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Rec for a Wedding and Reception

I have a friend who wants to have a memorable wedding and reception in the same venue. He will spend as much as he can, but he's getting crazy quotes: State Room - $40,000; Seaport Hotel - $30,000 and so on. They are both in the hospitality business with fine dining experience, so they do have high standards, but not $350/person high. He looked at the Stonehedge Inn; it was too small. There will be about 170 guests coming from as far as France and he is looking to spend, I would guess, about $90/person, all inclusive (room plus food, not liquor.) Any thoughts?

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  1. Personally I don't feel "memorable" and "hotel" generally go hand in hand. There's just something really sterile about a hotel ballroom, no matter how you fancy it up. I think they would be better off selecting a stunning location and hiring a caterer. A great resource for finding both Boston/New England locations and caterers is www.meetingpath,com. Although it's geared towards event planners it's easy enough to use if you're an average joe.

    I also think your most memorable locations in this area are places with water views- Exchange Conference Center and Inn at Castle Hill are two that come to mind.

    1 Reply
    1. re: Chris VR

      Hmmm, the Crane Estate. I like that idea. With a mind like that you must live in Melrose.

    2. What about the Lyman Estate in Waltham? It has so much character and you can do the ceremony in the ballroom. The downside is that they won't be able to seat all the guests together - the ballroom will be converted to tables/seating and then there are (if I remember correctly) 3 or 4 other rooms for seating. I'm not sure of pricing now, but when we were married there (8 yrs. ago), it was mid-range in price for venues. We brought in our own caterer (Tables of Content) and 8-piece band and had approx. 120 guests and it was fantastic.

      1. I have heard of great weddings/receptions at the Omni Parker House, Royal Sonesta and the Boston Harbor Hotel, to name a few

        1 Reply
        1. re: saltyair

          Though it's probably around the same price level as the places the OP mentioned, for the record, I went to a fantastic wedding this weekend at the Boston Harbor Hotel in the Wharf Room (right on the water). The food was excellent as was the service. The overall setting/decorations (is this done by the location or do people bring this stuff in?) were pretty ideal.

        2. Look at longwoodevents.com and see if their locations appeal. I've had three large events at the Brookline location and all went off very well; the rooms are very pretty, the staff does a good job and the food was well prepared.

          1. The USS Constitution Museum in Charlestown is nice for functions.
            Wife and I had a large party there a few years ago catered by Gourmet Caterers (Boston) who did a great job.