- lola blue
- 8 years ago
- Wedding: November 2011
Gaaah! I’m so confused!
I’ve always wanted an outdoor/garden wedding of some sorts, and it seemed we had found the perfect venue, a local homestead with gorgeous gardens and a barn available for the reception.
We went to view it in November last year, and were given their information pack, including their exclusive caterer. The caterer’s (let’s call them caterer A) prices seemed very reasonable (we have a mortage, 3 kids and are a 1 income family, so are trying to stick to a modest budget), and included a 3 course buffet, all linens, cutlery and crockery, and complimentary tea and coffee.
We were advised that the venue held a byo liquor license, so we would be able to supply our own alcohol. In fact, on the day we went, they were setting up for an internal function, and had bought their alcohol in bulk with the caterer just taking care of food. At the time, we were advised that they were setting up for 77 people.
We went back in January this year and signed the contract. At that time we were told that they had met with another caterer the same day, and if all went well, we’d have a choice of two catering companies.
I called both caterers the next week, hoping to set up a meeting with both, and was told by caterer A that they were no longer catering the venue due to a conflict of interest.
We met with the other caterers (caterer B) just over 2 weeks ago (a Friday) and after taking down all our details/ requirements she told us she’d get back to us with a quote early the next week (never mind it was actually the following Friday and a few phone calls/emails on my behalf before we received the quote).
Caterer B’s prices are approx $15pp more expensive than Caterer A’s. This price does not include any entree or dessert options. There is an additional charge for linen, cutlery and crockery. Tea and coffee is an extra $3 pp and cakeage an extra $5. We were also advised, that although supplying our own alcohol was still an option, we must opt for the $15pp corkage package.
Also, in the quote, it was noted that the maximum they’d be willing to seat in the barn would be 60, with a marquee needing to be hired for a larger guest list (rather defeting the purpose of a barn wedding imo). And as we all know, hiring a marquee is not cheap, so we would have to trim our list to fit the 60 guest max.
When I let her know that we were thinking of changing it to a lunch reception, she advised trhat that was fine, however there would be an additional early set-up fee of $800!
Over the weekend I was having a look at alternate venues that I hadn’t considered before (a country club and a waterfront restuarant in fact) and have found that both would seat our entire list comfortably and by my rough calculations would be at least $2k cheaper WITH the additional 20 guests we would have to cut if we used the caterer, than the 20 person smaller list with the caterer.
I’ve contacted both, and they are both still available on the date of our wedding also. We are going to view them both within the next week.
I am hoping that we’d be able to change our contract with the original venue, to just use it for ceremony, the cost of which is less than the bond I’ve already paid for entire day use.
Would you change your entire vision for the reception if you were in my place, if it meant being able to invite everyone you wanted originally and saving approx 20-25% of your overall budget?