As there are only so many weekends in the year available, it’s a good idea to reserve your wedding reception site as early as possible. It’s not uncommon for some locations to be booked a year in advance. While your site selection is a reflection of your style, keep in mind the travelling distance from the ceremony site to the reception facility. Out-of-town guests may be unfamiliar with the area, so the distance between the two locations should be convenient and easy to navigate. And keep their comfort in mind. While the bridal party is taking photos, guests should have a place to spend the hour or so in between the ceremony and reception.
Another consideration in reception site selection is the number of guests. Hotels usually have a variety of banquet rooms and can accommodate both smaller intimate weddings and larger extravagant weddings. Halls and reception facilities may be more limited in space, but may provide a more interesting and unique atmosphere. Be sure the hall has ample room for the musicians and dancing, and ensure that there are adequate kitchen facilities for your caterer. Inquire about any candlelight restrictions and specific decorating regulations. You often have a choice of catering services when booking halls and some will even provide you with a list.
Another alternative, for a celebration well suited to the Westcoast lifestyle, is to host your wedding at sea. A ceremony and reception aboard a luxury yacht can be an intimate affair, cruising gently past the city skyline and coastal mountains. However, yachts can also accommodate larger receptions, upwards of 350 guests.
Having the ceremony and reception at home is another option. While you may not be able to host a sit-down dinner for 100, a cocktail reception following the ceremony can be very intimate and sometimes less costly. Make arrangements for parking if there will be a number of guests with cars, and be sure to give your neighbours ample advance notice.