Finding your best wedding reception is one of the most tantalizing parts of planning your wedding, but with endless options, a little guidance goes a long way. From various price points to scattered destinations to unlimited themes, choosing ‘the one’ will be difficult. Now that you’re here relax and peruse our finite list of the 20 most popular reception venues of all time. Choosing the venue for your wedding will be a story you can look back on for years to come. Remember, stress now only leads to smiles in the future. Have fun with your process, and enjoy whichever destination you decide on!
How To Stretch Your Budget
Avoid Busy Saturdays
Have you ever been to a wedding before? Was it on Saturday? Most likely, yes. The vast majority of weddings in the United States are on Saturdays. These venues can charge up to DOUBLE what they charge for any other day of the week or Sunday. These venues are obtaining extra income they normally don’t receive if they manage to schedule a wedding on another day of the week that isn’t a Saturday. It tends to be slightly more inconvenient for guests, but it is a win-win for the couple and the venue!
A great way to cut costs for your wedding is to get the show on the road earlier in the day! If you do this, you will save a significant amount of money, and it makes the venue itself elated because it allows them to get two events done in one day! Getting up early on your Saturday is never too fun, but for this special occasion going to bed a couple of hours earlier on your Friday night isn’t too much to ask. As a bonus, after the wedding, you have all day to keep the party going and reflect on the highs and lows of your day.
Venture Outside Your City
Price quotes for weddings can change by tens of thousands of dollars by just traveling to another zip code only 20 minutes away. The big city you live in or around might have a little more glamour in the ring the name has to it, but traveling to a smaller area will give you the same feeling when you’re in the moment anyway. A rural area will be an option if you’re looking to reduce your spending, and traveling to the rural area may also provide a unique experience outside of the big city.
When choosing a venue, make a valiant effort to select a place that lets you bring in your own beverages. This lets you choose the specific drinks you want to bring so you are not stuck with many drinks people don’t want. You can avoid the drink packages that companies have premade that are oftentimes incredibly overpriced. With this option, you also get to hold on to whatever doesn’t get used. Selecting your own beverages are becoming more popular now because you would want to choose drinks you preferred.
Summertime, summertime, summertime. That is the ‘perfect time’ for any wedding. Better weather and fewer commitments normally, but don’t be afraid to break away from this social norm! An offseason wedding anywhere from October to March could be a much cheaper alternative with the same bang. You might have to enclose the party inside, but depending on where you live, you may be able to steal a beautiful day in the late fall or early spring for your wedding!
Popular Reception Venues On A Budget Locations
1. At Home
Little to no cost. Four words can be an absolute game-changer in the process of selecting a wedding venue. At-home weddings are certainly different than most usual weddings but can be even more incredible because you can totally customize your experience. You can manage your space exactly how you want to have the most cost-effective beverage options and seating arrangements. Lots of benefits to just staying home! Guests may even feel less pressure to dress up and show up at the event.
2. Parks and Public Places
These locations generally have beautiful scenery and a ton of space, great for larger weddings. Another huge bonus to this option is the low cost. You will have to go through the city to be granted a permit for your wedding to stay out of legal trouble, but as long as you get on that in advance, it is no big issue at all.
3. Block Party
In most areas outside of cities, you can go through the city to block off a street. This option is usually around the price of a couple of hundred dollars, and let’s keep the party local. If you visit your local city website, they will walk you through how to get the proper licenses for serving food and alcohol to complete your venue.
4. Bars and Restaurants
Depending on your party’s size, renting out an entire bar or a party room at a restaurant can be an incredibly electric option for a venue. If you and yours had your first date at a particular restaurant, or met at your favorite bar, make the journey full circle and choose your venue there. Usually, this option is also very cost-friendly and allows B.Y.O.B., and you can also customize the setting of the place you rented for the night.
Alma maters make a great place for a couple’s venue. Another option for making life come full circle; this alternative option is perfect for couples who went to school together. This venue is also a cheap option because it is a school and doesn’t have places set up for a venue, allowing for cheap catering and B.Y.O.B options.
6. The Little Nell
This illustrious spot located in Aspen, Colorado, puts you on the side of a mountain. Your reception’s audience gets the view of you and yours with one of the most beautiful mountains directly in the background. Don’t forget that you will always be able to tell the story of how you got married at 11,000 feet in the air!
7. San Ysidro, CA
One location that encompasses everything that California’s beautiful state has to offer in a single reception venue. You look around, and you are right in the middle of a giant range. You have the aspect of the beautiful nature already, then you look up, and at this specific place, you can see the entire city of Los Angeles bustling from thousands of feet away. West coast lovers, this has got to be it.
8. Glenmere Mansion
What if you could go to Europe and be only a few hours from New York City? If that’s where you want to have your wedding day, the Glenmere Mansion is your dream destination. 150 acres of land is yours for the entire weekend, and you have room for everyone and over 50 different rooms to choose from to host your rehearsal dinner and everything else. If you are staying in the United States but wanting an international feel, this place is the absolute one you need to go to.
9. AMAN Venice
Travel to the beautiful city of Venice, Italy, and arrive at one of the country’s most stunning palazzos. Look out from this hotel venue, and you are directly above the famous grand canal. Look around the hotel, and you see one of the best-designed buildings in the entire world. This Venetian art style is just too good to pass up. Of all the places to go in Europe, this place has got to be one of the best choices out there.
10. Aynhoe Park
The United Kingdom is home to some of the most illustrious scenery in the entire world. Take that scenery and put a wedding venue that is a literal piece of art, and you have the whole package here. The house’s beautiful white and silver interior is unmatched in contrast to the beautiful forest that Aynhoe Park is located in. A can’t miss destination that provides a great middle-ground for nature lovers and indoor people.
Unconventional Popular Reception Venues
Couples who love reading, look no further than transforming your local library into your dream reception location. From local to college libraries, if you get in touch with your library in advance, they will oftentimes let you transform their space into whatever you want! Make it casual or dress up! All the different directions you can go with the library angle are incredible!
12. Airplane Hanger
Has travel inspired your relationship? Look way outside the box and tie the knot at an airplane hanger. The planes are an amazing background for your wedding, and there is so much space to accommodate a larger wedding. There are many different private hangers out there that will let you rent out their hanger for relatively cheap compared to traditional destinations. Just remember to tell your guests to get ready for a crazy ride!
13. Coffee Shop
Another first date nostalgia wedding venue! A coffee shop is another venue that will let you transform their shop into any setup that you desire. This option might limit space but makes up for it with the homey ambiance. They will also allow you to bring in your own drinks and food as it is another place that does not typically operate at a wedding venue.
14. Movie Theater
A huge venue that you can do so much with. Put your first date movie up on the screen, give the theater a retro feel or any theme you want. This venue is timeless and incredibly flexible. They will sometimes have different packages for snacks and food items if you really want to run with the whole movie theater theme for your weekend. This space will usually not allow for a rehearsal dinner, but it definitely depends on the specific theater’s location and size.
Visit your nearest aquarium and get in touch with underwater aquatic life. There is unbelievable scenery all around aquariums, and it is much cleaner than most would think. It also provides opportunities for outdoor and indoor weddings. This is such an uncommon wedding venue that they will pretty much let you do whatever you want with the venue. It will be a little more planning and crunching of numbers for you as the planner, but at the end of the day, if it is what you really want, the extra accommodation is no big deal at all.
Popular Reception Venues- Outdoors
16. Dos Pueblos Ranch
Located in Santa Barbara, California, this ranch is about as great of an outdoor venue as there is in the world. It has a customizable barn that is an outstanding alternative option to the outdoor venue. Move the party inside the barn after the reception is over or party all night in the beautiful California weather. A ranch is a little less traditional venue for a wedding but is an up and coming venue that will gain huge popularity in the coming years.
17. The Barn at Evergreen Memorial Park
This destination is centered around the barn and really gives off the countryside feel. The rural vibe pairs immaculately with the beautiful barn itself. It feels like it comes out of the middle of nowhere, and then as soon as you arrive at the grounds, your eyes are just glued to all the incredible scenery in the mountains. This option also is safe for indoor and outdoor venues, depending on the time of year. With the Colorado weather, you might want to focus on the incredibly mild and perfect weather present in the summertime.
18. The Hidden Vineyard
This vineyard is located in Berrien Springs, Michigan, and is actually a winery that is still in operation today. However, it is a huge destination for wedding venues and functions around certain months of the year as one of the most popular places to have a wedding at a vineyard that is not in California. It is incredibly scenic and has all the venue supplies, chairs, bar, tables, and everything else, that pairs perfectly with the older more rural feel that is pulled off so elegantly in this vineyard.
19. Montesino Ranch
This ranch is the first destination on the list located in Texas and one of the very few we have touched on in the south. Many ranches out there, especially located in the south, are very similar to the Montesino ranch. However, this is just one of the most elite wedding venues for this wedding style in the world. Located in Wimberly, Texas, this rustic architecture and countryside scenery is one of a kind and cannot be matched by anything else.
20. West Monitor Barn
Traveling back to the Northeast, this barn located in Richmond, Vermont, is in the middle of the forest and the woodland that Vermont has to offer. The kicker is that you get to experience the classic red barn look that many other venues have gone away from at this venue. Even better about this venue, all the renting fees go towards various youth programs all around the state of Vermont.
From operating on a budget to locations to dream locations, to unconventional locations, and the best outdoor venues in the world, we hope that this comprehensive list of the most popular reception venues will help guide you through what our team thinks is some of the best places to get married in the world. Feel free to read into even more of the places that we have recommended. We wish you the best of luck in your future and choosing a perfect wedding venue!