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Kathleen was very helpful, easy to get ahold of, and very accommodating for the many times I went with a vendor to look at the space to help map out where we're setting everything up. Beautiful place and outside area.
Beautiful setting, gorgeous building, wonderful House Manager & staff. Even better, proceeds go to the mansion upkeep & to local campus programs, which we loved. Very little decoration needed to make the interior & exterior presentable & "wedding ready". Outside patio stones are a bit uneven, but it is a very old house so that is not unlikely. Our guests enjoyed admiring the amazing architecture & strolling around to take in the serene ocean view. Despite being on grounds opened to the public, our event at The Branford House Mansion felt very private. Our event had a really nice, flexible timeframe to mold to our wedding day's needs & Katherine was lovely to work with. A little tricky for some guests to get to, but an overall convenient location for those craving pics of oceanside nuptuals (like we were). Unique, Philanthropic & Unforgettable. Our wedding there was all I had imagined & more. Guests are stillreeling over the place! I would certainly recommend this venue for those looking to have a unique wedding experience some place other than a banquet hall.
Kathryn Pollard, Director of The Branford House at Avery Point, UCONN, Groton, CT - the most helpful persons I have ever dealt with while planning an event. She was easy to get along with, flexible, accommodating and just plain nice. In fact, Kathryn went out of her way to connect me with the bride and groom who were renting the location for the next day to see if we could share the tent - once up and once down rather than the tent company having to come in and out twice - saved both us and the wedding party for the next day a lot of money! Compared to another similar location also owned by the State of Connecticut, and also located right on Long Island Sound - we absolutely hit the jackpot with The Branford House.
Beautiful location, beautiful bride, great day! Thank you, Kathryn!
We knew this was the place for us the moment we walked into the main room! The Branford House is a beautiful venue, and perfect for our unique day! Like most of the mansions, there were some restrictions on decorations and expectations on the time that we would be in and the time we'd be out, but they were more than reasonable and we never ran into any issues. It was a huge help having a caterer that had worked the venue, as the kitchen is in the basement so when making our seating arrangement, I knew in advance where there would be extra traffic coming in and out. The layout was also perfect for us - we had 125 guests, and the house is divided into three rooms. We were able to fit everyone in the main room and one of the wings, giving us another room empty for the dancing, which was perfect! With a few flowers and a couple of candles, our event was in the most beautiful of settings!
AMAZING LOCATION!!!!!! I was blown away the first visit out there. The wedding was beautiful and the guests were blown away by the location. All Around great day!
We had our wedding at the Branford House 9/21/13 and it was terrific! The venue is absolutely beautiful and we ended up with a late-summer afternoon wedding on the lawn as the sun set and sail boats quietly coasted in the water. My wife went to school in Newport, RI and wanted the Newport feel without making our guests stay in hotels for Newport prices. The Branford House has all of the beauty and elegance that you would see in Newport at a much more reasonable price.
The price of the venue has gone up slightly but is still pretty reasonable relative to other options. You have to pay to use their wooden chairs if you decide that you'd rather use those instead of the free plastic ones. Given how expensive the venue was and that they already owned the chairs, this extra charge was a little surprising. Also, if you decide that you wish to use the lawn (say you want to do a big tent on the grounds) there is another charge for that.
We did the ceremony outside with the dancing under a tent on the patio and the meals inside which was terrific. The venue is so beautiful it is nice to be able to use as much of the space as possible which we felt like we were able to do. The only complaint we have about the facility is the bathrooms - they are okay and certainly functional but not terribly nice. The staff actually did some decorating for us ahead of time which was very nice of them.
Overall would absolutely recommend the Branford House - you and your guests will without question have a day that you will never forget.
One last item of note, if you are going to have your wedding at the Branford House, make sure you get a good photographer. There is such beautiful architectural detail that having a great photographer is really worth the cost (we hired Joshua Behan and the pictures are terrific).
The Branford House is an absolutely stunning location! We were married in April 2015 inside the mansion in front of their grand fireplace. It was ideal. The location provides for a unique experience and is not your typical wedding venue. We loved the option that people could go outside and down to the water if they wanted to. The terrace and lawn were recently renovated and look gorgeous.
Katherine is prompt and helpful with getting everything set-up before the wedding, but I would highly recommend hiring a day of coordinator to oversee your day. Also, be sure to check in with her to clarify what vendors you can bring in. We had to change our liquor vendor at the last minute (3 weeks away) because their insurance was not accepted by the Branford House.
The value of the Branford House is also incredible. We got married in the off-season (end of April) and had a beautiful 55 degree day. You get the home for 10 hours but Katherine is very flexible and may allow some vendors to arrive earlier for set-up.
With the Branford House, you truly get to create a venue that is all your own. It is worth the extra work of brining in the vendors because it ends up being so personal. This place is magical!
This is such beautiful venue. All our guests were absolutely blown away by the interior and Katherine is so professional and helpful. If you are thinking of getting married in a mansion in New England, this is the best choice for you. The A/C is an added (and wonderful) modern addition to this gorgeous setting.
This venue is stunning. You're guaranteed to get beautiful photos on this site. I worked with Katherine who is responsive and kind and easy to work with. Our wedding was one of kind with the space and decor. Everyone loved the Branford house and all it's grandness. Definitely fit for royalty. We booked a little over a year early and was able to get the 2nd Saturday in August. So I would suggest booking early because this venue will not be available its too breath taking. Our guests were impressed by the venue and the great detail in the woodwork inside is it's own artwork. You can dress this venue to the max or you can leave it as is and it will stand on it's own. Love love love this venue!
When it came time to find a venue, my husband and I knew we wanted to get married on a place on the water. We found the Branford house and loved how we could bring in our own vendors, rather than have them pre-determined for us. It really gave us the flexibility and creativity to make our wedding our own. The venue is well kept, and the view is just breathtaking. We couldn't imagine our wedding anywhere else. During the planning process Katherine answered all of our questions and was accommodating when it came to organizing our various vendors for the day of. She was sure to contact us after our wedding regarding some items we forgot to bring back with us to ensure we got them back. We booked the venue two years in advance and found responsiveness to emails/phone calls to not always be immediate. However, as the date became closer responsiveness greatly increased and was never a real issue!
Absolutely incredibly gorgeous dream venue, absolutely amazing location, and a fantastic price!!!!
This venue is incredibly affordable for what you get - a full day of flexible time (ceremony on site? Sure, no extra charge!) and a fairytale view from a castle. It was an absolute dream, and my photos are just spectacular! It was rather windy during the ceremony, but that's the trade off for a picturesque lawn on the ocean with a lighthouse and a castle, with sailboats drifting by.
The only thing that could make this place better is more responsiveness. I sometimes had questions go unanswered, but as the wedding got closer, communication got much better. As it isn't an expensive venue, and there's only one person as the event manager, it makes sense she's very busy. If you go in with the expectation that it's an absolutely dream of a location at a very budget-friendly price, and don't expect a built in coordinator on site, you will be very satisfied!
They were very helpful and a beautiful site.
This is a GORGEOUS venue! If you aren't looking for a run-of-the-mill, wedding factory wedding, then this is your place! You get to bring everything in yourself to create your own dream wedding, not the wedding that the venue chooses for you, as is the case with your typical venue.
This venue lends itself towards a more intimate gathering, it is essentially like having a party at a large house, so you do need to be flexible regarding certain issues, such as seating arrangements, and a more go-with-the-flow type of atmosphere.
I wish I could do it all over again and again...I would not have changed a thing about my wedding at the Branford House!
It was love at first sight when I saw the Branford House. Gorgeous!! Didn't have to look any further for a location. If you want to pick and choose all your vendors like I did then this is the place for you! Trying to get a hold of the main contact for the mansion is frustrating and it usually takes a few calls or e-mails to get answers.
Please do not look at my 4.6 rating as this place not being absolutely beautiful!! As soon as I told my husband (then fiance) that I wanted to get married on the water, he knew exactly where we would be married. I would not have chosen a different location for anything!!
There is one woman scheduling all the weddings, so sometimes she is a little difficult to get in touch with. But she worked with us, met with us, and answered all our many questions.
This is the best place to put together the wedding you want - you just have to be willing to put the pieces together yourself (or with a planner)! Not your typical wedding factory. This mansion is so gorgeous you don't even need that many flowers to enhance its natural beauty! I just went crazy with candles to create a beautiful glow :)