The Reception Venue
What questions do I ask my chosen venue so that I know that it is perfect?
Searching for the perfect wedding venue can be
very daunting. Have you considered your budget and the size of the
venue you need? Considering our typically large family, extended
family, friends and friends of friends, you will need a venue that can
take them all under one roof. Alternatively, if you are planning a more
intimate affair, the size of the venue is still important, as it will
need to house everyone comfortably, but not so big that there is an echo!
What types of venues are there to choose from?
- Castle Venues
- Venues with gardens / ground
- Waterfront Venues
- Country Venues
Points to consider when looking for the right venue for your wedding reception.
- What sort of venue are you looking for?
- Will you have to spend money on flowers and decorations to make it beautiful?
- Do they have adequate coat check and bathroom facilities?
- Are there any hidden costs? Are there any extra charges if your reception
runs over the time agreed? (Before you sign the contract, read the
terms and conditions carefully.)
- Will they allow you to bring your own drinks and alcohol? (This is usually cheaper, but check if
your venue applies a corkage fee.)
- Do they allow outside
caterers? (This can be a lot cheaper than using a venue's inside
caterers and may also be more practical, depending on the food you want
- If they have an in-house caterer, will you like the
food? (While an in-house caterer can be easier to organise, sometimes
the food is not as beautiful as the venue. To avoid disappointment, it
is always a good idea to arrange a tasting of your chosen menu prior to
your wedding day, as tweaks can be made to suit your requirements.)
- Does the venue have enough extra space for a band and/or dancing?
- Does the wedding venue already own a sound system with adequate speakers or will that need to be rented?
- Is there a space for the bride and groom to change and/or have some down
time away from the hustle and bustle of the main reception room?
- Where will you take photographs? Is there a park nearby, or do the coordinators have recommended spots on the venue grounds?
- Where can your guests park? Are there extra fees for parking? Do they have valet parking?
- Is the wedding venue in a location close to transport links?
- How far is the reception venue from where the ceremony is taking place?
- Do they own enough chairs for the ceremony, or will they need to be rented?
- Does the venue have a noise gauge? The noise gauge cuts off the music and power if it gets too loud.
Advice from real brides
Venue and Noise
As a Bride of African Culture, I found the venue of my dreams, but the only problem was that the venue had a noise gauge fitted all round the hall. The venue was not suitable for me as I was having a live band and the music gets really loud. The noise gauge would cut the music and power off when the music gets too loud, so I weighed up what was a more important aspect of my day, and I decided it was the band, so had to look for somewhere else.
Lara S, Essex
Choose your dream wedding venue
When brides and grooms start looking for wedding venues, too often they fall in love with the beauty of the place, and sign a contract before they've considered the more practical things. It makes sense -- no one wants to look back and say, Well, it was beautiful but it wasn't practical. Unless the venue is so magical that you're willing to plan your whole event around it, you shouldn't choose a wedding venue until you have decided approximately how many guests you're inviting and the size of your budget. You'll also need to decide if you want to have your ceremony and reception in the same place, or if you your ceremony will take place elsewhere.
Tope L, London
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