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Wedding Reception in Finger Lakes Region

Haymarket, Virginia
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50 posts
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Wedding Reception in Finger Lakes Region

My fiance and I recently moved to the Binghamton area and we're interesting in having our wedding in the Finger Lakes region. We would like somewhere on/near one of the lakes for about 100 people with a reasonable pricetag (< $50 per person). Also we want to have it kind of soon, say October - November, so we'd need a place that has a nice indoor ballroom since it's going to be chilly. I've found a few places that we want to see - La Tourelle, Sherwood Inn, Mirabeau Inn, Esperanza Mansion, and Fountainebleau Inn. Any tips on these place or others (wineries perhaps?) would be fantastic!! Thanks much - NK

Doylestown...
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1. Re: Wedding Reception in Finger Lakes Region

I've never had a function at these places, so can't vouch for pricing or catering service, but you may also want to check out facilities at Belhurst Castle and Glenora Inn. But I don't think Glenora has a "ballroom". Not sure which, if any, wineries might make their facilities open for affairs....check out the listings at senecalakewine.com and keukawinetrail.com where you can find contact info for all the wineries....then make some calls.

Brooklyn, NY
2 posts
1 review
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2. Re: Wedding Reception in Finger Lakes Region

You may have already picked your spot, but just in case...

My husband and I live in Brooklyn and got married in Skaneateles earlier this year in February, specifically at Willard Memorial Chapel in Auburn (15-minute drive from Skaneateles), where the windows and lamps are Tiffanny originals. (It's simply a gorgeous chapel!) We had our reception at the Lodge at Welch Allyn in Skaneateles Falls, just a few minutes drive from Skaneateles. I can't recommend the Lodge highly enough. Their wedding coordinator, if she's still there, Paula, is a dream - professional, expreienced, responsive, and helpful. Wedding packages start at $49.95/person, excluding alcohol, and the food is good. There is a facility fee though, but you get the entire place to yourself and the grounds are really beautiful. It's on a little pond. You can check out their website at http://thelodge.welchallyn.com.

My husband and I wanted to find a place that was affordable (New York city prices are ridiculous), but which still had a "wow" factor for guests. The Lodge provided it, and everyone who attended our wedding still raves about what a great venue it was. As part of our hunting for a place, we also checked out the Sherwood Inn, Mirbeau, and the Springside Inn in Auburn. Here are our thoughts:

Sherwood Inn: beautiful site, but the catering manager seemed extremely busy and rarely returned our calls. We were finally able to schedule a meeting with her. At the meeting, she had to leave us 3 times since she was also serving as a hostess for the restaurant that day. She seemed harried, like she had too many things going on at once. I didn't have faith that she'd be able to give us or our wedding celebration the attention it needed. So, while we initially had our heart set on the Sherwood, we passed it over for the Lodge. (Paula at the Lodge was the most responsive of all the folks I called. She got back to me within a few hours and this was the case throughout our dealings with her.)

Mirbeau - the food is incredible, but it is very expensive. I believe their cheapest package was $125/person, excluding alcohol. Also, they can't fit more than 50 people indoors. Otherwise, it has to be outside in a tent and there's a charge for that, too.

Springside Inn - nice grounds and the food is decent. The ballroom where they hold most weddings was lovely. Additionally, the prices are very inexpensive. I can't remember them off the top of my head, but I think the website is www.springsideinn.com. The downsides were that there was no guarantee that you'd be the only wedding that day and the ratio of server to guest was very high. I think it was something like 1 server for every 30 guests, but can't recall.

Skaneateles is a lovely town to get married in. Guests have a variety of inns and B&Bs to choose from, and there's a holiday inn in Auburn approximately a 15-minute drive away. A lot of our guests initially wondered why we were making them travel to the middle of central NY for the wedding, but once they got there, they completely understood. To this day, people talk about what a great time they had at the wedding and how lovely the town was.

Good luck to you and your fiance! Have a wonderful wedding!

Brooklyn, NY
2 posts
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3. Re: Wedding Reception in Finger Lakes Region

Two addendums to the posting above:

1) The Lodge has a dance floor and the main reception area is huge. There's also a fire place and a balcony for guests to walk onto.

2) The facility fee varies by season and you can oftentimes bargain it down.

fingerlakes
2 posts
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4. Re: Wedding Reception in Finger Lakes Region

Hi, My fiance and I are actually looking for something similiar I've looked at most of the places that you've mentioned. The Esperanza is amazing! The Mansion is beautiful, and the view is perfect! The price is extremely high and the bar prices are way to much for us! I have to confess that was my favorite spot!The Fountaineblue Inn is adorable, but the owner didn't seem very friendly, I spoke to one of the cateers that go's there and they said she is really hard to work with.She has a lot of rules and didn't seem to want to work with my ideas. I'm going to ckeck the sherwood inn's prices next, the grounds are really pretty and the owners seem very nice. Also check out Emerson park which is at the end of the lake. My friend had her ceremony and reception there and it turned out beautiful! The lodge in skaneateles is really nice as well, the food is great, and it would be perfect for a fall wedding. Hope I was helpful. If you find any other spots would love to hear about them!

Haymarket, Virginia
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5. Re: Wedding Reception in Finger Lakes Region

Hi, actually my husband and I did seal the deal on Lake Cayuga @ Sheldrake Point winery last June. We found Sheldrake to be the right atmosphere and price point for us. You have to be OK with having your reception in a tent, it is a nice tent, but it's no mansion. The views of the lake and grounds make up for it, at least for us they did. Sheldrake was the most affordable by far (our entrees were $35) which is way better than $50 or $60. For a few photos you can look here: kvphotography.com/blog/…index.html.

I think prices went up this year, but I highly recommend Sheldrake for a beautiful lakeside winery wedding. I don't feel like we sacrificed anything by going here even though it was more affordable. Happy to answer more questions if you have any.

Congrats & good luck!

New York
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98 posts
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6. Re: Wedding Reception in Finger Lakes Region

I live in the Finger Lakes region, right on the Seneca Lake Wine Trail, in Lodi NY. Check out Giinny Lee Cafe at Wagner Winery. Several B&B's close by, motels/hotels in Geneva, Ithaca, Elmira/Horseheads and Watkins Glen for your guests 920 - 30 minute drives). Many couples have their ceremonies right there on the lawn by the vineyard (even during the Fall) with a nice view of the lake. There is also a swan pond that many choose as there backdrop (the swans are mean though; pretty to look at but they'll bite your toes!!! There is a fence around the pond). Some chose to have their service in this historic chapel in the village of Lodi, a mile from the winery. Now, the village of Lodi itself isn't that sweet; very "rustic" but the chapel has a small rotundra surrounded by stained glass. I think it's a museum or something; they can give you info at the Ginny Lee. Regarding the cafe, we like the food there and have been to a wedding or two. Considering it for our 25th Wedding Anniversary gala. They have both a winery and a micro brewery on grounds. It seems to be reasonable. it's not ultra fancy but is a nice winery wedding experience in the country and our area is BEAUTIFUL in the Fall. Not only the lakes but waterfalls and glens too. Oh, Taughannock Farms Inn in Trumansburg is located right on Cayuga Lake in a State Park. I think they do weddings. Also on Cayuga Lake, in Aurora, is the Aurora Inn. Nice.

Esperanza Mansion does have a killer view. we've been there for dinner and have been seated near an outdoor tent which is utilized as the cocktail area prior to dinner in the reception area.

Belhurst Castle and Geneva on the Lake are also nice. There is a Ramada Inn in Geneva, right on Seneca Lake, but that might be a bit too ordinary for you.

Congratulations!!!

fingerlakes
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7. Re: Wedding Reception in Finger Lakes Region

Thank you for all the helpful tips! I never considered Wagner before. I have been to wagner and yes those swans are nasty!!

Geneva New York
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5 posts
97 reviews
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8. Re: Wedding Reception in Finger Lakes Region

Did you stumble accross Cobtree Vacation Rental Homes in Geneva overlooking Seneca Lake and who offer a wedding venue where you can erect a tent. We charge just $250 hosting a reception for up to 150 people on condition that three of our properties are rented at the same time. We also have on site accommodation for up to 36 people sharing 5 rental homes and use of a free wedding arbor. You get a tent company to erect the tent (Spatolas also can supply tables, chairs, dance floor,plates, dishes, glasses...you name it..they have it) and you then arrange for a local outside caterer to provide the food or get somebody to do you a pig roast...yummy.

http://www.cobtree.com

9. Re: Wedding Reception in Finger Lakes Region

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