When I first thought about having a vineyard wedding, Bluemont is the place that came to mind. M and I have been here many, many times and always enjoy hanging out on their patio, splitting a bottle of wine with my cousin and her husband, and admiring the absolutely gorgeous view:
|With an elevation of 951 feet, Bluemont can easily boast the best views in Loudon County [source]|
In the end, I think I realized it was not for us, although I do encourage any NoVA bride to check it out for a vineyard wedding.
|Front porch for cocktail hour|
|Inside The Stable reception hall|
I was attracted to Stoneleigh because it offered the rustic, vineyard setting with all the amenities of a country club. The Club itself was gorgeous - rambling stone walls, tiny bridges for photo ops, creeping vines - but the wedding area wasn't as appealing. First off, the reception site was tented on a concrete top. M and I are leaning away from tented receptions because we know how unpredictable the weather in May is, and don't want strong winds or rain ruining our reception. Concrete instead of grass was preferable, but still not exactly what we wanted. In addition, the venue had no backup plan in case of rain during the ceremony, which was held in a grassy field directly adjacent to the reception tent. We also didn't like how close the two areas were, feeling like our guests might get distracted during the ceremony by caterer set up or feel like there wasn't any place to go while we were out taking our gorgeously scenic wedding pictures.
|Ceremonies are held in the corner of the courtyard|
|Adjacent reception site (with tent down for winter)|
Bowling Green Country Club
Our last stop was Bowling Green in Front Royal. A bit of a hike from the airport for our out of town guests, but with nearby hotels and a very affordable price tag. We were shown two reception sites and their dedicated outdoor ceremony location:
|Set up for a company party with a 1920s French theme. Ooh la la.|
In the end, the trip went as I expected - good exposure to new sites, and I learned a lot from the questions my cousin (who was married 3 years ago) asked, but still, no real winner. My dream location would have to wait until the following weekend... but you only have to wait until the next post. :)
*All pictures are personal photos unless otherwise stated
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