(Closed) Charleston Brides?

posted 8 years ago in South Carolina
Post # 47
Member
27 posts
Newbee
  • Wedding: October 2013

@kjo687:  Please let me know what you think of Confederate gardens. We are looking there in 3 weeks. If you take pictures could you email them to me? [email protected]. Thanks!

Post # 48
Member
7 posts
Newbee
  • Wedding: July 2012

@mullinscmu:  I wanted to give you my input on some of the places you are looking at. Also, I think you’ve talked to my mom a little about this! I got married at Harborside East on July 21st and loved it! I don’t have my pictures back yet to show you, but it truly is beautiful!

So, Historic Rice Mill- my friend had her reception there in May and they had about 175 guests plus a band and there was plenty of room! There were 3 food stations set up, as well as a table of snack type stuff. They had one bar inside and one outside. The outside area was so nice at night. I thought there was plenty of room for a dance floor as well. An important thing about the Rice Mill is that you have to use their catering, but the food was good!

The Wickliffe House is also beautiful, but since it’s a house it doesn’t have that open feel. I think a lot of people end up doing the dance floor outside as well since there is no room for it inside. You also have to use their catering company.

Were you planning on having the ceremony at a church or at the same location as the reception? 

 

 

 

Post # 49
Member
27 posts
Newbee
  • Wedding: October 2013

@lnbozzelli:  Yes I have been talking to you mom! She has been a huge help! Harborside is our first choice and I feel like that’s what we will end up with but I just wanted to have a back up plan. We plan to do ceremony & reception at same location. I would love to see your pictures when they come back! I’m glad to hear Historic Rice MIll fit 175 comfortably. Thanks for the info!

You looked beautiful by the way in the pictures your mom let me see! Congrats!

Post # 50
Member
17 posts
Newbee
  • Wedding: May 2013

@mullinscmu:  The Confederate Home is lovely!  The garden area is very green and the lawn is well maintatined.  You can easily accommodate a lot of chairs (~200 ish?) for a ceremony.  The indoor ballroom can be used if it rains, which is a nice option if needed.  The ballroom is beautiful (original wood floors, tall ceilings, lots of crown molding) but I wouldn’t recommend it for a reception.  The building is very old and the floors are not stable enough to dance on.  Amplified music is also not allowed since elderly women reside there.  I guess it depends on what type of reception you are having but the no band/DJ + no dancing rules made it easy for me to cross the CH off my list for a reception.  

Post # 51
Member
308 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: April 2013

@MrsLadyL:   Do you know how much they cost for just the reception?

Post # 52
Member
17 posts
Newbee
  • Wedding: May 2013

@Tiffner:  Yes!  Prices are broken down by which indoor room(s) you need- there is an East room and a West room, $750 individually or $1,050 for both (for 4 PM – 11 PM, prices are cheaper for an afternoon reception).  Each room can accommodate 75 people standing or 45 people seated.  If you want to have your reception in the gardens that comes at a price of $525 for up to 50 people or $675 for over 50 people. An extra $200 will be charged if a tent or flooring is used for the event.  As a bonus, if you rent one or both of the indoor rooms plus the gardens, $200 will be subtracted from the regular combined fee.  Hope that helps!!

Post # 53
Member
308 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: April 2013

@MrsLadyL:  Thank you so much! I’m wondering if I should look into this as an option since The Battery has no rain plan.  If anyone has pictures (I live in Charlotte) it would be a huge help 🙂

Post # 54
Member
951 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: October 2013

@MrsLadyL:  I was actually quoted more than that less than a month ago. Your pricing sounds about right as per the contract, but the superintendant was not very friendly and kept telling us what we could *not* do. She also said that the contract is out of date, and didn’t seem to have read it in its entirety. From what we were told, you can not set up flooring on the grass (although the contract lists a price for doing this) you can not dance in any of the rooms, you can not even dance in the garden area, you can not have amplified sound, you can not use candles, you can not bring in heavy equipment to the ball rooms nor can you move their fixtures. I’m sure there was a slew of other things, the worst of which was when we were told we would have to pay $100 for one of the elderly residents to sit and “make sure that absolutely nothing goes wrong” during a 30 minute ceremony. Apparently they used to hire police officers to do security but decided they don’t like them very much. Did I mention police officers usually charge around $25/hour? So to use the garden only, you are charged $675 just for the grass, $150-175 (I can’t remember) for a backup in case of rain, and $100 for “security,” before you’ve even rented a single chair or table.

My sister is on the main crew for one of Charleston’s most well known catering companies, she has seen every venue and she was very bitter over our whole experience at the Confederate Home. The gardens are beautiful, but to us it wasn’t worth it. 

Post # 55
Member
951 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: October 2013

@MrsLadyL:  By the way, what you’re referring to I’m thinking is the two parlors? Each of which are decked out with Confederate flags that can not be removed. Perhaps that doesn’t bother you, it is the Confederate Home after all, however after actually seeing the parlors I highly doubt they could fit that number of people. Perhaps combined they could fit 75 standing or 45 seated, but not individually. 

The old Courtroom could fit quite a few people and is GORGEOUS, however the same very long set of rules applies and it is about $1700 to use for the night, plus $475 for a ceremony in the Courtyard, plus the $100 security, and that’s before you’ve brought in any rentals. Not exactly a steal of a deal. I loved the Courtroom, however my sister thought it looked musty and haunted. 

Post # 56
Member
107 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: December 2012

Oh. I agree. The lady that manages the property is very strange and odd. I felt like I was intruding when I was there. That being said it is in a great location and if you have a wedding planner/coordinator, I’m sure you’ll have no problems.

Post # 57
Member
17 posts
Newbee
  • Wedding: May 2013

@sablemuse:  I agree with you- I would not use the CH for a reception because of the reasons I mentioned in my post and you rementioned (can’t dance, no DJ/bands allowed).  Maybe they changed their policy in regards to allowing tents/flooring?  No idea.  My contract (which I signed last week) still lists these as options.  I’m not sure what indoor rooms you are referring to.  I was only shown 2 adjoining rooms on the 2nd floor that were both beautiful.  You could EASILY fit 45 people in each room for a seated reception (think: 1 round table holding 8-10 people would mean you would only need 4-5 tables/room).  I am only having my ceremony at CH and the $125 indoor room fee is paid only if you actually need the rooms the day of. 

The woman (Sally) who runs the CH is older (70s?) and a little particular.  I met with her twice and had no issues with her whatsoever.  I think it is probably easier for her to list the 5 or 6 things you cannot do on the property rather than the 100 things you can.  The gardens are well maintained because she is somewhat protective of them, which I can respect.  She also lives on-site so this is her home!  If you are polite, say ‘please’ and ‘thank you’, and are a little patient with her you will have no problems!  I sat in her office and talked about the olympics, buying a house, my job, etc. 

Post # 58
Member
951 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: October 2013

@hfarrant:  Totally.

And might I recommend, for anyone who is going to be in the Confederate Home/Old Exchange/ Waterfront Park area, Southend Brewery has a lovely upstairs space that includes everything except for linens for a catering minimum. They do not use their regular kitchen for this (thank God) and have a catering team who according to my sister is led by a well respected Charleston chef. The upstairs space is actually two different floors, you can use one or both. The top and largest floor has pool tables off to the side and a full bar. Definitely something you Bees may want to look into. I was going to go with Southend but decided to go with a different ceremony location after visiting the Confederate Home. The coordinator Jana was a doll to work with though, I have her email and lots of pics if anyone would like them.

Post # 59
Member
951 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: October 2013

@MrsLadyL:  LOL I was definitely more than polite, and talked to her about her cats and all of the animals that live there and everything on the news that week etc. She was nice, but not what I would call hospitable. I had the same experience at the Visitor’s Center, which is priced the same and managed very similarly. I think this has something to do with them being owned by the City and expenses aren’t really spared to pay for advertising or event managers. 

Also you may want to ask Miss Sally about the outdoor flooring because we were told that we could not do it, even when we pointed out that it was on the contract. In fact we pointed out that several things were not on the contract/written differently and she said that the contract was not correct. Obviously once you sign the contract, that’s what you go by so like the other Bee said if I were you I’d just get a coordinator to deal with things after that. I can promise you she does not realize that legally, what is on the contract goes.

Post # 60
Member
17 posts
Newbee
  • Wedding: May 2013

@sablemuse:  Yes, a coordinator is definitely in the works… for my own personal sanity!  Thankfully all I need for the ceremony is chairs!  

Post # 61
Member
951 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: October 2013

Correction, MrsLadyL and I just discovered that the parlor rooms are referred to as the “drawing rooms” in the CH contract.. in case anyone needed to know! Like I said make sure that what you sign off on is the “Courtroom” as a backup in case of rain, especially if you have over 50 people. There is a huge difference! 🙂

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