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Blog - How to choose your wedding venue

Posted: Thursday 23rd November 2017 By: Andrew Broughton Views: 632

Choosing your wedding venue can be a tricky task; trying to find the perfect place for your dream day. But what do you need to look out for?

Wedding at the Little Silver Country Hotel

This isn't a sales pitch for any particular venue, it's a collection of thoughts for you to consider when choosing your venue.

Reviews

It's always worth reading reviews of venues before making the final decision. Reading comments from previous clients will give a good indication on how good a venue is. It's even better when the comments are on a third party site such as Trip Adviser or Facebook as these reviews are more likely to be genuine.

But be careful not to dismiss a venue just because you've seen a bad review - who knows what actually happened. Without knowing the whole story it could be bogus feedback or an angry person trying to annoy the venue.

Meet The Staff

Venue staff make a big difference during a wedding; they can be the ones working in the background to resolve a crisis and putting in the extra mile to make sure you get what you want.

It's a good idea to arrange a formal meeting with the staff to discuss what you'd like and ask them questions. It's also good to see them outside of this meeting, at a wedding fayre for example, to see how they cope with lots going on.

Hidden Costs

This might sound obvious but it is worth checking how much the venue will cost and what that cost covers. Some venues will have a basic price but then keep adding "extras" so you end up paying considerably more than expected.

There are a few venues that are offering discounts, on websites such as Groupon, but these are generally only for smaller numbers. By the time you've added extra guests you might not be getting the saving you thought you would get.

Location

Another potentially obvious point but worth considering is the location of the venue. If you're getting married elsewhere and then travelling, you won't want to be travelling for too long. It's also worth considering how far your guests have to travel and how they'll travel back afterwards; the longer the distance the more likely it is they'll leave earlier.

Size

Have a good think about the number of guests you want to invite. There's nothing worse than being too cramped in a room and equally it doesn't look great if you've got 50 people in a room designed for 500. Most venues will give you an idea on the maximum capacity of a room. If the room you get is too small it could mean not being able to invite people that you'd like to.

Layout

The layout of a venue can play a big part on the success of an event. I always advocate that having the bar in the same room makes the evening a lot more successful, otherwise you tend to have a crowd of people at the bar ignoring the entertainment.

It's good to get in your head where all of the main areas are in relation to each other; the function room, toilets, bar, smoking area...etc.

Parking

Although parking might not be the top priority for you, particularly as you'll probably arrange transport to and from the venue, it's worth keeping in mind that your guests will likely need somewhere to park. You don't want to be waiting for guests to arrive because they're driving around looking for parking.

Finish Time

It's worth checking what time the party has to finish. If you want the party to continue till 1am then don't book a venue that only has a licence until 10.30pm.

Sound Limiter

I've written about sound limiters before and in a nutshell I advise checking if a sound limiter is in place and what it is set to.

Trust Your Instincts

When you visit a venue you'll no doubt get a feel for it and the staff. It's important not to ignore your gut reaction but use it to explore what it is you liked or didn't like.

Like most things in life, no doubt you'll end up compromising on something. But at least it's better to be aware of the issue in advance than it becoming a problem on the day.

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References

  • There was a good selection of music, we just didn't want the party to end!
    Suzanne & Paul - Wedding at the Little Silver Country Hotel (Tenterden)
  • Andy went the extra mile for us helping to sort out the ceremony music and for our wedding breakfast music with a twist!!
    Mr & Mrs Rickwood - Wedding at the Little Silver Country Hotel (Tenterden)

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