Let’s talk about wedding venues. There are so many choices. How does one decide what is
right for “our wedding”?!?
Style / Ambience
Probably the first thing you want to consider is what atmosphere you want for your special day.
There is no “one size fits all” and there are numerous choices for each style. So start here.
Church like but not a church per se
The number of guests you invite, and usually feed, is the largest controllable / variable cost (along with alcohol). Consider your budget, set your target, and prune accordingly. If you can afford 500, go for it. If you can afford 100, make choices.
Distance from not only your home, but that of your guests, is a consideration. You will visit the venue a few times, certainly the day of, and maybe the day before, your wedding. This will vary with the style, decorating and other choices you make. Like in real estate, location matters.
Amenities: included / options
This is your second biggest variable and has many choices to make. This can range from total DIY to everything done for you. Obviously you get what you pay for, so your budget will, at least in part, drive your decisions on this one.
Services – Vendors
Some of the things to consider:
Decorating venue (props available to help trim your costs?)
Decorating tables (how and who)
Linens (buy, rent, put out and pick up)
Officiant (religious, secular, etc)
DJ Service (do you want a party or just background music?)
Catering w/ or w/o serving (type of food, number of entrees, side, soft drinks, etc.)
Bar yes / no and type(s) (Beer & Wine, Hard Liquor, No bar)
Wedding Cake, sheet cake, cupcakes, donuts, etc.
Coordinator and/or Day Of Coordinator
Clean up and take out the trash
There are more things to consider, but those are the questions you want to address early in your planning stages. In fact, selecting the venue may affect many of those other choices.
They are also often booked a year or two out on prime wedding dates. Plan accordingly.
Respectfully submitted by a venue owner and therefore based on experience of answering the same questions for many. We’ve seen everything from meticulous planning to slap it together.
That’s not judgmental, just a way of saying planning is always less stressful when your special day finally arrives. And remember, like most things in life, the journey is a least as much fun as the destination.