Post # 1
- Wedding: September 2010 - Heron Hill Winery
So I understand I am planning way ahead, but that is me..I need to plan, plan, plan so I don’t worry, worry, worry. I have been contacting the venue we want to have our ceremony and reception at and have pretty much hit a brick wall. So like I said we are planning ahead and want to set our date for September 10, 2011. I know it is 2 years away, but figured since it was a funky date we would want to talk to our venue now. I contacted the event coordinator and was upset to find that I won’t even be able to think of securing a date until Nov. 1, when they will have the 2011 rates in. Another downer is that to secure the date the full price of the rental fee is due to secure it. I was a little surprised at this, nearly every other place I looked at required only $500-1000 deposit at contract signing. The rental fee for both the reception and ceremony will be between 2500-4000 depending on if we have tents for the ceremony vs a deck ceremony. I was a little shocked since I was expecting the typical range of $500-1000, but $2500-4000 . I think we should have close to that amount saved by then, but now I am a little scared. I want to secure the venue, but think that maybe I should start looking at my other options. I have looked at the positive side to this though and realize it would be good to only have to worry about paying for the food and to know that we have at least paid the rental fee.
Have any other brides had similar experiences? Or I am just trying to keep things on a small budget that this $$ seems more than it is?
Post # 3
oh my goodness! i have never heard of a venue requiring the entire amount to secure a date! usually they require a deposit and then the remainder due before the event. i LOVE you date, 9-10-11 sooo friggin cool!
i am with you about the bright side though, your venue would be paid for and you wouldn’t have to worry about that at all!
Post # 4
- Wedding: September 2010 - Heron Hill Winery
I am in love with the date too…because my Fiance is soo bad at remembering dates, but he can’t forget this one…He just needs to remember we got married in September then I count up….Yeah I thought it was odd too about requring the rental fee to secure the date. Well actually to be correct here is the response she gave regarding booking:
What is required to book a date? Sign a contract and pay the room rental fee (the rest. fee and the deck fee if rented that space – paid in full 30 days from reserving the date.
Does this mean $1700 + $850 (for deck ceremony)=$2550 due at the signing of the contract or do within 30 days of signing the contract? It means within 30 days of signing the contract (sign the contract and return it ASAP – followed by the payment within 30 days) – however, just to confirm with you these are not 2011 rates – and until I get those rates I cannot hold any dates or guarantee any rates…(you also need to add 8% sales tax to the rental fee) – whatever that may be for 2011.
Does she sound snobby to you or is it just me….it is hard to tell via e-mail
Post # 5
Love it. This is so weird. You won’t even know what the tax rate will be NEXT WEEK. How the heck would you know what the tax rate would be in 2 years?
Yes, she sounds snobby. Are you sure there is no other place that you would like to host it at? This place sounds just a bit too much for 2 years out.
Post # 6
I had to pay the entire venue rental fee to book our venue. We had a 10 day hold from the day we toured it, and if they didn’t have the contract signed and deposit in hand by that day it would be opened up for other couples.
Post # 7
Ouch. That’s a lot of cash to come up with. Even though your heart may be set on this venue, you’ve got a ton of time. Have you looked at any other venues? You never know, there might be something else out there that you hadn’t seen. Get a backup just in case. It doesn’t sound like this place has been very nice so far.
Post # 8
This place does not sound very nice. If I read your excerpt correctly, even if you pay the full amount, the date is not reserved and the rate is not set, leaving you open to them adding whatever charges they want as their “2011” rate. If you’re not even guaranteed the date after you paid that much money, then you probably shouldn’t give them the money.
Post # 9
Giving them the whole fee up front would really worry me. What if they go out of business, have a fire, renovate, or some other problem before your wedding date? Then they already have all your money and you have no recourse. And if you’re already slightly uncomfortable with their attitude, imagine how much worse it will get once they have your money! It’s a recession; they should be treating you like gold for even considering giving them your business.
Post # 10
I agree with the others maybe you should wait on this one. I know that when we looked we couldn’t book some places for another 6 months because they don’t start booking till then for next year. I didn’t like that because I needed to start getting other vendors booked. I have had some vendors tell me they have to wait until they get their new rates for next year. So that doesn’t surprise me. I would wait to get a firm rate from them because the last thing you need is for them to sock it to you next year and your stuck because you’ve already given them lots of money.
Post # 11
- Wedding: September 2010 - Heron Hill Winery
We do have other venues in mind…we are looking at a vineyard wedding and do have a lot of options in the area…The fingerlakes is a huge NYS wine region. So here is the website for the one in mention: www.glenora.com
This is the top choice mainly because it is such a great setting and they have the accomidations to host the reception indoors. Also, my Fiance is really in love with the place, however after telling him about the e-mail he is more wary than he had originally been.
My top choice is Heron Hill which looks absolutely gorgeous in photos, but we have yet to see it in person. http://www.heronhill.com/heronhill/page/our_facility.jsp  ’ defer=’defer; Not to mention that it is also a little bit more pricey to rent, but I really like what it looks like. They require a $1000 deposit and have a few things I wasn’t sure I liked in their contract.
Our third choice is probably the most logical though it is not necessarily the prettiest of the bunch. http://www.sixmilecreek.com/weddingsevents.html
The pros to the latter is that it is right in town, the event coordinator has been the most responsive, they are flexible when setting up a payment plan, and the deposit to secure a date is only $500. Downside is that we want a fall wedding with 100 guests this would mean renting a tent which adds to rental costs. By far though looking at the quotes this place would be a cheaper option than the others.
What do you think?
I have a long list of other vineyards/wineries, but we haven’t had a chance to go to all of them and some we knocked off the list based on price alone.
We do plan to meet with the person from Six Mile this week since we haven’t put it out of our minds yet.
Post # 12
I would look around especially if you cant commit to the high deposit. I agree it is frustrating you have to wait to book a venue, where I work we only book events 18 months out so all the 2011 brides have to wait until later to even contract. I will say though part of the reason, for us at least, is that we contract at a certain price per person and once its contracted we can not raise that price. So if we contracted at $60 per person now for a 2011 event and minimum wage went up, the cost of food went up, etc we would loose alot of money. Some venues contract further out because they have it in the contract that you are just booking the space and the price can/will be discussed or changed later. And dont feel too bad about the deposit, ours is $5000 and where I had my wedding it was $3000.
That being said, since you have a little more than 2 years away, I would take your time and find a venue you love, can afford and are able to book the date when you are ready.
Post # 13
This just seems silly. They should be thrilled to have an organized bride planning so far out ! All up front isn’t fair either ! I could see a deposit ….. then some in a year …… but all front is too much. I’d go elsewhere.
Post # 14
Locking in early rates is great, but I really do think that this is pretty early to commit to a venue, anyway… So much can change in 2 years. Venues change hands. There is turnover in staff. Your wants and desires change. I say explore all of your options now. Make lists, take photos, and then re-evaluate in early 2010. You’ll still have ample time to decide, and it is really unlikely that you’ll have to compete for bookings.
Post # 15
I’m also getting married in 2011, so I know what you mean about wanting to be prepared and stress free !
Mmmmmm this seems a little….I don’t know. Judging from the vibe that you’re getting from the people at your first venue, I don’t think it would be a good fit.
I totally agree with Mrs. DG as well…so much can change in two years.
Keep us posted about Six Mile! I’m very curious to see how you like them…from what I understand, a responsive wedding coordinator is a Godsend!