May 26, 2009

Two Very Different Venues for Philly Area Couples

Wedding

I go to networking events in the area when I can. This month brought me to two very different but extraordinary venues that I wanted to share. I can imagine either of them hosting a fantastic soiree. I’m truly kicking myself for not bringing my camera, but I’ll post links and you’d better believe I’ll have it ready next time.

I attended the Brides.com event for event professionals from the Philadelphia and South Jersey areas at the FUEL House in Philadelphia. It was originally constructed in 1902 as the Girard Corn Exchange Bank and served as the home to MTV’s Real World Philadelphia series. When it’s not hosting fabulous events, it is the scene for exhibitions “to aid the launch of successful artistic careers by creating a truly unique and singular forum for the display of art.” F.U.E.L. is an acronym for Fostering Undergraduate Exposure on Location.

Next door to the Betsy Ross House in Old City, the venue at 249 Arch St. boasts an open floorplan of oak floors, fantastic columns, and floor to ceiling windows. I loved the exquisite mezzanine level marble wrap-around balcony that looks below. The centerpiece to the scene is the enormous crystal chandelier hovering above it all. It can hold a maximum of 450 people. I think this captures the place perfectly,

These stunning architectural details are housed in a multi-tiered structure, creating an intimate yet opulent space where classic form meets modern function.

I could easily see this space transformed into a posh reception hall overflowing with white hydrangeas everywhere and black and white damask accents or simple all white living room setups for guests to socialize. Maybe a hint of Tiffany blue too! I’ll leave that up to the wedding planners.

The other event was the Professional Wedding Guild May luncheon held at the John James Audubon Center at Mill Grove. Built in 1762, it was the historic home of artist, naturalist, and writer John J. Audubon. Most of it remains unchanged and serves as an educational center, museum, and bird sanctuary.

The rental space includes over 200 acres of fields, woods, rolling hills, hiking trails, and all around green serenity. They have a brand new all-wood pavilion for dancing and dining for up to 250 guests. But it was the 19th century bank barn with its exposed wood beams and high ceilings and old cracked and textured walls that did it for me. Just lovely for a ceremony or cocktail hour. Jeffrey Miller Catering is the exclusive caterer to the venue.

A complete 180 from what I can imagine with the FUEL House, I can see a wedding at the John J Audubon Center covered in rich red and orange hues with a casual almost-country feel. Big wreaths of magnolia greens and flower girls with gerbera daisies. Maybe perfect for the bride and groom who opt for the seersucker over the Italian silk. Then again, I’d love to be proven wrong!

I would love to shoot a wedding at either of these fantastic venues. Check them out and let me know what you think!

Happy planning!

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