Wednesday, July 01, 2009

I LOVE my venue!

Mr. NationalHarbor and I are getting married at the Oxon Hill Manor in Oxon Hill, Maryland. We are getting married on Halloween and I was trying to find a venue that had the right feel. A giant hotel downtown could have worked I suppose but this one just felt right from the second we drove onto the grounds.

Our wedding planner suggested this location the very first time I met her. We were having cocktails and trading ideas and when I told her I was getting married on Halloween she exclaimed: Oh you should see if you can get the Oxon Hill Manor! I immediately went home to check out the place on the Internet and it looked perfect. I took off of work the next day, grabbed my fiance' and my parents and headed out to view the building and grounds.

I know I am biased but I think it has everything you need if you are having a smaller reception. It can hold up to 170, I believe. The Manor has its own brides' room upstairs where you can get ready, a drawing room, a library, a dining room, a beautiful long driveway, a spacious outdoor area in the back with fantastic views of the city and grounds, a pool with fountains and a mini garden on the side where lots of brides like to have their pictures taken I am told. Sadly, because of the time when I am getting married I won't be able to use the grounds for pictures though. They also have a number of chairs and tables in storage which you can use if you like which is included in the fee.

And speaking of fees-- that is the best part- the Manor is only $3,300 if you are a PG county resident and $4,500 I believe, if you are not. You don't even have to be the resident. My parents live in PG county but I do not. The administrator said as long as they sign the main paperwork that is fine and we could still get the discount! As I was writing the check for the deposit-which is only $750 by the way- a bride called checking on availability for October of 2011! The administrator shook her head and said that the phone rings off the hook all day with brides checking on dates. Apparently word has gotten out about the place. She said they do not start taking reservations for the coming year until they get back on January 3rd from Christmas break. She said that last year 3 couples had actually camped out the night before and were waiting for her when she arrived to open the door at 8 a.m. so they could ensure that they could get their date of choice. She then excused herself from the room. When she returned the phone rang again and incredibly it was a bride asking about an afternoon wedding on the exact same day as me!!! I had gotten my choice by the skin of my teeth!

I made sure I handed my deposit check over quick-- let me tell you!

The place really is great and I can only think of 3 drawbacks. 1) No red wine or red flowers. Oxon Hill Manor is owned by the Maryland Parks Service and since it has been recently refurbished with all new hardwood floors they will not allow anything red. 2) You cannot get on the grounds until 2 hours before your ceremony starts. For some-- this may be a problem and 3) you cannot actually cook on the grounds. They had a bad fire a few years ago and I am not sure if that had anything to do with their decision but they only have a warming kitchen now. My caterer said that was not a problem and that there are a lot of places that have that restriction though.

So if anyone is looking for a place which has some charm and are on a small to medium sized budget I highly recommend Oxon Hill Manor!

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Blogger avvl said...

I'm getting married there, too! Trying to decide between a date in the summer or in the fall. Your picture issue sounds like a head-scratcher... in deciding my dates I tried to take into account sunsets because I'm obsessed with having awesome photographs! :)

Friday, July 03, 2009 11:51:00 PM  

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