Beware of the Lulu Island Winery! Warning to all brides

I thought that this was the ideal venue for my wedding next September. I was new, inexpensive, centrally located for all my guests from around the lower mainland and best of all they offered a complimentary wine tour and tasting for your guests while your off having pictures taken.

When we first visited this venue in April of this year we fell in love and the staff seemed so helpful. We were told that they were planning on putting in a kitchen over the summer and upgrading the floors, paint ect, but that they had a wedding booked in August so it would all be done before then. We had some other venues to see but nothing really compared so in early May I called to confirm and booked our date.
At this point I was told that there was a stall with the renos, that the permits had not come through yet but they were hoping to get done this fall. I booked my date with them thinking that with a wedding the following fall there would be plenty of time and the girl assured me that they would keep me updated on the progress of things.
By August I hadnt heard anything and I was getting nervous. I called them again and spoke with another employee who told me that were not making confirmations at the time until after the renovations were completed.

I discussed things over with my fiance, parents and in-laws and we decided that we should start looking at other venues again, unfortunately it became apparent quickly that everything else in our price range has already been booked through to Jan of 2013.

I again contact the winery urging them for some information and explaining that if they did not come through I would have to cancel the wedding and postpone (save the dates have gone out and we have already booked our honeymoon). I was told that it was because people had been way for the summer as to why they had not received their permits yet but they were pretty sure that things would be all sorted out by December.

At this point I am beyond concerned, so my mom went to speak with the city of Richmond and this is what she was told:
1. They have submitted an application for renovations permits but for permits to put in a restaurant.
2. Because they are on agricultural land the application process is incredibly lengthy as they have to go before the council members and then get approval for construction separately (this can take up to 2 years)
3. They hadnt even submitted for the permits until May of this year (after our initial conversation).
4. And finally that the venue is not even licensed to accommodate large parties.

I feel totally duped. I have been lied to and strung along all this time. I will never recommend this venue and I urge you to pass it by and warn other brides that you know. I hope that no-one else is booked at this venue but if you are please know that your not alone.

Re: Beware of the Lulu Island Winery! Warning to all brides

  • edited December 2011
    I'm so sorry this happened to you, but I really appreciate you posting this. My fiance and I looked at this venue about a month ago and were considering it, but your story has definitely convinced me otherwise.

    I hope, at the least, you got to enjoy an amazing honeymoon!
  • That's TERRIBLE!  I hope that you have since found another beautiful site.
    Thank you for the heads up...

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