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Expert October 2020

Bridal Suite and Cocktail Hour

Natalia, on June 17, 2019 at 9:52 AM Posted in Etiquette and Advice 1 6
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Hello ladies,

I visited a lovely venue, yesterday. 618 in Freehold, NJ. It was PERFECT! However, there were two big things that really bothered me, and I am trying to decide if they are, or should be, deal breakers.

The venue did NOT have a bridal suite or any place for the bridal party to get ready in. Okay, so they had a tiny room, almost like a vestibule, that is before an office. There was barely any room for two people much less an entire bridal party plus moms. I would very much like to get ready at the venue, or at least have my bridal party get ready with me, preferably in a close proximity to the venue. We can always get as hotel, I suppose, but it would not be preferred.

Next topic, cocktail hour. The venue seemed pretty small to me, even though it was said to hold up to 200 guests, which is more than enough for us. They only have ONE banquet room, a restaurant downstairs, and a patio. The restaurant is open even during the wedding. We can rent the space to have our ceremony in, for 30 minutes and $500. However, the cocktail hour is in the same room as the reception, so I am worried people won't want to spend the entire time in the same room. In the reception room, you can also have the ceremony should you choose to, but that seemed completely asinine to me as it would be pretty odd to move the chairs for the ceremony, then move then back for cocktail hour and reception?

Perhaps I am already turning into bridezilla, against my better judgment. I just don't know if something so small should be a complete deal breaker when the venue is absolutely perfect otherwise. My entire wedding will basically be comprised of all Italians, some Puerto Ricans, and a few Polish people from my side. I want to give them what they would want but at the same time enjoy my own wedding, when I am the one paying for it. I know my FHs family, specifically the grandmother, and I just want to give them a wedding they won't judge me so harshly for, when I am already under fire by some of his family for not having children attend.

Would something like this be a deal breaker for you?


Latest activity by Judith, on June 17, 2019 at 1:26 PM
  • Mrs. H
    Master September 2019
    Mrs. H ·
    • Flag

    You're not at all turning into or sounding like a "Bridezilla". You need to choose a venue that accommodates you and FS' wants, needs, etc. We actually toured one other venue before deciding on ours, and that's because there ended up being multiple "deal-breakers" at the first one - including the lack of a bridal suite. Don't be afraid to keep searching until you find a venue that's right for YOU. Trust me, you will know when you've found "the one".

    • Reply
  • Mrs. S
    Master November 2019
    Mrs. S ·
    • Flag
    I don’t think these are deal breakers. I’ve been to plenty of weddings where the cocktail hour is at the reception area and it was perfectly fine. Mine will end up being that way too because of logistics. I understand your feelings about getting ready but I think that one’s worth letting go if that’s the venue you want. I would rent the ceremony space so you don’t have to flip the space for the reception while guests are standing there.
    • Reply
  • Caytlyn
    Legend November 2019
    Caytlyn Online ·
    • Flag

    These wouldn't be deal breakers for me, but it's really about your priorities. If it's important to you that you get ready at the venue and have a separate cocktail hour space, then keep looking.

    • Reply
  • Tris
    Expert August 2019
    Tris ·
    • Flag
    Keep looking at venues. You don't have to commit yet. You have plenty of time to see more and think on it.
    • Reply
  • Kelly
    VIP October 2020
    Kelly ·
    • Flag
    I think you should keep looking at what else is out there and compare it to what other venues offer. If other venues meet your needs better go with thrm
    • Reply
  • J
    Master 0000
    Judith ·
    • Flag
    I hate being in weddings, as MOH or BM , in which everyone gets ready together. It means 3-5 totally unnecessary hours to do something bride and all attendants can do in 1 1/2 to 2 hours, all at the same time, in their own hotel rooms or homes. And have extra hours of social time not centered around groom grooming. The single room type arrangement is fine for last minute putting on veils or accessories. But until this recent trend of everyone being treated like celebrities, with Pro HMU on site for the whole group, people were always responsible for showing up groomed and dressed, with people making their own arrangements where help was needed. And usually a friend or family member with the bride, not everyone. I like that, but if you don't, and check with your ladies and see what they want, you could find a place for group . It is costly to have all HMU come on site, for everyone. . . .Having cocktails in the meal area, usually ends up with half the people staying in the cleared area, and the other half going to their tables, having drinks there, as in a restaurant. If you have most photos done before the ceremony, and only 15 minutes or so before you arrive, people will stay in the designated cocktail area, near you. But when the couple and parents and wedding party desert everyone for an hour, not a traditional thing, a recent one, that many people will always spread out and sit down at tables.
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