Today’s venue walkthrough is of the beautiful Willowdale Estate in Topsfield, Massachusetts, and our tour guide is Willowdale’s Sr. Sales & Marketing Manager, Sarah Boucher. Enjoy!
Tell us a bit about your venue:
Willowdale Estate is an Arts and Crafts field-stone mansion; our property today sits on about 4 acres of the 720-acre Bradley Palmer State Park. Our historic venue is not only an ideal location for weddings, but it also hosts our in-house catering company and dedicated team of planners who help make each event personalized and unique.
See more of this lovely venue after the cut!
What makes your business unique?
The raw beauty and craftsmanship found throughout our fieldstone mansion in the diamond paned stained-glass windows, mosaic tiling, stone-carved fireplaces and ornate woodwork is a direct inspiration for our immaculate care of the property and grounds today. We are one of the few historic venues that is open for weddings and events year-round! Our Tent Season (May-October) make use of the mansion and our custom Sperry Tent and the Mansion Season (November-April) for smaller indoor weddings.
Do you target any particular niche?
The ideal Willowdale wedding client is someone who is inspired by beauty and wants to create something special on their wedding day. We accomplish this by offering consultation and planning support to make our clients ideas come to life.
What’s your favorite part of the job?
My favorite part of my current role at Willowdale is looking for and sharing inspiration for weddings. When a photographer sends photos from a recent wedding I can relive all of the special moments and amazing details from our clients wedding day. Through sharing photos from real weddings and from around our property I get to help our clients who are still dreaming and planning for their upcoming wedding day.
How do you help couples customize their weddings?
There are so many great ways to make a wedding personal and meaningful. Our team of wedding coordinators offers consultation and inspiration from the time our clients choose a wedding date. The week of the wedding we offer a decor drop off meeting to talk about the placement and design for details like personal photos, signs, seating guides and table numbers. We store the decor and set it up for our clients to their specifications on the wedding day, we even pack things up at the end of the night! Sometimes there are more custom decor items like floral chandeliers to our tent or adding ornate paper cranes to a ceremony arbor and our team is willing and eager to make sure that all of these carefully curated ideas come to life on the wedding day.
Do you have any funny stories about a past wedding or event?
One of my favorite wedding day stories was a was the bride who was wishing for romantic snowfall on her wedding day in November. The week before the event it was looking like the weather was not going to cooperate. Much to our brides surprise her father had arranged for a snow machine to be positioned on the roof. The unsuspecting couple was lead outside by the photographer for some portraits just after dinner. The look on the brides face when snow began to fall was priceless and it was so fun to help make this special detail happen!
What’s the biggest lesson you’ve learned?
If you are planning a wedding or helping a family member or client plan- try to keep the focus on the meaningful nature of this once-in-a-lifetime day and let that guide your decisions. If you can’t enjoy the culmination of all of your hard work along the way then it will be all for naught!
Any tips for brides on the hunt for a venue?
Let your values guide you- what are the most important elements when you envision your wedding? Try to choose a venue that has great reviews for the things you value most like food, service and location. Also prepare yourself with a realistic idea of who is coming, who is paying and try to keep an open mind about the date- your first choice could already booked at your favorite venue.
Thanks Sarah! For more information about Willowdale Estate, please visit their WeddingLovely Vendor Guide profile or head straight to their website.
What do you think about today’s featured venue? Let us know in the comments below!
All Photos by: Zev Fisher Photography