Texas-Austin

Venue opinions

Hello Ladies, I am a first time poster not a first time reader. I know you all have great ideas. My fiance and I are trying to pick a place for our wedding and I am feeling a bit overwhelmed. I need your help. Have any of you been to a wedding at the Stephen F. Austin hotel? Did you like it? What are your thoughts on hotel weddings. My fiance and I up until recently were only looking at hill country venues. It is a huge change but the cost value is so high that I cant look away from it. Our top pick and favorite is Mandola Winery in driftwood and second in Hamilton Twelve. If you have any opinions on those let me know about that too! Thanks so much ladies!
The future Mrs. Anderson! Check out my blog: http://misadventuresofanexyankee.blogspot.com/ Wedding Countdown Ticker

Re: Venue opinions

  • jupiter2311jupiter2311 member
    First Comment Combo Breaker First Anniversary
    edited December 2011
    I've been to a wedding a the Stephen F Austin hotel, and I think there were too many people for the room, as it felt really cramped. We looked into it because we got engaged at the lounge upstairs but it was booked and also not large enough for us. We went with the Omni which we chose mainly because we had an extremely large guest count and wanted to remain in Austin proper instead of going somewhere far out. It was really one of the only places we found which would hold all of our guests. Also, most of our guests were out of town and they either stayed there, or nearby in the downtown area so it was convenient. If we had a smaller group, we may have chosen something different, (I LOVE the winery in Driftwod) but it was nice to have the food taken care of, as well as the onsite staff - they took very good care of us. HTH!

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  • edited December 2011
    Thanks so much for your thoughts. My worry is that I might be disappointed with getting married in a ballroom and not outside. I have had one picture in my head and now have to think differently. We only have 80 people invited to the wedding so we are planning on 60 to come. Do you think that would be OK? I am only using half of the Capital ballroom. I think we should be ok with that. They are making the deal really hard to walk away from and I think my FI and I are just over looking at all these places and then getting huge extra fees in the estimate. ANNOYING! Let me know if you have other ideas or thoughts about a ballroom wedding.
    The future Mrs. Anderson! Check out my blog: http://misadventuresofanexyankee.blogspot.com/ Wedding Countdown Ticker
  • edited December 2011
    I personally am not the type that would want my wedding in a hotel ballroom. I like things that are a bit more unique, and you have to spend a lot of money to make that happen in a hotel ballroom. I'm also a wedding photographer, so after a while hotel ballrooms are all the same to me. However, that being said, it's all a matter of personal taste and what works best for you. I can understand why a lot of people have their wedding at a hotel. I love Mandola Winery... I seriously hope I get to shoot there someday. Hamilton Twelve looks lovely too! GL! :)
    Liz & David | 10/23/09
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  • jupiter2311jupiter2311 member
    First Comment Combo Breaker First Anniversary
    edited December 2011
    I think with a smaller group, you would be fine. I think the one I went to was 150 or more? Like previous poster said, it's all up to personal taste, so if you see yourself getting married there, then you should go for it! :)

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  • foxandsocksfoxandsocks member
    First Comment
    edited December 2011
    I looked into Mandola's Winery. They were really great and very accomidating when I was meeting with them. Their food is amazing and so are their cakes. Both are included in your package, if I remember right. The room for a larger, wedding was beautiful and brand new. I loved how it is located in the same building they make the wine. It makes for great entertainment for guests to explore during cocktails. The only thing that I noticed that was negative, was that they didn't have a nice outdoor location for a large ceremony. (I'm planning for 250+) They said that they were planning to have an area landscaped for this, but when I was meeting with them there were no definate plans in the works. And there really wasn't an indoor rain plan area.
  • edited December 2011
    I have never been to a wedding at Stephen F. Austin so I can't help you there. I would say to really weigh the pros and cons of each. We visited the hamilton twelve prior to choosing Vintage Villas and thought it was really quaint and excluded. We just didn't like the fact that it was quite a drive from any hotels, and with an open bar it didn't seem like a good idea. So if you do choose a hotel that is also another perk you might want to revist. Ultimately when you see the venue you will know if it matches you and your FI's style or not GL!
  • henderstraushenderstraus member
    First Comment
    edited December 2011
    Definitely think about the look/feel/theme of your wedding. Do you want an outdoor area? All indoors? You should be 100% happy with your venue as it affects every one of your next steps. So carefully weigh the pros and cons, not just prices.
  • edited December 2011
    You know what ladies, you are all so right. I really should not be only looking at the bottom line. I am going to have to look at this venue for the rest of my life. I really wanted an outdoor wedding with an indoor reception. I should make that happen if that is what I really want. My FI is all about making me happy and he keeps saying its not just about the money, but I am sure some of you know it is hard to not think about the investment you are making. I will let you all know what i decide. I am going to go back to my top three one more time and choose this week! OH BOY! Let me know if you know any other facilities that are hidden gems for small weddings I might not know about too!
    The future Mrs. Anderson! Check out my blog: http://misadventuresofanexyankee.blogspot.com/ Wedding Countdown Ticker
  • edited December 2011
    Did you see the new venue I posted the other day - The Wild Onion Ranch in South Austin? It's awesome for an outdoor wedding if you are reconsidering venues. http://www.thewildonionranch.com/index2.php My niece got married at Hamilton 12 and it was great. Most was outdoors, my little nephew (2 at the time) fell into the pool out on the patio, and the food was delish. My boss just went to a wedding there last weekend and said the same thing. I guess it's just kind of far out and away from everything. The SFA hotel is nice, but based on what you said it is a totally different feel - not really an outdoor venue. I've not been to Mandola but a wedding at a winery sounds fabulous. Good luck - venue was the worst part of this process for me too. :  )  
    ~ Trish Finfer
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  • edited December 2011
    I posted a few weeks back about a ceremony venue called Chapel Dulcinea (www.chapeldulcinea.org). It's a great venue for small weddings and FREE!!! If you like the outdoor feel, it's worth looking at the site. There is also a free reception site there but it's more so for quick receptions, not an all out dinner/party.There is a beautiful reception hall near the property (the name escapes me at the moment and my crazy blocker at work won't let me access the site!) that has a decent fee (about $3000) and is within walking distance of the ceremony site (if I remember correctly).
  • edited December 2011
    mandola's is awesome! i love it! we are actually doing our rehearsal dinner there. the food is great, the grounds are beautiful!
  • lotusbrendalotusbrenda member
    First Comment
    edited December 2011
    I have not been to either, but Mandola's made the news recently with a feud with a neighbor and some dogs were killed.  I wouldn't want my wedding to be caught up or affected by any feud:http://www.statesman.com/news/content/news/stories/local/2009/07/07/0707mandola.html
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