It’s no secret that planning a wedding can be a daunting task, but selecting the perfect venue can make all the difference. Whether you’re envisioning a rustic barn wedding or a luxurious ballroom affair, the United States is home to some of the most stunning wedding venues in the world. From picturesque vineyards to breathtaking mountain views, the options are endless.
But with so many incredible options to choose from, it can be overwhelming to narrow down the search. I’ve done weddings all over the United States, so here are some of my favorites I’ve come across over the years.
Factors to Consider When Choosing a Wedding Venue
Choosing a wedding venue is an important decision and there are many factors to consider before making a final choice. Here are some key factors to consider:
Capacity and Location
The first thing to consider when choosing a wedding venue is the capacity and location. You’ll need to determine how many guests you’ll be inviting and choose a venue that can comfortably accommodate them. You’ll also want to consider the location of the venue and whether it’s easily accessible for your guests. I have seen some huge wedding venues with only 20 guests, and it just looks silly.
Style and Atmosphere
The style and atmosphere of the venue should also be taken into consideration. Do you want a modern and sleek venue or something more rustic and charming? The atmosphere of the venue should match the overall theme and vibe of your wedding.
Your budget will also play a major role in deciding on a wedding venue. Determine how much you’re willing to spend on the venue and make sure to stick to it. Keep in mind that some venues may require additional expenses such as catering, decorations, and rentals.
Top Outdoor Wedding Venues in the United States
There’s something magical about an outdoor wedding. The natural beauty of the surroundings adds a special touch to the day. Here are some of the top outdoor wedding venues in the United States:
The Barn at Gibbet Hill – Groton, Massachusetts
The Barn at Gibbet Hill offers a rustic and romantic setting with stunning views of the Massachusetts countryside. The restored 100-year-old barn is the perfect backdrop for a cozy and intimate wedding. I’ve done two weddings here, and I adore it.
Dunton Hot Springs – Dolores, Colorado
For a truly unique wedding experience, consider Dunton Hot Springs in Colorado. The resort offers a variety of outdoor wedding venues including a meadow, a waterfall, and a ghost town. The ghost town is really fun.
The Greenbrier – White Sulphur Springs, West Virginia
The Greenbrier is a luxurious resort that offers a variety of outdoor wedding venues set against the backdrop of the beautiful West Virginia mountains. From the elegant North Lawn to a charming gazebo, there are plenty of options to choose from. I once did two weddings here in one day. I was finishing up one wedding, when another couple approached my and said their photographer never showed up. I did it for free.
Most Unique Wedding Venues in the United States
If you’re looking for a wedding venue that’s truly one-of-a-kind, the United States has plenty of options. Here are some of the most unique wedding venues in the country:
Best Destination Wedding Locations in the United States
If you’re considering a destination wedding, the United States has plenty of options. Here are some of the best destination wedding locations in the country:
Napa Valley, California
For a romantic and intimate wedding, consider Napa Valley. The region is home to some of the best wineries in the world and offers stunning views of the California countryside. These are pretty popular in northern California, so if you love wine like I do, choose a winery wedding.
For a charming and historic wedding, consider Savannah. The city is home to stunning architecture, beautiful parks, and a vibrant art scene. Oh, and those peaches!
For a tropical and romantic wedding, consider Maui. The island offers stunning beaches, breathtaking views, and a laid-back atmosphere that’s perfect for a destination wedding. I’v been lucky enough to do three Hawaii weddings. They were all nothing short of extraordinary.
Wedding Venues with Stunning Views in the United States
For those looking for a wedding venue with a breathtaking view, the United States has plenty of options. Here are some of the best wedding venues with stunning views:
The Grand Canyon – Arizona
For a truly unforgettable wedding experience, consider getting married at the Grand Canyon. The stunning views of the canyon are the perfect backdrop for a romantic and intimate wedding. My first Grand Canyon wedding was in 1999, and I returned exactly 20 years later when the same couple did a vow renewal at the same spot.
Big Sur – California
Big Sur offers some of the most stunning views in the country. The rugged coastline, towering mountains, and lush forests are the perfect setting for a rustic and romantic wedding.
The Rocky Mountains – Colorado
The Rocky Mountains offer some of the most majestic views in the country. With snow-capped peaks, crystal-clear lakes, and dense forests, the mountains provide a stunning backdrop for a mountain wedding. There are many resorts in Colorado with beautiful wedding venues.
Wedding Venues with Historical Significance in the United States
For those interested in history, there are plenty of wedding venues in the United States with historical significance. Here are some of the best wedding venues with historical significance:
The Biltmore Estate – Asheville, North Carolina
The Biltmore Estate is a historic mansion that was built in the late 1800s. The estate offers a variety of wedding venues including a grand ballroom and a garden terrace. My very first wedding in the U.S. took place here.
The Alamo – San Antonio, Texas
For a truly unique and historic wedding, consider getting married at the Alamo. The historic site offers a variety of wedding venues including a beautiful courtyard and a historic chapel.
The USS Midway – San Diego, California
For a wedding with a patriotic flair, consider getting married on the USS Midway. The aircraft carrier was commissioned in 1945 and offers a variety of wedding venues including the flight deck and the hangar bay. I photographed a wedding here for a Navy chief and his bride.
How to Choose the Perfect Wedding Venue for Your Special Day
Choosing the perfect wedding venue can be a daunting task, but with the right preparation, it can be a fun and exciting experience. Here are some tips for choosing the perfect wedding venue:
It’s important to start your search for a wedding venue early. Many popular venues book up quickly, so it’s important to start your search as soon as possible.
Determine Your Budget
Before starting your search, determine your budget and stick to it. This will help you narrow down your options and avoid overspending.
Consider Your Style and Theme
The style and theme of your wedding should match the atmosphere of the venue. Consider what kind of wedding you want and choose a venue that complements your vision.
Visit the Venue in Person
It’s important to visit the venue in person before making a final decision. This will give you a better idea of the space and help you envision your special day.
Choosing the perfect wedding venue is an important decision and there are many factors to consider. Whether you’re looking for a rustic barn wedding or a luxurious ballroom affair, the United States has plenty of options to choose from. From stunning outdoor venues to unique and historic locations, there’s a perfect wedding venue out there for every couple.