(Closed) Clearwater/St. Pete wedding reception 100 people for under 7k?Am I dreaming? :(

posted 10 years ago in Florida – West Coast Florida
Post # 3
1854 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: September 2012

Just sent you a PM!

Post # 4
2183 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: November 2011 - Florida Aquarium

Hi there! I’m getting married this November in Tampa, so I did some shopping around.

It sounds like you know this, but cutting your guestlist is the easiest way to save money.

Are you looking for a ceremony and reception spot or just reception?

We looked at out of the box locations, an orange grove, the Sunken Garden, the Florida Aquarium, and wineries. Keel and Curly Winery has a pond, and the celebration area overlooks it. I think it might fit your budget.

Key is going to be finding a place that does require you to use their caterer. There are lots of places to cut costs… does the $7000 include your dress, rings…?

Also, you mention using a hotel because they take care of most things for you… just fyi, a lot of venues these days come with a cooridnator who can be extremely helpful, and I’m telling you this as an out of town bride, so keep your mind open– unless your dream is a hotel ballroom, and in that case, go for it!

Post # 6
120 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: April 2012

I ended up deciding against a wedding in the St. Pete/ Clearwater areas because it was just so pricey for the atmoshpere I was looking for.

This might not be what you’re looking for, but I really liked this place (though my Future Mother-In-Law would have been really upset if we went this casual) http://www.postcardinn.com/weddings-events/

Post # 7
2183 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: November 2011 - Florida Aquarium

View original reply
@FutureMissSmoothie: I chose the Florida Aquarium. Our total budget is about $15000, and we budgeted for 75 people, but only about 60 are actually coming. Lots of these places have “packages.” For instance, the Aquarium includes (chivari) chairs, tables, linen, cake cutting, champagne, bar… in a package. Ours is $64 per person. We’re having the ceremony and reception there. We’re getting married and hold the reception in the Coral Reef room, which has a floor to ceiling fishtank backdrop– so minimal decor is necessary. We also have a coordinator assigned to us, who we work with specifically. The downfall for us was the catering- we must use their caterer, We decided we’d deal with that. We chose th Aquarium because it’s our dream venue and it would be easy to plan from a distance. We worked with their preferred vendor list for the photographer, but branched out for the DJ and baker. I’m not so into flowers, so we’re just having them for our ceremony. All that said, for 70 folks, the “wedding package” with plated dinner the total is about $6000, plus $1900 to rent to Aquarium. 

Sorry, that’s a lot of information!

It’s only recently all fallen into place. We’ve been concerned about paying for it (we’re doing it ourselves), but we’ve figured it all out and are now really happy with our decision, all drama aside.

My point is there are TONS of options where you don’t have bring everything in. Look for beautiful settings where you need little decor. You do have time, so just visit all the places you can think of. Getting in to these places for free was awesome too ๐Ÿ™‚

Post # 9
533 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: November 2011


I’m getting married in tampa on the 5th of Nov. 2011!!10 more days!! 

My recommendation is the Columbia Restaurant in St. Petersburg! Their Prices are super reasonable & it has gorgeous ocean views!! Check it out! 

Here is a link:


I was going to do the columbia in ybor city & it came out to be about $22 a person (mind you, thats just food & drinks & location, tables & standard white linens.) So that would leave you plenty of room to splurge on other items like chivari chairs (btw, anywhere here in tampa, these would run for about $7 a piece + 200 delivery fee, i got mine from Brelex Rentals in Miami for $3.50 + 200 delivery fee.) Its really an incredible deal! 

Also, feel free to PM me for vendors!! 

visit my facebook page, I have some vendors there! 


I make personalized wedding hangers & I know MANY vendors ๐Ÿ™‚

Good luck & welcome to the tampa bay area!! ๐Ÿ™‚


Post # 10
1291 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: January 2011

The Rusty Pelican is a beautiful weddig venue. They also have packages.

Post # 12
1 posts
  • Wedding: October 2010

Davis Island Garden Club, Clearwater Sailing Center, St. Pete Community Center…totally do-able on that budget.  St. Paul’s is in downtown St. Pete and much closer.  It’s not a cathedral, but still gorgeous!

Post # 15
1854 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: September 2012

I attended a wedding on a Starlite cruise and it was lovely.  The view was great, the officiant did a phenomenal job, and the food was out of this world.  I have never before in my life gone back for seconds on a buffet at a wedding (you don’t usually want to), but I went back for 2nds on salmon!  The bride/groom seemed stress-free and everyone had a good time.  Plus, with the boat, no one worried about staying too late/leaving early.  

Also, my first wedding was at the Florida Aquarium, so more than happy to share my experience there. 

Post # 16
18 posts
  • Wedding: February 2012

I think I may have the answer to your prayers!  I am getting married on the beach in February and having our reception at the St. Pete Beach Community Center.  http://www.spbrec.com/facility-rentals/ Yes, it is a community center, but it is beautiful, on the intercoastal and CHEAP!  I, too, wanted a place on the water that takes care of everything, but the budget was more of a priority. 

We chose to go this route and get a coordinator who also is really affordable.  Check out Sue from Suncoast Weddings. (It used to be called Allen Weddings) http://www.allenweddings.net/home.html She has LOTS of experience, great reviews and has been nothing but amazing for my fiance and I. Again-she is affordable! 

My FI’s mom is a former caterer so she recommended a company she used to work with.  They are the most affordable we found anywhere and obviously came with the highest of recommendations.  Another friend booked them after we did!  Check out Spotlight Catering. http://spotlightcatering.com/weddings.htm  $43/person for cocktail hour, full dinner, open bar, china, linens, and service charge!  You really can’t beat them.  AND…the food is excellent!

I was really overwhelmed in the beginning, too.  I hope this helps.  Good luck!

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