- 4 years ago
Good day everyone! I’ve put so much work into researching the best vendors in Ottawa and so I thought I would share my experiences with the ones that I’ve met!
We are having a New Year’s Eve wedding and it was difficult choosing the perfect venue. I had contacted many venues and here are my experiences with some:
1. Le Belvedere: We spoke with Jessica at this location and she was fantastic. The venue is gorgeous with a wonderfull view. The actual reception room is modern and clean. The venue is located up a hill and is extremely private. They were not going to charge us extra for a New Year’s Eve wedding which was great! The only reason we did not pick this location was that since the view is the best part of Le Belvedere, the sunsets at 5pm in December and so we wouldn’t be able to take advantage of it for long. We were also worried that there might be a snow storm and that some of our guests might have a hard time driving out of the city if that was the case. If we were going to have a summer wedding, we definitely would have picked this venue!
2. National Art Centre: We loved that this location was right downtown. The person we dealt with was Catherine and she was really nice. They offered the best price when it came to food and there was the option of bringing homemade wine for the dinner. We found the rooms a little too dark for us with the brown walls and the burgundy carpet. We would have had to put a lot of money into decorating to achieve what we wanted. We also didn’t like that the wedding coordinator doesn’t attend the actual weddings.
3. Brookstreet Hotel: When we inquired about hosting a wedding at this location the first thing the person told me was that we had to spend a mimimum of $20 000.00 (or something around that). We are blessed to have such a budget but I didn’t like that the first topic of conversation was money and so we didn’t bother going to see this venue.
4. Club de Golf Gatineau: We visited this venue before coming up with the idea of having a New Year’s Eve Wedding. It’s nice and modern. The person who helped us was extremely nice. The prices were reasonable and they have a beautiful terrace for the wedding ceremony.
5. Delta City Centre: We visited their penthouse rooms and knew right away that it would make the perfect NYE wedding venue. When we asked about the date availability, we were told that the Groomsmen blocks that date off for a charity party he hosts every couple of years. They finally agreed to offer it to us. The person we delt with is Elizabeth and she was fantastic, but she currently resigned for a better oppurtunity and we haven’t met her replacement yet. The penthouse has floor to celing windows and you have a wonderful view of the city. The valet who brought us up to see the place was sooooo nice and we had similar feelings from the rest of their staff. They are charging us extra because it’s NYE but we wanted the venue so much that we went along and took it anyways. I will post a post-wedding vendor review and keep everyone updated with our experience!
I was a little dissapointed with the lack of variety when it came to officants.
1. All Season Weddings: They seem to have most of the officiant in the Ottawa area. I like that you can see bios of the officiant as well as videos online. Most of my friends used their service. We picked 2 officiant from their list and requested them. Both were unavailable. They were charging us extra for having a New Year’s Eve wedding, even if our ceremony is earlier in the day. It would also take a few days to get a response when communicating via email which let me to contact other officiants.
2. Exceptional Ceremonies (Lynne & Keith): I contacted them after a friend of mine attended a wedding that Lynne officated. Keith is the person who I communicated with and was quick to respond via email which was great. They were charging us twice what All Seasons Wedding was and when I told him that we couldn’t justify paying 600.00 for a half hour ceremony he mentioned something along the lines of if I wanted a meaningless ceremony then I should go with someone else and that you get what you pay for. The communication was all via email and perhpas things would have went differently if we had spoken on the phone.
3. Julie Keon: Julie was so nice when corresponding with her. She unfortunately wasn’t avaible on our wedding date but we loved her energy.
4. Scott Rothwell (Ipronounceyou.ca): After doing a bit more research we found Scott and after chatting on the phone with him, we knew that it was a perfect fit. He answers emails in a timely matter and has a good sense of humour. He did not over charge us and the total price is 300.00 which we’re happy with.
Our top 3 picks were Troy St-Louis, Julie C. Butler or Melissa Leroux. All three are fantastic but we ended up choosing Melissa Leroux http://www.melissalerouxphotography.com because we really loved her style and thought it matched us as a couple 🙂 She’s also incredibly nice.
1. Dahlia: The person we met with was really nice and the correspondence was great. The decor ideas were very innovative and our consult went really well. We read the bad reviews online though and so decided to not take a risk.
2. The Eventist (previously masterminds Orleans): We love supporting new businesses and enjoyed our consult at The Eventist. It was a very casual atmosphere. We mentioned what we had in mind but we were still very open to ideas and suggestions. After our consult we were told we’d get a quote via email the next day. After about 4-5 days passed I emailed them to ask about the quote. They apologized and said they had been really busy and sent it the next day. The prices were good but we were looking for something a bit more innovative and organized.
3. Laviolette Flowers: This place was recommended to us since they apparently had the lowest prices in Ottawa. We booked 2 appointments with them and they cancelled them both times, once just an hour before. I then gave them a third chance after letting a month pass by. They sent me a few available times, when I contacted them back to confirm they never got back to me.
4. Sage Design: I saw that Sage Design had one an award recently and decided to contact them. The times to go to the studio are very limited and so we had a consult with Sophie via telephone. You could tell she had experience and knew what she was doing. She asked me all the right questions and sent a quote within a few hours. The price was great and the designs she came up with for our centrepieces and my bouquet is absolutely perfect. I asked if I could purchase my own vases for the centrepieces to save a bit of money and she was very supportive of this. We’re looking forward to having her decorate our wedding 🙂
5. Quality Entertainment: We contacted a few lighting companies to add to our decor. Scott at quality entertainment was the person who offered us the best prices and was so good with communicating with us. We also heard lots of great things from this company and so trust that they are reliable 🙂
We contacted 4 companies based on reviews that we read online. We only need transportation for 2 hours to take pictures around the city.
Infinity Limousine of Ottawa: I called them on a Saturday. The man who answered the phone asked me when I needed the limo. When I said for December he replied: That’s in 5 months. Call back on Tuesday. I could tell that he was at some sort of function when I called due to the background noise. We didn’t call back.
Robinson Limousines: I communicated with them via email and they were quick to respond despite it being a weekend. They quoted me at $634 (HST and Gratuity incl.) which is just too much for only 2 hours.
East Cost Limos: I also communicated with them via email. Keith responding to me within a few hours despite it being a weekend and him being away! He was very courteous and professional. They offered reasonable prices ($340 + gratuity). They were our second choice but we’ll definitely keep them in mind for the future.
TIP Limos: Spoke to Tom on a Saturday and he was extremely nice and professional. He said he wouldn’t charge me extra despite it being NYE since I only required transportation during the day. They are charging us $365 (HST and Gratuity included). We decided to go with TIP because they have good reviews online and they quoted us a little less than East Coast Limos.
1. Luxe Bridal: Had a great experience at this wedding boutique located on Dalhousie. The 2 ladies helping me were fantastic. One of them put me in a “just for fun” dress in a style that was completely different from what I was looking for. Turns out I loved it and changed my style to what she had suggested. This was my second favourite store.
2. Alliance Bridal: Had a great experience here as well but was fortunate to have Tanya as my helper. There were other people trying on dresses while I was there and their consultants didn’t look very nice. Tanya has a book with all the wedding dresses they carry. She made me go through it and pick the dresses that I wanted to try on. We’ll be going back here to get my maid of honour’s dress.
3. Sinder’s Bridal: There were so many people while I was there. I had to share a miror with many other brides which made the experience not so personal. They make you walk through the store and pick dresses off the rack but it’s really hard to do so when everything is white and looks the same. I prefer being able to tell someone the style I’m looking for so that they can pick the dresses for me. My consultant was really nice though. The once for the girl next to me, not so much.
4. With Love Boutique: This is a smaller boutique with really beautiful dresses. My consultant was ok but there was another girl there that was just FANTASTIC. I wish I would remember her name. She started asking me questions about my wedding and started making suggestions. She was cute and short, that’s all I remember unfortunately!
5. David McCaffrey’s: The first appointment we had was during major constrution on the 417 in Ottawa and so we arrived 15 minutes late. The person who greeted us made sure to mention it to us right away. She rushed us through the entire process. I didn’t really enjoyed my experience but the dress i found there was just magnificiant and David would make the alterations that I wanted. On my second appointment, someone else was helping us more and she was sooooo nice. David came out as well to take my measurements and he is so nice and professional, very easy going. Overall, my second visit was a lot better than the first… maybe because at this point then knew I was purchasing a dress for sure but that’s fine, it was a great experience. Very much like what you see on TV.
I have a friend doing my cake and another is my videographer. I’m ordering my invitations from Cards and Pockets since they were half the price of The Paper Studio in Ottawa. Hope this helped! I will post a Post-Wedding Vendor Review in January and let everybody know how it went!