baltimore venue confusion

Hello! I am looking into venues in the Baltimore area. My family and many friends are coming locally, but we will have invitees from NYC,Los Angeles, Florida, the midwest, and so on. About a third to a half of the invitees will be flying in to BWI-

including the bride and groom!

So it is important that guests be able to easily (and affordably) get to venues and hotels, including to and from the airport,without need for a car (cabs or hotel shuttles would work).

we are looking at the standard downtown hotels: both sheratons, monaco, pier 5, tremont, 1840s, harbor court, and maybe AVAM or something.the aquarium is on my list,but i am working to get a quote from their required caterer (classic,not my favorite) and a rental quote before i fully include them on the list.

I was wondering if you all had any suggestions, knowing that a fair number of guests are flying in (no backroads venues, we can't afford shuttles), just looking to see if anyone has any additional ideas. if it's not a hotel, thats fine, but something that has a hotel partner would be fine too!

again, doesn't have to be immediately in the city, but there should be some kind of shuttle service to help guests get around (primarily to/from airport), or near to the lightrail. downtown seemed easy because they can also visit attractions easily and make a vacation out of their weekend.

Guest count: 115-150
Budget for rental: up to $4000
Food budget if bringing caterer: up to $16,000
Budget if rental/food are included (hotels): $20,000

we have money to spend and will probably exceed these numbers, though i would prefer that no one spend that much, but i know we CAN, so... i'm willing to include those budget prices.

i also wanted to add:

I am in the business. I work as a catering event manager in LA, so I don't want "cheap" but I am also not high-end fancy. but i'll "know" when things are going wrong(because they ALWAYS do), so i want to feel confident that they can be handled properly.

But i'm looking for those venues that maybe people don't think of. Like the hippodrome or something...

I anyone used the hotels I am looking at, why did you pick them?Or, on the flip, why did you NOT pick one?

Did you find ease in negotiating some of those silly things out of the contract (I have such a pet peeve with these per slice cake cutting fees- as a cater-waiter in 4 states who myself has cut over 50 cakes, I have never once seen that $1.50 fee in my paycheck, so know that it's NOT going to the person cutting the cake or to dishes or anything except straight into the company's bank account, negotiate it out!!! they dont even charge for it in LA) and these $150 charges for bartenders in hotels... silly... OUT. oy...

but wondering what things you negotiated in or negotiated out, and which venues you did this in.

Many thanks!

hehe (hope i save people money there too)

Re: baltimore venue confusion

  • Have you considered the Baltimore Museum of Industry? It's a pretty cool place to host a wedding, and is just on the western side of the harbor. Or the Baltimore Science Center?
  • Are you planning from LA?  I would look into hiring a planner, it might make things a bit easier.  Do you have time to come in to look at venues? 

    A couple of thoughts - if you choose to have your wedding at a hotel venue you should def. negotiate a couple of rooms/bridal suite being comped.  Many will offer this, but sometimes you have to ask.

    I don't think you should worry too much about guests getting to/from the airport.  Not all hotels in the downtown Inner Harbor area will have this shuttle service.  Your guests are probably mostly adults and with information from you and your fiance and family they should be able to either get a cab, shuttle or train into the city.  Instead pick a venue/hotel in a walkable area so that they will not need a car when they are in town.   

    Some thoughts for hotel block and/or wedding venue:

    Hotel Monaco


    Pier 5
  • I will send you a pm with a lot of information.
  • I was also going to recommend the Baltimore Museum of Industry OR the Visionary Arts Museum! 
  • We got married at the Edgar Allen Poe Museum. It  is a beautiful venue.

    I would also highly recommend our photographer Soheil Soheily who knows all the vendors.
  • Hello,
    I got married at the Hippodrome Theater 3 yrs ago.  The have a ballroom which is beautiful.  You can also get married on stage (which is more expensive).  The have in house catering which was really wonderful.  They will make whatever type of food you want...we had a 3-course meal with wine pairings, but a previous couple had a "our favorite foods" theme and had hot dogs, popcorn and cotton candy.  They are able to handle anything and you can get your cake from anywhere (I can't remember a cake cutting fee).  It's extremely easy to get to and within walking distance from the Inner Harbor Marriot (2 blocks).  Let me know if you have any more questions.  Email me because I'm no longer on the Knot very often.  GL!
    ayrikawhite at hotmail dot com
  • My daughter just got married and our caterer was awesome. They started in corporate events and are expanding to weddings. Rouge catering...very personal and excellent food and service. Price was the best in town believe me we checked around. Would hire them again in a heart beat! My son is next this year and if possible will have them again! Out of my hand this time!
  • I would put in my vote for the Intercontinental Harbor Court. Will be getting married there this December. The coordinator, Scotlyn Campanella, is an absolute joy to work with. She's on top of evertyhing, acts as day-of coordinator, and is really considerate and sweet. They have 2 distinct ballrooms that you can use; 1 for the ceremony and another for the reception, 2 baby grand pianos on site, a gorgeous spiral staircase right in the lobby, and take care of a lot of the decorating for you. Something else that is particularly great, they give you a bridal suite for the night BEFORE and the night of the wedding. They also only schedule 1 wedding per day, which is really nice. Sorry for all the info, and again, this is fairly one-sided. Oh, and they would definitely be within your budget. Hope this is somewhat helpful. Best of luck!
  • Have you seen 1840's Plaza? The ballroom is amazing with courtyards for cocktail hours. Check it out ...
  • thank you all! i greatly appreciate it!
  • And if you don't like any of the above and do want to go a little off the beaten path, the Hampton Inn near BWI has a program where if 25 nights are booked they provide a 55-passenger bus to take guests from the hotel to the ceremony and reception.  If you go here, click on the wedding package link (it's a PDF) - I don't know if other hotels in the area do this.
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