officiated over an unexpected wedding ceremony,” the report by the protection services states.
— EL PAÍS España (@elpais_espana) May 21, 2015
The local City Council defended the celebration, which occurred last August, saying that the concert had only been held after an official ceremony elsewhere. The city insisted that the mayor never officiated the marriage, even though the couple were dressed for a wedding, signed documents at the palace and the mayor had been directing them throughout the event.
Municipal sources told El Pais that the official marriage ceremony had taken place at another venue, but did not give details.
The Director General of the Alhambra supervisory board María del Mar Villafranca wrote a letter in February to the councillor of culture, expressing “deep disappointment”.
Villafranca added that the incident was an “improper exercise of abuse of trust” by the councillor and the mayor, who is also a member of the board. She has since brought the case to the board of directors of the monument and the legal offices of the group to see if “the events deserve further actions”.