We just got married on Friday in the Historic District (along with about 6 other couples that we saw) and I just wanted to leave a quick review. Keep in mind that our guest list was very small (32) and some of our experiences may not be so helpful for anyone with a larger event.
Ceremony venue: Waterfront Park - A++
Cold, but so worth it. We tried to get the city to turn off the big walk-through fountain, but they won't do it. So we stood on the "echo stone" (which we later found out is kinda haunted) and had our families circle around. The accoustics were perfect and we didn't need any sound equipment.
Music - Bagpipes: Bill Nuttall A+++++
This man is an incredible piper and so easy to work with. Not cheap, especially for a very short ceremony, but worth every penny. He was early, prepared, flexible, professional, and very personable. If you're looking for pipes at your wedding, I highly recommend him.
Photography: Anna McSwain A++++ (so far)
Anna arrived right on time in the right place ready to go. I haven't seen the pictures yet (because the ceremony was just on Friday) but she's promised we'll have them quickly. Her prices are very fair, her portfolio looked great and she was also a pleasure to work with. If we get professional pictures done in Charleston again, we will definitely look her up.
Flowers: Seithel's of Charleston A+
Carl nailed every detail we wanted. The bouquets, corsages and bouts were exactly what I had imagined. The only snag was the delivery. They went to the park instead of the hotel, but I think that was my fault. They did arrive on time, though. The prices were very reasonable. If you use them, stay on top of communication. They respond VERY quickly, but don't often make the first attempt.
Transportation: Chucktown Transit - C+
Pros: Arrangements were made late in the game, and they were willing to work with us. Prices were great. They provided four total drivers, three of whom got rave reviews from our guests.
Cons: Arrived late, which set back our whole timeline. One of the drivers was terrible (tried to double charge for the fare and tried to push the timeline up by 40 minutes because that "worked better for him"! WTF!?) and we are filing a complaint with the company. And they don't do business over email, which made coordination more difficult. Also the man in charge had such a thick accent neither of us could understand him.
Reception venue: High Cotton A++++++++++++++
This place was absolutely perfect!! They accommodated every request we made, set up the room beautifully, placed our favors on all the plates and even set up our POW table perfectly (they also put a favor on the POW table which made all the veterans tear up a little), and of course the food and wine were amazing. Basically, their attention to detail was impeccable. And they let us stay THREE HOURS past our reservation end time without one bit of pressure to wrap it up. I can not say enough how incredible this place is. And Lindsay was so easy going and wonderful she made planning this so very easy.
Rehearsal dinner: Bocci's Italian Restaurant A
Very good food, very accommodating, and very proactive. The wine was okay (not good if you're a wine snob) but there was a lot of it. The service was great. They gave us a private room upstairs. They even tried to accommodate a gluten-free request, which is not standard for them. Overall, they did very well and I'd love to go back.
Baker: DeClare's Cakes A+++++++++
I can not articulate how perfectly they nailed each detail we wanted for our cakes. They even created perfect miniature gumpaste replicas of a 1911A1 for our wedding cake and sugar poppy flowers. And they tasted incredible. Nevermind saving it for a year, we're eating the top tier NOW! Prices were good too, and Alison and Debbie were so great. Ours was the first wedding cake I've seen where ALL of the guests finished it.
Hotel: Ansonborough Inn A++++++
Beautiful! The perfect room for our wedding night. Reminiscient of a Victorian era ship.
Hair & Make Up: Elina Mille A++++
Elina and Alayna were so much fun to work with. They arrived right on time and proceeded to do incredible hair and airbrush make up in different styles on five women in three hours. Very professional, very personable. Both are so incredible nice women. Prices, I thought, were just a tad high, but so worth it. Such a great experience.
That's it! Thank you for reading and I'm sorry this is so long, but we had such an amazing time at our DW and our vendors were so great that I had to share.