I worked with Ashley at the Florida Aquarium to plan my wedding and reception. She was responsive and easy to work with - which was important since I was planning my wedding from another state and could not meet with her in person often. On the day of our event, Ashley handled every detail. She coordinated with our vendors, oversaw the setting of furniture and decorations, and made sure our event moved along in a timely and efficient manner. At the end of the evening, she even made sure that her staff packed up everything we brought with us - meaning my wedding party got to enjoy the reception instead of having to pack up. It was an amazing night at a unique venue.
I worked with Mary to coordinate all of the catering. We had a sit down dinner, and considering the price we paid included appetizers and an open bar, the price was more than reasonable. Our food tasted amazing, and the portions were generous - far more than I expected. There was an unfortunate accident where an entire tray of food was dropped, but the staff handled it well and worked quickly to get food to guests as fast as possible. All of our guests were pleased with their meal.
The Florida Aquarium has the perfect backdrop for a ceremony in front of the giant shark tank, so decor is minimal! The staff at the aquarium for weddings is so professional and unbelievably organized. They do this all the time so everything went perfectly. Natalie was our wedding coordinator and she was so awesome and relaxed. It helped me relax! I realized early on that email is best way to get in touch with their staff. They work odd hours for events so they will answer back usually within 2 days. Much faster than waiting for someone to call you back. Our cocktail hour was on the outside deck and reception in the explore-a-shore outside area. Weather was perfect in March, and was underneath an overhang just in case of rain. My husband and I were so impressed with how everything turned out! Our guests raved about the food and the venue. Everything was perfect!
It is hard for me to put into words how beautiful my wedding was (not to brag or anything). I had my ceremony in the Coral Reef Room (in front of the panoramic window), then cocktail hour on the second floor while they flipped the room, then the reception in the Coral Reef Room. The room was more than I ever could have imagined with the decor and uplighting (from 2 other vendors). Natalie was my contact and she was amazing throughout this whole process. I had a planner as well so most of the contact was between the two of them. Mary was the catering manager and she was very prompt in getting me the information that I needed and very sweet and patient with me. I cannot imagine having my wedding anywhere else, because everything was just so perfect. The food was great, the venue was awesome for some very unique pictures, and overall my wedding was perfect! I would recommend this venue to anybody who asks me! I loved it!
My husband and I were married at the beautiful Florida Aquarium on February 21, 2015. Since then, I have heard nothing but rave reviews from friends and family about what a unique and special venue the aquarium is! And I must agree ;) Everything went absolutely perfect the day of the wedding, and I attribute this to the amazing staff at the aquarium. Our coordinator was Natalie Melillo, and she was more than willing to answer my many, many e-mails and was helpful whenever I needed suggestions. The catering staff was also wonderful- the food was delicious and there was plenty for everyone! Being from an Italian family, having enough food was my main concern, and they delivered! I really can't say enough good things about the aquarium-it truly was a perfect day! Thank you to Natalie and the rest of the staff for making the wedding stress-free for me!!
First, the venue is unique and beautiful. My guests had an amazing time; they had never attended such a fun and fascinating wedding before. If you go during the day, you will not see the real beauty, but trust me - it is the most beautiful setting imaginable.
Second, Natalie the event coordinator is PHENOMENAL. She held my hand through every step, and I had no idea what I was doing or what I wanted. She offered suggestions when I was lost without being pushy, and she always made us feel completely comfortable. I had a million questions, and she never made me feel rushed or like I was an annoyance. She helped me choose my other vendors, and THEY all did a great job as well! She was calm and cheerful, and even when things went wrong (we forgot our escort cards), she handled everything and I never had to worry about a thing. My guests couldn't say enough about how amazing she was.
Third, Mary, the catering manager shared many of Natalie's qualities. She was patient and helped us choose a menu that suited a variety of guests. The staff was extremely attentive and helpful, and the food was so delicious!!!
Everything was absolutely perfect, and I highly recommend the Florida Aquarium for your wedding (ask for Natalie, she's the best!!!!)
I can not say enough about everything they did. What an absolutely fabulous place for a wedding. There was always something going on from the touch tanks to the penguins. It was simply beautiful. We worked with Natalie she was awesome!!! She made sure the bride and groom ate and helped out with everything.
As soon as we found out that the Florida Aquarium hosted weddings, we knew that this was it for us! We chose to book the Aquarium for both the ceremony and reception for $2500. You pretty much are paying for the decorations too, because you really don't need any with the huge wall tank! You have to use their caterer, but we really enjoyed their hors d'oeurves (the coconut shrimp is a MUST!) and the dinner was delicious. Another plus is that they include an in-house wedding planner for free. We had Natalie Melillo, and she was just fantastic and everything flowed just perfectly at the wedding. We couldn't have done it without her. Everyone kept complimenting about what a unique venue this was and how it was the best, most intimate wedding that they had ever been to. Plus, just look at the incredible photos you get from having your wedding here (I would seriously recommend hiring a good, professional photographer who has shot at the Aquarium before because you'll be kicking yourself if you don't. The glass tanks make it hard to get photos, but if they are done right, they are just phenomenal). The night went way too fast though! It was incredible fun, and I would highly recommend this venue to anyone!
From the moment we met with wedding coordinator Natalie Melillo we we're immediately hooked. We knew that the Aquarium was the perfect place for us to get married and our dream location. Not only did it combine our love of animals and the sea but with this location you will never have to worry about rain or climate control. Natalie took care of us and made us feel like we were her only clients. She kept in touch throughout the planning process any time we needed to get a hold of her whether by phone or emails he responded promptly. There were many answers we didn't have and several options we weren't aware of but Natalie walked us through each and every detail and put our minds at ease. On the day of our wedding she made sure everything ran smoothly and we did not have to worry about a thing. It was an honor having Natalie as our coordinator and the Aquarium as our venue. We still receive compliments from people on how beautiful our wedding was. I have to say getting married in front of a huge shark tank was absolutely amazing and made our wedding even more memorable. If you plan on getting married in Tampa and you’re stuck on choosing, search no further as this place had amazing views, incredible catering, polite and knowledgeable staff to help coordinate your event and an Aquarium for your guests to walk through while the happy couple takes pictures.
I cannot even begin to tell you how amazing The Florida Aquarium was in helping us organize and execute our perfect day. Everyone kept telling me how stressed I must be planning this wedding because we were planning a Tampa wedding from all the way in D.C. The truth of the matter is that everyone at the aquarium from Carolyn, to Mary, and especially Natalie, our coordinator, were so helpful and amazing that I never once felt stressed or that I was missing something integral to the big day. I cannot say enough wonderful things about Natalie. She was amazing. She was a zen presence the entire time and I am beyond thrilled that she was our coordinator. The catering staff that took care of me and my husband(!) at the reception were also so wonderful to us, they really took care of us all night. The best part of is that we were able to host a wedding that our friends and family really felt was unique and special. If you are looking to get married in Tampa and you really want something out of the ordinary that is going to WOW your guests, look no further than The Florida Aquarium.
This venue was absolutely beautiful for a wedding. We had our wedding here and we could not even imagine a better venue for such a great event. Thank you for all staff involved with our wedding especially our wedding coordinator Ashley Valentine. She made everything so easy and she was able to help out with anything we requested. Thanks for making our day perfect.
First, Ashley and Mary are the greatest. It does not matter what your issue is they meet you with a positive, kind, understanding attitude. On the day of my wedding Ashley was so enthusiastic and fun and efficient, she really is just amazing. She keeps things moving and fixes hiccups as they come so quickly you never know they're happening! She encourages you through your entire day but she started being helpful and encouraging long before that!
The venue is just fantastic! There was not a single guest who was not amazed, who did not gush and rave about our wedding and the venue. The penguins walked me down the aisle which thrilled all of our guests but really, the entire atmosphere just made everything magical and beautiful.
When we went to the tasting we met Chiquita and requested that she bartend for us at our wedding. Everyone loved her and made sure to tell us! That is the way with the entire staff at the aquarium! It's beautiful, it's unique, it's affordable and the amazing extras like the penguins will make anyone's wedding absolutely unforgettable! I'm so in love with my wedding and that's because of Florida Aquarium!
Ashley Valentine is a superb event planner. She is a shining star. She made everything so easy to plan and was with us every step of the way. My daughter said her wedding day was the best day of her life. Ashley played a huge part in making it a perfect event. Mary Patterson was equally helpful and the food and beverages were a delight.
I am so happy about having my wedding at the Florida Aquarium. Staff was so helpful through the planning process. It was unique and beautiful ceremony. Loved every aspect of this venue and it was worth every penny we invested. The pictures are so beautiful. I love Florida Aquarium!
Very unique venue! My guests were all raving about the fact that the coral reef room at the Florida Aquarium was one of the coolest venues they'd ever seen for a wedding!
Pictures were amazing (if you can find the right photographer)! Wouldn't recommend their preferred vendors list for photography...we used Life's Highlights instead! Lighting in the room is really tricky because of all the aquarium glass!
Food was fantastic! We received so many compliments from our guests about the food and fast service!
Our day-of coordinator, Ashley, was included in the price (which was very affordable btw) was great! I felt at ease the entire night thanks to the aquarium team!
My daughter's wedding was held at The Florida Aquarium. The venue is so unique and a wonderful place to host an event. Ashley Valentine was our coordinator and she was a pleasure to work with. She was very responsive to all of our questions and changes/additions made along the way. I never doubted that everything would be taken care of. The day of the event there was not a single detail that was not attended to and if we were to do it all over again, there is not a single thing we would change. In addition, we worked with Mary Patterson in catering and the food was delicious. We have received many positive remarks on both the venue and the food. Many compliments have been received on the servers and all event staff. Thank you for making my daughter's wedding day exactly as she had envisioned it.
Having our wedding here was magical! We had the ceremony in front of their huge tank, capturing great photos of fish, sharks and turtles. Amazing place for ceremony. Reception was outside on their deck, having a beautiful view of The bay. Ashley was our coordinator and was so sweet and amazing, very helpful and always there for any questions along the way. I would not have changed a thing about our wedding. It was breathtaking! I would recommend this for everyone's wedding!