I have only been engaged for 4 months and I have learned a lot about myself. I have always seen myself as someone who wants to have a wedding in Brooklyn or Manhattan. I obsessively browsed through hundreds of weddings and was convinced that I also wanted something out of the box (which I still do). Once I began to actually look for my wedding venue, I slowly realized that I am more of an outdoorsy/nature bride. The same can be said for my fiance Michael and it totally surprised the both of us.
Now we are really infatuated with the idea of having an outdoor wedding. There were three other venues that we really loved: The Foundry, Prospect Park Boathouse and Brooklyn Botanic's Palm House. I don't know why The Foundry always seem to make it to the "affordable" wedding venues but it really isn't. It is a gorgeous blank slate but a costly price tag. I love the Brooklyn Botanic Garden and I can easily imagine getting married to the man of my dreams under a beautiful cherry blossom tree but it was over our budget (we're trying to get everything under $20,000). The Boathouse at Prospect Park came very close but it was still over our budget. After a grueling search for a venue, we decided to search further east.
Guess what? We found one!
We decided to check out a venue in Douglaston, Queens. Even after reading negative reviews about it, we went anyway and we are glad we did. Douglaston Manor is beautiful and we were almost in awe because it's a stunning sight. We were both asking ourselves "Why haven't we heard about this?" The venue is located in a secluded area on a golf course with the city skyline visible. The exterior definitely does not look a a manor, it looks like a Spanish villa and we dig it. While it looks like a villa on the outside, it has the old world charm of a vintage mansion (Is that a thing?). There are several rooms (I lost count) but the main ballroom aka Contessa Romantica features exposed wooden ceiling beams which we love. We also really like the Conservatory Room upstairs because of its high ceilings, exposed wooden beams and windows (lots of natural lights). I also love their bridal suite because it overlooks the ballroom and it has a vintage vibe. One of the important selling points for us is that they have a groom's suite which pretty much all of the other venues we've looked into do not have.
What we absolutely love is their outdoor space- they have plenty. We have the option of having our ceremony in their garden and the cocktail hour on their patio area (both garden and patio are elevated and we think it adds to the beauty of the whole day). If weather is crappy, we can have the ceremony upstairs or downstairs and have our cocktail hour in their green house which features floor to ceiling windows, overlooking the golf course. We even have access to their carts if we wanted but I doubt we'll use it (we're not really golf people). I still cannot believe this venue has gotten such horrible reviews online. We haven't set a date yet but we are all in for this venue. We actually recently attended an event that was held there so we were able to sample their dishes but that's for another blog post!