PLANNING A MARQUEE WEDDING
Şenel Besim Event Design have become specialists in the art of planning a marquee wedding over the years. We’ve created some truly spectacular celebrations, spanning several days at a variety of venue’s including many in our client’s homes. Marquee weddings are our favourite to plan; they allow us to fully embrace our creative side and create sensational celebrations for our clients.
Post Covid, in a world where personal connection is more important than ever, more and more couples are opting for marquee wedddings, which offer complete flexibility and control. Control to create a space that’s completely unique. One that truly reflects the personalities at the heart of the celebration. You! Many couples plan marquee weddings at home or opt for exclusive hire of a marquee wedding venue for an entire weekend for this reason.
But, what’s the downside? There’s no two ways about it; planning a marquee wedding is a lot more work and because there’s more to plan, and a generous budget is required if you want to create something with impact. Think about it like this – depending on where your marquee is, a marquee wedding venue or otherwise you will be creating (and staffing) an entirely new (and temporary) wedding space, from scratch. One which will need to be broken down and cleared away after.
Don’t let that put you off though, that’s what makes marquee weddings so, so special in our opinion. Each one is an absolute first, one-off, never seen before wedding celebration.
What we do promise, is that as long as you’re organised, prepared (and you’ve got a wedding planner on-side experienced in planning marquee weddings ) and you go into it with your eyes wide open, that extra work will be worth all the effort. Your guests won’t have seen anything like it. Your wedding will be like no other.
So, if you are considering a marquee or tent in which to host your wedding, and whether you’ve hired a wedding planner to help you organise the practical elements of the day or not, here’s a head-start (based on many years of experience!) to get you prepared for this logistical challenge:
WEDDING MARQUEES – THE PRACTICALITIES
1. The Site
a. Is it somewhere you can erect a marquee in the grounds, with access to the main house for the ceremony and accommodation – might be your family home? Although incredibly personal, bear in mind having a marquee at home means disruption, deliveries and plenty of comings and goings in the weeks leading up to, and after, the wedding – to install, set up, decorate and then the post-wedding clear-up and dismantle. Be sure everyone understands what’s involved and is happy before committing to the disruption.
b. Are you using someone’s land – you’ll have to ship in (and out) all the washroom facilities.
c. Is there already a permanent or semi-permanent marquee already in situ?
2. The Ceremony & Transfer – where do you plan on having the ceremony? How many guests do hope to have? And how will you and your guests get from the ceremony to the marquee? (Preferably without having to trample through a muddy field! or your parents Roses!)
3. Accessibility & Parking – in the preparation/build stages will suppliers and their vehicles be able to access the proposed marquee site? On the day, how will the guests access the site, where will they park and how do you make sure they leave safely at the end of the night?
4. Accommodation – how many of your guests plan to stay overnight? Is there accommodation available on site or will you need to make a list of suitable B&B’s/Hotels nearby?
5. Facilities – will your guests have access to existing toilet facilities (are there enough?) or will you need to hire them. Make sure there are enough for the number of guests you’re catering for.
6. Power – you’ll need electricity to power those beautiful fairy lights, keep fridges going for the caterers and those amps on full for the band – can you access power, or will you need to hire a generator? If so, where can it go?
7. Water – will you and/or the caterers need to access running water on the day?
8. Rubbish – where and how do you dispose of all the rubbish after the wedding?
9. The breakdown (not yours, the marquee’s!) – who’s going to be on hand to clear away all the tables, chairs, flowers, dance floor and lights etc afterwards? Will you need to employ cleaners to help with the clear up?
10. Security – will you need to hire someone to ensure there’s no trouble and that people leave safely at the end of the night.
DIFFERENT STYLES OF MARQUEE
When it comes to the marquee itself, there’s plenty of detail to think through. Once you’ve decided on marquee style, pull together a list of your preferred marquee suppliers. To quote, they’ll need basic info like site specifics, proposed date, number of guests etc. They may request to undertake a site survey in order to quote or send you an initial quotation to start.
Outside – there are lots of different styles and structure of marquees available, so do look around and decide which you prefer before requesting site visits and quotes. Is the site itself flat or will it need a levelled cassette floor?
Inside – What style of wedding are you planning? What is your asthetic? How many guests are you expecting? Would you prefer a large or intimate space? Will the dancefloor need to be out of sight until after the speeches? Square, long or round tables? What type of flooring – carpet or coir? Lighting and flowers? Decorative touches. Wet/cold weather contingencies.
If you want to reduce the amount of to’ing and fro’ing, relaying messages you should consider puttig your caterers directly in touch with your chosen marquee company. That way they can discuss logistics like power, access and dimensions of catering space etc between them. Similarly, if you’re thinking of hanging floral installations from the marquee, PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE make sure the florist and marquee company discuss hanging points and weight bearings in advance, to avoid any disasters on the day!
Hopefully this has given you a helpful overview of what’s involved, but really, it’s just the tip of the iceberg. Whether you’re planning a marquee wedding in the grounds of your family home, or at a stunning estate, Şenel Besim Event Design offer bespoke and tailored wedding planning support, ranging from Full Service wedding planning, through to Wedding Day coordination. We are the recommended Wedding Planners at a number of luxury wedding venues around the UK and in Europe and regularly plan high profile marquee weddings for our clients.
The photos in this blog were taken by Camilla Arnhold Photography from a recent wedding that Şenel Besim Event Design had the pleasure to plan and design at a private home in the Lake District. You can read more about the wedding on our blog or follow along on Instagram.
To enquire, please email email@example.com