As a city that’s been a hub of innovative minds, distinctive architecture and stunning displays of Mother Nature since 1630, it’s no surprise Boston offers a platter of remarkable wedding venues. This metropolis, that’s a fascinating combination of cerebral and spirited, is the ideal location for unique nuptials with a lush park filled with towering, contemporary sculptures, an industrial-chic wonderland replete with a three-story steam engine, a water world inhabited by mystical creatures, a legendary stadium that radiates history and glory, and a presidential library featuring one of the grandest presentations of modern day design. This is where you want to go if you’re looking for a New England wedding venue with a twist.
deCordova Sculpture Park and Museum
Imagine meandering through soaring sculptures and other manmade wonders, while reveling in the majesty of the outdoors, during a dream wedding at deCordova Sculpture Park and Museum. This sprawling, artistic eden caters to various tastes, as it includes three stunning event spaces, which offer everything from unforgettable art to mesmerizing vistas. The Dewey Family Gallery and Sculpture Park Terrace features artwork from the deCordova’s impressive permanent collection and overlooks the sparkling Flint’s Pond, while the Rappaport Roof Terrace captivates with views of Flint’s Pond, Sculpture Park and the immaculate landscape of the surrounding areas. Sculpture Park, one of the most popular event spaces, is filled with over 60 massive, contemporary sculptures that are accented by the lush encompassing foliage. Couples with a passion for innovative, thought-provoking art, coupled with the vibrant energy of nature will find their bliss at deCordova Sculpture Park and Museum.
Typical Cost: $3,500 – $11,000
Capacity: 100 – 350 depending on event space
Bonus: The rental fee includes exclusive use of the entire museum, allowing you and your guests to soak in the rich displays of creativity without interruption.
This otherworldly museum is the ideal space for couples wanting to shock and awe, as the massive steam-pump powered engines make you feel like you’ve landed in the belly of the Titanic. The combination of cathedral ceilings, architecture that seems to have been transported from the Gilded Age, and the enthralling engines have an equal parts unusual and astonishing effect, ensuring your celebration will be unlike any your guests have ever attended. For those who would like the outdoors infused into the day, ceremonies can be hosted on the front steps beneath an arched, stone entrance. So if the wonders of early American innovation, highlighted by an urban chic ambiance, sound like a combo you can get behind, Waterworks Museum might just be for you.
Typical Cost: Starting at $4,000
Bonus: Included in the cost is an Event Manager who helps organize everything from the wedding schedule to catering specifics, ensuring everything goes as seamlessly as possible.
New England Aquarium
Located in the iconic Boston Harbor, this venue allows sharks, eels, rays, and other graceful ocean dwellers to be guests at your wedding, treating your human guests to a never-ending parade of underwater beauty. Allowing the aquarium to cater to almost any size of nuptial are their various event spaces, which include the Main Exhibit Gallery that has you partying alongside penguins, sea turtles and a rainbow of tropical fish dancing in the four-story Giant Ocean Tank, and the Harbor View Terrace and Tent, where you can observe the bustling activity of the harbor.
Additional spaces include the West Wing that features the largest shark and ray touch tank on the East Coast and the Harbor View Café that opens to (you guessed it) sparkling views of the harbor and city skyline. Simplifying your wedding planning is the in-house caterer that cooks up acclaimed seasonal menus, barbeque, plated or strolling dinners, light fare or a coastal clambake. Adding to their appeal is the fact that they only use ocean-friendly seafood. Whether you had the childhood dream of being a mermaid, or just adore the citizens of the Blue Planet, this aquarium would be a remarkable setting for your big day.
Typical Cost: $1,000 to $7,000
Bonus: You can stoke your altruistic nature by knowing that your money will be supporting the animals and exhibits at the aquarium, and funding their ongoing efforts to protect the ocean.
Red Sox fans will rejoice in the fact that they can commence their wedded bliss on the famed ground their favorite team has made history. Twelve event spaces are offered throughout the stadium, providing unique indoor and outdoor options for ceremonies and receptions. Whether you want to say your I do’s above the dugout then party on the decks, or walk down the aisle in the Big Concourse before heading to The Partner’s Suite for a reception, Fenway Park can make your themed-wedding dreams come true.
Adding to the allure of this venue is the five-star cuisine offered by Aramark, the exclusive caterer for Fenway Park. Couples are often pleasantly surprised by this high-quality fare that includes options like braised beef empanadas, Main crab cakes, mini Fenway Franks, sweet corn chowder and numerous other selections that make you think you’re in a fine dining establishment instead of a ballpark.
Typical Cost: Starting at $5,000 to $8,000 depending on the time of year
Capacity: 100 – 300
Bonus: Numerous food and beverage packages are offered, in addition to add-ons, ensuring couples can customize the event depending on their unique needs.
John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum
A remarkable architectural feat, this presidential library is a simultaneous celebration of modern design and American history with its breathtaking nine-story glass pavilion that looks out on the 12-acre park, and access to the museum exhibits, which features the 1960 election, JFK’s inauguration and the US space program. Beyond the Museum Pavilion, a popular reception venue is the Smith Hall that offers a soaring ceiling and picturesque views of Boston Harbor and the city skyline. For those wanting an outdoor celebration, the Library Grounds can be tented between May and October. Enhancing the elegance of this venue is Gourmet Caterers who craft edible masterpieces, like Fresh House Rolled Thai Vegetable Rolls, Anjou Pear Tartlets, Olive Oil Poached Maine Lobster on Endive, Foie Gras French Toast and so many more opulent options.
Typical Cost: $5,000 for ceremony and $20,000 for reception
Bonus: The rental fee includes wedding planning services, dressing areas for the bridal parties, security, and venue set up and cleans up.
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.
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