Weddings

Haw River Ballroom Reviews

Haw River Ballroom View more information

10 Reviews

Rated
4.6
out of 5.0
Recommended by 92% of couples
  • Quality of service
    Rating 4.7 out of 5
  • Average response time
    Rating 4.9 out of 5
  • Professionalism
    Rating 4.5 out of 5
  • Value
    Rating 4.6 out of 5
  • Flexibility
    Rating 4.3 out of 5

Awards

  • 10

14 User photos

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  • Emma
    Emma S. Married on 03/30/2019
    Rating 5 out of 5
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    AWESOME venue that captures the best of NC!

    We had attended events at the HRB and always thought it would be an amazing place to get married - and it exceeded our expectations! Patti Gallivan, who leads events there and also served as our coordinator, was an absolute delight and so helpful throughout planning. The catering was delicious, the lighting/sound was incredible, and our guests (especially out-of-towners) couldn't say enough about this beautiful, historic space.
  • User2252732 2+ years ago
    Rating 5 out of 5
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    We couldn't have asked for a better venue or better people to work with. All people involved were responsive and reliable. The venue is absolutely beautiful and we would highly recommend this venue to anyone looking for a unique place to get married.
  • User1912534 2+ years ago
    Rating 5 out of 5
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    I highly recommend working with the Haw River Ballroom. From the beginning when we knew that would be our dream venue the team there was responsive and easy to work with. They had great recommendations for wedding planning, nearby hotels, and their exclusive caterer (the Saxapahaw General Store) is also amazing to work with. The sound and lighting for the event were perfect! So glad to have gotten married there and can't wait to return for good music or coffee soon!
  • K
    Kelsey Married on 07/19/2013
    Rating 5 out of 5
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    One of a kind place- never seen anything like it !!! Anything we needed they made it happen!!!
  • L
    Leigh Married on 03/21/2015
    Rating 4.9 out of 5
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      Rating 4.5 out of 5
    My daughter selected this venue and from the beginning we knew it was going to be gorgeous, unique and wonderful. Tom LaGarde, the owner, is great to work with! We used their exclusive catererer the Saxapahaw General Store whose food is amazing and all locally sourced. We had a gorgeous day and were able to use the outdoor amphitheatre for the wedding ceremony which was beautifully decorated by Brides and Bouquets! We used the third floor for the photobooth, the second floor for the cocktail hour and the ballroom for the reception. People were able to pour out onto the second floor balcony to enjoy the beautiful weather. So much room! Matt Shepard the sound guy is worth every cent! He made sure our DJ was set up and working, we sprung a last minute video on him which he got hooked up with sound and picture no problem. He lit the cakes and spotlighted all the vignettes that my daughter had created. He also on the spur of the moment got our photobooth up and going and well lit because I was busier than I thought I would be. If you are looking for a roomy venue with a very cool vibe ... this place is for you! Our special thanks to all at the staff at Haw River!
  • User2201723 2+ years ago
    Rating 4.8 out of 5
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      Rating 4.0 out of 5
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    Wonderful food and an amazing menu. The prices were very reasonable and people really enjoyed the food! Our only complaint was the cake cutting. It took a little longer than ideal, but it was still great. Coordinators know the menu very well and are willing to work with you to make it special and unique. Great catering...check out the general store to taste some of the items early too!
  • A
    Angela Married on 03/15/2014
    Rating 4.8 out of 5
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      Rating 4.0 out of 5
    Beautiful venue for our cocktail hour and reception. It is so charming and rustic that it didn't require a lot in terms of decorating. The large industrial space has large windows that lets in the setting sun and looks over the river. It was a beautiful day for people to have a beer outside on the patio. We had about 15 tables and 150 guests which was just about as much as I would have wanted to fit in there. They have a good sound system but for some reason, I think it didn't work out on that day for us. Also, they have a large stage and projector which we also didn't take advantage of, though you can. It'd be a great place if you had a live band but we went with a DJ and it was still really fun. They are particular about fire hazards, installing lights, and candles but justifiably so. They have dedicated light and sound staff that will help you set up what you need. Very professional and we were so glad we had our special day there.
  • User2372513 2+ years ago
    Rating 3.9 out of 5
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      Rating 4.5 out of 5
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      Rating 4.5 out of 5
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      Rating 4.0 out of 5
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      Rating 3.5 out of 5
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      Rating 3.0 out of 5
    The Ballroom is a BEAUTIFUL reconditioned mill nestled in the quaint and rural town of Saxapahaw (near Chapel Hill) right on the Haw River. Its setting is a unique blend of natural flora and bygone industrial glass, metal, and brickwork that only gets better as the sun sets. Overall, they provided a great wedding experience, but we did note a few issues which, had we anticipated them beforehand, probably would not have swayed our decision to use the venue, but which were annoying and could be issues for other clients:
    1. Unable to guarantee a rehearsal time until one month out, which was an issue for our Sunday wedding (another wedding was booked for the Saturday before ours).
    2. Required to use their vendor (Saxapahaw General Store) for catering.
    3. Venue isn't entirely dedicated to your event. There were folks parking and walking around the General Store, ogling from the Eddy Pub, and one random guy lingering by the doorway as I prepared to walk down the aisle.
    4. Limited parking adjacent to the venue... they share the lot with a few other establishments.
    5. While all the food was very enjoyable, our main dish was cooked and served differently than it was at the tasting with no notification given beforehand (the Ballroom's caterer's issue).
    6. Cocktail hour was not ready immediately following the ceremony.
    May not be the best value venue for everyone given the shortcomings above, but a beautiful venue nonetheless.
  • E
    Emily Married on 05/27/2018
    Rating 3.8 out of 5
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    I would like to start this off by saying this is an amazing, unique, special venue, and I'm so glad I had my wedding here because this place was special to me. That said, there were some issues during the planning process. 1.) Know that nothing comes with the venue -- except the venue itself and the chairs/table already in the coffee shop. This means you will have to outsource everything, including chairs, tables, tablecloths, etc. This adds up -- especially when you're already paying a significant amount for the venue. 2.) The Catering Director also will do your rentals (assuming they make a profit out of this somehow.) This can either be convenient or not, based on how you work. 3.) I did have some issues with the Catering Director -- essentially she is the only person who really knows how this venue works as a wedding site, so you will have to work with her, even if you don't pay her to be your coordinator. Either way, you will work with her -- not the business model. I worked with her for a day-of rate and I was told there were arguments between her and my team of helpers the morning-of. In addition, she can be difficult to work with and a bit condescending. I would recommend hiring an outside coordinator so you are not in the weeds with her. 4.) We had cocktail hour on the 2nd floor and the staff wasn't prepared for that many people and the service was slow during this hour. 5.) We had 142 people, and the tables were VERY close to each other-- making it hard for guests to get up/get dinner.

    All this being said, I am trying to be as helpful as possible to future brides, I am so happy we had the wedding there. Saxapahaw is such a charming, personal town and the Haw River Ballroom is one-of-a-kind. Just know there are cons that come with the pros.
  • Sierra
    Sierra S. Married on 10/05/2019
    Rating 3.6 out of 5
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      Rating 2.0 out of 5

    Many pros, some cons

    Overall, the Haw River Ballroom is an excellent place to get married. We paid around $5000 for the venue, and around 10,000 for catering, labor, etc. We were able to use the outdoor amphitheater and the inside space. However, trouble arose in using the HRB's wedding coordinator, and with parking.
    The venue isn't really well-set up to host weddings, but I was easily able to compensate.
    The venue required us to use their in-house catering, which was delicious and no problem at all for us. That's the only choice, however. They don't have a walk-in fridge, so if your wedding cake requires refrigeration, they can't help you. They don't have a very large space on the property to get ready. The green room is large enough for a bride and maybe 3-4 other people, but it isn't exactly the most comfortable space for getting ready for the Big Day, or for taking pictures. We rented an AirBnB and got ready there then headed to the venue, which worked ok for us.
    Patti is the Ballroom's wedding coordinator. Her services are less expensive than other wedding planners, and she's nice enough. However it was clear from the beginning she was looking out for the venue over anything else, and wasn't really flexible as it pertained to working with me as a bride. She doesn't seem to enjoy her job as a wedding coordinator. She could be condescending and a little rude. She sort of complained about another difficult wedding the very first time we talked on the phone together. I went with her anyway, since she was less expensive, and she does know absolutely everything about how the Ballroom works. Even so I ended up hiring a different wedding planner halfway through the process who could manage her, since she holds the keys to the kingdom. I wouldn't recommend using her as your wedding planner unless you're ok with hearing a lot of "no." The biggest issue we had with her was about parking. The HRB will not allow you to reserve any parking spaces on the wedding day. NOT. EVEN. ONE. They made an exception one time for a 90 year old because she had an oxygen tank. But even my husband's grandmother who is in a wheelchair could not reserve a space. She kept insisting that parking would be an issue, and that we would need to bus everyone in.
    The thing is, you can't explicitly reserve any spaces. And the HRB can get busy on sunny Saturdays. But seriously, the spot is made for concerts. There is PLENTY of parking, even without reserving spaces. Patti did not make any of this clear at all. We ended up paying thousands of dollars for a shuttle service we really didn't need because she couldn't really communicate that there were likely to be parking spaces available on the wedding day, even if we can't guarantee them.
    Still recommend, just hire a different coordinator to manage her.