Post # 1
Thank you to everyone who voted on my top 3 venues. (http://boards.weddingbee.com/topic/vote-on-my-venue) Unfortunately none of them worked out (Hampshire House was too expensive & Maggiano’s didn’t have a place for a ceremony). I’m not discouraged yet although I’ve truly inquired at over 25 venues. Here are the new top 4 to choose from. Each has it’s own drawbacks so this is a question of weighing the drawbacks.
1. Bellevue Golf Club
Pros: Unique & we really like the function room – it’s inviting & cozy but not crowded. And there is an outdoor balcony for guests.
Cons: Ugly tennis court positioned behind guests during ceremony. So when bridal party & I are going down the aisle & the guests turn to look, they will see us with a giant ugly tennis court behind us. A little difficult to find without GPS. They haven’t had a lot of weddings – I don’t know if that’s a good or bad thing.
2. Boston University Castle
Pros: Very beautiful & unique, and fiancee’s alma mater
Con: The dance floor appears to be quite separate from the dining space. So those who are not dancing may feel isolated.
3. Spinelli’s in Lynnfield
Pros: Easy to find, easy to work with. Classic. The most full service choice.
Con: Very “Vanilla” venue. Everyone on the North Shore of Boston get married here (because it’s pretty good in a lot of ways). One of the groomsmens’ sisters will be married at this venue the month after our wedding. (But we don’t have a lot of friends in common with her so he’s the only guest invited to both weddings). Fiancee has been and thought the space was very big & plain. They have a lovely fountain & lake but I guess the guests don’t really see it, only the bridal party.
4. Hotel Commonwealth
Pro: Beautiful, classy
Con: Parking is not included in the price – to the tune of an additional $2k which puts this slightly over budget.
I didn’t mention all the pros about each place because they are all lovely and pretty much comparable (to us) in lots of ways I didn’t mention. Also I just realized fiance is supposed to only have one “e” at the end. Oops.
Thanks for voting!
Post # 4
I really like the castle. But I went to a wedding once where the dining was seperated from the dancing by a wall, and it really brought the whole atmosphere down.
Post # 5
- Wedding: November 2013 - St. Augustine Beach, FL
I picked Bellevue GC. I liked The Castle but other than the separation it is also non-ADA compliant which means any guests with disabilities are going to run into issues with the venue which may include lack of ramps and an inability to enter the bathroom with a wheelchair. Not sure if you have any disabled family or friends but keep in mind that accidents can happen and someone may need an accessible space. I broke my knee a few years ago and let me tell you that using an ADA compliant bathroom is enough of a pain that a non-compliant one must be a nightmare.
Post # 6
Just based on pictures alone, I like #3 and #4. I would put them equal knowing nothing else about them. I wouldn’t like the dance floor to be separate so I would eliminiate #2 based on that alone.
Post # 7
@kes18: Thank you! I haven’t been to #3 but if you think it looks as nice as #4 then it’s a real bargain!
@beachbride1216: That’s a good point. We have no disabled guests but you never know what could happen with temporary disabilities.
@Happilyevaafter5: Thanks for your note. We are going to see it set up as a wedding soon. I’ve been in there before but it was for a cocktail reception so I wasn’t thinking about that issue.
Post # 8
Have you looked into cost and availabliy of each venue already?
Post # 9
I like the Castle even if the dancing is separate. Hotel Commonwealth is also nice but I don’t think worth putting you $2k over budget. (Debt is a bad thing!)
Post # 10
Um hello you could get married in a CASTLE?!?!?!?!? I totally would pick that one 🙂 Unless it doesn’t fit your theme. In that case my second choice would be the golf club. If you’re worried about the tennis court backdrop when you walk in, you could hang ribbon off the fence to hide it. You could also provide a map with your invitation with specific driving directions and put out signs for people to follow.
Post # 11
I voted Hotel Commonwealth.
For me, the tennis court spoiling the photos of the bridal walk would be a dealbreaker at the Golf Club. The Castle is lovely and would be a great second choice, but I would be worried about the separate dancing and dining really interrupting the flow of the reception and ending the night early. (If the dancing and tables would still be in sight of each other, this would be my first choice, though.) Spinelli’s is also nice, but I would feel like I was stepping on another bride’s toes to use it, plus I think you’re right about it being very vanilla.
Have you considered using separate venues for ceremony and reception? We used a historic stone mansion for the ceremony and photos, then went to a hotel with a beautiful ballroom for the reception and accomodations.
Post # 12
I voted for the golf club because it sounds like the cons are the easiest to work around. But it looks like you have some great choices!
Post # 13
@JrzyGurl: Yup – all (except the budget buster #4) are about the same cost, thankfully.
@ladyartichoke: I agree. For some reason it especially kills me that parking would be the thing to put us over.
@Chemist: I know, a castle! On the other hand, it’s only described as a castle because it’s a mansion in the middle of a city – if it were 30 miles outside the city it would be called a mansion We don’t have a theme so we’re safe there. I like all your suggestions.
@anemonie: I hope the tennis court wouldn’t spoil the photos but I can see how it would! Maybe the photographer can blur the background. My father has passed so I wouldn’t be walking with him, so that’s not my photo moment. I’m more interested in the photos facing forward. I guess I do think it would ruin the moment though. I would like to do ceremony/reception in different places but that would again add to the $ spent – all the places I listed include the cost of ceremony setup/space as part of the reception fee.
Post # 14
@Gemstone: Thanks! I think so too! To me, none of the drawbacks are dealbreakers, it’s just that we want to pick the space with the fewest drawbacks.
Post # 15
I think we have a plan!
Here’s a cheap place near the reception venue:
At first when we saw it we were like, “Well it looks like our garden with a nicer house.” So we pondered having just the ceremony at at our house, but we don’t really have the parking/bathrooms to do so. So I think the plan is to book this place for the ceremony and the golf club for the reception!!!