Charleston Wedding Planner – Venue selection
One of the first things a wedding couple wants to do after hiring a Charleston wedding planner is select a venue. This is one of the most important wedding selections and should happen before any other vendors are booked. Other than how the venue looks what are some of the important factors when looking at potential wedding venues?
- Can the venue accommodate ceremony and reception if that is desired? If they cannot and you have to select separate venues for ceremony and reception you will want to look at them consecutively to ensure they work well together. You will also need a Charleston wedding planner
- What is the price of the venue? It is important to have a dollar amount allocated for the venue and stick to it. As it is one of your first selections if you go over budget on the venue you might spend the rest of your planning trying to make up that money. No couple wants a beautiful venue but no budget to decorate it.
- What is included in the pricing? Most hotels and resorts include tables and chairs for the reception, set up of the tables and chairs and sometimes linens and décor. Some of Charleston’s popular historic sites only include the site itself with nothing else included. While some couples enjoy having a blank slate to work with it’s important to anticipate the additional rentals to calculate the trust cost
- Does the venue provide set up? There are some venues including Alhambra that provide tables and chairs but they don’t set them up. You will have to provide additional labor for these venues.
Tables and chairs at Alhambra set by Charleston Wedding planner Tanis Jackson
More Charleston Wedding Planner Venue Considerations
- Availability – Of course you want the venue on the date you have selected, but I have had brides change dates in order to get the venue they really wanted. I’ve also had brides move a day earlier or later to receive a non-Saturday discount. Some of Charleston’s most popular venue’s book 18 to 24 months in advance!
- What time is the rental from and when is the room available for set up? Some Charleston venues including the SC Aquarium, The Veranda at Magnolia Plantation and the Gibbes Museum have extremely short set up times (imagine two hours for complete setup). In these venues you absolutely have to have a wedding planner and quality vendors who will set up quickly.
Charleston wedding planner Tanis Jackson knows how challenging the 3:30 pm set up time at the Veranda is!
- What is the required end time for the venue? This is particularly important for the venues with the short set up time to ensure you have enough hours for your reception.
- Do they provide staffing? This varies a great deal from having a lot of staff to having no one onsite during your wedding. For most venues the onsite person will not be the same person you dealt with in the office.
- Do they have preferred vendors and do you have to select from that list? Some venues only exclusive agreements with very expensive vendors so if a venue has this sort of required vendors list you want to check out those vendors as well before signing a contract or putting down a payment with the venue
- Is there a kitchen? You would think a wedding venue would have to have a kitchen, but some of Charleston’s very old historic sites do not. This means you will have to have a caterer with offsite abilities. Not all do and the ones who do have this ability often charge more to cover the cost of the additional equipment
- What is the deposit/retainer for the venue? You can expect to pay 25% – 50% to ensure the date.
- Is there parking available and is it free or is there a charge for guests? This particularly applies to venues in downtown Charleston.
Charleston Wedding Planner
Tanis J Events, LLC
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