Sunday, October 28, 2012

Nuts (Acorns, specifically)

My mom and I had lunch Saturday and she asked if I wanted to swing by The Solarium for a drive-by.  So we finally get there (relying solely on my memory and navigation skills can be dangerous at worst, and highly time-consuming at best) and took a walk around.  There was a florist setting up for a wedding there that night and mom asked her about The Solarium's claim that 100 people could fit on the brick patio.  The florist looked dubious and said the only way that would be possible would be to have chairs "spilling down the 2 foot wide sidewalks".  To quote my friend Blair, that's "kind of not ideal."  The more we looked at the patio, the less likely it seemed we could fit everyone on it for our ceremony.  I REALLY want to have the ceremony outside and the reception inside, if possible, so the outdoor space is pretty important.  The patio is also on a fairly busy residential street with Marta buses swooshing through, a fire station about 300 feet away, and a new pub within spitting distance with a big ol' patio crammed with boisterous football fans out front.  I wish The Solarium had a more private outdoor space, but alas, they do not.  I also wish the inside wasn't painted light green, but that's another issue.  There was an enormous tree that arches over the patio area that was dropping acorns like it was 1999, which both alarmed and amused us thinking about guests getting nut-bombed during our wedding ceremony next fall!  We hit up a hotel in downtown Decatur as it would be convenient to have the wedding at a hotel since we have out of town guests.  Unfortunately, the outdoor space was kind of hilairs (it looked like the side of AMC Northlake - wide sidewalk, cement walls) and it overlooked a beautiful fountain the entrance to 2 parking decks.  After that, we spent at least 20 minutes driving around the Emory area trying to find the Emory Conference Center Hotel (ECC).  We finally found the beyotch and it was REALLLLL nice.  Beautiful courtyards, patios, fire pits, amazing ballrooms, floor-to-ceiling stone fireplaces, and other ritzy accoutrements.  Turns out it costs $12K to rent the larger ballroom or $6K for either of the smaller ones, plus $67 per person for cocktail hour (not including cocktails...I'm serious), $65-$71 per person for dinner, and $33 per person per hour for mid-level liquors.  Plus $90 per bartender.  Plus $90 per carving station attendant.  Plus a $750 ceremony fee.  Plus 85 other charges.  So scratch that place off the list, STAT!

So at the end of the day, we have nothing "cemented" other than having our name in at The Solarium on the reservation list.  I talked to Jason and he shared that he too had some concerns about The Solarium fitting with what we were looking for and agreed we should revisit the Trolley Barn (TB).  I mentioned Callanwolde (the 1920's Gothic Tudor home of Charles Howard Candler, the oldest son of the founder of Coca Cola) as I'd previously emailed with their event coordinator Charlotte (who is an absolute PEACH!) and Callanwolde is so damn gorgeous.  Their outdoor space is super amazeballs and the architecture is stunning.  Ever since we got engaged, I've had this secret dream of getting my picture taken in my wedding dress on the staircase there.  So today I emailed Charlotte to see if we can come for a tour this week.  The mere possibility of getting married there thrills me to the core!  Bonus: they have coral curtains in the music room so you know this is a solid establishment.  We'll see what happens this week!

Bride posing on the Grand Staircase
Ceiling detail over the staircase
The Grand Staircase

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