The Florida Aquarium
Unique Weddings Under the Sea!
    88 Reviews
701 Channelside Drive
Tampa, FL 33602  | map
Services: Bridal Shower, Ceremony, Engagement Party, Reception
Catering: Offered in-house
Maximum capacity: 350
 
 
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4.7 out of 5.0
4.7
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5.0 out of 5.0
5.0/5.0
  • Quality of Service:  5.0
  • Responsiveness:  5.0
  • Professionalism:  5.0
  • Value:  5.0
  • Flexibility:  5.0
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.
Wedding: 09/20/2014
Services Used: Rehearsal Dinner Location, Ceremony & Reception Venue
5.0 out of 5.0
5.0/5.0
  • Quality of Service:  5.0
  • Responsiveness:  5.0
  • Professionalism:  5.0
  • Value:  5.0
  • Flexibility:  5.0
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.
Wedding: 09/14/2014
Services Used: Rehearsal Dinner Location, Ceremony & Reception Venue
5.0 out of 5.0
5.0/5.0
  • Quality of Service:  5.0
  • Responsiveness:  5.0
  • Professionalism:  5.0
  • Value:  5.0
  • Flexibility:  5.0
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!
Wedding: 08/03/2014
Services Used: Ceremony & Reception Venue
5.0 out of 5.0
5.0/5.0
  • Quality of Service:  5.0
  • Responsiveness:  5.0
  • Professionalism:  5.0
  • Value:  5.0
  • Flexibility:  5.0
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.
Wedding: 06/21/2014
Services Used: Catering, Lighting & Decor, Ceremony & Reception Venue
5.0 out of 5.0
5.0/5.0
  • Quality of Service:  5.0
  • Responsiveness:  5.0
  • Professionalism:  5.0
  • Value:  5.0
  • Flexibility:  5.0

Rosalyn 6 Reviews
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!
Wedding: 06/06/2014
Services Used: Ceremony & Reception Venue
5.0 out of 5.0
5.0/5.0
  • Quality of Service:  5.0
  • Responsiveness:  5.0
  • Professionalism:  5.0
  • Value:  5.0
  • Flexibility:  5.0

Katie 4 Reviews
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!
Wedding: 05/25/2014
Services Used: Ceremony & Reception Venue
5.0 out of 5.0
5.0/5.0
  • Quality of Service:  5.0
  • Responsiveness:  5.0
  • Professionalism:  5.0
  • Value:  5.0
  • Flexibility:  5.0
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.
Wedding: 03/15/2014
Services Used: Ceremony & Reception Venue
5.0 out of 5.0
5.0/5.0
  • Quality of Service:  5.0
  • Responsiveness:  5.0
  • Professionalism:  5.0
  • Value:  5.0
  • Flexibility:  5.0
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!
Wedding: 03/08/2014
Services Used: Ceremony & Reception Venue
5.0 out of 5.0
5.0/5.0
  • Quality of Service:  5.0
  • Responsiveness:  5.0
  • Professionalism:  5.0
  • Value:  5.0
  • Flexibility:  5.0
Ashley is amazing. She was there for us from day 1 answering all my questions, big and small, and then answering them again when I was going crazy and forgot I asked. The aquarium is such a beautiful venue and they really make it easy planning a wedding. I am from Tampa but live in Wisconsin so I knew I needed a venue that I could trust would deliver on my needs without having to hand hold them. Because it is public facility, the aquarium was able to cater to my guests wide range of needs. If you have a large family, friends relatives with food allergies, specials needs, or children, this venue is PERFECT. (It's perfect anyway, but that stuff is a bonus). All my quests complimented the venue, service, and food. Ashley was there to help along the way and really helped out on the day of! I had no worries because I knew any issue was being addressed by her team. I had one issue with the food vendor, but we were able to quickly and professionally resolve it. Thank you supporting us on our big day and making our dream wedding a reality! - By the way, LOVE THE MERMAIDS!!!!!! XO, Darren and Susan
Wedding: 02/15/2014
Services Used: Ceremony & Reception Venue
5.0 out of 5.0
5.0/5.0
  • Quality of Service:  5.0
  • Responsiveness:  5.0
  • Professionalism:  5.0
  • Value:  5.0
  • Flexibility:  5.0
More than a month after our wedding, our guests can't stop gushing about how our wedding was the best, most original wedding they've ever been to. This was in large part to the amazing venue of The Florida Aquarium, which is easily one of the most unique places to get married in Tampa Bay. Where else can you get married in front a giant shark tank, and have penguins walk down the aisle? Your guests will love it.

The best part about the Aquarium is how affordable it was. For a 5 hour rental that included a ceremony in the Coral Reef Room and reception in the Main Lobby, the rental fee was $2300 (we didn't have to pay sales tax, since the Aquarium is a non-profit). That included our own personal venue coordinator (Natalie, who was amazing and helped us make our wedding absolutely perfect), as well as including the reception tables, chairs, and place settings. That's a price you absolutely cannot beat, and it allowed us to add on extras (such as the penguins, draping, fog screens, gel lighting, etc), that we wouldn't have been able to afford otherwise.

You do have to use their caterer if you get married there, but that wasn't a problem at all, as Aramark Catering provided great food at a very affordable price. Having an in house caterer actually made planning easier, as our catering manager Mary worked closely together with Natalie to make sure everything was right for our wedding. Catering also does a great job of setting up center pieces for a nominal fee, and made our fairly complex centerpiece setup look even more beautiful than we imagined.

If you do book the Aquarium, make sure that you find a photographer on their recommended list (we used the absolutely amazing Wes and Liz Weber at "Your Story By Us"). Done right, your photos will look phenomenal, but it can be a tricky venue to photograph, so experience is a must.

We loved our aquarium wedding, and highly recommend it to couples looking for a truly unique venue.
Wedding: 01/19/2014
Services Used: Ceremony & Reception Venue
5.0 out of 5.0
5.0/5.0
  • Quality of Service:  5.0
  • Responsiveness:  5.0
  • Professionalism:  5.0
  • Value:  5.0
  • Flexibility:  5.0
I highly recommend this venue. They were very friendly and accomadating. We had ashley as our coordinator and she was beyond helpful and sweet. The venue and staff were helpful to all of our wedding party and guest guest and went above and beyond to help us out. Nothing went wrong, everything was pefect!
Wedding: 12/06/2013
Services Used: Ceremony & Reception Venue
5.0 out of 5.0
5.0/5.0
  • Quality of Service:  5.0
  • Responsiveness:  5.0
  • Professionalism:  5.0
  • Value:  5.0
  • Flexibility:  5.0
Ashley Valentine and the entire team at The Florida Aquarium made my wedding dreams come true. From the event planners to catering to set-up, this venue knows exactly what they're doing to ensure you have the party of your dreams! Having met with several people at other venues, I cannot say enough about The Aquarium staff's expertise and professionalism, they made everything so easy for us and went out of their way on our actual wedding day to ensure we had the BEST time possible...thank you from the bottom of my heart for the best day of my life!
Wedding: 10/19/2013
Services Used: Ceremony & Reception Venue
5.0 out of 5.0
5.0/5.0
  • Quality of Service:  5.0
  • Responsiveness:  5.0
  • Professionalism:  5.0
  • Value:  5.0
  • Flexibility:  5.0
Looking for a truly amazing venue, some place that is exotic, unique and you wouldn't think would make sense for a venue for a wedding????? This is it! The staff was all so friendly and truly made my event wonderful. From Ashley who was the event coordinator and kept my wedding party on track, to Mikayla the catering manager who put me at ease when I came in super stressed the day of my wedding! We did our event in the coral reef room and it was simply breathtaking, we even got to have a live penguin walk down the aisle and then after the ceremony take pictures with him! My guests were impressed, I was impressed, this is definitely an A+++ venue and all in all it cost a little less then having my event at a hotel on a beach! So worth it! Oh and the food was to die for! My guests were super impressed with how fresh and flavorful it was.
Wedding: 10/13/2013
Services Used: Ceremony & Reception Venue
5.0 out of 5.0
5.0/5.0
  • Quality of Service:  5.0
  • Responsiveness:  5.0
  • Professionalism:  5.0
  • Value:  5.0
  • Flexibility:  5.0
Working with Natalie at the Florida Aquarium was a great experience, she was professional and friendly. She was available the entire time and any little thing we needed she got for us. The place looked wonderful and the night was magical thanks in part to Natalie's help. I would suggest this venue to anyone who is looking for a different kind of wedding venue. It was beautiful and peaceful, it also allows your guests a different experience.
Wedding: 08/24/2013
Services Used: Ceremony & Reception Venue
5.0 out of 5.0
5.0/5.0
  • Quality of Service:  5.0
  • Responsiveness:  5.0
  • Professionalism:  5.0
  • Value:  5.0
  • Flexibility:  5.0

Mike 3 Reviews
The Florida Aquarium was an amazing place to have our wedding. The room we were in was fish tank from ceiling to floor. Our event coordinator was Ashley and couldn't have been more helpful. The whole process with the Aquarium was so easy. Everyone was so easy to work with, and they were eager to help in any way they could. They also catered the event, and did a great job. The food was very good, and the open bar had a great selection of top shelf spirits. The catering and bar staff were exceptional. Our every need was met!
Wedding: 06/07/2013
Services Used: Catering, Ceremony & Reception Venue
5.0 out of 5.0
5.0/5.0
  • Quality of Service:  5.0
  • Responsiveness:  5.0
  • Professionalism:  5.0
  • Value:  5.0
  • Flexibility:  5.0

Tracy 5 Reviews
We had the most beautiful backdrop for our ceremony and reception in front of the coral reef tank. Our wedding at the Florida Aquarium was amazing, wonderful, beautiful,,,it was perfect. We worked with Ashley Valentine and she was fantastic. She followed every detail that we wanted. She worked with us from start to finish and guided us through the entire process as well as through the entire evening. We had the penguins walk down the aisle and that was a highlight for us and we also added the fog screens which added a special extra touch. Our guests had a great time and are still telling us what a beautiful and different wedding it was because of our venue. I cannot imagine having had the wedding anywhere else. Our Catering manager Mikayla was also wonderful, every detail was perfect and the food was excellent. The catering staff were professional, friendly and very accomodating to us and our guests. If you truly want to get married in a beautiful place this is it!!!
Wedding: 05/17/2013
Services Used: Ceremony & Reception Venue
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