Where you marry is arguably one of the most important decisions you’ll make while wedding planning. Your venue determines important logistical details such as guest count and date, and it also lays the groundwork for the overall vibe and aesthetic of your celebration. Regency fans may opt for a historic chateau; couples who love to spend time outdoors may go the greenhouse route.
If you prefer cleaner lines and a sparer look, there are also plenty of eye-catching modern wedding venues to choose from throughout the U.S. From art museums to white-washed barns (yes, really!), these minimalist spaces offer the perfect backdrop for your less-is-more nuptials.
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Ahead, discover 14 wedding venues to host your modern nuptials.
With roughly 170,000 square feet of gallery space, the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art is one of the largest contemporary art museums in the world. Its striking event rooms go big in the same way, giving couples plenty of options for crafting a show-stopping modern wedding. The 30-foot living wall on the Pat and Bill Wilson Sculpture Terrace provides a verdant green backdrop for exchanging vows, but you could also craft a completely unique-to-you ceremony in the Gina and Stuart Peterson White Box. Next, it’s on to an indoor/outdoor cocktail hour in the Rooftop Garden & Pavilion, followed by dinner and dancing in the Evelyn and Walter Haas, Jr. Atrium, where an angular staircase and two massive abstract paintings frame the scene for a guest count of up to 450. (Larger parties can opt for the Helen and Charles Schwab Hall.) Also good to know: If your wedding is on the smaller side, each of these spaces can be rented on its own.
There’s no shortage of modern industrial wedding venues in the City of Brotherly Love. If your event will be on the grander side, consider the 9,000-square-foot FAME, which can host up to 500 guests for a seated dinner and dancing. Situated across the top floor of a former textile factory, the loft-style space boasts 15-foot ceilings, two striking 7-foot chandeliers, and panoramic views of the Center City skyline from the outdoor patio. Catering is handled exclusively by Feast Your Eyes Catering, which is beloved throughout Philadelphia for playful and creative cuisine, and the venue also features an amenity that’s almost impossible to find elsewhere in the city: ample free parking in the lot across the street.
There’s no rule that modern wedding venues can’t also be rustic—and there’s also no rule that they can’t be set far out in the country. Located in a small town outside of Knoxville, Maypop Fields is a white-washed barn surrounded by 33 acres of calming meadows and forest. Exchange vows underneath the branches of a massive oak tree on the Wedding Lawn—it looks especially splendid done up in string lights—then head to the contemporary barn space (capacity: 200) for the main celebration. After dinner, you’ll dance the night away under vaulted wood-beam ceilings. There are separate getting-ready suites on the property for both members of the couple, and there’s no preferred vendor list, so you can bring in a team entirely of your choosing.
Soaring, five-story floor-to-ceiling windows that look directly out onto the National Mall are the selling point of the non-partisan headquarters of the U.S. Institute of Peace, which started hosting weddings and other private events shortly before the pandemic. Walk the aisle in a natural-light-drenched ceremony underneath the domed roof in the Leland Atrium or the gently curved International Women’s Commons Hall, then sojourn to the outdoor Peacemaker Plaza for cocktails. Seated dinners for up to 330 happen in the Schultz Great Hall, where the glass-railing staircases are the perfect spot for portraits. While the architecturally stunning all-white interiors are no doubt amazing, it’s important to know that maintaining the look comes at a cost: no red wine, cranberry juice, or red berries can be served during events.
Formerly the home of a Naval training center, San Diego’s sprawling Liberty Station is packed with cool restaurants, a killer food hall, and plenty of other reasons to visit. Marrying couples, however, will most want to familiarize themselves with Building 177. Originally built as the NTC library, the 7,000-square-foot event venue is a striking blank canvas for your SoCal celebration. Follow your eyes up from the wood floors and along the white walls and you’ll be greeted with a vaulted ceiling crisscrossed with exposed white beams, which are highlighted in soft, romantic lighting come nightfall. Building 177 can host up to 400 guests for a seated reception and is also equipped with an outdoor patio for cocktail hour and a chicly minimalist bridal suite full of utterly ‘grammable neon signs and velvet furniture.
New York’s Hudson Valley is known for combining the best of big-city style with the slower pace of country life. Situated just two hours north of New York City and fully accessible by train, the town of Hudson is also home to one of the best minimalist wedding venues in the state: Basilica Hudson. Established in 2010 in a former railroad car wheel factory, the 7,000-square-foot arts and entertainment center brings an industrial feel to private celebrations with exposed brick walls, concrete flooring, iron beams across the vaulted ceiling, and two-story windows. Dinner can seat up to 300 guests—the venue will happily grant use of their 10-foot farm tables for the experience—and funky mismatched vintage seats are provided for ceremonies in the Main Hall. The best part, though, is that the location isn’t at the mercy of any noise ordinances, so the party can last all the way through sunrise.
Situated on 20 private acres of Texas Hill Country, this modern gallery-style reception hall feels far from the beaten path, but it’s actually just a 25-minute drive from downtown Austin. Award-winning architect Max Levy designed the space to feel as easy-going as the surrounding scenery, and couples can configure an indoor/outdoor celebration to suit their specifications. Exchange vows on a raised platform surrounded by an oversized white frame on the Ceremony Lawn, or opt to head indoors and style your own backdrop in the Breezeway, the venue’s screened-in entry hall. Dinner and dancing for up to 220 guests happens in the Main Hall, a white box space with 15-foot ceilings that, for a just-a-touch rustic look, is dressed in exposed wood beams. Parking for up to 80 vehicles is available in a landscaped lot, and two private dressing rooms offer getting-ready space for both sides of the wedding party.
If money is no object, consider hosting your nuptials at this luxury desert retreat. Favored by celeb couples such as the Biebers and Kravis, this high-design hotel (think: stone surfaces, clean lines, and neutral hues) was constructed to blend into the surrounding 600 acres of protected wilderness. Celebrations require a full buyout of the property or the resort’s smaller Camp Sarika, which means Amangiri is best suited for multi-day weddings of a more intimate size. (Its largest venue can hold 76 for a sit-down dinner.) From there, though, guests will be treated to one-of-a-kind accommodations—many of the suites boast outdoor lounges and plunge pools—and unforgettable outdoor meals against backdrops of natural rock formations. When the main party is all said and done, you and your new spouse can stay on for your honeymoon. Outdoorsy activities on offer include cable ladder hiking, horseback riding through the Colorado Plateau, and many other adventures.
Like Philadelphia, Portland also offers plenty of industrial spaces for weddings. Jacobsen Salt Co.’s factory and Union Pine are two popular options, but a unique wow factor can be found at the winery and taproom Coopers Hall. The 10,000-square-foot former auto shop was built in a curved Quonset hut structure and is now lined with racks of wooden wine barrels and filled with greenery. (Natural light from the two-story windows only serves to highlight the minimalist splendor.) The maximum capacity is 185 seated, 225 standing, but smaller spaces are available for more intimate celebrations, and the polished tile bar boasts over 36 wines on tap.
Overlooking the turquoise waters of Biscayne Bay, this contemporary art museum is home to a permanent collection of roughly 2,000 works of 20th and 21st-century art from Africa, the Americas, and Western Europe. Designed by Pritzker Prize-winning architecture firm Herzog & de Meuron, it’s also one of the most striking modern wedding venues in South Florida. Tropical vegetation cascades from the museum canopy, creating a contemporary jungle-like atmosphere for outdoor ceremonies in the Southside Terrace. The semi-enclosed East Portico (banquet capacity: 500) is PAMM’s premiere dinner space and requires a complete buy-out, but parties of 100 or less can dine in the white-walled Paresky Hall gallery. For a fun final booking perk, the marrying couple also receives a complimentary one-year membership to the museum.
What better way to pay homage to LA’s long-standing relationship with photography and film than marrying in a studio? Located in the city’s downtown South Park District, the white-walled, warehouse-style Honeypot hosts all sorts of shoots when it’s not serving as a private event venue. Inside the 6,000-square-foot space, seven skylights stream sun rays down from 20 to 30-foot cathedral ceilings, which stun with white bow trusses. The reception and ceremony spaces are separated by a bridal lounge, bar, and other private areas, allowing for up to 175 guests to experience a new setting as they transition through each part of the night. Book your room block at the nearby Hoxton or Ace hotel and attendees can continue the fun before and after the celebration without ever leaving the neighborhood.
Contemporary design lovers that also crave the convenience of a centrally-located hotel wedding will not want to miss out on this newcomer to our nation’s capital, which is done up in a palette of tastefully neutral tones and marble accents. Exchange vows in the round underneath a cascading chandelier in the Falling Flowers Gallery, then direct guests to one of two outdoor terraces for cocktail hour. In the 7,000-square-foot Grand Ballroom (capacity: 620 seated), attendees will dine and dance the night away under glittering hanging light installations. Then, guests can head directly upstairs to sleep off the revelry. Want to pick up a last-minute luxury present for your wedding day gift exchange? The property is just steps away from the CityCenterDC shopping complex, where labels like Gucci, Dior, Louis Vuitton, and Chanel have all taken up residence.
While most modern venues are striking in their spareness, the look can sometimes come off cold. If you’re on the hunt for a minimalist space that doesn’t skimp on warmth, consider this unique option in downtown Charleston, which is part farm-to-table restaurant and part private event venue. Sage green double doors set the tone for the evening, which can begin with a ceremony or cocktail hour in the outdoor courtyard. Here, palm trees line the stone patio, while strategically strung market lights set a relaxing tone. Couples can choose either the Garden Room (capacity: 50 seated) or the Trolley Room (capacity: 150 seated) for dinner. No matter which you opt for, know that your menu will be customized according to the season and your culinary preferences, so guests won’t miss out on the wining and dining experience Charleston is so well known for.
Ballroom wedding venues make sense for so many reasons, but it’s often difficult to bring your own look to the space due to their distinctive carpeting and architecture. Boston couples searching for a blank canvas venue should scope out woman-owned Warehouse XI, where the high ceilings, large glass windows, and white brick walls can take on whatever vibe you desire. Thanks to a 2017 expansion, the 3,000-square-foot venue now includes the main warehouse space, a separate lounge area, and catering rooms. The venue can accommodate up to 150 guests.