The Best Wedding Venues of 2017

We surveyed more than 1,500 brides to find the best of the best

Updated 01/11/17

Pippin Hill Farm & Vineyards in North Garden, Virginia; Photo: Tec Petaja Photo

When searching for the perfect wedding venue, you have to make many, many decisions: Hometown or destination? Indoor or outdoor? Beachside or mountain vista? After all, it’s the location that ultimately sets the scene for your wedding day. It impacts everything from the vibe of the ceremony and the dishes at dinner to the cut off time of the all-night rager you just have to have.

Needless to say, choosing your ceremony and reception location is a decision that requires a good deal of time, thought, and research.

Lucky for you, we’re here to help you narrow the search. Each year, our editors do a crazy amount of research — meeting with on-site venue coordinators, chatting with top wedding planners and photographers, visiting locations, and stalking the Internet — to find swoon-worthy wedding locations across the country that have it all (a gorgeous location, rock star planning team, good grub, and more).

We make a list of the places that fill the bill — there are hundreds, believe us! — and then get to work on finding the best-of-the-best. How do we do that, you ask? We turn to the brides who recently said, “I do” there, of course. This year, we surveyed 1,697 ladies in total, asking questions on everything from the venue’s wine selection to the bridal suite.

The result? Our annual BRIDES Best Venues in America — a list of the 50 most spectacular wedding venues from coast to coast offering stellar views, creative cuisine, and above-and-beyond service.

Keep scrolling to see which venues made the final cut; we promise you’ll be no less than impressed. In fact, whether you’re a romantic bride who dreams of a royal-worthy castle (Oheka Castle in Huntington, New York), a wine connoisseur after a pinot-filled affair (Meadowood Napa Valley in St. Helena, California), or a beach gal who wants her toes in the sand (The Breakers in Palm Beach, Florida), we feel confident that you’ll find a venue that’s perfect for you, your groom, and your dream wedding.

Best of luck with the hunt — and when you do come across The One, make sure to say that we sent you that way. Well us, and your 1,697 new BFFs.

The Northeast

The Mayflower Grace in Washington, Connecticut
Buy out this charming 30-room escape for great sights and even better service. Photo ops are endless in the Shakespeare Garden, where you’ll exchange vows, as well as inside the resort’s all-white spa. (Hello, bridal portraits.)

The Barn at Flanagan Farm in Buxton, Maine
Take a 20-minute drive outside Portland to this meticulously restored 19th-century barn, which is open year-round. There’s also a cozy farmhouse perfect for unwinding with your wedding party pre- and post-nuptials.

Boston Public Library in Boston, Massachusetts
Charm guests with dinner in book-lined Bates Hall, then head to the Abbey Room for a dance sesh overlooking the courtyard. Bonus: The caterer will ensure you eat too, thanks to goodie bags filled with fresh entrées, mini desserts, and bubbly for two.

Melissa Robotti Photography

Chatham Bars Inn in Chatham, Massachusetts
Tie the knot on the private beach before moving to a sailcloth tent or one of the oceanfront dining rooms for a lobster dinner and dancing. Then you’re just steps from the bars on Main Street if you want to continue the party.

Bonnet Island Estate in Manahawkin, New Jersey
Want your own private island? You can have that, as well as an open-air chapel and a rustic ballroom (that looks like the inside of a ship!) overlooking Manahawkin Bay.

Jardin de Buis in Pottersville, New Jersey
Give your guests free rein of the estate’s grounds, which feature a barn, two greenhouses, a topiary-lined pool, and an orangery.

Oheka Castle in Huntington, New York
You may recognize it from T. Swift’s “Blank Space” video, but this mega mansion has even more to offer, like 23 acres of privacy.

Joseph Lin Photography

Gramercy Park Hotel in New York, New York
If you’re dreaming of a garden oasis in the city, look no further than this 18th-floor terrace. It comes with a customizable Danny Meyer menu and a retractable roof.

Rainbow Room in New York, New York
Take over the 65th floor of famed Rockefeller Center. You’ll be hard-pressed to find another spot with such epic views—or a rotating dance floor.

Jessica Haley Photography 2016

Blue Hill at Stone Barns in Pocantico Hills, New York
Head to this upscale farm an hour’s drive outside NYC for the freshest fare, impeccable service, and a bucolic backdrop.

Philadelphia Museum of Art in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
This top-notch destination is finally hosting weddings. Choose from the sculpture garden, art-deco Perelman Building, or Rodin Museum, where you can wed in front of The Thinker.

Castle Hill Inn in Newport, Rhode Island
Brides rave about the nightly campfire at this nautical landmark, saying it’s the spot for a nightcap by Narragansett Bay.

The South

The Hay-Adams in Washington, D.C.
Give your guests the ultimate District experience at the Top of the Hay, where they can sip champs and snap #selfies with the White House.

Pérez Art Museum Miami in Miami, Florida
If you want something unexpected, this is it. Think hanging gardens, views of Biscayne Bay and the city’s skyline, and a modern open-air portico.

Chris Joriann Photography

The Breakers Palm Beach in Palm Beach, Florida
Everyone raves about the Gatsby-esque ballrooms (they are stunning!), but it’s the resort’s attentive staff—from the pastry chef to the knowledgeable valet—that brides can’t stop gushing about.

The Biltmore Ballrooms in Atlanta, Georgia
In the heart of Midtown, you’ll find this historic landmark, which features an ivy-lined garden and two gilded ballrooms that are over-the-top in the best way possible.

The Cloister at Sea Island in Sea Island, Georgia
Choose between a quaint chapel and oak-filled gardens for the vows, then head over to the lawn for an oceanfront reception.

Courtesy of Race & Religious

Race & Religious in New Orleans, Louisiana
After poolside cocktails, let your guests explore this historic home and courtyard. Bonus: You can book it overnight for the after-party.

Fearrington Village in Pittsboro, North Carolina
Even if cows (with cowbells!) aren’t your thing, you’ll fall for the grazing pastures and barn at this onetime dairy farm turned Relais & Chateaux property.

Southwind Hills in Goldsby, Oklahoma
With a honeymoon cottage and chandelier-filled barn on 130 acres, this all-inclusive venue has it all, including its own photo booth.

Cannon Green in Charleston, South Carolina
At this downtown restaurant, the staff creates an original menu for every couple. But no matter how you customize, don’t skip the rosé sangria.

RT Lodge in Maryville, Tennessee
Tell your squad to pack for a full weekend because this Smoky Mountain escape has everything you need for a fancy summer-camp experience.

Rosewood Mansion on Turtle Creek in Dallas, Texas
The service at this historic mansion deserves nothing short of five stars. Brides rave that the staff does its research on you; they even know your cocktail of choice and have it readily available.

Nadia Huerta, June Bug Company

The White Sparrow Barn in Quinlan, Texas
A beautiful white barn with built-in speakers and vintage rentals? Nadine Ramos Huerta, a wedding photographer, created this spot in 2014 (with space for endless photo ops, obvi!).

Hotel Emma in San Antonio, Texas
This new boutique hotel is the talk of the town—and for good reason. Brides love the look of the restored 19th-century brewery almost as much as its entertaining chef.

Pippin Hill Farm & Vineyards in North Garden, Virginia
This beauty is a standout in wine country, thanks to its rustic-meets-chic barn, mountain views, and getting-ready suites for the bride and groom.

The Midwest

Chicago Athletic Association Hotel in Chicago, Illinois
This Mag Mile hot spot is perfect for the couple who wants to explore Millennium Park before partying in a 19th-century ballroom.

Chicago Cultural Center in Chicago, Illinois
No additional decor is necessary at this Windy City landmark, thanks to a 41-foot glass dome and mother-of-pearl mosaics.

The Langham, Chicago in Chicago, Illinois
This modern hotel executes the ballroom wedding to perfection and adds perks like personalized robes in the honeymoon suite.

Heather Jowett Photography

Zingerman’s Cornman Farms in Dexter, Michigan
It’s all about the food on this 42-acre working farm. From the famous mac and cheese to pulled pork that spent 14 hours smoking, the true farm-to-table fare is sure to win over the crowd.

Grand Hotel in Mackinac Island, Michigan
This resort is known for its front porch, which spans the length of nearly two football fields and overlooks Lake Huron.

Planterra Conservatory in West Bloomfield, Michigan
At this palm-filled oasis, the star staff will happily tackle your entire to-do list, handling everything from custom cocktails to upgraded rentals.

Janelle Elise Photography

Aria in Minneapolis, Minnesota
With a flexible open floor plan and four VIP lounges (hello, after-party!), this theater is ready for an A-list celebration.

Milwaukee Art Museum in Milwaukee, Wisconsin
Book the Quadracci Pavilion, designed by architect Santiago Calatrava, for a setting that looks as cool on the inside as it does out.

Courtesy of Big Cedar Lodge

Big Cedar Lodge in Ridgedale, Missouri
Take your pick of four wedding chapels, then move on to a cabin with 360 degree views of Table Rock Lake or to the lake itself, where there’s a yacht ready to host 45.

Four Seasons Hotel St. Louis in St. Louis, Missouri
Get hitched on the rooftop terrace, which has uninterrupted views of the city’s iconic Gateway Arch. You can’t get more St. Louis than that.

Cleveland Museum of Art in Cleveland, Ohio
Pose for portraits with the museum’s oh-so-grand exterior, and then meet your gang inside the glass-enclosed atrium for dinner and dancing under the stars.

The West

Arizona Biltmore, a Waldorf Astoria Resort in Phoenix, Arizona
At this historic landmark, you can lounge in what was Marilyn Monroe’s favorite pool, then watch as guests are stunned by the hands-on service and stunning architecture, co-designed by Frank Lloyd Wright. (And don't forget that this was the site of Michael Phelps' glamorous New Year's Eve wedding!)

Korakia Pensione in Palm Springs, California
You’ll feel transported to another world at this Moroccan-meets-Mediterranean sanctuary featuring a strict no-kids policy and a nightly candle lighting that creates an uber-romantic glow.

Rodel Valdez of A Touch of Soul Productions

The Mission Inn Hotel & Spa in Riverside, California
The property’s gilded chapels and ornate ballrooms attract couples after old-world charm in SoCal. Not to mention, this place has been hosting weddings for more than a century.

Meadowood Napa Valley in St. Helena, California
Foodies, take note! With a three-star Michelin restaurant and personal relationships with Napa’s greatest vintners, there’s something here to please the most discerning of palates.

Four Seasons Resort, the Biltmore Santa Barbara in Santa Barbara, California
After vows in front of the Santa Ynez Mountains, head to the La Pacifica Terrace for sunset cocktails with views of the Pacific—and pods of leaping dolphins.

The Little Nell in Aspen, Colorado
You’ll be on top of the world, literally, as you wed, dine, and take in panoramic sights of Elk Mountains from the Sundeck, which sits at 11,000 feet.

Chowen Photography

Dunton Hot Springs in Dolores, Colorado
Make this restored 1800s ghost town, with 13 cabins, a spa, and hot springs, yours for a weekend of outdoor adventures and epic summit scenery.

Hyatt Regency Lake Tahoe Resort, Spa, and Casino in Incline Village, Nevada
Get the best of the shore and the mountains at this lakeside property, where coordinators excel at even the smallest of details, like surprise mid-ceremony mimosas.

Mandarin Oriental Las Vegas in Las Vegas, Nevada
Find a moment of zen on the Strip at this elegant minimalist property that hosts parties of all sizes, from 25 guests in a luxe top-floor suite to 480 in the Oriental Ballroom.

Castaway Portland in Portland, Oregon
Make this raw space whatever you like—from an industrial-chic fete in the restored warehouse to a romantic affair in the garden.

Stein Eriksen Lodge Deer Valley in Deer Valley, Utah
Come for the ski-in/ski-out access and stay for the lodge’s ability to host an indoor-outdoor event, which brides call a necessity with Utah’s unpredictable weather.

Sodo Park in Seattle, Washington
You’ll feel at home in this massive industrial space, thanks to its award-winning catering and a design studio that masters lighting.

Brush Creek Ranch in Saratoga, Wyoming
Shoot clays in the morning or relax in the spa before you say “I do” mountainside. Later, party in a wooden barn or out in the open on the 30,000 acres of untouched terrain.

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