As some of you may know, we have had the most amazing start to 2017. We have been recognised as the East Midlands best wedding venue of the year by BrideBook and have also been shortlisted as one of the top ten Stately Home and Mansion Wedding Venues across the whole of the UK by Guides for Brides. We never could have imagined being in this position, being acknowledged by such prestigious online wedding directories…. We have a come a long way and what a journey! We feel extremely proud of what we have achieved and we are so grateful to our couples who have given us the platform to do what we do best!
As we are a family business it is so nice to be able to open our doors to our couples and their families, we have managed to fit in three wedding open days already this year, which we are so pleased about! Open days give us chance to welcome not only potential couples but also our lovely couples who have already booked The Old Vicarage for their special day. We thrive off seeing so many different people thoroughly enjoying every aspect of The Old Vicarage, open days are a time for every couple to thoroughly enjoy the venue and really get a feel for what their big day is going to be like. It’s so nice for brides and grooms to see the place full of life.
The build up to an open day is always so special; As we never sell entry tickets we advertise with only a few Facebook posts and a banner here and there around Nottinghamshire we can honesty say, we have no idea how many people may or may not turn up! However, they always seem to be a success! As we open our doors at midday we eagerly anticipate the arrival of our guests. With The Old Vicarage looking perfect and our staff prepped and ready to go, we are open day ready!
Our team of wedding planners love having the chance to spend the day talking to so many couples about all their different ideas. Its so refreshing to have such a constant stream of people who are as excited about weddings as us. Whether its potential new couples or our current Vicarage couples it is always a delight for the team to spend the days discussing all things weddings.
We like to think our open days are a little bit more unique, our open days are more of an open house rather than a typical wedding fayre where you will find a huge handful of suppliers which can sometimes be a little overwhelming. Its so important when exploring wedding venues that nothing over shadows your viewing, however there are a few suppliers that we cant resist to invite, they never fail to add the perfect ambiance. This year we have had the pleasure of VAAS, Nottinghamshire Harpist, Ark Angels, Love Candy Cakes and Martin Makowski.
At The Old Vicarage, we offer all of our summer couples the chance to get married outside! As you may have read elsewhere on our website, we have a one of a kind bandstand in our garden! It was hand built for us by the Amish in Pennsylvania and the constructed in our garden in the winter of 2015. Fully licensed to hold civil ceremonies, the bandstand has been a welcome addition to The Old Vicarage. Whilst many couples are desperate for the opportunity to get married outside, it is quite hard for them to vision what the day would be like. Wedding open days give us the opportunity to set up our bandstand ceremony and show off another of our proudest assets!
Each one of our canapés has been lovingly created by Marcus our Executive Head Chef, he is always seizing the opportunity to try out his new ideas. Wedding open days provide him with the perfect platform to show off his talents.
At our last open day Marcus debuted a selection of his new creations…
Jerk chicken tostada with pineapple salsa
Spinach and halloumi naan with minted yoghurt
Crab and chilli croquettes with bravas tomato sauce
Blue cheese and walnut biegnet with spiced port plum coulis
Morrocan chickpea and pepper fritter with pea puree
As well as some of his old faithfuls…
Sticky pressed pork with bourbon smoked BBQ glaze and apple slaw
Mini fillet beef Rossini with truffle and pate served en croute
Local asparagus spear and camembert wrapped in parma ham with a hollandaise dip
Seared scallop with black pudding and apple textures
And of course catering for our sweet tooth…
The Vicarage Boutique Eton Mess, seasonal fruits, crisp meringue and chantilly cream
Salted caramel brownie with hazelnut crack ice cream and praline
Sticky toffee pudding with rich butterscotch sauce and vanilla ice cream
All washed down with a glass of bubbly.
Open Days are not only great for Marcus but also our bar staff. The Old Vicarage events team love to show off their mixology skills!
At this years open days they have presented our couples with…
The Vicarage Old Fashioned
Stewarts Espresso Martini
All of which were extremely well received!
And of course, no one goes without! The designated drivers at our open days are treated to teas and coffees which were accompanied by Marcus’ homemade biscotti biscuits and white and milk chocolate macaroons! A real treat! Macaroons are one of our favourites, an option which couples often add to our wedding package! Marcus can create macaroons in any colour a bride desires and they always impress!
Here at The Old Vicarage we LOVE to decorate. We are constantly updating, renovating and improving. Wedding open days are the perfect opportunity to show off our flare for designing. We love being able to have the opportunity to show our current brides and grooms the changes we have made. Even the smallest of tweaks can completely transform a room.
At 4pm when our front door closes, it is so nice for the team to gather round over a glass of bubbly and celebrate another successful day! The wind down time after an open days carries such a sense of achievement and we are always so proud of what we have done! As the clean up begins, were already planning the next and how were going to make each one better than the last!
The next day back in the office after an open day is always exciting. We know we are coming into many excited emails from potential new brides and grooms who have further questions for us or who want to come back and see us again. However, the nicest emails to receive are those which contain feedback. This year we came into an email from the father of a lady who was looking to book at The Old Vicarage…
“Firstly, can I just congratulate you and all your staff for staging a fantastic open day yesterday in your impressive hotel.
So much so that we would like to know if the above date is currently available as a probable venue for my daughter’s wedding.
These types of emails give us so much job satisfaction and are such a joy to receive they make any stressful day worth it.
We would also like to take this opportunity to congratulate all the couples who booked their weddings for 2017, 2018 and 2019 at this years open days. We are so thrilled that you have chosen our venue and we cannot wait to work with each and everyone of you! Also, a special thank you to all the brides and grooms who take the time to visit us on Open Days, its such a pleasure to have you and to meet your nearest and dearest.
We will be hosting our next wedding open day on Saturday 6th May 2017 and we are so looking forward to seeing some new and familiar faces!