Hacienda Sarria Design Your Wedding Open House 2018

In February Lady Luxe Events Co. took an adventure outside of the GTA to visit one of the most unique venue locations we have yet to come across, Hacienda Sarria. This venue space has been through many transformations in its history beginning as Canada’s first sugar beet mill in 1902. Then becoming a distillery, a scrap metal yard, a steel factory, and eventually by 2004 it was converted into the event space as we know it today. 

Lady Luxe is happy to be able to provide you with an inside look at this stunning space. You too could schedule a visit if you like what you see here and want even more information. A lot of you living in the Greater Toronto Area might think that the idea of driving to Kitchener is just way too much for yourself and guests, but we are telling you it is totally worth it!

The atmosphere immediately pulls you in from the first look at the building’s exterior you feel a warm and inviting presence you don’t often get from your typical banquet hall. Seeing the outside of the space in February does not do it complete justice as the fountains and ponds were not in full operation, but of course the space in the spring or summer months, along with the professionally manicured gardens would definitely act as a beautiful backdrop to your photos.  Seeing the outside of the space in February does not do it complete justice as the fountains and ponds were not in full operation, but of course the space in the spring or summer months, along with the professionally manicured gardens would definitely act as a beautiful backdrop to your photos.

On your way in you can’t miss the beautiful and heavy wooden door & mural as you walk up the main entrance under the covered porch. You are soon greeted by high vaulted ceilings showcasing a staircase and landing above, where you can’t miss the large piece of art work on the wall and other unique architectural features in the foyer.

The staff were extremely friendly offering coat check services and directing visitors to the beginning of the tour which took us up the stairs to see the bridal and groom suites. The rooms were cozy and provide ample space for you and your bridal party to get ready and relax before the main event. The grooms room also sports access to a couple of balconies overlooking the main courtyard.

Around to the south side of the building is the perfect space for your guests to be welcomed in with cocktails and light refreshments served butler style before the main dinner begins. The room is warm with colourful tile floors, wood burning fireplace and provides access to the patio for those warm summer nights. You will definitely be impressed with the selection of cocktails or mocktails the bar has to offer, as well as the assortment of hors d'oeuvres that would please a variety of taste buds. Hacienda Sarria sources it’s ingredients locally and even grows a lot of its produce on the grounds themselves. You can taste the difference freshness makes & the professional catering on site will impress you with their creative creations. Some of samples offered included their green pea fritter, arancini, freshly shucked oysters, mini beef sliders, yellowfin tuna taco & the beef tenderloin chips to name a few. All were delicious, we may have even had more than one! One of the many benefits about booking with this venue is that they include a menu tasting for the couple & up to 2 guests. They also allow you to customize your 3-course plated menu upon request, but in our opinion it’s unlikely you would feel the need to do so as the offerings are already pretty fantastic.

The open house also showcased some local vendors throughout the space such as Pink Poppi Designs, Pirate Smile Stationary & Design, Rouge Beauty by Cassie, CM Entertainment, Flamenco Guitarist Juneyt, Anne Edgar Photography, Crème Couture and several others.

After spending time in the Lounge, we moved into The Courtyard. This is in our opinion, the main feature of the venue and what will leave your guests in awe. The room is set with 40ft ceilings, massive skylights that bring in lots of natural light and numerous Spanish style architectural features that will transport you into another world. The space comfortably seats a maximum of  120 people without feeling too tight. The venue showcased their house linens and décor with Edison bulbs beautifully draped across the room adding to the rustic charm of the space. The beauty of this space is that very minimal additional décor is required (which can  save you some money!)

The last room we wanted to share with you is The Ballroom located at the North end of the building next door to the Courtyard. This space can be used for your ceremony, cocktail hour or a smaller reception. It’s a large rectangular room with custom wood flooring and a stunning fireplace. During the open house it was decorated with a beautiful floral design by Flower Studio Designs based in Waterloo.  The candles and draping added to the ambiance of the room, really giving it a warm inviting feeling to all who were in attendance. Right off of this room through some barn doors was a large bar space for guests to grab a drink and or grab a cup of Hacienda’s signature blend while checking out the authentic coffee grinder on display.

This venue is by far one of the most unique that we’ve come across and a big selling point is that the space is all yours for the day you book. You are given the venue  from 9am to 1am, giving you ample time to get set up and ready for your big day and most importantly celebrate! The venue offers an extensive list of inclusions in the price, that even though the plate price per person rate may seem on the higher side, it’s important to consider all of the bonuses they offer that most other venues would charge extra for or not even provide for you. If you are interested in seeing more, please check out the venues web site and view their packages and gallery. Lady Luxe would love to assist you in planning your next event at Hacienda Sarria, so please feel free to contact us for all of your event planning needs and we’d love to put you in touch with one of the top-notch venues in the business.

Happy Planning! <3

Kristine Hardy, Creative Director

Where or where shall my wedding be ?

Lets talk about venues shall we? When shopping for the perfect place to get married there are some things you need to take into consideration before making a choice.


What time of year do you want to get married? The most popular time for wedding season is typically April – October. The most popular day? You guessed it, Saturday. That is approximately 28 Saturdays out of the year for potential weddings. I hope you know where I am going with this, that means you need to shop your venues early and decide quickly. Venues tend to book about a year in advance.

One of the first questions you will be asked by the venue, aside from when will the wedding take place, but how many people are you expecting. You do not need to know the exact amount when you go for your first site visit, but you should have a pretty good idea what the range is. Your numbers will dictate which rooms to look at if you’re going to a multi-function venue, also it will heavily determine the cost of the rental if they do not have a set price list.

Figuring out where you want to have your wedding can be tricky. Do you want your ceremony and reception in two different locations? If so, how far apart are those two locations? Do you want a formal banquet or a modern event center? Do you want an at home or destination wedding? Do you want to go out of town?

Once you’ve answered those questions these should be your next steps.

1. RESEARCH!
There is so much information on the internet all you have to do is search for it. Look for venues in your area and slightly just outside your area. A comfortable travel time for guests without overnight accommodations is an hour and a half. Keep in mind though you should always be aware if hotels or overnight accommodations are in close vicinity to a venue.

2. Book site visits
Venues love having you come in so you can physically see and experience the venue. Pictures are great, but if you can get to the location, do it! Things could change for the better or worse. Ask questions, take notes, take pictures, go home and compare notes. Many venues have their own open house that you can attend for free. This is a perfect opportunity to see your potential venue decorated and set up for an event. Check out our blog on open house date happening this year. 

3. Take your time in making this decision
If you absolutely need a specific date and you have fallen in love with a venue and know that’s it, then book it. The disappointment you will feel afterwards if you lose that date will hurt. However, if you are a bit more flexible take the time. Venues are known for saying that they book quickly. They are not lying. Most do. However, you can take one or two days to decide. I wouldn’t spend more than 2 weeks thinking because then you’ve lost those two weeks as an advance. The month you wanted may now no longer be available.

4. Read the contract
Venues are notorious for having hidden or additional fees that may be added in. SOCAN music fee, room rental fee, plug in fee, upgrades, regular/additional fees, and taxes could all be in that quote or contract, but unless you are looking for them you will just bypass them as standard.

5. Ask for measurements of the room
Your décor vendor will appreciate this later. If you go in saying you want the room fully draped from floor to ceiling they are going to need those numbers. This will also help you visualize how much space you’ll have once tables chairs and people are in the space (If it is not set up already)

6. How am I supposed to know if the food is going to taste good?
Most venues do not offer a tasting prior to being booked. If they offer one it would be after and much closer to the wedding date. This can be stressful for some and to be honest this is where blind faith comes in. A chef is employed at this venue for a reason, they are open and have good business. So for your wedding if you work with the chef to come up with a satisfactory menu prior to your event you should trust that they will accomplish what you are asking for. This is also the reason why most venues have set menu for selection.
If this is still unnerving for you there are ways to work around this. Most venues have open houses. This is when you can go into the venue, see it decorated, sample the chef’s food and taste the bartender’s skills with drinks. This is a great way to further envision your big day. Another option is to see if there is a restaurant offsite where the same chef cooks. You can order off the menu and see if it is something you enjoy. If you work with the venue as well, most can be persuaded to set up a meeting with their head chef. Personalities meshing well go along way and if you think the chef is up to your standards then go through with the booking.
Unfortunately, venues used to do tastings prior to booking. It became too expensive and wasteful. Online reviews will help. If there is one thing people love to do after attending a wedding is to talk about the good the bad and the ugly. You will find everything you need to know through the reviews.

All in all, do not be afraid to ask questions. This is when you need to get the accurate information necessary for continuing the planning process. You do not want any surprises later or on the day of your event.


Ashlie Callender
Lead Event Coordinator

Our Experience at Graydon Hall Manor Open House

On Saturday February 3rd Lady Luxe Events Co. had the opportunity to visit Graydon Hall Manor, a beautiful piece of history just outside the city at the North East end of Toronto. It was built in 1936 and features a beautiful terrace, courtyard and gardens that make for a gorgeous backdrop to a romantic wedding. While the property is surrounded by modern day condos when you pull up into the parking area and see the iron gates and trees you are transported back to an older time. The building reflects the look of a historical farm house with the fieldstone & limestone used for the exterior and the cobblestone driveway. You are promptly greeted with a beautiful covered front porch with warm wooden door and stone background, probably one of the most photographed spots on the property.

When you enter the manor, you walk into a foyer and to the left through the entrance hall is a beautiful reception room with an incredible Grand Staircase. The staircase features white banisters with a dark cherry wood railing to add contrast and coincides with the dark wood flooring & carpet runner. Overhead is a stunning gold and crystal chandelier that adds just enough shimmer to the room without being overstated. This stair hall is your gateway to the main dining room which for a wedding holds up to 128 guests comfortably with a head table and dance floor in the centre with doors leading out to the terrace and round table seating on each end of the room. If elegant and romantic is the look you want for your special day this dining room is perfect with its many chandeliers, wall sconces, ceiling decals and wainscoting combined with the symmetrical bay windows on each side and centre doors looking out to the beautiful terrace & gardens.

To the left of the main floor is a ceremony room with raised ceilings and optional second floor balcony seating. This room has striking stone floors and some of its other distinguishing qualities include elaborate mouldings, a stunning fireplace with murals on each side and crisp white California shutters. This room can be transformed for many smaller functions other than just wedding ceremonies. It would be well suited for shower & business meetings or presentations.

The lower level of the venue is a contrast to the main floor in that it’s much darker but very warm and inviting with its wood paneled walls, medieval stone fireplace and unique light fixtures. The meeting room and lounge can be used for business meetings or a cocktail hour before receiving guests in the main dining room upstairs but would also make for a great photo opportunity of your event. The upper level has a number of meeting rooms but also a fantastic bridal suite & grooms room with all of the amenities you need to make getting ready for your special day a treat.

 

Overall, we were extremely impressed with this venue in that it can be used as a one stop destination for all of your wedding day needs. It provides couples with possibilities of having their ceremony or cocktail hour indoors or outdoors with the large terrace and the option of a clear span canopy to ensure rain or shine you get use of the entire space. It has a beautiful dining room that is already elegant and formal and needs little in the way of décor to make it spectacular. In addition, the Manor has so many unique bonus rooms and outdoor gardens to take all of the stunning wedding photos you wish. This venue would suit a wedding of 100 to 120 guests perfectly and many other types of events that the Lady Luxe Events Co. team would love to plan with you.

Kristine Hardy, Creative Director

 

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The 2018 Open House at the Estates of Sunnybrook

This past Sunday Kristine and I had the pleasure of attending the open house of the beloved Toronto venue, The Estates of Sunnybrook. The property is located on Bayview Avenue and is surrounded by picturesque landscapes, perfect for photo opportunities. There are three historic buildings on the property that have been converted into intimate venue spaces.

The open house gave prospective couples and industry goers an opportunity to catch a glimpse of what an event could look like at their venue. There were numerous vendors set up throughout the space, as well as delicious canapes and food stations to give you a taste of what the venue has to offer.

The upper level boasts several smaller rooms, including the bridal suite and several meeting rooms perfect for corporate events. During the open house, they converted two of the available spaces into ceremony rooms. As we headed up the staircase, we were welcomed by the sounds of music from Dunstan Morey Guitarist and Ambiance Flute & Guitar Duo. In the Academy of Medicine, Phoebe Lo Events designed one of the ceremony spaces with a breathtaking natural theme! Not to miss in the room was also Afya Jema Cakery which displayed mouth watering desserts, that we definitely were tempted to taste (but alas! It was a display only). Down the hall, The Valleyanna Room was pleasantly decorated with fresh greenery and flowers, styled by San Remo Florist. Both rooms have numerous windows that bring in natural light and offers a beautiful view of the surrounding property outside.

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The Vaughan Estate

The Vaughan Estate is the largest of the threes buildings on the property. It hosts three floors of charm and character that are the perfect backdrop for an intimate and sophisticated event. You can choose from the lower or main level ballrooms that can accommodate up to 150 guests seated.

Walking into the venue we were pleasantly surprised to see Patricia’s Cake Creations set up in the foyer with her succulent cake designs and samples of cake pops, as well as  the wonderful sounds of Chantal Dube Harpist and Ken De Los Santos. These spaces are best suited for live musicians as they have great acoustics. The Main ballroom, was beautifully setup by Fete Floral & Events while the Lower Ballroom was creatively styled by Fabulous Occasions and D&D Floral Designs. In both rooms we got to sample some of the in-house catering. We could not get enough of the gourmet grilled cheese station and the mushroom risotto balls - absolutely delicious! Both ballrooms contain their own personal bar and cocktail space, perfect for welcoming the guests into these warm and inviting receptions.

 

The Coach House

This 2 level intimate space is perfect for smaller functions, seating up to 40 guests . Wedding ceremonies can be had on site on the private patio.  Secrets Floral Collection provided all the floral and decor for the ceremony and reception, while Brooklin Paper Co. designed all the stationery.  Each table was perfectly set up to represent a different themed function. Our personal favourite table set up was the Alice in Wonderland themed table.


The McLean House

When you enter this venue space which seats up to 72 guests, it opens into a unique foyer which leads into the Conservatory. The first thing that caught our eye was the brilliantly displayed head table created by Weddings by Design. The flowers, which were themed with this year's ultra violet colour, were complimented by the luxurious gold table details. To the right of the table, The Cocoa Cakery had an array of beautifully crafted cakes and sweets on display. This gave the guests a chance to sample the various cupcakes and goods, and proved to be a wonderful sugar filled pick me up!

The second floor is home to the The Bayview room, which was our favourite space in the entire venue. The room's large, arched windows provided a natural light, which even during this cold winter month, felt as if you were on an outdoor patio. Asian Fusion Weddings decorated this ceremony space, accommodated with an elegant floral arrangement from Periwinkle Flowers.


We were pleasantly surprised to find that  the Estates of Sunnybrook gives all of the revenue they generate towards the medical research at Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre. If the space itself doesn't sell you on this venue, then this certainly will. What a special opportunity to not only have a unique venue space for your event, but to feel good about the money spent.

We are certainly looking forward to coordinating and designing some spectacular events at the Estates of Sunnybrook in the near future.

Emilia Da Silva, Creative Director