Unlike any other destination, Portland radiates with an idiosyncratic style enhanced by lush vegetation and stunning natural landmarks, like Mount Hood. These special ingredients make this quirky city an ideal location for those looking to say their I do’s in one-of-a-kind venues that range in ambiance from a redwood-covered wonderland to a historic hotel exuding the glamour of old Hollywood. Making these venues even more desirable is the fact that they’re all offered at shockingly low rates, allowing you to score your dream wedding without draining the bank.
Envision pledging your love under a canopy of redwood and sequoia trees, as the fresh air, soothing sounds and earthy aromas of Oregon’s natural world please your senses. For those with a fondness for Mother Earth, there are few locations in Portland as enchanting as this 190-acre paradise of flora and fauna. Whether you want to walk down an aisle of lush grass in a rustic meadow, have an intimate ceremony on the aptly named Redwood Deck, or celebrate under the picnic shelter surrounded by Douglas firs, Hoyt Arboretum can be the optimal setting for your wedding. Enhancing the appeal of this charming venue is the fact that rental proceeds support the Arboretum’s plant collections and preservation programs, in addition to the important work of Portland Parks & Recreation.
Typical Cost: $285 to $595.75
Bonus: As it’s located in downtown Portland, the arboretum is in close proximity to many of the city’s most popular lodging options.
It seems dreamlike to find a chic venue in a storied hotel that has a price tag that makes you look twice, as you’re sure it’s missing a few zeros. Elkspace at Sentinel Hotel is keeping the dream alive, offering contemporary decor, floor-to-ceiling windows overlooking downtown Portland, and elegant hardwood floors for a rate that won’t make you gawk. With its sleek white walls and black-framed mirrors, space offers a clear canvas to paint your fantasy wedding upon, with custom floral arrangements, lighting and any other special touches that excite you. Beyond the stunning visual aesthetics is the sumptuous fare crafted by an in-house caterer, Jake’s Grill. Popular menu items include Ahi Tuna Tartare, Avocado Cream & Mango Relish on a Wonton Crisp, Cornmeal Hush Puppies with Whipped Honey Butter, Pancetta Wrapped Beef Filet and Crab Stuffed Salmon, a mac n’ cheese bar, and so many other options it’s near impossible to choose your favorites.
Typical Cost: $250 to $2,000
Bonus: As this venue is located within one of the most iconic hotels in Portland, you can treat yourself to the luxury of a plush hotel room, coupled with unbeatable convenience.
Modern art lovers will find their happy place at Disjecta, a 12,000 square foot creative haven for imaginative, thought-provoking creators and creations. This non-profit contemporary art center offers a sophisticated backdrop of lustrous concrete floors, exposed beams, white walls, dramatic lighting, and compelling metal and wood accents. It’s a fun space to sprinkle with unique additions until it’s just right. For those that want the outdoors to play a part in their nuptials, Disjecta offers an intimate courtyard ideal for ceremonies. When it’s time to shift into party mode, you can head inside where playful vibes and a dance area await.
Typical Cost: $2,500
Bonus: The rental fee includes a bridal dressing area, podium and/or stage, venue set up and clean up, votive candles and day-of coordinator.
Those who have a vision of 1920s Hollywood glamour woven through their wedding will adore this historical hotel, which has been a luxury retreat since 1912. Event spaces at Hotel deLuxe include Gracie’s Restaurant, which emanates elegance with floor-to-ceiling windows, massive framed mirrors, soaring gold gilded ceilings, European crystal chandeliers and tasteful pops of lavender and green, the Screening Room that is a 1,240 square-foot dance-floor-clad ballroom, and the Rooftop Terrace, offering panoramic views of downtown Portland and surrounding hillsides. As there’s no better time to treat yourself to posh digs, you can enhance your wedding with opulent comforts and convenience by booking a room for a night or two (or five!)
Typical Cost: $300 – $1,000
Bonus: The indoor event spaces are so ornate, there is little need for additional décor, saving you even more money.
Edgy weddings with an eccentric twist regularly bloom in this 2,600 square foot venue that was originally built as a house in 1908 and now includes industrial chic finishes, exposed brick walls, quirky light fixtures, and an intimate outdoor area that exudes romance under the glow of string lights. Because of these design features, vintage, alternative, and romantic style weddings work especially well here. While you can hire an outside caterer, Opal 28 serves up ample simplicity with their in-house caterer that provides gorgeous spreads, including options like Chili Lime Marinated Grilled Flank Steak Bites, Pulled Pork Sliders with Smoky Barbecue & Dressed Coleslaw, Herb Crusted Prime Rib with Hearty Jus, and a Taco, Greek or Donut Bar. The rental fee includes the use of two event rooms, the covered patio, tables, chairs, flatware, linens, and one bartender.
Typical Cost: $4,300
Bonus: Opal 28 offers four eclectic one-bedroom apartments above the venue that can sleep up to 16 people.
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Bailey Gaddis is the author of Feng Shui Mommy: Creating Balance and Harmony for Blissful Pregnancy, Childbirth, and Motherhood, a childbirth preparation educator, birth doula, and hypnotherapist who works with mothers-to-be, new mothers, and their support teams. She is also a regular contributor to media outlets including Disney’s Babble, Working Mother, Pregnancy & Newborn, Huffington Post, Cosmopolitan, Redbook, and Woman’s Day. In addition to her childbirth-prep work, she volunteers for families in need of postpartum support. She lives in Ojai, California.