One of the biggest decisions, if not THE biggest decisions when wedding planning is choosing a venue and date. For us a venue and date came hand in hand. We decided to be flexible with our date in order to find the venue of our dreams. Find a venue does not just fall on your lap for many and it includes so much research and work. We definitely learned a thing or two along the way when selecting venues to tour. I want to share with you some tips along with our experience touring our venue…and finally reveal to you the venue we selected for our wedding!
From the beginning of our wedding planning we fell in love with the idea of a rustic themed wedding, in my extensive search I came across a little place named….drum roll please… Lorimar Vineyards and Winery !
This beautiful location is in the heart of Temecula Valley in Southern California. It is a beautiful tuscan-style winery with two beautiful options: The Vineyard Lawn and the Barrel Room & Ceremony Lawn. We decided on the Barrel Room & Ceremony Lawn…but more about that later! Now back to the tour…
Booking An Appointment
I came across Lorimar online and just fell in love with its natural beauty. You can find a quick and easy contact form to move forward with booking an appointment HERE or always do it by phone! Within 24 hours I had a response email from one of their wedding consultants Amy. I communicated via email some of my must haves along with my budget and my need to stay within my budget, Amy reassured us they would definitely work with my budget. This was a HUGE plus on my end and put Lorimar at the top of my list with that comment alone!
If you are touring multiple venues try to schedule at least 90 minutes for your tour plus travel time in between. We only viewed a total of 3 and split them up into 2 days. We allowed for enough time to drive, eat, and unexpected Lia things in between. Amy did share with us some brides book up 8 per day! WOW!
Do Your Research In Advance
You can find some basic information regarding pricing, packages, services, and venue capacity online. I made sure to get some ideas of what packages include along with basic services I should expect. Along with this information I also found Lorimar Winery and Lorimar Weddings on Instagram to get some real live images of weddings on their property.
The day of visualizing what Amy spoke of was so easy to do! I could already envision where I would walk down the aisle, where my guests would sit, and where we would dance the night away. I definitely recommend finding your venue on social media.
Who To Bring To Your Tour
This is one of those wedding pieces I say having your partner is a MUST! We wanted our moms present too for second opinions and to keep reminding us of our responsibilities in case we got swept away by all the wedding bliss. Unfortunately mine was out of town but my soon to be mother in law (STBMIL) joined in on the fun. We also had Lia there…but isn’t she always around?
During our tour with Amy she made sure to address any questions and described the day not just to us but also to my STBMIL. She definitely knew that although it was our day her opinions and concerns are important.
What To Bring
Silly me, I didn’t get my wedding planner and organizer until after we booked a venue. However, if you have yours already-bring it! Of course with the excitement there also comes a lot of questions and decisions to be made. If you have any questions or concerns-write them down and bring them with you. We asked all the questions we had, even though Amy had addressed most during the tour. She was such a sweetheart and answered our questions 2, 3, and even 4 times if we asked lol!
I also made sure to bring my camera and phone to take some pictures in case I needed a refresher when making our decision. I was actually encouraged by Amy to take pictures of everything so we wouldn’t forget.
What To Ask
Questions to ask depends on what it is important for you. We recommend you have at least the following answered:
- Guest capacity for the venue
- Weekday VS. Weekend Pricing, Off-Season VS. On-Season Pricing
- How long will a date be held- Lorimar has an amazing 7 day holding period which gives the couple a sufficient amount of time to think about it without fear of loosing their date or quote
- Deposit amount- find out what your total deposit is and if there are any payment plans you can take use of
- Price per person- Find out the price as well as what is included
- Meal options: plated, buffet, or BYO
- Alcohol options: cash bar, hosted bar, partially hosted, BYO
- Children pricing- we are having an adult only wedding minus our kids
- Noise ordinances- this will impact the length of your wedding as well as the location and end time
- Does the venue provide a day-of coordinator- SUPER important. We are so thankful to know Lorimar will provide one and leave us headache free so we can enjoy our day
- Vendor policy- is there a preferred list, can you bring your own things, when are vendor agreements due, must vendors be licensed
- Decorations- are DIY decorations allowed? Will the venue set them up for you? Once again Lorimar comes in with the win to make sure the bride, groom, and our friends and family get to enjoy and not have to set anything up
Of course you can ask many more and chances are the person in charge of giving you the tour will already include them as part of the tour…but better safe than sorry!
What Happens After
After your tour is done you might feel a combination of excitement and nervousness. There is a lot of information that is discussed and a lot to think about. If you are looking at more than one venue you have to consider and weigh out the pros and cons of each place to make sure you make the best decision for yourself. After you leave your tours I recommend sending a thank you email and asking any additional questions or clarifications you may need to help assist your decision. Building a good connection with your venue is important from the get go. They understand what a special day it is for you so don’t be afraid to reach out.
Following our tour we were gifted a free wine tasting for the day and we enjoyed some wine and food while we played the tour back in our heads. I remember getting into the car after we viewed Lorimar and telling Marcos “I LOVE it here! I can actually see our wedding!” He smiled and had the look he gets when he knows that I won’t stop until I get what I want. What can I say I know what I want! The connection and safety I felt with the Wedding Department at Lorimar was indescribable, if you feel that go for it! Trust your gut bride-to-be’s !
If you have any additional tips or want to share your stories leave them in the comments! Stay tuned for more wedding planning next Monday!!!
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