Venue Inspiration

The venue! The venue! It’s all about the venue (at least in my book).

Our venue choice was extremely important to me. It was the first thing I wanted to arrange before even thinking about anything else. Fiancée Eagle was easy: she told me that she would love the venue if I loved it. Done!

I knew that we wanted something different—something unexpected as a wedding venue, but still semi-traditional feeling. And because we won’t be getting married in a church/temple/synagogue, we wanted a venue where we could have the ceremony and reception all in one place. All-inclusive, baby!

First, we considered somewhere simple and beautiful, like The Art Gallery of Calgary. They have a beautiful, modern space that is frequently used for weddings.

eagle

Image via Calgary Bride / Photo by The Art Gallery of Calgary

Image via Corea Sotropa Interior Design

But…it almost felt too modern for our style. A little too “downtown” (even with the Chiavari chairs!) and hip. While I admit that we didn’t go see the venue in person, I could tell from the photos that it just wasn’t the right fit.

So we kept looking for a downtown venue that didn’t have that “downtown feel.” We didn’t want to get married in a barn, but we also didn’t want to get married in a loft. I wanted our wedding to be classic and vintage feeling, but also represent us a couple. We essentially live downtown, and we love the Calgary downtown core. We want to get married downtown but have the venue feel like it’s not really downtown. Does that make sense?

Now, I can’t remember where I discovered The Lougheed House, but I believe it was on a wedding message board/forum, and I instantly fell in love. It’s a beautiful historic house owned by some old dead rich people. (OK, OK…they are a pretty “popular” family around here—there is a hospital here named after them, too.) It’s nestled in the downtown area, very close to a lot of our friends’ apartments and businesses we frequent a lot. But—I had never seen or heard of it before our wedding-planning adventure began. PERFECT!

It was a downtown venue that felt like it wasn’t really downtown.

Image via Flickr / Photography by Nancy Chow

Image via Loughheed House/ Photo by Wes Raymond Photography

We really didn’t even have to discuss it—just from the photos online, I was 99% sure that we needed this venue. It was downtown (!!!), close to several hotels, and almost perfect. The marriage ceremony could be held outside in the historic garden, and the reception and dance could be held inside of the gorgeous house.

We heard several online horror stories that this place has a 1.5-year waiting list, so we wanted to quickly arrange a viewing of it before it booked up for the date we were thinking.

Did you have an easy time picking your venue? Or did you find several you loved and couldn’t pick just one?

BLOGGER

Mrs. Eagle

Location:
Calgary, Alberta, Canada
Wedding Date:
August 2012
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  1. Member
    mink 2178 posts, Buzzing bee @ 5:25 am

    We did a semi-exhaustive search of vineyards and inns in our area. We got engaged around Thanksgiving and felt pressure to book before the Christmas/New Years/Valentines Day engagement crowd got into planning.

    We ultimately signed with a venue that wasn’t built yet. It was a pile of dirt when we saw it, but the plans were awesome and the team behind it had a great reputation. It was a big risk, but it worked out well!

  2. Member
    mspony 9265 posts, Buzzing Beekeeper @ 5:27 am

    The Loughheed house looks dreamy!

  3. Guest Icon Guest
    uberbrides, Guest @ 5:47 am

    Those grounds will make an AWESOME backdrop for photos!

  4. Member
    kaliella 230 posts, Helper bee @ 6:09 am

    Budget is the most limiting factor for us, especially when it comes to the venue. We’re also getting married in the state our family lives in, rather than the state we live in, so that makes internet scouring a must and visiting hard. We’ll be checking out two next week.

  5. Member
    hawk 1117 posts, Bumble bee @ 6:16 am

    Such a gorgeous venue! I can’t wait to see more!

  6. Member
    TinyTina 3312 posts, Sugar bee @ 6:18 am

    Wow looks gorgeous! We looked at so many venues before finding the right one.. But we went the all-inclusive route too!

  7. Member
    All In 1550 posts, Bumble bee @ 6:28 am

    That is a gorgeous venue!

  8. Member
    eagle 1552 posts, Bumble bee @ 6:34 am

    @Miss Mink: I loved your venue post!
    @Mrs. Pony: It is SO dreamy. I want to live there. @uberbrides: Those were my thoughts exactly. :) I’ll save on decor… right?

  9. Member
    eagle 1552 posts, Bumble bee @ 6:37 am

    @kaliella: good luck with the venue search. Budget is the hardest thing when it comes to venues, I agree. We’ve had to skimp in other places but I’m hoping since we won’t need massive decor, that it will all work out.

    @Miss Hawk: I can’t wait to show you more!

    @TinyTina: All inclusive is really the way to go, huh?

    @All In: Thank you!! I’m so excited. There will be more pics in my next post.

  10. Guest Icon Guest
    Lexy, Guest @ 7:34 am

    Beautiful location, I can see why you fell in love with it!

    Our venue is less than a mile from our house, it’s a golf course that my Mr. spends every weekend at in the summer and we have been mostly planning on getting married there for about a year before we got engaged. We booked it less than 24 hours after the engagement.

  11. Member
    futuremrscpt 955 posts, Busy bee @ 7:47 am

    wow that looks gorgeous!

  12. Member
    Coffee cup 2319 posts, Buzzing bee @ 8:32 am

    Gourgeous place, you’ll feel like a princess there.
    We ended up picking the first venue we visited, we loved it so much the others couldn’t keep up with it.

  13. Member
    eagle 1552 posts, Bumble bee @ 9:01 am

    @Lexy: Oh my gosh girl that must be a record! Less than 24 hours? You are amazing! I love golf course/country club weddings. If we were planning a larger wedding, then I would have definitely done it at a CC. My family are long time golfers.

    @futureMrsCPT: It is gorgeous! Stay tuned for the next post for more inside photos :)

  14. Member
    eagle 1552 posts, Bumble bee @ 9:03 am

    @Coffee cup: I hope to feel like a princess! Congrats on selecting your venue right off the bat too. Makes things feel more official, huh?

  15. Member
    futureMFG 283 posts, Helper bee @ 9:23 am

    Oooh pretty!

  16. Member
    Lexy 404 posts, Helper bee @ 9:41 am

    @Miss Eagle: It’s important to note here that we got engaged October 4th and the date is January 15. So everything had to happen pretty dang fast :) The first week of engagement we had venue, menu, photographer, dress… we were very busy

  17. Member
    cinnamonbun 1116 posts, Bumble bee @ 8:39 am

    Tee hee, that’s 3 blocks from my house. :) My mum tried to convince us to have our wedding there, but we already had our hearts set on our venue.

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