- 6 years ago
- Wedding: September 2013
My fiance and I are super stuck on two different venues, Liberty House and Giando on the Water (I’ll try the NJ board too). Any feedback anyone can give on this would be appreciated.
For all intents and purposes, we do seem to prefer LH in a lot of ways, but it’s not as simple as it sounds. Still, first off, WHY we like it better:
The nearby hotel is less expensive, and there’s a shuttle deal to get the out of town guests over (haven’t found that in Brooklyn).
The outdoor patio area is nicer- nice lounge furniture, fire pits where guests can roast marshmallows outside (Giando only has metal benches, and fire pits aren’t even allowed- we’d probably end up renting some lounge furniture so people can be comfortable, if we can afford to).
The ceremony area at LH has a little more going- built in “aisle” by way of a path, more foliage/bushes/etc. surrounding the ceremony area. Giando could stand to gussy up their outdoor ceremony space a little (and yes, I’ve seen photos of when everything is in full bloom. Still looks a little bare). And if we want an archway, we have to rent it from Giando’s recommended florist.
The contingency plan for rain is a little better at Liberty House (plenty of room inside for the ceremony and reception; at Giando, it’ll be doable but kinda cramped).
It’s a little easier dealing with our contact, which makes me feel more confident. This is because 1) the contact at Giando doesn’t do any correspondence by email (and sometimes you need to contact someone on the go, plus, it serves well to have things in writing throughout your correspondence), and 2) if we can’t get our contact at Liberty House, there are others we can deal with. At Giando, it’s just one person.
Liberty House has a nice variety of food. At Giando, it’s pretty much just Italian.
We can rehearse the night before at Liberty House (Giando only allows for a “day of” rehearsal).
LH photo ops: incredible. Not just the waterfront, but an expansive lawn, a cool oversized chess set, and an awesome unused train depot.
We have minimal need for decor at Liberty House. Centerpieces, that’s it. Which we’d have a friend do. The downstairs room at Giando (we didn’t want to pay for the upstairs ballroom- too opulent and anyway, we want our party right near an outdoor space) has low ceilings and is pretty bare. The tented area is bare too. They could look good- I’ve seen some photos on their site- but it takes a lot of decorating. And I have no idea how much that could potentially run us what with uplighting, extra flowers, vines, etc. The idea of the major decorating- and potential cost- gets me pretty stressed out. I can see why people would go for the ballroom given it is more done up- unfortunately, it’s just TOO done up for us, and again, not right by the outdoor space.
Giando doesn’t do a food tasting- even AFTER you book. So yes, we did eat at the restaurant (it was, “eh”, but we did see a fair amount of negative reviews for the restaurant food yet interestingly, mostly positive for event food), but I’m not sure how accurate of a picture that experience really gave.
The kicker: overall, Liberty House works out to be about 4 grand more. And that’s really straining the budget. We’d have to cut down on some things I’m sure (although the guest list can’t be one of them). So torn, when there are all these things about it we like better.
To be fair, there are a few things we do like better about Giando (besides the price):
I haven’t heard any real complaints in reviews yet about the quality of the food (Liberty House, I have heard some complaints about food quality), even if it does lack in variety.
It’s more convenient for the local guests.
We can afford to use the bakery we love (with the delivery charge to NJ from Brooklyn, it just sends the cake budget a bit over the top).
It is RIGHT on the water (water is further back at Liberty House), and I am definitely a water person. If the weather cooperates, that could be pretty gorgeous in photos.
And if the weather cooperates, outdoor dancing! There isn’t really a way to make that happen at Liberty House.
I’m sorry it’s so long!
Any thoughts anyone has about either of these places- your personal experiences, or just general ideas to think about when it comes to decor, the food situation, etc., would be helpful. Thank you!