How to choose your perfect wedding location
“You know you’re in love when you can’t fall asleep because reality is finally better than your dreams.” – Dr. Seuss
So you’ve found the person you want to spend the rest of your life with. That’s amazing! You two are just at the very beginning of the wonderful journey that is married life. During your time together, you’ll see new places and make memories but the first stop is the altar.
However, it’s hard to plan the journey without a destination in mind. Do you and your spouse-to-be want to tie the knot in a gothic castle in Europe or in a humble church on the outskirts of town?
There’s a lot to consider when you’re selecting a venue. Here, we’ll break down the major factors, from budget to size, that help determine a venue to help you achieve your dream wedding.
If you’re not too sure where to start when it comes to picking a wedding venue, it’s probably best to refer to your wedding style. Weddings can come in all shapes and sizes, but can often boil down to classic, modern or rustic weddings.
Not sure what your wedding style is? Read our blog here.
If you’re thinking about a classic style wedding, a bigger more ornate venue might be for you. These kinds of venues can include grand churches and temples, if you’re doing a religious wedding, or higher end outdoor spaces.
Those having classic weddings often opt for churches as they can easily fit a large number of people and need little to no decoration to feel exquisite. Churches, or similar spaces, can be easy to come by and choose from.
For churches, you and your partner can opt for an an establishment close to you or can decide to travel abroad for a more luxurious ceremony. You can also choose to hold your wedding ceremony in hotel ballrooms and event spaces if you’re not feeling too religious.
With modern weddings, there’s a little more leeway with the kinds of spaces to tie the knot. Though it is totally possible to hold a modern style wedding in a church, they most often occur in more urban spaces, like Downtown Los Angeles’ The Millwick or the SmogShoppe in Culver City.
Spaces for modern style weddings can also include museums, like the Grammy museum, or contemporary hotels. These sorts of venues give you more opportunity to personalize the space the same way the modern style allows you to be more expressive and unique with your big day.
If you’re thinking outdoor, boho venues with modest decorations, you’re most likely thinking about the rustic style wedding. Venues for these kinds of weddings can range from a number of locations, from farms and barns, to boats to the California redwoods forest. Such venues are more ideal for smaller, more intimate and more casual ceremonies.
It’s definitely worth using your ideal wedding style and aesthetic to help determine your location, as it will help your big day, from roof (or lack thereof) under which you say your “I do’s” to the intricate floral decorations, feel cohesive and well-thought out.
With every wedding style come venues that will fit all kinds of crowds. However, just because you’re aiming for a classic style wedding doesn’t mean you should reserve a huge hotel ballroom for 20 of your loved ones.
Size is one of the major factors that will help you narrow down your wedding location. Throughout the wedding planning process, it’s always helpful to put yourself in your guests’ shoes. This will ensure that you know how comfortable your loved ones will be on your big day.
If you’re thinking of having a smaller wedding, less than 100 people, you can opt for more intimate settings. The beauty about a small wedding is that you can invite your attendees to your home for a personal reception, or, if in your budget, to a luxurious destination wedding in the tropics.
It’s worth remembering that the more guests you invite, the more you’ll have to cover a number of factors, including meals, lodging and transportation. So while it may be a dream of yours to have your family see you and your spouse to-be seal your love with a kiss underneath the Eiffel Tower, it might not be the most wallet-friendly.
Instead, it might be worth it to cut traveling as much as possible and opt for a more accessible venue. This space could be a church or hotel ballroom in your hometown or somewhere everyone can reach without a multi-hour flight. For everyone to enjoy the big day, comfort is key.
Finding the right venue that fits both your guests, your preferred style and your budget can be a balancing act, but once you find the venue that gets you to that equilibrium, you’re in the clear!
While it’s tempting to go all out for your wedding and spend like there’s no tomorrow, you and your spouse to-be still have your whole lives ahead of you, so it’s best not to break the bank before factors like owning a home, children and retirement come into the equation.
When looking for a venue, know that you and your partner deserve something special, but also you have to be practical. Picking your perfect wedding venue can only be done with enough research. One of the first steps is narrowing down how many venues can fit your guests and aesthetic within your budget.
The more you have saved for your wedding the more grand, and luxurious you can get. Destination weddings and huge ballrooms are great for those who have the monetary resources to expend. However, there’s no shame in staying at home and simple if it means you can have your friends and family around you.
TIME OF YEAR
In one of our previous blogs, about how to choose your wedding date, we shared that choosing your big day could be a process in itself. However, knowing when you’d want your wedding will also help you determine where you’d want to tie the knot.
If you’re hoping to hold your wedding in the spring, it’s a beautiful time to opt for an outdoor wedding. You can go beachside, but you can also go countryside if the rustic feel is more for you. This is an incredible time to explore outdoor venues without the worry of it being too cold or too hot for your guests.
The spring is also a good time as venues won’t be as booked compared to prime wedding season. But if you’re planning to hold your wedding anytime through May to July, we highly suggest calling venues way in advance.
For the summer months, you can also explore outdoor venues such as the beach and tropical destinations. Just note that it may be less comfortable to move around in formal wear during this time of year.
Of course, indoor venues are absolutely still an option, but like other event spaces during the summer, they’ll most likely be booked months in advance. It’s best, depending on the size of your wedding, to reconsider how important a grand ballroom is compared to a more modern and casual setting might be when tight on the clock.
There’s also no other season to fall in love than fall. Though it may not be peak wedding season, autumn also gives you a chance to take advantage of event spaces’ less busy calendar months. Depending on where you live, fall can be a perfect time to explore outdoor spaces while still basking in leftover summer warmth, or you can start cozying up with family in indoor ballroom spaces.
If you’re aiming for the winter months, it’s probably best to steer clear from outdoor event spaces. The last thing you would want is for the weather to steal the show on your big day. It’s key to think about your guests’ comfort and how they may be impacted with winter weather conditions.
This isn’t to say that you should hold your wedding off until winter passes, but rather that it’s more worth your time and energy to look for an indoor venue that will keep you and your loved ones shielded from rain, winter storms and the like.
Whether you’re hosting your big day in the family barn or flying all your loved ones out to the Caribbean, wherever you hold your wedding will be a part of your life once you say “I do,” which is why it’s so important to select the best venue possible.
So if you’re unsure or if you’re already working towards your dream venue, take style, size, budget and time of year into consideration for your perfect wedding.
We are CineStory Films, a Wedding Videography and Wedding Photography company based in Los Angeles. Having Videographers and Photographers on our team, allows us to achieve great results consistently. Our approach is to get to know our couples on a personal level. Connecting with our clients allows us to tell their stories in a symbolic and unique way. The passion and experience we have, combined with our efficiency and professionalism, enables us to create timeless images and videos.