During our venue search, we toured A LOT of places in the DC DMV area. One of those places was the Washington Navy Yard, which is right across the street from where we used to live (and where FMIL still resides).
On Friday, we had the opportunity to attend a Strawberries and Champagne Charity Gala there, and I was glad to get a chance to see the venue in action. Here is my score for the event, if you’re interested in the Washington Navy Yard for your wedding.
Here are my comments on Venue, Dress, Food, and Overall Experience on a scale of 1-10. If you have seen the show Four Weddings on TLC, you will recognize my categories and grading scale.
Venue – 7
The Washington Navy Yard has a lot of history. Placed perfectly on the water of the Potomac River in Washington, DC, the Washington Navy Yard is a perfect mix of military tradition and modern urban swag.
Image via Examiner.com
The Catering and Conference Center sits on the edge of the base, with a gazebo that faces the water. Unfortunately, I had to deduct points from the venue because there are MANY guidelines and restrictions to allow civilians onto the base. You would have to have a military sponsor to even rent the facility, and then you would have to collect the names, driver’s license numbers, and vehicle information of every guest to submit to the guard at the gate. Then, once you get past all the security at the gate, there are A LOT of twists and turns on the base to get from the gate to the Catering Center. I would suggest making cool signs with arrows (and maybe balloons) to direct all the vehicles.
The inside is great, though. The entire place can seat over 300 guests, but it can also be sectioned into smaller rooms if you are having a more intimate wedding (or want one room for the ceremony and one for the reception). Unfortunately, this could be a drawback, as they do book more than one event in an evening if you aren’t planning to buy out the entire venue. At the event we attended on Friday, we were in one half of the full ballroom, and we could hear ALL the music from the party next door. Our smooth jazz dinner music was easily overpowered by sounds of the line dances and dance jams. But when dinner ended and we transitioned into our own dance music, I no longer noticed.
Dress – N/A
Since this wasn’t a wedding, there was no bridal dress to score, but if you’re looking for a venue that lends itself to formal attire, this place is for you. This is definitely the cocktail, formal, or black tie optional event location.
Mr. A and I got a chance to get dressed up! / Personal photo
Food – 4
I’m not going to lie, the food was a little disappointing. When we arrived there was a tray of fruit and cheese. Then for dinner we had our choice of London broil or apple almond chicken; I had the former and Mr. A had the latter. The beef was lukewarm and tough, but the vegetables and potatoes were well seasoned and tasty. Mr. A said his chicken was pretty good, and he agreed the sides were the highlight of the plate. Dessert consisted of a chocolate fountain with globs of chocolate and a vanilla sheet cake that looked beautiful, but tasted a little dry.
Overall Experience – 7
Despite the disappointing food and the distracting dance music next door, I really enjoyed myself! The room was decorated nicely in red and white, and the DJ played some GREAT line dancing music.
Look who also attended! It’s BM Motivated!
Have you been able to attend any events at venues that you looked at for your wedding? Did you reconsider your decision?