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Finding the Perfect Wedding Venue


When you approach the hotel as a potential paying guest, it’s important that you are made to feel welcome. Are they courteous and attentive over the phone? When you arrive at the reception desk to make your initial enquiries are you greeted by a friendly face? Are you made to feel important – as though the hotel really cares about you and your wedding day? And of course, it’s so easy to search for independent reviews on the internet – or to ask people you know who have used the hotel in the past for their opinion.

Many hotels aren’t blessed with idyllic rolling hills as a backdrop, but many do have perfectly lovely gardens that are perfect for all those photographic opportunities. Failing that – or when the weather’s just too plain awful – many have areas set up inside to create a romantic atmosphere for the cameras to roll. It’s a good idea to ask about this before you book – a hotel that is really geared up and that truly wants to host your wedding day should be more than happy to help.

Whilst you may be too excited to eat anything on your wedding day, chances are your guests will be more than ready to finish off the wedding breakfast when it finally arrives – and maybe even a buffet later on in the evening. So do make sure your chosen hotel has a proven track record for quality dining. If you’re in a position to sample a meal there beforehand, even better, that way you can also gauge how the staff cope and treat their guests.

If all your guests are familiar with the area it probably doesn’t matter if the hotel is tucked away off a minor road and down a single track lane. As long as it suits your needs to a tee everyone will be happy. But if your guests are traveling from far and wide to attend your wedding celebration, you should consider opting for a hotel that’s not too far off the beaten track. It will make life much easier for everyone if it’s close to major road and rail networks.

Finally, you’ll be spending one of the most important days of your life in your chosen venue. If you feel at home when you cross the threshold then it’s probably the one for you.

It’s definitely worth booking a meal at the hotel to enable you to sample the food first hand and also to gauge the service. If the staff appear friendly and attentive you may be more inclined to make further enquiries and even ask to look around. If you plan your visit to coincide with an actual wedding being held at the hotel, even better, as you’ll really get a feel of the standard of service and the quality of the occasion.

If you know people who have held their wedding celebration at the hotel do ask them if they would recommend it. A personal testimony is usually reliable and can help you make your final choice.

Chances are you’ll be organising flowers, cakes and photographers and arranging all sorts of extras to make your wedding day just perfect. Many hotels offer these services as extras and using them can really take the strain out of organising a wedding. But if you’re using your own local suppliers it’s a good idea to pick their brains and ask their personal opinion of your shortlisted hotels. They may be able to enlighten you and help you make your mind up – perhaps one of the hotels has a great reputation for attention to detail or whose chef’s culinary skills are second to none.

If you’ve something quirky or unusual that you’d like to incorporate into your big day, make sure your chosen hotel can accommodate your request. To be honest, if a hotel has a proven track record for hosting celebratory functions they should pull out all the stops to ensure you get what you want – and it should seem to you like nothing is too much trouble for them.

Dave Matthews is a freelance writer, writing on behalf of Thorpe Park Hotel, a premier Leeds Wedding Venue.

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Listed: November 10, 2011 8:38 am