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5 Steps To Choosing The Perfect Wedding Venue


July 13, 2020

A small wedding venue outside with a bride and groom kissing in front of a white wall as their guests celebrate

A wedding venue is the foundation of your entire event. Without the right amount of space, proper amenities, and the look that you desire, your dream venue could quickly turn into your biggest hassle. We want to help set you on the right track with our 5 Steps To Choosing The Perfect Wedding Venue. 

1 | Write Out Your Wishlist

This step may seem like a no-brainer, but you would be surprised by how many couples that don’t know what they want out of a wedding space. When planning your wedding, you need to think about what you want to use your venue for. Will you host a beach wedding on one of San Diego’s stunning beaches and move your reception to a different venue? Are you looking for an outdoor event venue in Escondido (or wherever you may be) that can accommodate your ceremony and reception? These are things to think through and have the answer to before you start your venue search.  

2 | Nail Down Your Guest List

Guest lists. We know they are stressful and can sometimes create difficult conversations. Before you look for your perfect-for-you venue, you need to know how many people need to fit in it. For some couples, inviting a select number of close friends and family to the wedding ceremony is best. They can then open up their cocktail and reception to other friends, coworkers, and family members. For others, inviting everyone to all of the festivities, even pre- and post-wedding parties is essential. It is crucial to find the right venue(s) for your size. As an example, if you want an intimate ceremony of 50 guests, it will not bode well to grab a place that can fit 600. Instead, opt for viewing small wedding venues to better fit your party’s size.

A wildflower bouquet in the center of a round table with a white tablecloth. The table has the number two in a frame to mark the wedding table for guests, and four candles.

3 | Call And Talk To Your Venue’s Team Before Viewing

Scrolling online, you will come across a ton of gorgeous wedding venues that will spark your interest and make you excited to put down your deposit and go—but looks are only half of the battle. Your in-house event team is as—if not more—important than the look and feel of the venue. So, here’s a pro-tip: give your desired venue a call and talk to one of the coordinators. Ask questions about how they manage the wedding day, and what they can offer you. Get a feeling for their personalities and the business culture at the venue. From one phone call, you will, more than likely, be able to tell if you would like to move forward. Is this team responsive? Do they sound easy to work with? Are they open to my ideas? Do they have answers/or are they willing to get answers to my questions?

We cannot stress how important it is to have a responsive, supportive, and helpful event team. After all, if you wait weeks on your first inquiry response, you can only imagine how long it will take for you to get answers when you become a client.

Some important questions to ask your wedding venue are: 

  • What are the max capacity and max seated capacity for your venue?
  • Are there rooms available to get ready in, and are they included in the price?
  • What upgrades are available with your packages?
  • Am I allowed to bring in outside vendors? 
  • Can you send me the best room layout for my party size? 
  • What other amenities does this pricing include?
  • How does the day-of my wedding flow (when can vendors start loading in, what is the load-out time, who is responsible for clean-up, etc.)?

4 | Love The Look

If you dream of having a modern outdoor wedding, but only look at venues that are boho chic or have indoor spaces, your wedding will not come together as you dreamed. Think of your venue as a canvas. The flooring, walls, windows, and lighting are your blank slate to create the day of your dreams. Take note of the little details. What excites you? What do you wish you could change? Like a drop ceiling, some things can be expertly covered with draping cloth for an undeniably romantic vibe. Others, like the architecture of the building, are not easy to hide. So, head to Pinterest and start scoping out your dream look.

A wedding reception venue surrounded by North County San Diego mountains. It has over 10 round tables showing with white tablecloths and purple and pink bouquets at various sizes.

5 | Think About Amenities

Not every venue has bells and whistles, and that is A-ok as long as you are prepared. Ask your event team about what is included and required with a venue rental. When a wedding venue is all-inclusive, they require you to work with their in-house catering and entertainment teams. If that is the case, do your research. Just as you spoke to your event staff, you will want to talk with the caterer, the DJ, and whoever else is on the required list, to make sure that they can offer you what you want. Think through what you want out of your dream day, and do the work to make sure it can happen.

Other venues allow you to bring in the vendors you want. If this is the case, the sky’s the limit. Ask your venue if they have had any vendors stand out from the crowd or have a preferred list. This is always an excellent place to start because their contacts will have an idea of how the venue flows, and know how to work with the venue’s specific quirks. 

Your wedding is a day to celebrate your love with those that you admire the most. Be sure to follow your heart and work with the best people that you can. The Centre Escondido has 10 modern indoor and outdoor wedding venues to choose from, with an event team that will roll out the red carpet for you and your guests. If you would like to learn more about all that we have to offer, contact us. We cannot wait to get to know you.