Choosing wedding venues can be one of the most difficult parts of planning your wedding. How many guests you may want to invite can well dictate your choice and vice versa. Not everyone that attends the wedding ceremony will be invited to the reception. If space is limited where the ceremony is to take place, or you want a small, private ceremony, then you may prefer to ask additional family and friends to attend your reception, and will need to source a venue that will comfortably hold that number of people. For 100 or more guests, your best choice is probably to look at rooms specifically designed for wedding receptions, as they will have all of the facilities that you need. However, if your number of guests is small or you are working to a close budget, then you might want to look at other options.
This may sound rather obvious, but before charging off and booking your chosen venue, make sure you and your fiancé both want the same type of wedding and reception. For example, one of you may suggest getting married abroad, and this does sound inviting. Picture yourself getting married on a sun-drenched beach, and later celebrating with friends and family by having an outside meal on a terrace overlooking the sea. The dream could be shattered though, when you consider that out of the 100 or so guests on your wedding list, only a handful may be able to take the time off, and afford the cost of travelling abroad, coupled with accommodation costs when they get there.
There are lots of different wedding venues such as hotels, historical places like castles and wine estates, botanical gardens, and theme parks. If you’re working on a tight budget you may want to consider a local village hall or even a friend’s garden if it is large enough. It’s surprising how some simple decorations can transform even the plainest looking of venues. If you can afford to hire a marquee, then your bases are covered if it decides to rain, plus a marquee is easily decorated with some cheap coloured voile, ribbon, balloons and displays of fresh flowers.
When considering particular wedding venues that appeal to you, there are certain factors to be considered to ensure that it is a suitable place for the type of reception you want to hold. Things such as:
– Are there suitable toilet facilities for the number of guests?
– Is there wheel chair access and suitable facilities if you have any disabled guests on your list?
– Are there places for elderly guests to sit, if you’re not having a sit down meal?
– How easy is parking? What size is the car park and can you park nearby?
– Is the venue fairly near to where the ceremony is to be held and is it easy to find?
– Are there any restrictions such as the consumption of alcohol or a time curfew on an evening venue?
– Does the venue have accommodation for those wishing to stay overnight?
– What about children? Is there anything to keep them amused where they can let off steam?
Bear these factors in mind when choosing from your short list of wedding venues and remember that size does matter. Too small a venue and your guests will be packed in like sardines or you may have to reduce your numbers, and choose too large a venue and your reception will lack atmosphere with the room looking half empty. Don’t make your decision until you are sure that you’ve covered all of your options and also got the best value for your money.