Post # 1
So we’re about to book our venue and my FI and I have differing opinions on the space. The venue we want is an old fort that looks like a castle. Basically there are two floors inside of it. The upstairs space is huge and holds like 150 people seated and we’re having 60 to 75 guests. My idea is that we rent just that space, have our ceremony, dinner, and dancing space inside there (it would be flipped after the ceremony). Then we would have cocktail hour outside on one of the patios.
My FI’s idea is that we have the ceremony downstairs in the room that holds like 75 people max. Then upstairs we have dinner and our cocktail hour, and then dancing downstairs later again. He still wants to rent the patio area, but doesn’t want to actually use it apparently. He just wants it there so his family can walk around the grounds and see everything. I think this is pointless, but according to him it’s brilliant. I don’t like the idea of dancing being separate from dinner since I know how much it sucks to have to walk up and down stairs in heels. Logistically it would be a nightmare for the bar, since people would either have to walk upstairs to get drinks or we’d have to get two bars. Then there is the matter of having a DJ. I see it causing problems with that as well, since we’d need the DJ for two different rooms vs. just one room all day. What do you bees think?
Post # 3
I dont like having dancing separate from everything else. Some guests dont like to dance, and prefer to sit and mingle. Other people (like myself) like to dance and mingle and having everything on different floors makes this tough. And carrying drinks up and down in high heels will inevitably lead to someone falling.
Post # 4
@Bostongrl25: This is exactly what I’m trying to explain to him. Of course, walking up stairs isn’t hard when your a guy. But drinks + high heels just seems like a disaster waiting to happen to me.
Post # 5
How about ceremony downstairs, cocktails on the patio, then dinner and dancing upstairs? I think ‘flipping’ the space adds some complexity.
Post # 6
- Wedding: November 2012 - Oak Tree Manor
@Tarheelgurl: I am def on your side – you should rent out one floor, or at least have dinner and dancing on the same floor. Is there something your FI really likes about the smaller room – is there a reason why he wants to have the ceremony there rather than in the larger room?
I’ve been to a lot of weddings, and the best ones are definitely where the dinner and dancing are in the same area – so guests can get up and dance for some songs, sit down if they get sweaty/tired, refresh their drink and set it on their table while they dance, etc. We went to a wedding with ~75 guests (probably very similar size to yours!) and the ceremony was in a church, and the reception was in a fairly large room where there was enough room for dinner tables and a medium-sized dance floor. The reception was so cozy and intimate, and the tables were in a circle around the dance floor. I loved how easy it was to visit with people intermittently between different songs, and honestly, it was just so cozy! I think by having dancing and dinner on separate floors, you sacrifice that feeling of “togetherness,” and you’ll probably end up with nobody dancing (because they don’t realize it’s happening, or don’t want to keep going upstairs and downstairs), or the young people downstairs dancing while the older people are upstairs (which kind of sucks, because weddings are about everyone coming together, right?)
Long story short, definitely keep dinner/dancing on the same floor.
Post # 7
@Tarheelgurl: Ya the stairs would bother me, but having everyone separate is more of an issue for me. We actually looked at a venue with a similar layout (dinner and dancing in different areas), and that was the reason we didn’t book it.
Good luck!! sounds like a cool venue so hopefully you and your DH can compromise 🙂
Post # 8
I prefer dinner and dancing in the same place. For guests who don’t dance, they’ll still be able to enjoy the festivities and watch. I’ve been to a couple wedding where the dancing was in another room and it always feels like there’s a disconnect. If you add stairs, there’s also the hassle of walking up and down and you might have less people wanting to dance in the long run.
Post # 9
I went to a wedding once that had dancing on a separate floor. I didn’t dance. I had heels on, and had thrown my back out the previous day, and did not want to climb any stairs! If you actually want people to dance, don’t make them work for it.
Post # 11
@CityBearBride: We could do that if he really wants both floors. It would make things less complex with having to flip the room for cocktail hour. So yeah that might work. I’ll talk to him about it.
Post # 12
- Wedding: August 2013 - The Liberty House
I like his idea of having the ceremony downstairs, but I think the dancing and dinner should be upstairs.