First of all, thank you all for posting your suggestions for questions to ask. It was so helpful to have an idea of what I need to know etc, and I had a lot of them memorized so that I could quickly write down the answers once we were finished walking around.
I took pictures of the first location we went to, a beautiful resort in MD. With it being a resort we understood that cost would be on the more expensive side....boy was THAT and understatement (when setting up the appointment, the consultant would not specify pricing, said everything will be included in our "welcome" packet)....The least expensive option available was a served dinner at $160 per person....the buffet/station style we are looking to have is $190 per person WHAT???? We expected about $90-100, but almost $200 per person, WITH a separate "attendant fee" of $100 per attendant, plus separate bar fees per person. The cons just keep coming, the ceremony venues are all very public areas, ie: on the 18th green but "don't worry, our golfers are usually very good about waiting until the ceremony is over before 'playing through' although sometimes a stray ball will make it over into the green." The next venue is out on a beautiful pavillion that you walk down a dock to get out to because it's surrounded by water....a golf cart is reserved to take the bride to about 15 feet from the end so she can "have a short walk." The last is a very pretty fireplace pavillion that is open all around but has a roof and nice white pillars, but again in a public area right next to the beach volleyball courts. Now for the cocktail hour.... we were told we can have it in the pavillion next to the courts which would be "semi-private" since it is a raised pavillion, or we could have it in front of the ballroom before the reception, or out by the firepit but they can't "block off" that area from the other guests for our wedding guests to have cocktail hour...what does that mean? That there will be guests outside of our wedding milling around and possibly nibbling on the food we have paid for to entertain our guests. Ok, so we're thinking this place, as pretty as it is, will be a no....no biggie we had another location booked to tour that afternoon and even more still on our list.
The second venue, which was a very nice restaurant with a more casual bar-like dining room downstairs in OCMD....OMG where to start. We explained when setting up the tour that our guest list is 100+/-and were told no problem come on down. We get there and begin our tour and she asked again how many people we planned on having. We told her again 100+/-...to which she replies "oh is that trimmable? we can't accommodate that many in our ceremony area, and in our dining room, we can have about 100 if you choose not to have a dance floor. WTH? We said no we really want a full reception, dancing, cake, dinner etc... she asked which day we are planning. A Saturday in May. Her reply to that was "oh well you can have your ceremony on our "beach" (which is literally a sandbox with a few palm trees) at 11:30am, pictures til 12pm, lunch in the dining room, come down here to the main area and have dancing til 5pm, when we will need to ask you to leave so we can open for our regular dinner guests." Ummm how bout a big fat NO.
So yesterday was pretty much a disappointment, BUT, now we have an idea of what to press hard to find out about BEFORE we take a ride to tour a place. It was a nice day spent together, which we rarely get to do, so it's not like the whole day was a wash. Off to check out some other venues in the upcoming weeks. If you all think of any more questions, please let me know!!