- Mary Caldwell For the AJC
The most important element of a perfect wedding – after your spouse-to-be, of course! – is the venue.
Brides.com has ranked the best places to get married in America this year, and a Midtown Atlanta landmark made their list.
The site praised The Biltmore Ballrooms as being "over-the-top in the best way possible," mentioning its ivy-lined garden and two gilded ballrooms. See the entire list of best wedding venues in the country here.
Here's some of what makes the venue special:
A rich and interesting history
The Biltmore Ballrooms had their origin in the Biltmore Hotel, which was built in 1924 as a result of a partnership between Atlanta's William Candler and a New York hotel mogul. Over the years, it became a centerpiece of Atlanta's social scene, hosting famous guests including Charles Lindbergh, Vivien Leigh and presidents Franklin Roosevelt and Dwight Eisenhower. It closed in 1982, reopening in 1999 as an event, office and retail space.
It's listed on the National Register of Historic Places, and many original touches have been preserved or restored, such as the original handcrafted plaster relief ceilings and restored crystal chandeliers.
A courtyard and entrance with large columns and archways makes an impressive entrance for wedding guests and also sets the tone for the space inside.
The event space features two connecting ballrooms, the Georgian and Imperial, which can be rented separately or together. The Georgian is more opulent, with gilded golf leaf and antique pillars. The Imperial is more intimate and features Colonial Revival architecture.
You can get married at the venue and also have the reception there, or you can choose to have only the reception at The Biltmore Ballrooms. Anywhere from 50 to 1,500 guests can be accommodated, and the average price for rental is $5,000. Find more information on pricing here.
The metro Atlanta area also has plenty of other venue options for prospective brides and bridegrooms. Atlanta – as well as counties like Cobb and DeKalb – have plenty of choices, including outdoor venues. Whether you're looking for a rustic natural setting or a sweeping view of Atlanta's skyline, the following are some that will fit the bill:
Ventanas, 275 Baker St., Atlanta. 404-ROOFTOP (766-3867). ventanasatlanta.com – Located atop the Hilton Garden Inn hotel in the Luckie Marietta District, Ventanas offers beautiful views of Atlanta's skyline.
The Gardens at Kennesaw Mountain, 1127 White Circle NW, Marietta. 770-396-5361. www.gardensatkennesaw.com – Have your ceremony at the shady outdoor garden, and enjoy a reception in the pavilion.
Mary Gay House, 716 W. Trinity Place, Decatur. 404-378-2162. www.marygayhouse.org – The Mary Gay House was built in the 1820s and has been restored with historically accurate décor and architecture. It offers plenty of room as well as charm for a wedding.
Smith Family Farm, Atlanta History Center, 130 West Paces Ferry Road NW, Atlanta. 404-814-4000. www.atlantahistorycenter.com/explore/destinations/smith-family-farm – This 1860s farmhouse and gardens can accommodate up to 350 wedding guests.