Post # 1
I need some help! How much did you CT wedding cost (big ticket items – Venue, catering, entertainment, flowers, photography?
I have no idea what the “going rate” is in CT for the kind of wedding we’d like to plan (about 100-120 people on the coastline).
I have been doing a little bit of research on my own (mostly on venue and catering) and am finding that it will be difficult to keep this under $15k. How much would a reasonable budget be for flowers, entertainment, and photography?
FMIL thinks it’s crazy to spend that much on a wedding (and I don’t necessarily want to) but I was hoping to be able to bring back to her some examples of real costs in the area.
Feel free to elaborate and break down the costs (rough estimates is fine).
Thanks for your help!
Post # 3
It will cost about $15000 for 130 people at our venue (which includes open bar, apps, cake, ceremony, cocktail hour, plated dinner, wine at dinner, honeymoon suite, total of 5 hours)
DJ is costing $999
Its really the little things that add up, but I’m not worrying much about the little things, since I won’t be bothering.
Where abouts were you looking to have the wedding?
Post # 4
@hkinsley: I was looking into the Eolia Mansion at Harkness State Park.
Post # 5
@TTReverie: Have you tried looking into Amarante’s Sea Cliff? Its in New Haven though. I’m not sure how close you are to that area and I don’t think it is extremely expensive. Obviously you can barter with the venue on items that you don’t want in their all-inclusive
Post # 6
@TTReverie: I honestly don’t think Harkness is doable with a $15K budget. I mean, there’s a possibility that it is if you don’t serve a full meal, don’t have a full open bar, or know other vendor friends.
Just to rent the place is 1/3 of your budget. They only have 3 caterers you can choose from, and I believe they run around at least $100 a head. I have more info about pricing at my house but I’m at work now. Vendor wise, good photographers in this area are at LEAST $2,000. My DJ is $1,000. Are you looking to do the full dinner and open bar? Or what’s the feel you’re going for?
If you’re looking in that area, I booked Branford House. Price is comparable to Harkness but there’s no ceremony fee and no caterer restrictions (they have to be legit and with the right insurance though). There’s also Rocky Neck or Narragansett Towers.
Post # 7
Thanks for the advise. I wanted to get a feel for what is realistic in this area so the 15k I budget isn’t set in stone. We are very early in the planning phase so we definitely will be looking around!
Post # 8
- Wedding: September 2013 - Pavilion at Rocky Neck State Park
If anyone is looking for an afforable venue, look at Rocky Neck. It is cheaper than the branford house and harkness. It is right in front of the water and is pretty cool.
Here’s a few pics
Post # 9
All the “popular” venues book up fast. I looked at the Webb Barn in Wethersfield because a friend of mine loves it (but it is way too pricey for my budget). Their calendar shows you what is already booked and what is not. To me, I feel $15k for that amount of people is about right because when they say $100 per person + service fee + tax. Sometimes that does not include gratuity, service fee apparently does not mean the same as tip. The cost for full open bar is killing me, I’m shooting for open beer and wine bar. I also read somewhere you can jazz that up and make a bellini bar.
Post # 10
- Wedding: June 2014 - Latitude 41
@TTReverie: I wanted Harkness too…ever since I was a little girl. BUT the don’t have a big enough room to fit everyone so the tables would be scattered in a couple different rooms. The dance floor is outside on the patio. It was just too divided for me…oh my lord though, it is a beautiful location.
We ended up going with The River Room/Latitude 41 in Mystic. I believe $15,000 is the minimum for a Saturday wedding. You will easily go over this unless you do buffet or a simple menu. MAKE SURE YOU FACTOR IN GRATUITY AND TAX. This will add 26.35% to your bill (20% for gratuity and 6.35% for CT tax). This makes a huge difference! ($3952 for a $15,000 bill). Some places charge 18% gratuity which lessens things a bit. Make sure you ask and consider this upfront. I have a friend who forgot to add this in and ended up having to come up with like $6,000 last minute.
Here is what our other vendors are costing:
DJ: $1300 (you can get this for less…we are having them (DJ and Assistant) for Ceremony, cocktail hour and reception) If you hire them just for the reception and use an ipod playlist for the cocktail hour you will save some $$.
Photographer: $4200 (for two photographers for 8 hours)
Officiant (non-religious): $250
Flowers: $2000 (flowers to line the isle, and for the wedding arch, my bouquet, 5 bridesmaids bouquets, 10 boutenierres–i never spell that right–lol–, petals for flower girl, flower girl crown, 2 corsages, 3 stems on each table in antique bottles–provided by me, one toss bouquet)
There are ways to cut costs. There are more budget friendly photogs out there and a lot of girls order their flowers in bulk from Sams or Cosco.
First determine how much DYI you want to do and prioritze.