Tips to Find Your DC Wedding Venue

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Whether you’ve had your eye on the ideal venue for a year or you’re sifting through lists of recommended venues in your area, I think we can all agree that your wedding venue will set the tone for the rest of your big day. Just think about it: your venue is the place that will be captured in some of the most important photos in your lifetime, the place that hosts a memorable experience for your loved ones, and the place where you and your partner will begin your new amazing chapter. It’s important to make the right choice, whatever that may be for you.

When you’re new to the venue search, the endless options of picturesque venues can be a bit overwhelming. We’ve gathered a few tips for you, to help you narrow down your venue selection and score the perfect venue for your big day.

Narrowing Down With Numbers

We would be lying to you if we didn’t acknowledge that numbers will be a great factor in selecting your wedding venue. From budget details to your guest list, taking the time to crunch down numbers before you begin your search might just save you from heartbreak later on. Trust us, you don’t want to miss out on a beautiful venue just because of a maximum guest capacity that won’t accommodate your needs or going “venue poor” on a location that will hurt your budget in the long run.

By taking time to draft your wedding budget before your venue search, you’ll find ease in narrowing your selection down with things like venue rental fees, minimum catering fees, and cost per person. And when you’re finally deciding between your favorite venues, your budget can help you determine the extras you can splurge on. Be sure to take into consideration additional costs like full-service fees or the additional need for rentals and decor if the venue has limited offerings. Some venues may require you to use a select list of caterers. Review these options closely before selecting your venue to ensure they align with your food and beverage goals.

When it comes to your guest list, select a venue that will accommodate your count comfortably and can accommodate your guests’ needs. Ask your venue contact for examples of floor plans similar to your guest count before making your decision, to ensure you’re aligned with the flow of the space. Consider factors like tight squeezes between tables or the need to break down tables to make space for a dance floor. How do you envision the ideal experience for your guests?

It’s All About the Vibe

As Washington, D.C. wedding planners, we are BIG on throwing traditions out the window and focusing on your dreams and visions. The venue you select for your celebration is no exception, and we encourage you to spend time thinking about your ideal day and its designs before narrowing down your venue search. 

Draw up your inspirations with as many details as possible, and ask yourself those hard-hitting questions: Am I searching for a timeless setting or something with history? Do I prefer an outdoor or indoor ceremony and reception? Should my venue’s space speak for itself, or do I want to go all out with personalized designs on a blank canvas?

The venues you choose to tour in the future should align with your overall vision. In selecting venues that fit the vibe of your dream wedding, you’ll be able to focus on other details when weighing your options.

Details, Details, Details

When you’ve established the pillars of your venue needs, you’ll be able to fine-tune your selection with the fine details. Is your venue’s location ideal for guest travel? Are you considering any restrictions you might have or necessities such as reasonable accommodations? Can you get ready on-site? Do you love (or hate) the rain plan? After narrowing down with the must-haves, are there any dream offers that would sweeten the selection?

While we don’t encourage you to get too wrapped up in alllll of the details just yet, ensuring your venue will be able to provide you with more than just the bare essentials is the perfect way to narrow down the best venue for you and your partner.

Keep Things In Perspective

The wedding industry hypes up the idea of perfection. While we think there is a perfect-for-you venue out there. There are no perfect venues and it is important to be flexible.

Help Can Be A Good Thing

We know that working through the details of wedding planning can be a hassle, and venue searches are just the tip of the iceberg. If you’re beginning to feel the wedding planning funk creeping up on you, we encourage you to reach out your hand and delegate this project to a wedding planner.

Teaming up with a wedding planner is the greatest way to relieve stress off of your venue search. And let’s be real here, after drawing up your dream wedding together, your planner will know exactly what type of venue you’re looking for AND where to find it. After all, we know where all the hidden gems of this industry are hidden, and we’re eager to share them with you.

If you’re in the midst of your venue search or getting ready to begin planning, remember to take a deep breath, pour a glass of your favorite bevi, and focus on these pillars. Your venue search doesn’t have to be hard, but it should feel right for you.

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I'm courtney-rose!

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serving the greater Washington, D.C. area

I’m an event logistics guru and wedding designer based in Washington, D.C. I’m also a wife and mama to a fiercely independent toddler and two fluffy terriers. Settle in as we share our team’s latest love stories, behind-the-scenes adventures and top-notch wedding planning advice.

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Dantus & Co. Events specializes in special event, and wedding planning & design in the greater Washington, D.C. area and beyond. Our couples are busy professionals who love details, want to incorporate several cultures or religions into their big day, and need a wedding planner who gets it to help.