Denver Wedding Venue Advice

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Engaged? Looking to plan the wedding of your dreams? We at Denver Party Ride asked local Denver wedding venues their advice to ensuring your wedding is one to remember!

 

“What advice do you offer to couples who are debating on having their wedding reception at a residence opposed to a venue?”

 

A wedding is a beautiful and timeless moment.  One that you want to be present for, relieved of as many venue-related stresses as possible.  While you’re choosing between reserving a venue or holding your wedding at a residence, consider this:

You can’t get back the precious moments lost when struggling with a DIY venue. Choosing a professional location to host your wedding will allow you to be present and undistracted during your once-in-a-lifetime day.

Self-hosting a wedding at a residence may not save you the money you think it will. When you consider all the hundreds of small costs associated with transforming a residence into a wedding hall or reception area, you’ll soon realize that the financial savings was an illusion.

Consider the time you’ll save by choosing to work with an established venue. Time is money, and when you look back, you’ll be thankful you spent the days leading up to the wedding with your loved ones, not hurriedly running unnecessary errands you could have avoided by choosing a quality wedding venue. 

Edgewood Inn

 

Having a wedding reception at a venue opposed to a residence will provide a stress free experience while the couple enjoys their big day. Everything will be provided from the locally inspired food and cocktails to our finely appointed linens and furniture. Our wedding + events team at Hotel Talisa works closely with the couple to ensure all of their requests have an authentic Colorado feel to them. Most couples who seek out Hotel Talisa, Vail, and Colorado in general, as their wedding destination are looking to work with local vendors and want their day to be an extension of the setting – whether it’s through food, cocktails, décor etc. Our goal is to honor that and customize their special day to their unique desires and personality.

Hotel Talisa, Vail

 

I would say that the biggest advantage would be the peace of mind that comes along with having your wedding with a dedicated wedding venue. Our experienced and passionate team has been curating and coordinating weddings for almost 20 years and is absolutely at the peak of their game to ensure that the couple has nothing short of an extraordinary experience. As we offer the all-inclusive experience, our couples will not have to worry about any detail left unattended, as the most important job for them to be doing that day is enjoying their time spent with one another and their loved ones!

Larkspur Vail

 

My biggest advice to those that want to host their wedding at a residence is to hire serving staff and caterers. There is a lot that goes on during a wedding day (as well as the week leading up to it), and while you can plan for nearly everything, there is always going to be something that goes off plan. Having serving staff and catering to take care of the setup and service during the reception take pressure so you can focus on other tasks and most importantly enjoy the day! It is also great to have them cleanup as no one wants to do that at the end of the night or the next day.

Wynkoop Brewing Company

 

My advice to couples as to why a venue would best accommodate their wedding reception would be that we work exclusively with all of our vendors to ensure that the couple would not have to worry about anything for their big day, we would take care of it all!

blanc Denver

 

Ask questions and make a checklist. Residences and venues typically vary in their rental guidelines and have different details to consider. You’ll want to make sure that the space you choose will fit your vision of your wedding day and meet your priorities; whether that is a certain style, budget or ease.

Fall River Village 

 

When comparing any two wedding reception locations, it is always tough to line them up apples-to-apples, especially when one is an established venue and the other is a private residence. But that is exactly what couples need to do to make the best decision about their big day. Consider the tangible items that a venue may include like banquet tables, linens, china, glassware, flatware and catering staff. If the venue includes a day-of coordinator, that service is priceless! Everyone who attends the wedding, including the couple of honor and their family members, should be able to enjoy the event as a guest. If that can be accomplished at a private residence, there may be some cost savings. And if that cost savings is not at the expense of the couple’s sanity, more power to ya! Many couples, however, do not have the resources in place to pull it off, and still look back on their wedding day as a blissful magical day. Rather, they remember a stressful planning season and a chaotic day of getting all the pieces into place. There is a lot of value in letting the professionals deal with the details, including the ones that pop up by surprise.

Black Mountain Lodge

 

Should you have your wedding reception at a residence or venue?  While both can be lovely, wedding venues have the  experience of conducting multiple weddings and events, so that you, your wedding party and your family can relax and enjoy all of the emotion of the most important day of your life.  Venues often have staff that will work tirelessly and take the work load off of those closest to you so that the focus can be on the most important item…LOVE.  Many venues have capacity/parking for hundreds and can offer recommendations for vendors so that your special day is everything you’ve ever dreamed of!  Plus, who is going to clean it all up (and for real, it’s super messy)?  Many venues include cleanup and tear down that way your favorites can rest and you can head on your honeymoon and relive how amazing it all was.

The Robinson Mansion & Carriage House

 

Photo of wedding ceremony at Cielo at Castle Pines by Elevate Photography

It takes the pressure off of having the residence converted into an event space where it may not necessarily be able to accommodate the appropriate logistics. Many venues include items that would otherwise have to be rented in: tables, chairs, glassware, dance floor. Another important thing to consider is a great back up plan in case inclement weather decides to roll through on the big day. A secondary indoor ceremony site is a huge plus that many venues provide and can make all the difference when considering the perfect location for the wedding. A residence is a place where you live your daily life, but a beautiful venue is special location that pinpoints that amazing moment in your life.

Cielo Castle Pines

 

 

We always try to help the couples we work with figure out what matters most to them. For some, a residence makes perfect sense. The ones who choose our venue tend to want a larger space, and a space they can transform to bring their own vision to life. Our venue is both unique and able to be treated like a blank slate; most couples who pick The Hangar know right away it’s the right space for them.

The Hangar at Stanley Marketplace

 

Make sure that you price out everything that you will need to rent or buy if you are thinking of having your nuptials at a private residence. You will need to rent tables, chairs, linens, plates, napkins, glassware, possibly a dance floor and all of the typical items like centerpieces, a cake, a DJ, a photographer and a caterer. You will need a large enough kitchen for the caterer to work in. If you decide to go DIY with the food, you will need chaffers to keep the food warm, serving utensils and someone to put out the food and replenish as food gets low. You will also have to take care of all of the clean-up and breakdown so make sure that you have a plan in place for that. You will need two separate locations, one for the ceremony and one for the reception so you may need to rent double the amount of chairs that you would need or have family and friends move them to the reception area. Also worth considering would be the fact that you would be putting out the family or friend’s whose residence you may use as your venue. With all of the prep, they will need to adjust their schedules and home for up to a week in total to accommodate the setup and festivities. A lot of people may think that it will be cheaper to have a wedding at a private residence, however, often times when you price out everything that you will need to rent or buy it ends up being more costly than it would have been to hold your reception at a venue. This is not to say it’s impossible to do, but you will need to be realistic about your guest count and do all of the research first before committing to a non-traditional venue.

Gallery 1874

 

Venues are the way to go, simply because a majority of venues will have an event coordinator who can help assist with the planning, making sure the event runs smoothly, and can take the stress away from the happy couple on a day that is all about them! I promote the idea of venues because, as mentioned, it only works in favor of the couple getting married, having another set of hands to help is never a bad thing!

MacKenzie Place-Fort Collins

 

When debating having your wedding reception at a residence vs an event venue there are many details to consider and pros and cons to both.  Two overarching critical factors will be the size of your reception and the atmosphere you want to create. Here are some details to think about during the planning stage.

Having a reception at a residence is very personal and comfortable. There are no time limits. You can easily incorporate unique elements like a massive oak tree or an elegant dining room. It can be cost effective and less expensive.

Some of the cons to consider is residences are usually smaller which dictates size – the space tend to hold smaller numbers.  Can the neighborhood hold a reception? You need room to say I Do – 150 guests, 75 cars, 20 waiters, 15 tables, not to mention bathrooms. Also, it can be stressful if guests try to stay at your home, you’ll need to rent everything and plan on tending to the lawn and flowers early.

Having a reception at an event venue has its own set of factors to consider. Some pros are that vendors provide everything and do all the set up and tear down. You will have more time thru out the process to focus on yourself and on the day of the event.  Large selection of spaces which can accommodate small or large numbers.  No clean up.

Some of the cons for a venue are they can be less personal and you are limited on time – often venues book multiple weddings in a day. You are locked into a date and can be more expensive depending on the price structure.

The most important thing to remember is to personalize your reception. Your friends and family won’t remember the food or decorations, what they will remember is their time with you as you start a new chapter in your life.

Association of Graduates, U.S. Air Force Academy

 

As an event manager who adores throwing home parties, I get it… you have the chance to invite people into your beloved space, and the funds you save by not renting a facility can go into making your personal environment tip top. If your guest count is modest, you provide an intimate setting and can relax as you simply close the door when the event is over and don’t have to drive anywhere. But some shy from this option as they don’t want to share their private residences. A smaller event space is a great alternative option.

Whether it be for a wedding, holiday party or private get together, by simply scheduling site visits with different event spaces, you can find a location to match your desired vibe. 

At Field House Event Venue, your event is private, as we host one party at a time, offer a fully stocked bar for variety, an impressive inclusive package, an amazing view, and you leave the cleaning to us!

 Field House Event Venue

 

I think that getting married at a residence is great and you’re fortunate if you have one that is perfect for your wedding! However, there are many advantages of having your special day at a venue. We provide beautiful tents, tables, chairs, bridal suites, bathrooms, an amazing staff and much more. If you were to rent all of these things, it would probably add up to the cost of our rental fee. Really nice to have everything at one organized and dialed location.

Lyons Farmette & River Bend

 

Essentially it’s up to the happy couple on how they would like to celebrate their special day. The benefits of having a wedding reception at a venue opposed to a residence, is that you have a team of professionals assisting you throughout the planning process. You also have the opportunity to create a memorable experience for your wedding guests that will last a lifetime.

Denver Botanic Gardens and Chatfield Farms

 

 

A venue geared towards events or weddings – whether the venue is traditional or not – allows for a level of professionalism and efficiencies that a private residence normally does not offer. Service areas, storage, parking, proper equipment, and trained, qualified staff, are just a few of the items that come to mind.

Gateway Canyons

 

When planning your wedding day it is very important to make the decision to be a guest at your wedding!  Next comes the venue, if you are thinking of having your wedding at a private residence take into account who is going to set up everything and take down at the end, who is going to ensure all goes smoothly while you relax and enjoy your wedding?  When choosing a venue you get the option of having a full staff assist with everything the day of, kitchens most likely will be equipped to handle a caterer or better yet an in house caterer.   Though it may seem like you can cut down costs by having your wedding at a private residence there are many factors to consider!

Dickens Opera House

 

Communicate!

If you are contemplating having your wedding at an estate home instead of a more conventional wedding venue, you are probably an “outside of the box” thinker. Good for you. There are many fantastic reasons to choose a big beautiful home instead of an event hall or hotel. Privacy, elegance, unhurried time with friends and family are just a few of the reasons you may have chosen a home. The freedom and cost saving associated with providing your own food and alcohol might be another motivating factor in your decision.

Whatever your reasons, keep in mind that communicating with the home’s owner in advance will save you angst down the road. Not all large estate homes are available for weddings. Make sure you are clear with the homeowner about what you want to do before, during and after your wedding celebration prior to signing the contract with them. Agreement with the homeowner that you respect their home, furnishings, neighbors and investment will promote a feeling of partnership.

Many estate homeowners do not allow events or parties at their property. Some homeowners are constrained by covenants and local ordinances which limit their ability to rent to groups planning events. Parking, unrelated guests at the house, noise ordinances, vendor access, and fire regulations are just a few of the items that might make a wedding in a residential area problematic. Large groups put heavy pressure on residential wells and septic systems. Hardwood floors, furnishings and carpets suffer from excessive traffic. The influx of strangers for the day may strain neighborhood relationships.

Homes that do allow events may have additional restrictions and fees.  Expect property owner concerns about using their household furnishings, parking, dishes, plumbing, landscaping, and trash removal for your big event.  Reassuring the owner that you have a plan to protect their investment may open their mind to the positive possibilities. Renting dishes and glassware eliminates concerns about loss and breakage, hiring a transportation company mitigates parking and intoxicated driver issues,  renting port-o-potties for the day of the event protects the plumbing and keeps day guests out of the house, and assigning someone to dispose of the debris and trash after the big event  insures quick cleanup.  These are a few of the steps you can take to reassure the homeowner you will not leave them with a disaster.

Discussing your celebration will allow the homeowner to give helpful options and anticipate problems that might come up. Conversations with them will provide information, solutions, insights and ideas which will add value to the day. The last thing you want on your wedding day is an irate homeowner, neighbor, or police officer demanding the party break up. Nearly as unwanted are plumbing problems or electrical outages due to overuse.  Losing a large security deposit or being sued by a homeowner for damages is not how you want to start out married life. Clear, upfront communication will allow you to relax and enjoy the party of your dreams.

TihsreeD Lodge Wedding & Event Venue

 

The Venue at Crooked Willow Farms is a venue that gives the couple an opportunity to find the perfect venue they can see themselves start their life in.  Also, one key element is that the  venue will offer indoor backup space should there be inclement weather and is able to accommodate 150 or more guests seated for a ceremony then dinner and dancing.  One of the favorite features is the bridal suite and grooms lounge complete with large screen TV’s and a cigar lounge.  Lastly, Crooked Willow Farms has a multitude of areas that the couple can do their first look or just take photos in general after the ceremony as the venue is theirs for the day, it isn’t our event, as the venue, and we want to support their vision and all they plan seamlessly and to exceed expectations of them and all their friends and family!

The Venue at Crooked Willow Farms

 

Couples considering a reception at a residence should carefully consider the property’s zoning restrictions.  If a private residence is not zoned for events, the wedding could be cancelled without notice.  Stressed brides have contacted us after this exact situation.

Meadows at Marshdale

 

 

If you are considering a residence, what items are you going to need to provide?  Most residences only provide the actual space itself.  That means you will be responsible for tables, chairs, linens (table cloths + napkins), staff to do set-up + tear down, along with glassware, flatware, china, and possible a power sources for your lighting and DJ to plug into.  If the space needs it, you will also be responsible to source pipes and draping and any additional décor.  Some residences don’t have restrooms or enough available for your guest size so you will also need to pay for those as well.  Having your reception at a residence is totally doable but you must factor in the cost of finding these items, paying for labor, etc. If this is something you are considering but don’t want to do all the work that comes with it, find a good wedding planner.

OR consider a venue:

While the overall cost of a venue can look daunting at times most provide quite a lot. For example, here at Brookside Gardens we set up + tear down of your completely customized event, a wedding day supervisor + staff to run your event, gorgeous lighting indoors and outdoors, an outdoor ceremony sound system, tables, linens, glassware, flatware, silverware, china, chairs for both your ceremony + reception, restrooms for all of your guests, a complimentary champagne toast + coffee station, gorgeous curated gardens and grounds for your wedding day photos, and a bridal suite and men’s dressing room along with a complementary wedding night’s stay for the couple.

Not all venues provide the same inclusions but if you’re stuck between a venue and a private residence for your wedding, we recommend doing the research to find out if the overall cost + time of having being married at a private residence is more economical or if the items the venue provides will be more beneficial to you.

Brookside Gardens

 

The few main keys and benefits to hosting your wedding at a venue is they are designed for a wedding, have staff that can help, you don’t have to rent a lot of stuff, the clean up can be facilitated by others, your guest count can be larger and easier to manage.

Meadows Event Center

 

 

Compiled by Denver Party Ride

Denver Party Ride is a luxury wedding transportation company servicing Denver, Colorado and the surrounding areas