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Lugner dresses as gnome for stag evening

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Lugner and Spatzi at their engagement party. Photo: APA/Eggenberger
16:53 CEST+02:00
Austrian businessman Richard Lugner (81) celebrated his forthcoming wedding to 24-year-old girlfriend Spatzi with a garden-gnome themed stag party on Monday evening.

The billionaire and his fiancee ate at a sushi restaurant in his Vienna shopping centre, Lugner City, with a few select guests including former politician Veit Schalle and award winning hairdresser Wilhelm Hüllerbrand.

None of Lugner’s family members were invited. “It’s only for close friends,” he told the Austrian Press Agency.

Guests were asked to come as garden gnomes, and don oversized pointy hats.

Guests were also asked to throw their plates on the floor, and Spatzi (real name Cathy Schmitz) swept up the pieces with a broom. This is an Austrian wedding tradition which is supposed to bring luck to the couple's marriage. It is also traditional in Austria and Germany for the couple to celebrate together with their friends.

However, Schmitz didn’t wear a part of her wedding dress to the party (another Austrian tradition). “I won’t be collecting the dress until Saturday morning,” she said.

The couple will be married on Saturday afternoon at Vienna's Schönbrunn palace. It will be Lugner’s fifth marriage.

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