From Rustic to Regal: Unique Wedding Venues for Every Couple
February 9, 2018|
By Alicia Elkin
The first thing on a newly engaged couple’s to-do list is finding the perfect venue for the big day. This can be a daunting task, especially given the overwhelming number of articles, tips, tricks and advice available at every turn. Couples must determine whether their special day will be indoor or outdoor, traditional or unique, simple or elaborate—and they must do so before someone else books the venue on their preferred date.
From rustic to regal, West Virginia has a unique and memorable venue perfect for any type of wedding. Whether the future Mr. and Mrs. are looking for a site rich in history, the ambiance of a fairy tale or the rustic charm of a wilderness destination, West Virginia’s venues promise a once-in-a-lifetime experience where couples can celebrate the beginning of their happily ever after.
Berkeley Springs Castle
Berkeley Springs Castle has been called a fairy tale wedding venue by many. The building is West Virginia’s only English-Norman castle and is an architectural masterpiece nestled on the side of a mountain overlooking the warm mineral springs of Berkeley Springs in the state’s Eastern Panhandle.
This national and West Virginia registered historical landmark was built by Colonel Samuel Taylor Suite between 1885-1891. Constructed of stone and hand-crafted wood, the property was restored by the most recent owner, Andrew Gosline, with furnishings and landscaping from the castle’s original era, creating a rustic ambiance.
The castle has a large ballroom with an elegant stairway leading to a second-floor atrium. The grounds include an arched bridge over a waterfall and paths throughout the surrounding forest. The venue also offers separate rooms for the bride and her party and the groom and his party to dress, as well as endless photo opportunities for the ceremony and reception.
Berkeley Springs Castle hosts upward of 20 weddings per year and can accommodate as many as 70 guests. An on-site wedding planner is available, and couples can bring in their caterer of choice. For more information, visit berkeleyspringscastle.org.
The Confluence Resort
The farm, the views, the cliffs and the rivers: that’s what makes The Confluence Resort a special venue for that once-in-a-lifetime experience. With more than 300 acres bordering the Gauley River National Recreation Area and direct access to both the Gauley and Meadow rivers, this Hico, WV, venue is especially attractive to wilderness lovers. The rustic resort also boasts multiple breathtaking mountain views, historical landmarks, a 70-foot waterfall, nature trails and endless possibilities for adventure.
“The Confluence Resort is a beautiful venue,” says Pervis Major, the resort’s owner. “Brides and photographers swoon over the background scenery, and the old barn and Cheri Bluff ceremony sites are crowd favorites.”
The micro-sized family business has grown since 2005 from 10 events to more than 20 per year. With nearly 13 years of experience in hosting events, The Confluence Resort has collected a list of preferred caterers but also allows couples the flexibility of choosing their own.
With a wide variety of ceremony and reception locations, couples can accommodate any party size during the months of April through November. For more information, visit www.confluenceresort.com.
Four Fillies Lodge
The future Mr. and Mrs. will find 19th century charm and 21st century elegance at Four Fillies Lodge. From sophisticated beauty to refined grandeur, all couples can find what they want in a wedding venue on this 78-acre property.
The venue offers a variety of unique locations for ceremonies and receptions, including The Barn with its 24-foot-tall fireplace, three lofts and numerous decks; The Chapel, a timber frame structure that fits 110 under its roof; The Red Roof Barn, which offers a memorable backdrop for events and pictures; Town, the lodge’s antique Appalachian village; and Willow Creek Riverbend with its state-protected Weeping Willow tree. Couples in search of the perfect fairy tale setting will fall in love with the Woodlands site, which was inspired by Rivendell in “Lord of the Rings.” Each with their own unique style, these locations can be further customized with rental décor and styling services available through the lodge’s sister company, Something Borrowed Something Florida and its on-site Décor Stable.
With room for up to 170 guests, couples can host a large party year-round and bring in a caterer of their choosing. For more information, visit www.fourfillieslodge.com.
West Virginia Botanic Garden
The West Virginia Botanic Garden at Tibbs Run Preserve began as the site for Morgantown’s original reservoir. The 15-acre lake that provided Morgantown with fresh water via 8 miles of wooden pipes was established in 1900. Now, an accessible trail around the original lake location accompanies several gardens, hammocks and sculptures, creating a unique and stunning setting for any couple’s special day.
“We are the only botanic garden in West Virginia, and it is iconic of the region with beautiful forests and stunning vistas,” says Bill Mills, the garden’s executive director. “The natural beauty, sense of tranquility and privacy make the venue stand out on its own.”
Developed in 1999, the West Virginia Botanic Garden has since blossomed into an 85-acre property worthy of the most regal ceremonies and receptions. The property features beautifully landscaped gardens, a shimmering pond, walking trails, flowering meadows, woodlands, sparkling streams and hemlocks. The property will soon undergo a $12 million expansion project that will add new buildings, stages and gardens.
With the capacity to host up to 250 guests, the West Virginia Botanic Garden has an indoor venue that can seat 45 for sit-down service and up to 65 for stand-up service. The adjacent lawn can accommodate a large tent for seating up to 200 guests. For more information, visit http://wvbg.org.
West Virginia State Capitol Complex
High decorative ceilings, marble walls and an unrivaled historic ambience are what make the West Virginia State Capitol Complex a regal venue for the big day. Fifty acres of landscaped grounds surround this historic building, making it popular for both indoor and outdoor wedding ceremonies and receptions year-round in the Charleston area.
The setting and history of the state capitol, as well as its stately elegance, make this property unique from all other venues. Two-thirds of the interior is marble and consists of 535,000 square feet of floor space, allowing ample space for approximately 35 ceremonies and receptions each year. Serving as the “people’s house,” the venue is open for use, when available, to individuals who would like to share their nuptials between the marble walls of the rotunda or on the beautifully landscaped grounds. While the venue does not provide catering, they do only allow one wedding per day, so couples and their guests are guaranteed to be the only wedding on any given day.