A reception is a very important social occasion, but it’s also an event held for a wide range of celebrations. A wedding reception is the most obvious occasion, but you can also hold anniversary receptions, product launch receptions, gallery openings, and many more.
The other feature of a reception is that it could involve dinner or cocktails, breakfast or brunch, lunch, or maybe even a high tea — it all depends on what you’re celebrating. With this in mind, it’s important to find a reception venue that matches the occasion, the theme, and the atmosphere you want your guests to enjoy.
But with so many different types of reception spaces to choose from, finding the right location can be a challenging task. Keep reading for the inspiration you need to find the venue you want.
The Best Reception Venues
A reception can be a formal and traditional celebration, it can be casual and relaxed, or it can be anything in between. So before you start comparing venues, it’s essential to have a clear idea of exactly what sort of ambiance you want for your event. With that done, here are a few popular reception space options to consider.
From chic and sophisticated to rustic and relaxed, there’s a bar out there to suit just about any type of reception. This secret underground speakeasy is all about intimate seclusion, while the casual vibe in this industrial gastropub lends itself to good old-fashioned fun.
- Hotel Function Rooms
They may not be as unique or memorable as some of the other reception venues on this list, but hotel function rooms are a simple and stress-free option. You get all the essential equipment included, catering available on-site, and the layout and decor can often be tailored to suit your needs. All you have to do is sit back, relax, and enjoy yourself.
- Gardens and Estates
A majestic private estate, landscaped gardens, and a sense of refined luxury everywhere you look — if that sounds like the ideal setting for your reception, compare private villas, mansions, estates, and gardens near you.
- Historic Homes
Want to imbue your event with a little bit of old-world charm and sophistication? A historic home can make the perfect reception venue, adding an authentic air and a touch of class to the occasion.
- Breweries and Beer Gardens
If a casual vibe is what you crave, look for brewery taprooms and beer gardens near you. With relaxed outdoor surroundings, great company, and some delicious craft brews, you and all your guests are in for a memorable celebration.
What to Look for in Reception Spaces
It’s easy to fall in love with some reception venues at first sight, but it’s also important to look past mere aesthetics to make sure the space offers substance to go with its style. Here are a few factors to consider to ensure that you find the perfect space.
First and foremost, think about the atmosphere your reception needs. Is it a formal occasion, completely casual, or somewhere in between? Once you know exactly what type of ambiance you want, you can start searching for a venue that matches those requirements.
Next, think about where your guests are traveling from and how they’ll get to the reception venue. For example, will they need private parking, or will they be using public transportation? They may also be flying in from overseas. Answering these questions will help you work out where the most convenient venue location is, as well as if it needs to be close to the airport and accommodation options.
- Essential Amenities
Now it’s time to consider all your reception venue must-haves. For example, what furniture will you need for the occasion? Does the layout need to include a dance floor, a stage, furniture for seated dinner? Will you need any AV equipment for speeches? How many bathrooms are required?
Finally, the cost will always be an important factor to consider when choosing a reception venue. Work out what your budget is well in advance and make sure to stick to it — there are plenty of other expenses to consider when hosting a reception, so don’t blow your budget on the venue alone.
Need some extra inspiration to help you find your dream reception venue? Here are a few ideas to get you started.
- Gorgeous Garden Party
The simple sophistication of a garden party is perfect for brunches, lunches, dinners, and cocktail receptions. Find a property with beautifully manicured gardens, hire a marquee if required, then treat your guests to a stylish and memorable celebration.
- Cocktails in a Rooftop Bar
Want your guests to feel like they’re on top of the world? Head for the sky and host your reception in an intimate rooftop bar or lounge. This renovated hotel rooftop lounge, boasting a centerpiece fountain and wonderful city views, is perfect for an elegant celebration.
- Ballroom Bliss
Some receptions call for the glamorous style and undeniable sense of occasion that only a ballroom can provide. With an opulent space and the right decor in place, your guests will feel like they’re walking into a celebration fit for royalty. Perfect for those who want their reception to be a grand, formal affair.
- Historic Mansion
Last but certainly not least, a historic mansion can lend an extra touch of elegance and class to any occasion. Finding a space with a rich and intriguing history, beautiful architecture, and authentic period decor can add old-world charm to your reception and give your guests a taste of luxury and extravagance from times past.