On average I seem to be going to at least three weddings a year at the moment, and if I am entirely frank while each event is cause for happy celebration, the details of each often blur into one. There’s a white dress, a big building and a sizeable cake. So what separates your bog standard nuptials from something really spectacular?
While the bride is obviously the focal point of any wedding, the setting has a lot to answer for, and some locations have considerably more wow-factor than others.
While whatever constitutes wow-factor is subjective, I don’t think many things beat a potent mix of historic architecture and beautiful surroundings, which to my mind are the things that make the Welcombe Hotel, Spa and Golf Club stand out. The proximity to Shakespearean Stratford-Upon-Avon helps with the whole romantic vibe as well – everyone loves a good storybook location don’t they?
One thing that I think can ruin even the most spectacular of weddings is a short supply of sub-par canapés. A wedding that I went to recently bypassed the nibble issue with spectacular class by laying on a full afternoon tea complete with cucumber sandwiches, mini-scones and petit-fours. That was all before the monumental spread that constituted dinner.
The upshot was a thoroughly enjoyable affair through which I successfully ate for around four hours straight. For any bride-to-be considering the allocation of her wedding budget, I urge you to prioritise those canapés and invest in a wedding venue known for its food. For inspiration consider the likes of the Inn on the Lake in Cumbria or Cotswold House Hotel and Spa in Gloucestershire.
Say it with style
Finally, location is a biggie both in terms of convenience and style. I have a particular friend who decided to have her reception at a venue that was a good 45 minutes on the train away from the church, and it didn’t offer remotely acceptable parking either. Major off-put when it comes to RSVP-ing.
So style wise, are you thinking country, city or seaside? Will people need somewhere to stay? Or if that guest list is bulging at the bridal seams, would you like to find a reason to discourage a few long-distance travellers? (I am sure you have never thought of such a thing).
For what its worth, as far as city destinations go, I am a real fan of the Prince Regent Hotel in London which combines the best of country and city thanks to its proximity to the 6,000-acre Epping Forest and, rather poetically, is a converted chapel. For something a little more rural however, Pembrokeshire’s utterly regal Lamphey Court Hotel and Spa is pretty hard to beat for upmarket elegance, spectacular grounds and the sense that you are lord and lady of the manor for the day.
So there you go, that’s my ten pence worth on the matter – huge congratulations and I look forward to getting my invite. Here’s to a year of memorable nuptials and ample canapés!