Today on Planning + Prosecco, we talked about the painstaking search for the perfect venue. Ya’ll this really is the first major hurdle in the planning process and is often what drives couples to realize that they may want a wedding planner to help navigate all of these options. I’ve got to be honest – you have to do your homework on this one. Venue hunting requires a lot of research – countless web searches, phone calls and emails. This is where a planner can come in especially handy because most already have a vast working knowledge of the available venues in town and what they include. But if you you’re reading this and saying, “I got this. I just need a little direction,” then lets break it down.
What Makes a Venue Perfect for Me?
In order to streamline your process and wade through some of hundreds of options available in virtually every city, we recommend first taking a long, hard look at your specific needs and wants. Once you have your lists of must-haves you can start quickly weeding out the options that don’t match your needs. Here are some things to consider.
What is Your Budget?
This is the most important thing to consider. You need to have a good idea of what you want to spend before going into this. Talk to your fiancee as well as any family that might be contributing and try to determine not only your budget for a venue, but for the wedding as a whole. These list of things each venue includes will be different which means you will want to also be thinking about how much you will have to contribute to fill the venue.
Make a List
Once you’ve determined your budget, make a list of all the things you want in a venue. Rank these in order of the non-negotiables, down to the “it would be cool ifs…” As you call each venue mark how many of these items it has available. What should be on this list? Here are some starters to think about.
This list can go on as you tailor it to your specific needs to make sure your are building out your unique vision of your wedding day. Make sure as you narrow down your list to read lots of reviews. Personal experiences from others count for a lot – you need to know more than if a venue is just pretty or the right price. Try to also find out if the staff was friendly, good to work with, and helpful. Did it seem like they went out of their way to provide an amazing experience for their clients? These things are just as important because they are good indicators of how your experience with the venue might go as well.
How Do I Even Find Venues Available Near Me?
There are several great resources out there to help you research your perfect venue.
Wedding Wire can be a great tool to help find venues in your city and also has an extensive list of other vendors as well. In addition to searching, they include reviews from other people who have just been through the same process you are going through so you can read real testimonials of others’ experiences.
Event Up is another platform that allows you to search by zip code and find available venues and their offerings in your area.
The Venue Report is a great way to find awesome venues by area as well as hotels. The site gives a ton of good information regarding price ranges, capacity, and what each venue includes.
If you are in the Nashville area, where we are based, you can also check out our Nashville Urban + Plantation Venue Guide and Barn Venue Guide with some of our favorite local venues. Best of luck on your venue search and Happy Planning!