Post # 1
Our venue sent over a contract and there is a clause that states:
“[Venue] reserves the right to change the function room assignments without notice to the JennyW1 party.”
So we talked to them and said, “Why would you change the function room?” They said, “Oh it never has happened and it would only happen if you fail to meet the food and beverage minimum and we would discuss it with you first.” So we said “Great–then if it’s contingent upon us not meeting the food and beverage minimum, then kindly add that to that clause in the contract.” “Oh, we’ll have to talk to our lawyers” they said. Fine.
So I get an email from them and they say they cannot make any more changes to the contract. Which I am PISSED about because I really really really like this venue–it would be PERFECT and now if they refuse to revise the clause, I just can’t sign.
D*mn, d*mn, d*mn.
(The venue has one private event space. It’s a beautiful room. The alternative is a space that’s open by the public pool, which would be outside and sectioned off WITH ROPES. Um, NFW!! AND, while I’m sure that it’s true they’ve never moved someone, this is a big vacation weekend at the venue and what’s to say that even if we DO meet the minimum, we’re still a small party (about 80)–and the hotel could get a request for a larger party say, 200 people and then stand to make a lot more over the minimum. Then they’d just move us to the smaller public space and make twice the amount of money.)
Post # 3
That would frustrate me too. Maybe you’ll find an even better venue because of this? I hope?
Post # 4
That really sucks but just be glad you saw it before you signed the contract!!
Post # 5
You are very smart not to sign that contract. Maybe they’ll change their minds if they know they’re going to lose your business over it.
Post # 6
@lezlers: *sigh* yeah, we’re hoping… But it’s helping to vent because I know I shouldn’t sign it and I just want the venue SO BADLY–in part because I really like it, but also just because I want to be DONE with that portion of the planning, you know? Hearing others tell me I’m doing the right thing is helping me steel my resolve! 🙂
Post # 7
You are doing the right thing! How crappy would you feel if you went ahead and signed it and then they moved your wedding after all? I wouldn’t feel comfortable signing. Sure, they said they’ve never used that clause to move a wedding, but there’s a first time for everything. It would make me too nervous. I totally understand wanting to be done, but you don’t want to make a decision that you’ll come to regret!
Post # 8
You could hand write that part into the contract, initial next to it, sign it and give it to them. That makes the addition enforceable (if they sign) but should really lay it out to them that they make the change or lose the customer?
Post # 9
Well if it makes you feel even better, I happen to be an attorney. 😉
Post # 10
I would discuss it with them. Ask to speak with the manage and get some guidlines on what are the minimums (you should know!) and under what circumstances would the room get changed. I know they say it’s slim but that’s only to cover their buts if you bail on them. Let them know your estimated #’s and see what they say. Tell them you want to having your wedding there. I’m sure they’ll be reasonable and let you know what their policies are and why they’re there. To me it seems fine and I’d book it!
Post # 11
It’s a common clause. I’m sure they don’t usually do it, but think about if there’s some technical issue that would make that space unavailable. They don’t want to change it in case something unexpected happens.
If you feel strongly about it. Just explain to them that you will only sign the contract if it says X, Y and Z. Just be prepared to go elsewhere.
Post # 12
That’s great, but shouldn’t they still notify you first? What if your decor has to change? Or the seating? Or some other detail that they aren’t organizing?
My complaint in that clause is that it seems they can do it without cause and without notification. Both = BAD
My venue wanted me to have my reception outside. In July. Um, no thanks. Aside from the certain thunderstorms, I paid to have it in a very nice room with nice tables, chairs, and oh yeah, AIR CONDITIONING. I told the coordinator I absolutely would not have it outside. And my contract was very rigid regarding where everything would take place. If they had to change the location, they would not only have had to notify me, but also comp me half the bill (even if it was out of their control like a burst pipe or something).
Post # 13
@Rgeddy & @beargirl: I plan on talking it over with them and discussing it, but I doubt that things will change since we’ve already asked to have it changed and they’ve refused.
I’m aware the clause is common but I think I’m entitled to be a bit annoyed: IF as she says they’ll only change the space after discussion and continent upon us not meeting a food & drink minimum cost, then I don’t think it’s unreasonable to ask that it be written into the contract that way–the clause might be common, but what I’m requesting is simply for them to put in writing what they’re promising verbally.
I don’t think that the room change is just for technical or crazy turn-of-events that cause the space to be unavailable. I’m more cynical. The truth is, we’re a small party and while we would meet the food & drink minimum ($5K), we’d probably just meet the $5K. Meanwhile, this is a big holiday weekend during high season (and this is a vacation town that’s also having a big convention our weekend) and there’s a likelihood that a larger party will request the space and be able to fulfill a larger food & drink order–say $8K or $10K. The clause means that they CAN just move us to the smaller space to accomodate the larger party and have two events, thereby earning two checks. I’d be okay with it if the alternative space were acceptable, but a roped off space by the public pool?? Are they nuts??
Post # 14
I went through something similar. Was ready to sign, place all picked out- and the clauses in the contract more than doubled the price I was quoted ( I needed to get insurance, pay for indoor option whether I used it or not, etc…).
I ended up not doing it, even though my heart was broken. I booked a different venue, and the price was so much better that I booked a horse and carriage, too, for the same money!
However…I do think in your case, it is a CYA on their part. IF something were to happen to the room, like a flood, fire, etc..they are covered and you would still have to pay because they can put you in an alternate space. It also covers them if indeed, you only get half the positive RSVPs, and like you said, they have the opportunity to book a larger party in the space. I think you should write in that, yes, you will accept the lesser space AT A LESSER COST TO YOU, if you can’t get the attendee count they are looking for.
Or, go elsewhere…beecause at this point, you owe them nothing!
Post # 15
I agree with a few of the above posts. They may not change that clause or add the minimum requirements, but maybe they can add a whole different clause that says if you are moved to another location without prior discussion they will give you a 25% discount. It will provide an incentive for them to keep you where you are. If they do not want to add that, then move on!
Post # 16
@menobride: Yeah, I know–the “accomodating larger parties” is kind of irritating to me because I hate the feeling that just because we might be a small party, it’s okay to move us outside next too the pool, like it’s a children’s birthday and not a wedding. But I get it. At any rate, I’m not signing the contract and I think I’m just enraged right now because it took FOREVER to find a suitable venue and now I’m back to square one. I’m thisclose to crying in frustration. Good to hear that someone else went through the same thing too and survived, though!