I’m back and ready to reveal our reception and AND ceremony venue locations, but first I want to navigate you all through the most difficult decision Emin and I have had to make so far. In my last blog, I wrote about the three venues Emin and I first went to see: Metropol Banquet, Legacy Ballroom, and Vertigo. Since Emin and I have seen more than 20 venues I decided to do a quick recap on some of the venues and then reveal our final choice. Do you think you can guess which venue we chose before the final reveal? Good luck.
Metropol: I fell in love with this venue; Emin not so much. Everything at Metropol is very modern and WHITE! Great for a more modern couple who is planning on having between 300- 400 guests. High ceilings, big dance floor, amazing LED Lighting which is INCLUDED in the price. Although this venue was on the higher end of our budget.
Legacy Ballroom: BOTH of us fell in love with Legacy although their 270-max capacity was way below the number of guests we will be having. This ballroom is very modern. It has LED panels at the main stage as well as in the pillars. The panels are FULLY customizable; however, you must pay an extra charge in order to have a light technician who will set that up on the wedding day. The ballroom is a on the smaller side, but perfect for those who have a lower guest count.
Vertigo: Vertigo is a very modern and high-end banquet hall. We preferred the Black Ballroom over the White Ballroom because it fit out theme more, but both are quite exquisite. The food is a bit different from your typical Armenian Banquet Hall, but it looked VERY tasty. The flaw was that the Black Ballroom was upstairs and we didn’t want our guests to be confused about where our wedding was and there was also the hassle of going up and down the stairs.
Glenoaks Ballroom: Formally known as Anoush Banquet Hall. This venue was very nice; however, it was being remodeled when we went to book for our wedding. It was a bit difficult for us to envision our wedding there without knowing what the final product would look like. I also didn’t like that there wasn’t a bridal room to wait in before the wedding. Price range was very fair and I believe the max capacity was at 400 something.
Brandview Ballroom: Emin and I didn’t like Brandview very much. The location was a bit too busy and the fact that the ballroom was upstairs really didn’t fit our needs. Although they have elevators, we didn’t want our older guests thinking they have to go up all those steps. The venue is a bit dated, but still looks nice.
Arbat Banquet Hall: I feel bad for saying this, but we were both disgusted by the cigarette smell. This place had a lot of potential, but because they allow people to smoke in the inside patio the smell was terrible. It was a solid “NO!” for both of us.
Castaway: So, this location counted for two venues; ceremony and reception. Although the view was beautiful we decided it wouldn’t work to have our reception there. We wanted something with Armenian food. We didn’t want to have to bring in outside catering because that would be an extra thing to add to our to do list. The ceremony venue however was beautiful. We both loved the nice view and the fact that it was in between both our houses. During this appointment however, we were told the time we wanted to have our wedding was too hot for summer. We hadn’t considered this so that got us thinking about possibly not having an outdoor wedding ceremony. We didn’t completely say no to Castaway though because the view was worth having to deal with a little bit of heat.
De Luxe Banquet Hall: When we went to De Luxe I was sure we found the perfect venue! It was almost like Metropol, but less white, and much more in out price range. I fell in love with their white marble dance floor! Emin had a problem with the dirty carpets, but they ensured us that they could be washed before our wedding. The only flaw to this venue was that they couldn’t book our date as it was too early. They only book a year in advance. This wasn’t that big of an issue for us, however we had already set a date for our wedding and we were scared someone else might book the same day if we didn’t contact them quick enough. It wasn’t a definite no, but I was a bit hesitant about waiting a year to book our wedding venue.
La Canada Flintridge Country Club: This venue was very beautiful for our ceremony, however the lady that we spoke to was extremely rude about the time we wanted to have our wedding. She told us we can only have it at 11 am and we could hold the ceremony for only 30 minutes. Emin and I didn’t want to feel rushed during our ceremony, as it is the most special part of the day, so we thanked her and went home. I couldn’t believe someone would even think 30 minutes is enough time for a wedding ceremony!
Dream Palace: I have been to many weddings at Dream Palace, but I was shocked when I saw the renovations they had done! It was unrecognizable! I loved the whole white curtain thing they had going on, even though Emin wasn’t a big fan. Everything was very beautifully designed and I already knew the food was really good. Emin wasn’t too pleased with the fact that the dance floor was all the way up to the front of the venue instead of in the middle.
I’m sure everyone is thinking we are crazy for going to 20 venues and honestly, one of the biggest mistakes I think Emin and I made was going to so many different places. Although it is nice going and seeing everything, it really confuses you when you have too many options! Especially in our situation when we had booked our photographer so easily; this process was so time consuming and extremely stressful. I highly suggest that the bride and groom pick three venues EACH and only go to those six before making a decision. Also, know exactly what you are looking for before you go to see anything. For Emin and I, we know we needed something with a big dance floor, good food and service, something more modern and remodeled, and no ugly carpets (this was Emin’s requirement). Once you know what you want you can eliminate venues that don’t fit your needs.
After going to all these different venues and confusing ourselves so much Emin and I decided we would stop looking and just make a decision based on the places we had already seen. Now, I should mention; Emin is sitting here with me and poking me, telling me to tell you all the “real reason” we picked the banquet hall we decided on. So, I’ll be honest with you. After seeing the venue we picked, I couldn’t stop comparing all the other venues to that one. Even before Emin proposed to me I had been dreaming of having my wedding there. So, every time we went to another appointment I kept saying, “But it’s not like *****!” I should also mention that we went and toured the venue three times because I couldn’t give up on it! This banquet hall was a little over our budget so when we talked about it Emin would always say, “I understand you love it, but it’s a little expensive.” My heart would break every time I heard him say that.
One night we were sitting around a pile of banquet hall and ceremony venue brochures, trying to figure out what the best decision would be for us. Emin asked me what my top three choices for a venue would be and I picked up the brochure for our venue and said very dramatically, “This is my top 3! I don’t really like anything else.” Emin gave me this funny look and shook his head. He came over and hugged me and said, “I want you to have the wedding of your dreams. Let’s pick that venue.” I jumped up and squealed with excitement. The next morning, I called and made an appointment for us to go book the venue!
I know, everyone is wondering which venue did we pick? Can anyone guess? Okay okay. I’ll tell you. Drum roll please.......
YAY! I am so happy to finally be revealing our wedding location! Yes, I know, I know; Metropol was the first venue we went to see and it would have been so much easier if we had just made that decision right away and saved ourselves all that time and stress. But honestly it was totally worth it to go through that stress and be so excited with our decision afterwards.
We were so excited when we went to put our deposit down, finally book our wedding venue, and solidify our wedding date. Everyone knows it’s not official until you book your banquet hall. Of course, I HAD to tour the venue for a fourth time just so I can pretend it was my wedding day. I know, so cheesy but I was so excited! After we gave our deposit and did all the paperwork, I had this sudden urge to see the ceremony room one more time. While we were in there Edgar described how we can decorate the isle and the alter, and how we could use the centerpieces from our tables to decorate the ceremony room to save some money. I got so excited by the idea. He also mentioned, since we want our wedding to start right away, how much more convenient it would be for our guests to leave the ceremony and go straight to the reception. Emin and I looked at each other with shock. He was totally right! We would be saving a lot of time and money by having our reception AND our ceremony at Metropol!
So, we made an impulsive decision right then and there and booked the ceremony room as well! So my dear readers what have we learned so far? Emin and Manifa are really good at making impulsive wedding decisions! Honestly, that has been a great way to do things for us. We spent so much time looking at reception venues, and at the end of the day we chose the one we first went to. Booking our ceremony venue and photographer was so easy. We just went with our gut feeling. Even though finding our banquet hall was a bit of a mission, I have to admit it feels good to finally say we have one! And as usual, booking another vendor made our wedding seem more real. We can’t wait to book our next vendor. Until then, good bye and good planning!