Greetings Penguin Lovers!
So if it wasn’t obvious already, Kristen and I are going to get married and have a reception (shocker I know), but the first step in this process is “Where are we going to have it?!?” Now, we are planning our lovely soiree to happen in the Bay Area of Houston, which is an amazing place for all sorts of different venues. Our first project has been to identify exactly what we want from our venue. Key points for us are: Cost, Capacity (about 100), Outside Catering (Cost efficient), Alcohol (Arm and a leg for booze? No thanks), and near the top is the ability to put up decorations (since we’re all artsy/craftsy and stuff). The combination of these is making things quite interesting in terms of cementing down a location and, given that the first one on that list is the most important, has put some interesting constraints on our searching.
The main problem however is the more traditional venues also carry a MUCH heftier price tag than we are willing to spend. Don’t get me wrong, Butler’s Courtyard is an absolutely stunning place, and as an old bank turned reception hall is a perfect setting for a steampunk soiree. However, the $12k price tag associated with it makes me want to cry myself to sleep at night. Even the “cheaper” places we have found are all over $4k. Much more reasonable, but at the same time is still half of our budget for the entire reception. With awesome decorations, outfits, and more planned, that amount is still far more than we want.
It all seems to be coming down to “what do we want to do with as minimal a budget as possible.” We have to be able to hold the 100~ people that we are planning to have there, while at the same time trying to create a unique atmosphere, and not break the bank. Some of the minimal price locations we’ve been looking at are more along the lines of community centers in the area. Definitely fits the cheap bill, but are sorely lacking in the “ambiance” category. On the plus side though, Kristen was kind enough to point out that those kind of places are MUCH more likely to allow us to do our own thing there. Big money savers such as our own caterer, alcohol, and music or DJ. As well as smaller details like hang things up, put decorations out, use our own lights, etc… Which could end up working quite well considering all the construction I have planned for decorations and Kristen for unique flowers.
Further beyond this is the additional concern that until we cement a time and location we realistically can’t begin searching for anything else. Some places will only let you use certain caterers, florists, have different rules on alcohol, and any other myriad of small details. One location that was PERFECT had this in the small print “There is no dancing of any kind allowed.” Seriously? No dancing? What kind of venue has a zero tolerance policy on dancing of all things?!?
For now though we find ourselves at an impasse of trying to explore as many options as possible to find something that works for us. So if you know of any place in the south east part of Houston/ Clear Lake / Webster / Seabrook area that you know of, let us know! We would LOVE to hear from you.
In the mean time Penguin followers, did you find something special for you that was a budget saver? Or did you blow it out for the best place you could find? Let us know in the comments!