Tuesday, March 29, 2011

A Venue fit for the Giraffes

This past weekend, Mr. Giraffe and I sat down with Jen. the catering manager (who I've been e-mailing with for the last forever!) of our reception venue. I want to tell you all about that, but you'll have to wait until later ;-).

Today, I want to introduce you to our lovely reception venue. I haven't really blogged about our awesome venue at all, simply because you have to book it a year and a half out, and when I started blogging in October, the decision had all ready been made months before. We had booked it and hadn't had to get back to it for a while, so I really didn't have anything to say about it.

To get you guys caught up, we're receptioning at a magical place called Idlewild Country Club. Idlewild is about 20 minutes from our ceremony venue, but in the suburbs everything is 20 minutes apart so it works out perfectly.

The first time I visited Idlewild was at about 4:00 on New Year's Eve back in 2008 (holy cow). Mama Giraffe warned me not to fall in love with it simply because it was all decorated for the holiday, but I did just that. It is such a pretty venue. I have a bunch of pictures I took of the venue all empty, but who wants those?!

Recently, I discovered Idlewild's facebook page, complete with all kind of fancied up photos.

Sigh... Love...

Anyway, you might be too busy staring at those photos, but I'm going to continue you on, just in case. Why did we choose Idlewild as our venue? Well, it was #4 out of the 4 venues we visited, and unlike the first three, it hit everything on our list.

Here's what the Giraffes were looking for (and what we're getting):
On Site Catering - Call me lazy (which I am for sure), but going out and finding and hiring a caterer seemed like too much work. Wouldn't it be nice if the food just came with the venue?

A space all to ourselves - We visited two different venues where you got a partitioned space (aka a giant fake wall that breaks one room into two). One place had a lovely outdoor balcony, but I hated the idea that guests would be sharing the balcony with guests from other weddings. Idlewild is closing the whole upstairs so its all ours. We get the lobby, bar area, and rest of the space that is all connected, and we don't have to share it with anyone. Yay!

Chair Covers - Okay, okay, I realize I'm crazy but chair covers have always been a priority to me since the very beginning of our marathon of an engagement. Once places wanted $700 for chair covers, and another $400. Idlewild includes them in our package. This was enough to have me.

Good food- And boy, is it tasty. More on that later!

Location - The 'burbs are so spread out that it's hard to keep everything 'local.' Unlike the city, we don't have any public transportation either, so I didn't want it to be too far. The goal was no more than a half hour away, and Idlewild fits that perfectly.

A good deal - I didn't want to feel like we wouldn't be getting our money's worth, or even thought it is quite expensive, that we're getting ripped off. Idlewild was by far the best deal we found.

There it is guys. You might think our reception venue sounds awesome, but hold your horses, just wait until you see the food!

Did you "reception shop" with a certain list in mind? What were your priorities?