From pretty coastal towns and oast houses in the country, to Tudor cottages and a cathedral City. Kent is blessed with so many amazing places to tie the knot, but how to choose which wedding venue is right for you?
When planning a wedding, pretty much every aspect of it is up for debate. Will you arrive in a vintage car or a horse and carriage? Silk or fresh flowers for your bouquet? Cupcakes instead of a wedding cake? But one thing is always for sure and cannot be overlooked – the wedding venue. You need to have somewhere to exchange your vows and a place where your friends and family can come together to celebrate with you. But when searching for the perfect wedding venue in Kent, you may have found pretty early on that we’re spoilt for choice!
There are so many amazing and varied locations throughout the county,. This means that it can be hard to choose which one is right for you. But finding the perfect venue in Kent is really important, as it affects all of your other future wedding decisions. Like logistics; can my caterers actually get to my venue? To styling; does the location suit my Boho vision of fairy lights and hay bales?
To help in your wedding planning we thought we’d share our top tips on how to choose the perfect wedding venue, while also featuring some amazing locations in Kent.
How Many Guests Will You Have?
This is a pivotal decision (and sometimes a painful one…), but knowing your guest list numbers will greatly impact the size of your venue. If you’re thinking of inviting more than 200 people to your wedding then your filter for locations in Kent changes quite dramatically. In this case, you’ll probably need to book a special event space like The Hop Farm for example, a beautiful oast house in the heart of the Kent countryside with a capacity of 400 plus. Or maybe you could consider a large hotel like The Spa Hotel, an elegant, family run 18th Century mansion set within 14 acres of stunning grounds, with a ceremony capacity of 250.
If you’re thinking of hosting a more intimate affair, like a micro-wedding for example (50 guests or less), then obviously your choices change again. In this case you have the freedom to tie the knot not just in a private venue but also in a restaurant, pub or anywhere you fancy! Like the atmospheric George Vaults wedding venue in Rochester, Kent, a uniquely atmospheric underground ceremony and reception space, with a cute terrace and bar upstairs.
Choose a Venue that Fits with Your Theme
It’s useful to determine your theme early on, as your venue should reflect it. Otherwise, you’ll have a battle on your hands trying to twist the space to match your theme. If you’re dreaming of a festival wedding for example, work with a company who can help you source a suitable location for a tipi and assist you with all of the elements that will be needed to celebrate surrounded by nature. Maybe you’re looking for more refined, timeless elegance? Well, nothing could be more timeless than Hever Castle, a true fairytale wedding venue in Kent, a place that ticks every box for the couple who want a touch of spectacular in their big day photos.
Consider Your Budget First
It can be easy to get carried away when planning a wedding, and start saying yes to everything you’re offered. But if you don’t keep track of the extras, you’ll soon lose sight of your budget, and have to forgo something that you really want further down the line. Before you commit to any wedding venue, consider whether there is somewhere else in Kent that aligns better with your budget and that doesn’t have any ‘hidden charges.’ For instance, a hotel may charge for things you’ve never even heard of before, like a corkage fee for example.
If your budget won’t stretch to a particular venue, don’t force it. Opt for a flexible wedding venue that will give you control of the catering and decoration, like The Barn Yard in Sittingbourne, Kent. A large permanent marquee, barn conversion and restaurant in the countryside that offers couples an extensive range of ways to plan their day.
Remember that it’s You Getting Married, Not the Instagram Version of You
For many couples these days, wedding planning does not begin with the latest copy of Brides Magazine (gone, but not forgotten…), it begins with social media. In 2021 a lot of our wedding inspiration comes directly from Pinterest or Instagram. This access to ideas from around the world is incredible, no bones about it, but it can be bewildering and sometimes leave you not knowing what is actually right for you and what is authentic. With this in mind, choose a space that really represents you both, not an idealised amalgamation of what you’ve seen online. Also, if you’re searching for a wedding venue in Kent via Pinterest, you may find yourself falling in love with the decoration, rather than the actual venue itself. Wedding venue stylists in Kent like us are experienced in turning our clients’ vision into a reality. This can mean that a space looks completely different once all of our decoration and lighting is taken away. So try and look beyond the pretty lights during your venue search.
We hope we have inspired your wedding venue hunt. If you’re looking for an expert to style your chosen wedding venue in Kent, we would love to join you on your journey! Diamond Circle Weddings Ltd is an experienced decorative hire and planning company specialising in weddings and other milestone events.
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