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We had a terrible time with the Equinox Resort venue. We were able to book our wedding easily but that was the only easy step with the Equinox. Everything was a struggle from working with the planner (which they provided) to food tasting to layout of venue. We constantly communicated with our planner via email and in person and nothing was according to our plan. We were planning an outside ceremony but 3 weeks before the wedding they told us they double booked our wedding. We were moved to another location for the ceremony. Completely unacceptable they double booked and told us so late. We had to provide napkins for the reception so don't expect anything to be provided. Our planner responded when she felt like it. It was unpredictable and she never answered everything completely. Completely regret booking this venue.
Venue was beautiful and overall well-suited for a wedding. Service was fantastic on all fronts throughout the wedding weekend. Our guests enjoyed the wedding and their stay at the Equinox thoroughly. We plan on vacationing here again in the future.
The Equinox Hotel was AMAZING! I had the wedding of my dreams. It was so wonderful to have a coordinator who helped everything run smoothly and have in-house everything. I was able to get a great deal by having my wedding in the winter on a non-holiday Friday.
Everyone at the hotel knew about the wedding and congratulated us around every corner. I really CAN NOT say enough about how fabulous this was... I am so sad it is over.
The Equinox is an absolutely beautiful venue and we are thrilled to have had our wedding here. We got married two months ago and we keep hearing what a blast everyone had, what a nice place it was, it was magic, etc... We worked with Ruth who was absolutely outstanding- we couldn't have asked for a better contact. She was really thorough and so pleasant.
Our tasting was delicious and we were so psyched about the food because my husband and I are both foodies! This was one of the most important aspects for us. After the tasting we kept telling our guests they would be blown away by the food, it was diamond rated, so delicious, etc... Well, the food was good, but not phenomenal like we had expected. The serving sizes were much smaller and the quality seemed less. I understand serving 90 is harder than 2, but we were disappointed. I would just be cautious of this-We just thought they would be able to deliver -
The Colonnade room was beautiful with our decorations - make sure you have plenty of decor because this room is huge! If you don't, it will look much like a regular nice room and remind you of eating breakfast in there. Luckily, we had lots of decorations and uplighting that really brought the room to life.
The staff was terrific - all very professional and friendly for the most part. The only complaint about the service other than food quality is the bar - we asked to have the bar tenders switched because the drinks were very weak and guests were paying top dollar.
Overall, I absolutely loved our weekend there and we don't have many complaints at all. The bridal suite was gorgeous (hard to find pictures online, but its two floors with lots of room on the first floor for hair/makeup and general lounging). You are spending a lot of money at this venue, so that is why I am being honest about the food and bar - you expect a lot for the $.
Good luck and I hope that helps all future brides!
The Equinox Resort & Spa was the perfect venue for my New England fall-themed wedding. The Pond Pavilion provides a gorgeous outdoor venue for a ceremony and the resort provided enough flexibility to where I was able to do part of my cocktail hour at the Pond and then move the other half to the Lincoln Gardens since I was having the reception and dinner in the Colonnade Ballroom (which was also gorgeous). The Pond is about a 5 minute drive from the main resort and they do provide transportation to and from for you guests.
The food and the cake were delicious. Presentation was amazing. Shelly, the pastry chef, did an amazing job with my fall themed wedding cake vision.
The entire staff was extremely professional, helpful, and on the ball the night of the wedding.
Throughout the planning process Ruth Whitelaw the Equinox event coordinator was there for me every step of the way. Whether it be trading emails back and forth or touching base on the phone she was always prompt with replies.
The only downfall to a fall wedding in this small town is that you need to book everything very early especially if you are planning around the peak foliage weekend. The Equinox room rates can be fairly pricey especially over the weekend in the main hotel and they have a 2 night minimum stay requirement in the fall. If you are on a budget and you don't mind having your wedding on any day of the week besides Friday and Saturday the venue is nearly half the price.
Overall I had a fabulous experience working with the Equinox. It provided the perfect venue for my dream wedding!
We had our Wedding at the Pond. Ruth and Lauren were our coordinators and were amazing. Throughout the process their response to questions was almost immediate. As a bride it was assuring to know you could fully trust and rely on your planners. Would recommend the Pond it was breathtaking !!
My husband & I live in the NYC area, but we decided on VT for a “destination” wedding. We researched other venues (MountainTop Inn, Hildene, Reluctant Panther, etc) and finally found the Equinox Resort in Manchester. We wanted outdoorsy feel, something with a lake and mountains, and the Pond Pavilion was perfect! We really liked that it didn't feel too rustic or campy, since some other outdoor settings reminded us more of an Adirondack lodge. I was also surprised by how reasonable the pricing was given the stunning setting; I wouldn't say it was inexpensive but I feel the cost was worth the high quality of the food, service, and venue. We started our wedding planning with Jessica, who was fantastic but then left the resort to move to Colorado so we continued our planning with Ruth. We were a bit nervous but soon learned we were in great hands; Ruth has been a part of the Equinox team for years, had so much great advice to offer, and really made our wedding planning easy and stress free. She was very flexible on our menu and allowed us to combine different food choices from separate menus to create our dinner buffet. Every time I would get nervous or worry about something Ruth would provide a great solution and everything went flawlessly the day of the event! The entire resort staff was very friendly, always said hello, remembered our names and that it was our wedding weekend. I was very impressed with the service and positive attitude from the staff. Our wedding servers were great, and it was awesome having 2 bartenders. I've been to weddings twice our size where there is only one bar and you spend a lot of time waiting for drinks. Overall we had an amazing experience at the Equinox resort and I am so happy we chose it as our wedding venue. We're still getting compliments from family and friends more than a year after the wedding, and some have said it's the best wedding they've ever attended – all thanks to Ruth and the Equinox team!
The Equinox was the perfect place for our wedding. There are a lot of options for both the reception and the ceremony (we used the Pond Pavilion). Jessica Smith, their wedding coordinator, was always responsive and very helpful. She was able to answer all our questions. The day of the wedding I was completely comfortable leaving everything in her hands and she executed it perfectly.
I would recommend the Pond and the Equinox to anyone wanting an elegant, beautiful, stress-free wedding.
I can say that, without a doubt, The Equinox is the perfect venue for couples looking for a romantic and scenic venue matched with impeccable service and luxurious amenities. The resort and town of Manchester Village provide a beautiful backdrop for a destination wedding weekend within a few hours' drive from New York and Boston.
Our entire planning experience with the Sales, Catering, Culinary, Golf and Spa teams was absolutely flawless - they helped us put together a weekend full of fabulous activities, UNIQUE and restaurant-quality dining, and above all, impeccable service for our guests.
We have received SO much positive feedback from our guests - even so far as WE have received thank you notes from THEM in the mail these past couple of weeks!
I can't say enough about The Equinox team and cannot thank them enough for making our wedding unforgettable.
My husband and I decided to get married in my hometown of Manchester, Vermont in the Fall season. When we began our venue search, we knew we wanted both our ceremony and reception venue to give us and our guests the feeling that we were in our own little world. Ideally, if the weather played along we wanted to be married outside surrounded by the foliage with a pretty view but we knew we would need a back-up for this plan. For the reception, we wanted to avoid venues that felt like they could have easily hosted a board meeting during the day (as many hotel event rooms do). Many of our guests were not from Vermont and so we also wanted to find a reception venue where they could continue to enjoy the beautiful Vermont landscape.
With all of the above in mind we viewed the Southern Vermont Art Center, Hildene, the Arlington Inn, the West Mountain Inn and the Manchester Country Club. Initially, our first preference was Hildene. It is a beautiful location with fantastic views and I had volunteered there for a number of years. Foliage season has however become a peak wedding season in the area and we felt the venue pricing was too high for a reception in a tent which was the only option for 90 people. We therefore selected the Equinox.
While also expensive we liked the breadth of services available. In the days leading up to the wedding, I was able to use the fitness facilities to stay dress ready :-). Our guests received a discounted pricing offer (although still very high for the area due to peak season). We had discounted use of a suite the night before the wedding and so my mother, sister and I stayed at the hotel the night before and the bridal party got ready in the room. Our ceremony was held at the 1811 Lawn which has beautiful views and our guests were transported to the Equinox Pond Pavillion for cocktails by the water followed by the reception inside the pavillion which has a beautiful fireplace, ceiling and lovely wooden floors. The venue was anything but a converted meeting room. Following the reception we returned back to the hotel and enjoyed time around the outdoor fireplace at the Falcon Bar before my husband and I retreated to our complimentary wedding suite where delicious ice cider and cookies awaited us. The staff was attentive and well-trained, the food was delicious and the signature cocktails were creative and tasty. The entire atmosphere was extremely pleasant the entire day.
So why is our rating not 5.0/5.0? There were a few areas of improvement for the team and the venue.
1 - The Pond Pavillion can only accommodate a buffett service. The Equinox should either make the space renovations required or find a creative way to address this. The venue atmosphere was more important to us than being served in our seats but a dinner service would have been nicer than a buffett.
2- The first contact we had at the hotel was not their usual wedding coordinator, it was their manager. Despite being the manager, the contact was very cold and clearly focussed on every last penny and lacked the warmth of personality that the majority of the staff had. Working with her was extremely unpleasant and we had almost decided to go elsewhere when a friend who worked for the resort stepped in.
3 - Our dealings with the rest of the hotel staff were by far more pleasant but they also made a few mistakes which meant that we could not have a rehearsal at our ceremony location, our room still had a dress steamer when we returned for our wedding night, our top layer of cake was disposed of and a few of our wedding decorations were missing when we came to collect them. Not the end of the world but areas to improve.
4 - We never received a final statement. An amount they felt was outstanding was simply deducted from our credit card.
5 - The resort has not yet planned for colder weather usage of the pavillion. They could easily obtain glass panes to insert over the screened windows and heating other than standing heaters. (We knew this when we booked but would still recommend for their future use of the venue).
Overall we would strongly recommend the resort if you have a food and drinks budget of $90/head plus and a venue budget of $5K plus.
Jessica Smith was an absolute pleasure to work with. The Equinox provided the elegance we were searching for. The costs is excessive, but worth every penny.
The team at the Equinox was wonderful to work with. They were flexible with their menus and were professional from beginning to end. Most importantly, they were happy to partner with my wedding planner to make everything perfect.