- 6 years ago
- Wedding: August 2013
Sorry for the length of this post!
Our wedding is probably going to be 100 people or fewer. We want a Saturday in the summer of 2013, and the most popular things are booked already, and the costs are high for spending minimums for Saturdays in summer, so that’s uneconomical with our smaller group.
I found a place that fits our group wonderfully, and is what we were looking for in terms of our city (we want a venue where you know we are in our city, not just an anonymous ballroom that could be anywhere), and it has availability we can work with for summer, but it has a few elements that some people would think of as negatives.
It’s a hotel space, not a ballroom, but a room on a higher floor of a hotel, with huge windows spanning two sides, overlooking our city’s downtown area (very spectacular view). It fits about 125 for a seated dinner, so our group of 80-100 should be fine.
The room would be available for our reception to start around 6:30pm – it is used as a cocktail hour space for larger receptions that are in the hotel’s main ballroom. They use the room from 5-6, then the hotel staff clears the room and would reset it for my reception. Apparently the staff are very practiced at this and quick/good.
There would be minimal decorating needed – the windows/view is the main decor and is pretty spectacular. We would probably only do table centerpieces and the staff will put them on when they set up the room.
This room would save us a lot of money over a more traditional venue – the room rental is cheap and there are NO minimums.
The downsides would be that it is would be a shorter reception – a bit of a late start at 6:30/7pm, and we’d need to end at 11pm, because of some guest rooms being near this space. The second negative there is no dance floor. You have to rent a dance floor from a third party vendor and have it put in/taken out if you want one, which is an added expense and hassle.
We also wouldn’t have a real cocktail hour. We aren’t planning to have a big time gap between ceremony and reception – photos would be mostly done ahead and we’d time our ceremony to end fairly close to the start of the reception. Say ceremony at 5:30, ending at 6, reception at 6:30. We can host some hors d’oeuvres in the hotel’s bar in the lobby if we want to, as people arrive for the reception before our room is switched over. It’s not a private space, but apparently it isn’t used much at that time of day.
I’m not sure if we’d have dancing. I want it, but my fiance thinks we should go without. The room has a sound system for dinner-volume music, and we can do our own ipod playlist thing, and there is a grand piano that we could hire someone to play if we wanted to. He thinks people can just socialize after dinner. I kind of want dancing and a DJ, but that means getting a dance floor rented, and the time available for dancing would be shorter than most weddings due to the late start/early end of our reception. I’m not sure our crowd would be into dancing, plus with such a small guest list, I’m not sure that “critical mass” to get people really dancing would be met…