When planning any event, it would be silly to pretend we don't have grandiose ideas of what we want. None more important than the location or venue, because it sets the tone and atmosphere for the event.
If you want to have a laid back affair, you won't choose Buckingham Palace as your venue. From the time your guests see that printed on the invitation, they are already planning their fancy hats and bow ties, because let's face it... who is going to a function at Buckingham Palace in their ripped jeans and crop tops? Let's be real, guys.
Although having a location which can send thrills through your guests by the mere mention of the name, you need to consider that that is not the only reason one should choose a location.
1. What atmosphere are you going for? Maybe you want to have a formal dinner, or you envision your guests jumping into a pool. Answering this question plays a big part in the places you even consider shortlisting.
2. What is the size of your guest list? Are you looking to accommodate a stadium's worth of people or are you seeking to entertain just your inner circle? This is a crucial question, because it can be the determining factor between guests having personal space or stepping on each other's toes. Alternatively, having too much space is just as bad as having too little. It's a sign of poor planning. Imagine...you have an event and the place is too big and you walk past someone saying maybe they were expecting more people but your guest list is all there...do you really want that?
3. What is your expectation of the weather? Living in the Caribbean, we sometimes forget that the rain may fall. Or rather, we operate with the belief that the sun shines more than it rains, so there is the tendency to see outdoor events without proper covering. The weather is a serious factor to picking your choice of location.
4. Speaking of coverings, logistics play a big part as well. Do you need a place with a PA system, on-site bathrooms, night time lighting, a kitchen area, a bar, wheelchair access....the list could go on and on. The question of logistics also plays a big part in the money you will spend. A venue without the necessary things you need means you have to spend more to bring your venue up to standard.
5. And I saved the biggest factor for last...money! Busting your budget on the venue to achieve the dream location isn't the smartest move. It's a big element to your event but it's not the only element. Especially if you are having a paid event, those costs add up and you may even price yourself out of clientele to attend your expensive venue. Don't be cheap, just smart. Seek out locations with packages that tick off items on your must have list like catering, parking, lighting etc. Bundling saves money.