That special somewhere
PUBLISHED: 16:45 20 August 2013 | UPDATED: 16:45 20 August 2013
Archant Norfolk Photographic © 2013
At Stower Grange country house hotel in Drayton, the emphasis is on taking the pressure off the wedding party and ensuring the finest service. “The care and attention we give when it comes to our food, and the high level of service from our experienced staff ensures the day is incredibly special and runs smoothly,” says owner Richard Fannon.
1 Look at as many venues as you reasonably can to see if it suits your needs.
2 Be very mindful of how venues structure their pricing. Ask exactly what is included in that price and for a breakdown of costs. Be clear about what it doesn’t include and what it adds to the budget.
3 Think about accommodation. Can guests stay at the venue? How much will rooms cost and are there alternatives nearby?
Stower Grange, School Road, Drayton, NR8 6EF; 01603 860210; www.stowergrange.co.uk
Conference and events manager at The Assembly House in Norwich is Georgina Postlethwaite, who says it makes the perfect backdrop for a wedding. “It’s a beautiful, Grade One listed Georgian building whose fabulous architecture lends itself to special occasions. It’s also centrally located, and the wedding packages are very reasonably priced.”
1 Your wedding day is a very special occasion and you’ll want to feel as special as possible, so make sure that you’re going to be the only bride and groom at your chosen venue that day.
2 Choose a venue with a dedicated weddings team, where you can deal with one person from start to finish, so you won’t have to repeat yourself and nothing will get lost in translation.
3 Ideally, the staff at your chosen venue will be able to help you with all aspects of your wedding, from flowers and cakes to music and photographers.
The Assembly House, Theatre Street, Norwich, NR2 1RQ; 01603 626402; www.assemblyhousenorwich.co.uk
Debbie Lannon is conference and events sales manager at Barnham Broom Hotel, where she says: “Every wedding is different, and no matter how many we have here during the year, it is always lovely to go through the experience with them. We have had weddings with just five guests up to those with 150 guests.”
1 Don’t just read the brochure - go and visit!
2 Go back as many times as you need to; visit in different times and seasons too, and with other members of the family.
3 Make sure you know what you are getting for your money, right from the start.
Barnham Broom Hotel, Golf and Spa, Honingham Road, Barnham Broom, NR9 4DP; 01603 759393; www.barnham-broom.co.uk
Jon Fisher, manager of the newly-refurbished Carlton Manor Hotel, near Lowestoft, says: “We offer a bespoke service; you tell us exactly what you want and we’ll make it happen. It means it is completely transparent in terms of pricing as you are choosing what you want.”
1 Speak to someone else who has had a wedding at the venue about how it went for them.
2 Visit the hotel before you book and use its public spaces, try the food, have a drink in the bar, get a feel for it.
3 Look at the toilets! In my experience, if the cloakrooms are clean it reflects care and attention throughout the hotel.
Carlton Manor Hotel, Chapel Road, Carlton Colville, NR33 8BL; 01502 560567; www.carltonmanorhotel.com