Post # 1
Hello fellow bees!
I usually just lurk because I tend to find all the info I need by reading other posts or browsing the archives but I need a little guidance on hotel blocks!
I’m getting married this upcoming August and I’m conflicted on my room blocks. My ceremony/venue site are both at the Drexelbrook in Drexel Hill. This is about 20-25 min away from the local airport and about 30 min away from center city.
I was hoping to book two hotels (a cheaper but nice option and a more upscale option for those with different tastes). I liked the idea of having an option near the airport for people flying in BUT there are hardly any good entertainment/food options there. I liked the city because it gives you entertainment and food although you’ll have to pay for it. My concerns are that the ideal hotel spots are too far from the venue! Either way people will need to rent cars to get out there.
My questions to you ladies would be:
1.) Do you think a ~30 min commute to the ceremony/reception site is reasonable?
2.) Should I just nix the idae of splitting people up so that I can possibly rent a school bus or van to transport all guests in the hotel at one time?
3.) Do you know of other hotel options that would be a good compromise between price, entertainment, and locaiton?
Thanks in advance ladies!
Post # 3
@SwtAnana: Usually people who have to fly in know that they will be having to rent a car, so I wouldn’t worry about that. As for people who are driving in, they’ll have their own cars, so again, don’t worry about the car rental things.
Booking blocks of rooms at 2 locations, to me, isn’t something you should have to do. You can book a block of rooms at the more expensive hotel, and possibly try to arrange a shuttle with them? (Some hotels do this, others do not.) Also talk to your venue and see if they have suggestions/know of shuttle services. If your location is one where the hotels are usually further away, venues usually have a good system or at least knowledge for getting guests to and from the location.
With that said, guests don’t have to stay at the hotel you book rooms for, and many guests will find locations where they can afford/are willing to stay. I know for me, I have discounts with a certain hotel, so I’ll stay there if it is a viable option instead of whichever hotel the couples books.
1) 30 minutes to me, is a bit of a drive, if there is something closer I would prefer it, if not, it’s fine.
2) I really like the idea of a shuttle from one location (then people will be more likely to stay there AND it is a safer option if drinks are involved).
3) Not familiar with the area, so sorry, I can’t be of help.
Post # 4
- Wedding: September 2014 - Turf Valley
Me personally, I would hate a ~30 minute drive back to the hotel because I would plan on drinking at the reception. Providing some type of shuttle service would be a cool idea.
Post # 5
OMG keep your guests away from the aiprort. Yes there is nothing near it but its also not the best area, but neither is Darby. My suggestion would be to find a hotel on the other side of city ave in ardmore/havertown etc. If you’re guests want to go downtown they can take a 15 minute train ride. I agree with PP on the shuttle idea.
Post # 6
If you’ll be having a bar at your reception, I would strongly recommend doing only one hotel block and lining up a shuttle bus; you can even invite the locals to take the shuttle bus if there’s space left after the out-of-towners are taken care of. OR pick the hotel closest to the venue. I wouldn’t want to recommend guests stay in a specific hotel knowing they would all be more likely to drink and drive back to it.
Post # 7
Thanks so much for the advice ladies!
I think I’ll talk to my FI about doing what you recommended: getting one hotel in an area of town that actually has activities/shopping for the guests (Ardmore!) and making sure that the guests are informed on how to get into Center City. I’ll also look into the shuttle idea because I think that’s the best option for having a venue that’s so out of the way.
I think it’s a bummer that people will travel so far only to have to mostly remain outside of the city so I”m sure that if I find an affordable shuttle option it won’t be that big of deal to have a hotel in the city.
Post # 8
We have mostly out-of-town guests coming to our wedding, and we opted to book a Center City hotel (the Sofitel) and offer a shuttle to our venue (only in Fishtown, but we still wanted to provide transportation). I agree with others that a 30-minute drive is a bit much, especially when people are drinking. I would feel responsible if my guests opted to drink and drive. We ended up booking Cescaphe trolley for our transportation, but Sterling Limo’s buses were very reasonably priced.
From personal experience, I would want to stay downtown if I’m paying to travel out-of-town to a wedding. We went to a wedding in Toronto and opted to stay downtown, even though the wedding was in the burbs. A bunch of us arranged for taxis to take us to/from the venue. It wasn’t super cheap, but it was reasonable and allowed us to drink without issue. If you choose to block a hotel downtown, you could try to help people facilitate cab sharing to get to/from the wedding. Given that we were there for the weekend, we wanted to make the most of our trip and stay somewhere that we could enjoy the city.
As far as booking two hotels – I personally opted to book the “nicer” hotel and I assume that with expedia and other travel booking sites, guests who want to book a cheaper hotel will find their own. I personally didn’t find it necessary to book two hotels…most people are Internet savvy enough to find one on their own if they don’t like your selection.
Post # 9
I went to a wedding at Drexelbrook and everyone stayed at The Radnor Hotel. It’s nice. As a guest I’d rather stay close to the reception site and travel a little for entertainment on the day of or after.
Post # 10
@SwtAnana: There is a brand new hotel (I think a marriot) that just opened up right next to springfield country club. I would contact them as it is a perfect distance from your venue. I personally think 30 minutes a bit far of a commute from a venue to a hotel.
Post # 11
Thanks again ladies for the additional suggestions.
We decided to pick a hotel in the city since people will be traveling all the way from Florida. Hopefully they can make it into a nice vacay. We’ll just rent transportation to and from the venue so that people can drink without worry.
I’ll have to look into Sterling Limo Buses! Someone suggested having those big yellow school buses since they’re cheap but I’m not sure about having people ride in those things…
Post # 12
We have the same situation. Our wedding is in Rose Valley/Media on July 3rd and we ended up getting a block of rooms at the Doubletree in Center City to be close to the July 4th festivities. We are also renting a school bus to take the guests back and forth.
Post # 13
We decided to go with the Sofitel Hotel in Rittenhouse Square and to rent buses. We got engaged in Rittenhouse so we thought it’d be neat to go back there and perhaps have a nice brunch for our guests at that little french restaurant on the corner (blanking on the name right now!)
Post # 14
@SwtAnana: Let me know where you’re having your brunch! We are blocking at the Sofitel too (as you may remember) and we’re trying to find a nearby brunch spot that won’t break the bank. The only French restaurant I can think of is Parc, but it’s far from little so i don’t know if that’s what your referring to!
Post # 15
Parc! Thanks….I was having a complete brain fart on that one. And you’re right, it’s not little at all actually lol.
I haven’t done a ton of research on a brunch spot just yet so I’m not even sure we’ll go that route. It sounds nice but we’ll see what the budget actually says.
I”m happy I went this route instead of opting for something far out of the city. I think our guests will enjoy this much better than staying on City Line.
Post # 15
What ever you do, DO NOT USE hotelweddingblocks.com as I have never experienced such terrible customer service like this ever before. After being in email contact with 2 different consultants, neither one got back to me with hotel/price options. I sent several more emails that were ignored. I waited 2 months- calling multiple times and leaving a few voicemails, until I finally got a ahold of one of the consultants via email. She stated that she did not find any options in my price range. No further explanation or options given. Of course when emailed back for further help with an expanded budget I got no reply. Complete waste of my time.