How to Choose the Perfect Wedding Venue
Whether you have yet to decide where to marry or even if you set your heart on your perfect wedding venue before the proposal, this article will really help you and your wedding from the start of your planning adventure. Finding the ideal wedding venue that’s right for you can initially feel overwhelming, especially if you both have different ideas about where or how to celebrate at the beginning (like we did!).
With new wedding venues springing up now and then, it’s great that there are so many varied choices. This is why it can feel like there’s too much to think of and consider. Even your dream wedding venue may involve some limitations or compromise.
Compatibility Rocks – Aligning Your Visions & Style
Let’s say you both have slightly different ideas at the beginning. Ask yourselves these questions at an early stage because you’ll know the answers to these more or less straight away so each of you will quickly see where your ideas and vision meet.
Church wedding, civil or humanist ceremony is probably the first step to agree on. Then, what’s your style? Are you more in favour of a romantic castle full of history, a delighful country garden or an impressive country manor? Or are you more city or boutique chic than urban cool? Do you fancy somewhere quirky or contemporary or is the seaside more your thang? How bothered are you about views or would you be happy to be inside somewhere splendid all the while? It makes sense to see if you and your fiance/ fiancee are thinking along the same lines.
Read on to see what you should consider, and remember that a great wedding planner will also be able to answer how to choose a wedding venue that’s right for you.
Where Do You Begin – Big Wedding, Little Wedding?
Your guest number will mean that some places are not suitable. Once you have an approximate number of the people you want to invite, your wedding venue search will become more relevant. How many guests can your venue comfortably accommodate? If too big or if there are many rooms to wander about in, then it could mean that your main wedding room rarely looks full. On the other hand, no-one wants to feel cramped in just one or even two rooms for most of the day.
Location, Location, Location
At this stage, you should also consider its geographical location and how easily your guests, especially any who are elderly or infirm, can reach it. It might be a deal breaker if your favourite grandparent can’t get there. There are special people in life that you just can’t imagine getting married without.
Not all wedding priorities are the same; one of my friends originally wanted to have a destination wedding, then realised that she would have to put her pets in a cattery because the family that usually looked after them were going to be with at her wedding abroad. She could not bear to do this because her long-time furry friends had never experienced being out of their home, so she happily married in North Yorkshire instead.
Guest Experience & Children
Would you prefer your venue to have onsite accommodation and are there enough places for your out-of-area guests to stay nearby if they want to? If you have family and close friends travelling from afar, you might want to consider a wedding venue that you can hire for more than one day or even a weekend. Maybe glamping is an option for some of your guests, with luxury and convenience for others?
Think also about parking and the enjoyment value of outside space for everyone.
It’s important to consider if you would be ok if there was another wedding in another part of your venue or on the same grounds? Could you see yourself enjoying your day more if it was at a place where the members of the public would also be around congratulating you and calling you beautiful?
Time of Year
The time of year or seasonal choice is usually an easy one. Love spring? How would your venue look in the springtime? Usually those who really love a particular season or those who are wanting a spring or summer wedding like somewhere outdoors to enjoy and for some of their wedding photographs.
Snow is very romantic and it really does look magical but think about travel and access to your venue for your guests and your wedding suppliers if you’re planning a winter wedding.
Mood, Aesthetic & Design
How do you want your wedding day to look and feel? How do you want your wedding photographs to look in terms of light and mood? Is your general preference for light, spacious rooms with pale floors, subtle colours and big windows or are you more about a rich, cosy space with a nightclub or restaurant feel in the evening.
When you go for venue viewings think about how many places it offers for the kind of photographs that you want. If you prefer lighter looking photographs, a darker venue will result in darker photographs.
Are the views from the venue important to you?
My top tip is for each of you to separately write down the answers to these, read each other’s, then see where where you might have to compromise or start your ideal venue search afresh. We ended up learning quite a lot more about each other in the year we were engaged!
Logistics & Other Things
Do you want your marriage ceremony at your reception venue, at a church or even outdoors? If your ceremony is away from your venue, think about the length and ease of the journey between the two, especially if you’re having a winter wedding. Is it easy for your guests to get taxis or can you hire transport for everyone to save worry about guests getting lost?
Are you a couple who prefer to choose your own caterers and food or would you prefer to choose from the options available at your venue. As well as finding out what your catering options are, it’s also worth finding out about things like confetti and candles, sparklers and fireworks. Some couples prefer to style their own wedding too.
Check when do you need to vacate in the morning after your wedding, when you can arrive to start getting ready, when the partying has to stop, and when your guests can start arriving too.
With the erratic weather that we’ve been having, it makes sense to check if there is actually any available space for your photographs inside if it’s pouring down outside.
Lastly – wedding insurance
The unexpected can happen and sometimes weddings have to be postponed or arrangements changed for unforeseen reasons. Last year a wedding had to be postponed because the guests could not reach the wedding venue due to road flooding. As it’s one of the most expensive celebrations most of us have, please do look into insurance carefully and select the right policy for your wedding.
So it begins!
You’re welcome to give me a call on 07973 266 393 if you’d like to talk through your ideas for the right wedding venue for you and your wedding day.
Getting married in Yorkshire? Then you need to read this! From Castles to Teepees – Here’s What Your Yorkshire Wedding Photographs Could Look Like