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Event Planners Guide to Choosing a Venue

Your Event Space is All About What You Need From It

I think we can all agree, that outside of hiring an AMAZING Wedding/Event Planner, the most important decision you will make about your wedding or event is the venue where you will hold your celebration. But where does one start looking for a venue?  The answer is in the question, and so much more.  Here are some steps for finding the perfect venue.

1. Where?  If you are in Southern California like we are, there are 50,000 options to choose from.  The biggest filter for narrowing down your search is location.  Narrow it down to a key city or geographical area to start, and then list your backup area just-in-case you don’t find something you like.  And if you want a beach wedding but it is too pricey, consider having it on a boat! 

2. Guest Count.  Your guest count will help you narrow down your search as well.  Try a google search with “250 person venues in ______ (my area).”  This will help you find places that fit the size of your wedding.

3. Involvement. How involved to you want to be in the design of your wedding?  Some restaurants and ballrooms are already decorated and don’t allow too much change.  If you’re all about “let em’ handle it,” this could be just right for you, especially if you love the space.  However, if you would like a lot of control over the theme, design and decorations in your space, you may wish to go with a venue that offers less, and allows you to bring in your own food, rentals and decorations. Just make sure you hire the right resources (a Coordinator, Bartender, Florist, etc… to help you the day of.  It’s quite difficult to set all of that up while getting ready for your own party.

4. Communication.  Communication is essential when finding a venue. When you start your research for venues, they should get back to you quickly and with detail.  Even if it is a dream venue, if their sales reps are slow to respond and seem generally uninterested, you can rest assured they will treat your event with the same attitude.  A communicative and interested Venue Rep will ensure a far easier day for you, your guests, event coordinator and vendors.

5. Timing & Restrictions.  Many venues have restrictions on noise, event length, decorations and more.  It is important to ask these questions up-front.  We’ve seen venues that don’t allow dancing, and some that refuse you to have live flowers on site.  You should share all of your timing, theme and design goals with the venue before you sign a contract, to ensure anything against the rules isn’t going to put a damper on your day.

6. Parking.  Nothing can be more of a turn-off for event guests than difficult parking.  See if they offer easy parking, and if not, if a valet service can be provided.  This also helps to make sure the event starts on time.  Difficult parking = late guests.

Your Wedding or Event is important to you, so be sure to take the time to consider all elements of your event venue before signing an agreement.   It was be tempting to sign on the dotted line for the venue of your dreams, but be sure to take into consideration any restrictions that may come with the space.  Hiring a Wedding or Event Planner/Coordinator can also play a big role in finding the perfect venue space.  Chances are, an Event Planner has worked with tons of venues and vendors, knowing the ins and outs, saving you a lot of time on your search.  They can also recommend opportunities that best work for your budget and theme.  We’re also pretty good at saving you money!

We hope we’ve provided you with some valuable info to aid in your search for the perfect venue.  We find that all of the most important moments in our lives are also the most creative, hence, When Life Happens. Creative Happens!

 

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