Original article by BrideMalta.com
After selecting your gown, selecting your wedding reception location is the most time-consuming and exciting decision you will take, this time together.
A number of variables are to be taken into account.
How far apart you want the church and reception to be, from each other? The reception location will need to be in somewhat close proximity to the church to encourage people to attend both. But then again, the distance must be great enough to make the car rental worthwhile. Take into consideration the time during which you will be driven, and traffic usually found en route. And will the guests find parking easy, or spend time cruising around the neighbourhood in search of a spot to park?
Do you prefer an outdoor or indoor setting? Consider the weather at the time of your wedding- will it be cold so you only need an indoor setting to your liking or will the weather permit the guests to adventure outside? Check annual weather forecasts for the season and don’t be optimistic about it ‘not raining on your day’.
Do you want a large banquet hall or a small intimate hall?
Do they have a preferred/discounted caterers’ list or can you bring your own caterer? Some facilities nowadays offer packages including music and catering that may be worthwhile. One word of caution – make sure that such packages are worthwhile. Also most hotels will offer a night stay at the site. Check out the room just in case you want to upgrade it or want certain specifications.
You will need to start early for availability of the best selection especially if your wedding is in the popular season, i.e. April to June and September to October. This means about 2 to 3 years in advance so if you have set your heart on particular location ask how far in advance can you reserve the location. This way you will also rent it more cheaply as such costs rise from year to year.
It is also important to ask what is the minimum and maximum number of guest the location can hold. You will not want either a sparse room or a crowded one.
What are the music restrictions? The law states that the volume of music in a public place must be played down, in order to not be audible by neighbours after 11pm. But some venues may be situated in quiet residential areas, so extra loud music will give rise to complaints being made at earlier time by residents and it does not pay to have the police knocking at your door, asking for the volume to be turned down. On the other hand, the exclusive location of some venues permit guests to enjoy loud music till the early hours of the morning.
Another legal prerequisite is having the police at your wedding, for which there is a small fee to be paid, and some reception locations charge extras for security.
As in all services, get everything in writing and make note of the fine prints.