Venice - George Clooney coolly sipped champagne with celebrity pals before gliding up the majestic Grand Canal Saturday evening, waving to hundreds of well-wishers on shore and a flotilla of photographers chasing a glimpse of what presumably were his final public moments of bachelorhood.
Clooney's water taxi was the last of a procession of a dozen that brought guests including Cindy Crawford, her husband Randy Gerber, Bill Murray and Matt Damon from the five-star Cipriani hotel opposite St. Mark's Square up the Grand Canal to the luxury Aman Hotel.
Crawford wore a purple floor-length halter dress; Clooney and the other men were dressed in tuxedos.
Clooney's boat was momentarily blocked by a passing cruise-liner and then by a water bus, giving time for dozens of boats carrying photographers to catch up. A police boat swerved in vain to try to keep the paparazzi away.
The star, standing in front of the taxi, maintained his ever-relaxed demeanour and waved to hundreds of people who crowded the arched Accademia bridge, canal banks and passing water taxis to see the Hollywood star before he took the plunge he long vowed never to take.
With the pink sunset casting a gleam on Venice's most picturesque canal, Clooney rubbed his hands in sweet anticipation, and disappeared into the Aman's tent-covered pier.
There were no signs of his bride, human rights lawyer Amal Alamuddin, who was last seen publicly on Friday riding a water-taxi down the Grand Canal with Clooney's arm resting comfortably around her. The bride, wearing a bold black-and-white striped Dolce & Gabbana dress, beamed.
SEE THE PICS HERE: