The Reception Venue.
With the expense that a wedding reception can bring, it is only logical to take your time with this one. Don’t make any hasty decisions – if you don’t get your first choice then it probably wasn’t meant to be and there is something better for you around the corner. Don’t despair, you will find what you are looking for.
Having had the privilege to chauffeur our brides and grooms to their receptions, I have come to realize that you can be as individual as you like. Over the years we have taken our newlyweds to hotels, holiday homes, community centres, church halls, private houses, scout, and guides camping fields, glamping sites, canal boats and canal steamers, marquees in fields, marquees in gardens of private homes and marquees in hotel grounds and stately homes to name but a few. The places you can have your reception to appears to be endless.
Anyway, before you choose the venue there may be a few things you may need to think about first. Here are some, but not all, things for you to consider.
- Does your venue have a marriage licence (if you are not marrying elsewhere)
- Budget – how much can you afford?
- Day and date (any seasonal offer available)
- Is there a particular theme for your wedding and, if so, will the venue you are thinking about cater for your theme?
- Are you having a DJ or a band or both? Will you need a stage for the entertainment?
- Round tables for your guests or straight? In my own opinion, round tables can be more sociable, but this is down to personal choice, and space!
- Do you need hotel rooms for your guests – if so, you might want to consider having your reception at a venue where overnight accommodation is available.
- Does the venue cater for the number of guests you are going to invite – is there a minimum and maximum requirement when it comes to numbers?
- Where applicable, does the venue cater for the disabled?
- Does the venue supply a room dresses/decorator – and if so, is this at an extra cost?
- Do you want to stay at the venue the night before? If so, is there a bridal dressing room available for you big day?
- Does the venue have a specific wedding team/personal planner you can deal with directly?
- Does the venue have a preferred supplier list for photographer, wedding cars, videographer (to name but a few) – if so then don’t forget to ask for a copy, it could save you money in the long run.
- When you receive your price quotation for the reception, firstly it’s ok to negotiate the price and secondly, be sure to check if there are any hidden extra’s. I say this because when my cousin got married the year before the covid lockdown she was under the impression that she (well her dad!) was paying for a fixed wedding package from the hotel. It turned out that for every selection she made from the menu choice there was an additional charge per course per guest. The whole package cost considerably more than had been anticipated. So please check the finer details, it could save you a fortune in the end!
Jake and I have selected a very nice hotel for our wedding reception and, as part of the package, we have been offered several guest bedrooms at a reduced rate. This wasn’t our main reason for selecting a hotel, but it certainly helps because we have several out-of-town guests coming to the wedding and should they want to, they can book one of the bedrooms in our package deal. Anyway, it’s very early days and there is still lots of planning to be done so I will keep you posted and share any tips I pick up along the way.
Keep safe & stay calm!