Recommended by 96%
7 User photos
Julia · Married on 09/22/2018
Charming venue for a country-style wedding with a truly excellent value!
Awbury Arboretum was the perfect venue for our medium-sized wedding of 60-something people. One thing that's so appealing about the venue is that there are multiple options for where to stage your ceremony, cocktail hour, and reception. We were able to have distinct sections of the day, each in their own spaces--the ceremony on the gently sloping front lawn, the cocktail hour on the large-wrap around porch, the reception under the big tent on the premises, and dancing, cake-cutting, and toasts in the parlor. There are also many beautiful spots within the arboretum, so you can do all your photos on the grounds of the arboretum if you'd like. It's possible to have a simple, beautiful wedding without decorating the grounds at all. We didn't have an arbor or any decorative touches for our ceremony and none were needed. With the green grounds, big trees as a backdrop, and the Quaker-style house, the setting exudes charm and allowed the focus to be on the people.Sent on 12/17/2018
It was a dream to work with Branda, the Awbury manager. She got back to us in a timely way on everything and was attentive and responsible in every interaction. The partnership of the Awbury Arboretum with Birchtree Catering turned out to be a big plus in choosing this venue because Branda and the Birchtree staff are used to working together, and functioned as a team to make sure the wedding was set up as we wanted, and that the cocktail hour and reception went smoothly. The Awbury/Birchtree partnernship allows you the flexibility of customizing and personalizing your wedding, but they work with you and guide you, which was a huge relief for my husband and me and our families, as we weren't interested in a truly Do-It-Yourself wedding. We found the Birchtree food, service and day-of-coordinator support to be first-rate. (They even helped us work with the music and coached our wedding party on when each set of people should walk down the aisle.) Both the Awbury and Birchtree staff were organized and helpful throughout the process.
The venue turned out to be ideal for a medium-sized wedding, but would work well for a larger wedding too. In addition to the beautiful setting for an outdoor ceremony, there was a good alternative--a shorter ceremony on the wrap-around porch--in case of bad weather. This back-up plan gave us peace of mind when planning the outdoor ceremony. The big tent with an awning-covered pathway to the house makes for a good venue for a reception in rain or shine. Awbury has decorative lights for the porch and tent that are festive. The path between the tent and the porch is covered too. There was parking on the premises and there are adequate spaces in the house in which to get ready.
Awbury Arboretum offers the opportunity to have a gracious, old-fashioned, country-style wedding at a reasonable price in Philadelphia. It is a little-known gem. Our family stayed at the Chestnut Hill Hotel which we also highly recommend!
Awbury Arboretum's reply:
Chelsea · Married on 06/23/2018
Can't say enough good things about this venue. Branda is great to work with and was really helpful from day one. The space is beautiful, especially with the new tent addition in the back. The price is fair for such a large beautiful green space, tent, and house all to yourself. We had about 100 guests, and the amount of room was perfect. Birchtree is also great to work with, and their food is incredible! Having them cater is definitely the priciest aspect of renting here, but the food and service is worth it. We still have friends and family raving to us about how much they loved the food, and we got married a month ago. Birchtree's organization and attention to detail the day of was also seamless. We had a chance of rain, and transitioned into having our ceremony under the back tent instead of on the front lawn without any issues. Amazing venue, we'd get married here again in a heartbeat if we could!
Stephanie · Married on 05/20/2018
We absolutely loved our wedding at Awbury two weeks ago (May 2018)! Even with the late spring and the rainy week leading up to it, the grounds were stunning. Branda and her team have put a lot of work into spiffing up the grounds around the Cope house - with lovely new stone walkways, new wood chips, and blooming flower beds. There is also a semi-permanent tent now (which we didn't use but looks very nice). Our ceremony was on the freshly mown lawn in front of the house, and our brunch reception was inside in the parlor. The parlor has beautiful large windows that open up into doorways leading to the porch, and we were able to utilize the entire space. Our wedding was very small with 25 guests, and I couldn't imagine a more perfect setting.Sent on 06/03/2018
Birchtree (their exclusive caterer) managed the entire set-up and clean-up, but all design and decor creations were our responsibility. If you are a DIY enthusiast, Awbury is the perfect place, the Cope house being very much a blank slate. With that being said, it is stunning in it's own right, and didn't require much more than a few flower vases along with our table decorations.
Branda was amazing to work with: so responsive and accommodating. Her coordination with the Birchtree team was so helpful and made planning so much easier.
I would recommend Awbury in a heartbeat, especially for the nature loving couple. The options for ceremony at Awbury are endless and every one equally stunning!
Awbury Arboretum's reply:
S · Married on 10/22/2017
Loved our wedding at Awbury! We had an outdoor ceremony on the last weekend of October and their trees were popping with color and gorgeous!
Branda was fantastic to work with throughout our wedding planning process and facilitated coordination between the different wedding parties for the weekend. She was very responsive and able to answer any questions we had. Day-of staff were also extremely helpful in coordinating the event and making sure things were moving along on schedule. We loved this space and it was everything we could have asked for.
Rachel · Married on 10/07/2017
We got married at Awbury on 10/7/17. We walked in and immediately knew it was the perfect venue. It has some indoor space, enough for about 60 guests, and ample area outside to cover with a tent in case of rain. It also has fantastic wraparound porches and great getting ready spaces, as well as a small kitchen for caterers.
Awbury is definitely a DIY venue. Though they provide some tables and chairs, you will need to rent more if you are having a larger wedding. Also, you are responsible for all setup and cleanup. This was not a problem for us at all. We had friends, family, and hired helpers who took care of setup/cleanup, but if you want a venue that does all that for you, this might not be a good fit.
Awbury seems to be doing more weddings and has changed some things since we first booked them. They have done a lot of improvements, such as building a beautiful blue stone patio out back which made a perfect area to set up a tent and dinner tables. We were able to bring in a buffet caterer, but they are now partnered exclusively with birchtree catering. They also now have a sound system (both an indoor one for music and outdoors for the ceremony) which we were able to use.
Branda, the events coordinator, is SO nice, responsive, and helpful. She answered all of my questions thoroughly and made me feel like my event was important to her. On the day of, Awbury provided a parking attendant who successfully guided our buses in and out, and an event staffer (Courtney I think?) who I didn't talk to much (I was a bit busy, heh) but it seemed like she was being helpful.
Overall, the space is GORGEOUS with a perfect flow for guests, and it was a breeze working with Branda to plan, despite having many moving parts. 5/5 would get married there again :D
Jessica · Married on 09/09/2017
We had a beautiful wedding at Awbury this September. We liked Awbury because it's close to our home, allowed us to DIY many aspects, and was a beautiful location. We liked the mix of indoor and outdoor spaces which created a nice flow to the day. We had our ceremony off the side porch, cocktail hour on the front porch, dinner in the tent on the patio, and dancing in the parlor. The property has lots of green space for photographs. Branda, their site coordinator, is a joy to work with and Robin was there the whole day.
Do keep in mind that you will have to rent most of your furniture and a tent. We had to do all of the setup the morning of, so consider booking extra time if you have substantial decor.
Erin · Married on 07/14/2017
We chose Awbury Arboretum for our ceremony. The grounds are gorgeous! It rained on our wedding day, but the inside of the Francis Cope house is beautiful. Awbury is an oasis in Philadelphia. Branda, the manager, is great at what she does! She responded to every email/ silly question that I had.
Nick · Married on 05/27/2017
Awbury Arboretum was the perfect wedding venue. The grounds and the Cope House are stunningly beautiful - you really can't ask for a more picturesque setting if you want an outdoor, rustic wedding. Branda, the manager, was really easy to work with. You can tell that she loves the arboretum and takes a lot of pleasure in helping people plan events there. The flexibility to bring in your own caterer really allows you to have a personalized wedding. The constraints of the kitchen space in the Cope House can be challenging for a caterer, but we spoke with multiple caterers from Awbury's list of preferred companies, and it wasn't a problem for us to find several different catering options. The combination of the indoor space in the Cope House, the porches surrounding the house, and the paved patio make for a really lovely atmosphere and allow you to have an outdoor wedding while still offering your guests some comforts of indoors. We got a lot of compliments from our guests about how gorgeous the grounds and Cope House were. The arboretum also has a really great mission, and it was cool to get married in a spot that values the surrounding community. This place is a hidden gem in the Philly wedding scene!
Anita · Married on 09/09/2016
I can only say this: definitely book your wedding here! The flexibility of being able to bring our own caterer was so awesome. The place is totally shabby chic--- and it decorates itself with all of the surrounding foliage and the beautiful Francis Cope House. My guests raved about it. I also loved that it wasn't as well known as the other venues in Philly, makes it feel really special. Additionally, Branda is totally amazing to work with. She's really laid back, but super responsive and knowledgeable. She saw the whole thing through from start to finish with total grace and professionalism. I can't recommend this spot enough!
User5385215 · 2+ years ago
Awbury was perfect for our wedding. We wanted to do a low-key wedding on a reasonable budget, which was hard to find in Philly. We had both the ceremony and reception at Awbury for about 70 guests, but it was easy with such a large space. There were other places in Philly that would have worked on our budget but Awbury was easily the best due to the size, the flexibility with vendors, and with the beautiful Cope house and gardens. Branda was also really great to work with, and made everything seem easy. We had a fantastic time on our wedding day, and can't come up with any complaints.
User5447330 · 2+ years ago
I loved Awbury for my wedding, It was beautiful, it was affordable, and the money I paid went to support an organization that runs programs for the local community. Branda was fantastic, and extremely easy to communicate with. The thing to keep in mind with Awbury is that it is a completely DIY space. they have a suggested list for caterers, but unless you hire a wedding planner, everything else is pretty much whatever you want it to be. This can be a good thing or a bad thing depending on how you want to plan your wedding. Personally, I mostly loved it. It took a little more work but I got to hire exactly who I wanted to do exactly what I wanted.
Alina · Married on 05/20/2016
The Awbury Arboretum was the perfect backdrop to our wedding. We wanted a more relaxed, informal wedding, and we were able to achieve that with hosting our cocktail reception in the Cope House. The May weather gave our guests an opportunity to spend time in the house, on the porch and in the yard. We were able to use the property early in the day to take some beautiful photographs outside the house and in the secret garden. Branda was incredible to work with and really helped us with all our questions about planning our wedding reception at the arboretum. The cost of the arboretum made this even better for us - it was such an incredible value. We could not have found a better place to have our reception!
User5585518 · 2+ years ago
Our caterer recommended Awbury and we were so thrilled they were available for our October date. It was a beautiful setting for our outdoor wedding and backdrop for photos. Branda was wonderful throughout the whole planning process and had great suggestions with her vast experience coordinating events at Awbury.
nikki · Married on 06/13/2015
Awbury was the absolute perfect spot for our wedding. We wanted a beautiful venue that reflected our love of Philadelphia, and we wanted to support the nonprofits and small businesses that make this city so great. From our first visit, over a year before our wedding, we fell in love with the Francis Cope House and the surrounding grounds. In every direction, there are vibrant plants, flowers, large trees, rolling fields, and hidden nooks. The gardens are expertly maintained and yet not overly manicured. The house is large, airy, and historic. Our wedding was on a hot summer day and yet the inside of the house remained quite cool throughout. The wraparound porch is extravagantly spacious; the side porch was large enough to accommodate our dance floor and DJ table, while the front porch held our bar and welcome table. There are extant hooks in the porch arches that made hanging our homemade ribbon buntings a breeze. The side yard was large enough to host the 30'x60' tent we had rented for our dinner reception, and also provided additional shade on a sunny day. The front yard was perfect for our ceremony, too, with a slight slope that created natural amphitheater seating and a direct path/aisle from the front doors of the house.
On top of all this, the site coordinator (Branda) was utterly responsive and helpful throughout the entire process. She quickly answered all of my many emails leading up to the event; she met with us at least twice before the event to show us the grounds (including the incredibly useful storage shed, which we were able to use to store materials shortly before/after the big day); she was prepping the space before we arrived that morning and helped with clean-up after everyone had left. There was also a parking attendant who was invaluable to our guests.
There is much more I could say about our perfect wedding at Awbury Arboretum, but these are main elements that made it all possible. We are so glad we discovered Awbury!
Olivia · Married on 05/24/2015
My husband and I loved Awbury so much, we decided to book it for 2 receptions. Originally, we had planned a small ceremony at Awbury followed by a lunch reception at a nearby restaurant on a Friday afternoon. We wanted to hold a bbq the following Sunday for extended family and more friends. When we quickly realized that our bbq plans were getting bigger than our house could accommodate, we quickly turned to Awbury! The garden is a hidden gem that makes you feel you've been transported out of the business of Philadelphia. The staff is attentive and willing answer any questions. On the day of, they were so helpful and just made you feel at ease. Brenda, the event host, went far and beyond and even connected me with a bride who was having a wedding the same weekend as my receptions. This allowed us to rent a tent together. I think this showed how much Awbury fosters a sense of community and is really dedicated to just having people experience the arboretum. My experience with other venues is that they try to get as much money as they can from you, charging for every little thing. Awbury staff was the complete opposite. You paid what was told to you with no hidden costs (and it's already such a bargain!). It is definitely more of a DIY venue than others (which I loved), but honestly, the arboretum and the Cope House are absolutely beautiful on their own that the site required very little decorations. My family and friends still gush about Awbury!
Paula · Married on 02/22/2015
We had a very untraditional wedding so having a wedding at the Awbury Arboretum in the middle of the winter wasn't as unusual as you would think! We know, most people want to have their big day outside on the beautiful grounds surrounding Frances Cope House ... Not us! The day before the wedding we had bad weather including snow and ice. When we showed up for the big day they already had the entire area plowed and salted! We set tables and decorations up in the parlors while our caterer, Blue Monkey Catering, was busy at work setting up in the entrance hall and side room which provided ample space for our Hors d'oeuvre and buffet spreads. As our guests arrived through the main doors they could feel the history and splendor of this grand old house. The folks at Awbury were gracious and accommodating to our needs. There were the perfect hosts.
Alexis · Married on 04/19/2014
I stumbled upon the Awbury Arboretum by accident. I actually drive through the Arboretum everyday on my daily commute without realizing it was such a hidden gem. Branda was amazing to work with. She answered any questions and addressed every concern. She made sure we were accommodated and made her resources available to us. The space is brings you back to the late 1800's without seeming dates. It really reminds you of a time where less is more and it allows your guests to really take in the cozy atmosphere. I am already planning future events in my head at the Arboretum. I honestly could not imagine having a better venue.
Ari · Married on 10/07/2018
Awbury Arboretum is the most beautiful venue in the Philly area. From the moment my fiance and I walked on the property we loved every little, charming thing about it. The house has so much character and is absolutely stunning. Branda, the events coordinator is personable and kind. She responds quickly and has so much grace when answering questions. Unfortunately, my fiance and I had some financial issues that made Awbury outside of our budget making so we were not able to host our wedding here. Otherwise, it is a good value. I will say that the exclusive caterer that Awbury uses is disproportionately expensive to the cost of the actual venue, but every review of the caterer says its well worth the cost. I'd highly recommend Awbury for any event you are hosting! Like I said, Branda is the best.
Adrienne · Married on 10/21/2017
My husband and I were looking for a wedding venue that would accommodate our large wedding (around 170), but that would still be flexible and allow us to create the event that we wanted. It turns out this is a difficult ask, but Awbury fit the bill! They were very flexible and Branda, who was our point of contact, was incredibly helpful through every step of the process. No question was too small for her.
We had our ceremony on the wrap around porch, and fit all of our guests under a tent on the newly paved patio behind the house. I was worried it would feel small, but Branda suggested a solution of adding a second adjoining small tent for the bar, and it worked beautifully.
There are some quirks given that Awbury is in a residential neighborhood - the reception needed to end at 9:00 and Awbury is necessarily serious about keeping the DJ speaker noise level down out of respect for the neighbors.
However, people were happy and the 9:00 end time didn't feel too early. We rented a large airbnb in the neighborhood for the weekend (so many beautiful houses!) with some out-of town friends, and just brought the celebration back there! It was perfect.
Harriet · Married on 05/28/2017
We loved having our wedding at Awbury Arboretum. The grounds and house are beautiful, especially the porches, and the venue set the tone perfectly for our laid-back DIYish wedding. We were so happy to have the paved patio under the tent instead of the mulch. This was a great update for Awbury to make this year (2017). Branda, the event coordinator/manager at Awbury is so friendly and easy to work with and we got the sense that she really takes pride in what she does. A few things to note for a couple considering having their wedding or other event at Awbury Arboretum: It is not the park plaza (obviously). It's a venue where you need to bring everything to and from it. All set up needs to happen day of as does any breakdown. It works best for a couple wishing to have a daytime wedding because the music (at least for us under the tent) needs to be shut off by 9pm because of the neighboring residents. Checkout Awbury's Pinterest page for inspiration!
Claire · Married on 06/17/2016
We absolutely loved hosting our wedding at Awbury. The property is a hidden gem in Philadelphia. The Cope House and gardens are beautiful, and it is one of the more affordable outdoor venues I could find in the city. Branda was wonderful to work with. She was extremely responsive, informative, and flexible!
Jefferson · Married on 10/31/2015
We had our small ceremony at Awbury, and it was just the perfect venue for our date and our budget. Our guest list was really small, and because of our late-October date, we needed a venue in Philly that could be indoors or outdoors...we ended up with perfect weather, and couldn't have been happier!
The staff was super accommodating of our various needs and requests, and was always available by phone for last minute questions. We did our decorating ourselves, and ended up ordering chairs for the guests; for a small DIY situation on a tight budget, Awbury is the perfect fit.
natalie · Married on 08/18/2018
Awbury was one of my first venues to visit when planning our wedding. upon walking on the grounds, we were impressed with the preserved space and great accommodations for a wedding. Located in the Germantown section of Philly, this venue is close to a nature sanctuary, but still remaining in an urban neighborhood! Awbury is exclusively paired with BIRCHTREE CATERING to provide wedding services, planning assistance, and of course outstanding and delicious food. The 2 are a package deal if that's something you're interested in....saving the hassle of picking a catering company that is not familiar with the venue. Birchtree and Awbury work so well together and saved me alot of stress in the planning process. Awbury's rental program supports a mission of providing our urban neighbors free access to nature and history 365 days a year. Because of renters of this wonderful space they are able to provide thousands of local children free or low-cost field trips and adventure camps, serve our neighbors through unique lectures and community events, and maintain and improve their greenspace (Awbury.com)
Rachel · Married on 06/25/2017
We were thrilled to have our wedding at Awbury. Branda was such a pleasure to work with over the 12 months leading up to our event. A lot of our guests had never heard of or been to the Arboretum, and were very pleasantly surprised upon arrival, so it was nice to introduce them to this neighborhood gem.
We visited a bunch of times during the planning process and always felt welcome. Even though there was a wedding the night before, the house and grounds looked great when we arrived the morning of our big day. It doesn't feel like a wedding factory at all.
One of the things we liked most about Awbury was their flexibility and how laid back and accommodating they were. They also made a bunch of upgrades for this summer season.
Just keep in mind that you will have to budget for extras. We rented tables and chairs, linens and glassware, paid for extra hours in order to get ready and dressed before the wedding, and ended up hiring a valet service, which was pricey but we felt offered the best experience for our guests due to lack of parking. There are also restrictions around music.
Overall I highly recommend this venue if you want a DIY wedding in the city, with peace, quiet and beauty, and a very nice indoor space in addition to the gorgeous grounds.
Oona · Married on 05/13/2017
Awbury is a gorgeous location, and even though it poured rain on our wedding day, we still had a wonderful experience. It was unfortunate that we couldn't have the reception outside, but the beautiful historic house was large enough to accommodate everyone inside. The manger Branda was awesome, super friendly and knowledgeable, willing to answer any questions and help us in any way. Unfortunately she was not there on the day of the wedding. We had some issues with the onsite attendant. She did not know how to get the house speakers to work properly. She also seemed more interested in her boyfriend than in helping us with anything. Luckily we didn't need her for much. I'm very happy we chose Awbury as the venue for our wedding.