Monday, June 27, 2011

Behind the Bowtie: Our Venue

So one of the first things you’re supposed to do (according to Alex) when planning a wedding is figure out where. Where will we get married? We didn’t want to make people go from one place to another. It’s a lot easier for everyone to be in one place for the entire evening. The last thing we want is our guest’s complaining about the traffic from the ceremony site to the reception. People in LA love to complain about traffic, and this would no doubt occupy the majority of conversation during cocktail hour, when they should be talking about how shiny my shoes are, or how beautiful the bride is. (Probably the ladder)

Photo Courtesy of Miss Taylor Cast

We only looked at 3 venues for the wedding. The first was Hummingbird Nest Ranch in Simi Valley. My first thought was “Wow, I can’t wait to put Simi Valley on the wedding invitations!”. But as we drove up a windy, tree-lined road to the estate, it began to grow on me. It’s hidden, it’s quiet, and it should have it’s own zip code. The house itself was not so big, but the entire estate was massive. There are all sorts of lodging at this venue too. Alex liked one of their lower areas with a bunch of trees for the ceremony site called Sitting Bull, and then she wanted the reception in another, which was a nice hike to get to. We would have had to hire a shuttle service to caravan our guests up the hill from one end of the property to the other. It would have been a “Survivor” challenge otherwise. Plus, it’s windy in the mountains, so she wanted to tent. We would have had to spend way too much money ON the venue after spending FOR the venue. In the back of the property is a grass area the size of 10 football fields. Seriously. 10. Maybe more.

Photo Courtesy of Bloomberg Business Week

They probably lost their bid for the 2016 Olympic games, but only because of the Simi Valley address. In the end, the place was beautiful, but too big, and not quite us.

Photo Courtesy of The Back Nine

Then it was off to Sherwood Country Club in Thousand Oaks. Yes, we saw both in the same day. It’s a wonderful place, I go there every year for a golf tournament and love it. It’s very luxurious, high-end, etc. Again though, was not really us. It wasn’t as expensive as I would have imagined, but it was booking up fast and the weekend we wanted wasn’t even available. So we moved on.

Photo Courtesy of Carcano DJ

The following weekend we went to Downtown LA to see Vibiana. This was our winner. It was surprising because it was nothing amazing from the street, but the outdoor courtyard is perfect for a ceremony and the tall vaulted ceilings inside can let Alex go crazy with design and décor. I know she’s going to go absolutely crazy in there, I promise. Vibiana used to be Los Angeles’ oldest cathedral, but has been converted into a venue. The irony of a Jewish Wedding at a former cathedral is not the worse thing I’ve ever heard, just try to ignore the confessionals in the walls if that sort of thing bothers you. My High School actually just had their Senior Prom there. Not quite sure how that makes me feel. There are tall pillars inside, lots of space, and it’s perfect for what Alex wanted. Mission accomplished.

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