Archive for April, 2018

How to Choose the Perfect Wedding Venue

Thursday, April 12th, 2018

How to Choose the Perfect Wedding Venue

 

Wedding venue tips. Picture by Boho Chic Weddings.

Photo by Boho Chic Weddings.

 

Weddings are incredibly variable, with almost everything having a ‘take it or leave it’ approach. One thing that can’t be dropped is the venue.

This can be a really stressful decision – there’s a lot to consider and you have no real idea how everything’s going to work out on the day. Luckily for you, we’ll be giving you some key wedding venue tips in this post, alongside some unique wedding venue ideas to help you have an easier decision-making process.

 

Finalise Your Guestlist Early

Writing your guestlist is important preliminary wedding work.

Knowing how many people are coming to your wedding, or at least how many people you’ll be inviting, is of the highest priority when it comes to organising the big day. It’s especially important when looking at venues – there’s no point looking at the perfect location if it only holds 40 and you’ve invited 80. Wedding Ideas Magazine have a really useful article on how to write your wedding guestlist, which offers some great points.

You should always leave a bit of room to manoeuvre, too. You never know who you might have forgotten, or who your parents just insist on inviting without you knowing! Don’t go overboard with extra space though, as booking a large venue for a small number of people might make the room feel half-empty on the day.

Make sure you know how many the venue can comfortably accommodate. Always be wary of the phrase ‘maximum capacity’, as a space that’s bursting at the seams is hardly an enjoyable place to be. Ask the prospective venue the size of the most successful weddings, and gauge whether your plans fit with that figure.

 

Know Your Budget

Like knowing your required capacity, having a budget in place is among the most important things when selecting a wedding venue. Not only this, but you’ve got to be up to scratch with hidden costs. Does the venue provide furniture? If you’re booking for the reception, what food and drink is included? You should get a cost list and work out the total predicted expenditure. Remember that budgeting for venue hire is always more than just the space itself!

When it comes to extra costs, decorations are one of the biggest culprits. This can be alleviated by your location choice: if you choose a unique wedding venue, it might be exciting enough that you can spend less on decoration.

 

See It Through Your Guests’ Eyes

Thinking about your guests is a top wedding venue tip.

Photo by Boho Chic Weddings.

 

The wedding is unquestionably your day, but it’s made so much better when your guests have a great time too. The best way of ensuring a good atmosphere is to take some time to imagine the day through your guests’ eyes.

Is the venue comfortable? This comes back to the guestlist point above – make sure that there’s actually enough room for everyone on the day. See if there’s any ‘breakout’ rooms for people to spread into, or outdoor space for people to get a bit of fresh air.

Check to see what parking facilities are available at the venue, too. If there’s plenty of parking space, then you can save costs on hiring transport for everyone. Also check to see what accommodation is available nearby, as people will be drinking and won’t be able to drive home! Even better, see if the venue itself has guestrooms available overnight.

 

Added Extras

Now it’s time for some wedding venue tips that often get sidelined in the grand scheme of things, but they can make a real difference if you spend a bit of time looking into them.

First things first, check whether you’ll have exclusive access to the venue. Unless the prospective venue is gigantic, we would recommend that you look for somewhere that will be entirely yours for the occasion. There’s enough confusion with your partner’s lesser-known family members anyway – you don’t want to be getting your new relatives-to-be mixed up with other venue guests!

Another thing that you should look into is whether the venue comes with an in-house co-ordinator. Having someone from the venue on the wedding day to take care of the little things helps to take the stress off and let you enjoy your big day. Not only this, but they’ll know the venue inside-out, and will probably help in the organising beforehand.

While you’re looking for venues for your wedding, it can seem overwhelming to have to do the same thing all over again with food and decoration outlets as well. To alleviate this, many venues will have a list of recommended vendors which can be of real help. The vendors, be they caterers or decorators, will have worked in the venue before and will ensure the logistics of the wedding run smoothly. You should still check pricings (as some recommended vendors can overcharge), but it makes a good starting point.

 

If you’re looking for a truly unique wedding venue in North Yorkshire, The Chapel in Harrogate is available for both ceremony and reception bookings. Enquire at info@thechapelhg1.com for more information.

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What is a Boutique B&B?

Thursday, April 5th, 2018

What is a Boutique B&B?

 

The accommodation industry has boomed in recent years, especially with the prevalence of online comparison websites and mobile apps. Among this, a new trend seems to keep cropping up in the accommodation sector, and it’s a question on many lips: just what is a boutique B&B?

 

A Small, Luxury B&B

The Chapel's Balcony Suite. Photo by Sam Toolsie.

A boutique B&B is generally defined by two things – size and luxury. Generally, they’re on the small end, and maybe have around ten rooms or fewer. Frequenters to boutique bed and breakfasts often search them out for their intimate feel combined with their luxurious décor.

The suites may be individually furnished, giving each a distinct feel and atmosphere. If the rooms are different sizes, then it makes sense for them to each have their own personality. Not only this, but having varied rooms and suites also encourages repeat visits!

 

It Makes a Statement

Statement pieces are a feature of boutique B&Bs.

 

Boutique B&Bs are designed to give an indulgent experience, as well as raising eyebrows with cutting-edge statements. Maybe there’s a unique decorative style that blows you away, or perhaps it’s the architecture of the building itself that makes it truly compelling.

Often, boutique B&Bs will mix the old with the new – there’s a particular je ne sais quoi when an older building has been renovated with a modern inflection. It’s this link with the past that can make boutique B&Bs so appealing, and it definitely makes a statement that remains in the memory.

 

 

Personal Service with Local Expertise

The Stray in Harrogate

There aren’t waves of staff at a boutique B&B – more often than not it’s just the owners and pro rata housekeeping staff. Because of this, the service that you are offered as a guest is much more personal. You’ll feel much more valued as a customer, especially because there aren’t as many guests as in a hotel.

Don’t underestimate local knowledge either: owners of a boutique B&B will know the area inside-out. They’ll be able to tell you about the little-known tourist attractions, the best lunch spots in town, and answer any other questions you might have. Owners are almost always live-in, and will be available whenever you need a hand (within reason!).

 

Something a Little Bit Different

The Opium Suite in The Chapel lends itself to photoshoots.

Due to the nature of a boutique B&B, they can often be used for many different purposes. With intricate interior design, living areas and certain suites are ideal for photoshoots and film & TV sets. We’d know: The Chapel featured on Quest TV’s Salvage Hunters recently and Channel 4’s The Restoration Man in 2017. Be warned that you might suddenly recognise something on arrival!

Boutique B&Bs are also keen to book out the entire building for private functions. Wedding receptions are particularly popular, and The Chapel even takes bookings for wedding ceremonies. Unique B&Bs also make great locations for corporate events, from impressive client meetings to company parties.

 

A Sense of Humour

What makes a boutique B&B? A sense of humour goes a long way.

Boutique B&Bs convey a sense of luxury, but also have a tongue-in-cheek appeal to them as well. It’s another moniker of originality and sets smaller B&Bs apart from traditional ‘luxury hotels’ – it might be a quirky guestbook or a mildly rebellious accessory.

A boutique bed and breakfast is often good-natured, and does all it can to make your stay as memorable as a lamp made out of a mannequin.

 

The beauty of boutique B&Bs lies in their versatility. Unique décor and style, encyclopaedic local knowledge from the owners, and multiple booking options make them an accommodation like no other. If you’re feeling tired of the same cookie-cutter hotel, you don’t need to look much further.

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