With most of my life being consumed by everything wedding related, I decided to make a series about it. The thing that’s been currently taking up all of my time and thoughts is the venue. There’s so many different ones in my area, as I’m sure is the same everywhere, and so many different decisions to be making.
First you have to see how much the venues cost and what the rental includes (which for the most part is just the tables and chairs or the ceremony, cocktail hour, and reception). There are some venues – few and far between – that offer linens for all the tables and all the dinnerware that you’ll need. When I initially started looking at venues, I didn’t really know what I was getting myself into so I literally just requested quotes for anyone and everyone that I thought I could remotely see my wedding at. From there, I looked more deeply into the properties, their rules and regulations, and things like that.
I didn’t ever want a destination wedding and didn’t want to be more than an hour away from my venue from my house. I have to be able to easily go to the venue if I have meetings or questions. I can’t not know what’s going on – I would freak out.
We’ve cut out all the venues that didn’t really appeal to us, were too far away, or for some reason or another we decided to move on from them and we’re finally down to our last two venues! My fiance and I took our moms to the venues and they each had a tour to see where Chad and I could really see saying “I do” to each other forever (eeeep! I’m really getting married – still surreal). Wouldn’t you know though, the two venues are COMPLETELY different from one another.
The first venue we’re considering is on a golf course, has a massive ballroom of 5000 square feet, linens and dinnerware included, golf for the day included for Chad, his groomsmen and fathers (he loves golf), lots of natural light for the reception hall (they have these see through garage doors lining the whole front half of the building that can be opened, beautiful bridal suite, tons of included decorations, day of coordinator for dirt cheap, there’s an arbor where you would get married and it’s in front of a pong/lake thing. Seems great right? Well the location is slightly further away (35-40 minutes – I know I know, not really that far), we HAVE to use their caterer because it’s also a restaurant and there’s no tastings available for a month. So we would have to wait and potentially lose our desired date because I will not book a venue before I know what the food tastes like. Their open bar is outrageously expensive, the ceremony lawn is literally next to the parking lot, and it’s a public golf course so people will be playing golf and buzzing around on their golf carts during my wedding.
The next venue is 20 minutes away from us, a smaller property, and in some aspects resembles a castle. The ceremony site is in the back of the property and away from the parking lot, there’s water behind us from a river that you can see from the ceremony, Lots of natural light throughout the building, the bridal suite is pretty with a TON of natural light (the other I think it prettier, but no natural light in the golf course one), more elegant light fixtures, cheap month of coordinator, more intimate feel because the building is smaller, the back wall is all french doors that can be opened, it really and truly does look top notch. Downfalls? For the open bar you can’t have straights, shots, or any mixed drink exceeding a certain percentage of alcohol, since it’s a more intimate space, my guests may be watching my bridal party and I taking photos during cocktail hour, and for walking down the aisle you would be walking through your reception hall to get out to the back area for the ceremony.
So I’m at a loss of how I really love two venues that are so different from one another. I can’t decide which would be the best fit for what I’m looking for and which cons I can deal with and what the deal-breakers are.
Any suggestions? Any tips from people who have already done a wedding on what I should be focusing on and what you did for your special day that I should consider? Any wedding related tips and tricks welcome! I need all the help I can get!!