I have one of these venues.
It is a private home but they rent it out for weddings pretty much every weekend of the year – so they are pros at this. They are very hands off (which is a bit shocking) so anything goes. But EVERYTHING has to be done by us.
Our venue is 2.5 hours away from where we live. But the venue rental is for 3 days (most of the venues around here were the same price and the rental was only 12 hours). This is THE singular deciding factor in our venue!! If this hadn’t been the case we would never have considered it.
We are renting a u-haul, packing it on Thursday and driving out there Thursday evening. Our rental starts at 9am on Friday. All day friday we are setting up the lighting and doing the flowers. The rehersal dinner is at 4pm.
Saturday is the wedding and reception – Yay!!
Sunday we are doing a BBQ and pool party from 10 to 3. Then we have to pack and leave by 6pm.
My parents, siblings, and my sister’s husband, along with the groom, his brother, and his best friend are all very aware of the fact that they have to install and de-install lighting (as in 20 foot latters) the day before and the day after our wedding.
Did we save money? Yes. There tends to be an expectation in Southern CA to spend a minimum of $50k. We are having all three events – Rehearsal, Wedding, and day after party – all for a little under $30k.
BUT (and this is a huge BUT!) – I have 2 degrees in art, I can build anything from an altar to furniture, and I’ve been sewing since I was 11, and I have a garage that I can use as both a staging area and storage for all the items that I have to keep between now and the wedding (and believe me, it s a full on inventory!). I also work full time in logistics management and all day long I handle complex installations and de-installations for public lands as well as private homes.
Also my Fiance works professionally in the entertainment world and has access to professional quality make up artists, sound equipment, camera equipment, and the people who manage this. We are getting MASSIVE discounts on several of our vendors, and we’re still hovering close to $30k. That’s with discounts??? This sh*t ain’t cheap!
Is it worth the stress? No. If I had it to do over again I would pick a different a venue. I think anytime you need a moving van for your own wedding, you’ve bitten off more than you can chew.
Can I handle it? Yes, but the stress is very real!. Without a doublt the WORST thing to DIY has been lighting. Don’t do it!!! Classic Party Rentals wanted to charge me $2000 for lighitng rental and install. I decided to save the money. Instead I’m spening about $500 on lighing (and I can sell it after the wedding) but it has been the BIGGEST nightmare to try to anticipate the lighting needs. And I’m marrying a man who handles lighting and sound!! If we’re having these issues, then multiply it by 10 for someone who doesn’t do this stuff for a living!
So if you really want to do this be VERY realistic about the amount of time it’s going to take. I drastically under-estimated it and like I said, I do major logistics for a living.