A natural playground of captivating peaks, roaming wildlife, and shimmering-blue water, the resort town of Banff—located within Banff National Park in Alberta, Canada—is a dream location for weddings. But with so many venue options in the area, ranging from castles to lodges, it can be hard to decide where to host your big day. Luckily, we’ve researched the Banff wedding scene and pinpointed 5 of the most breathtaking settings, in the heart of the Canadian Rockies, to help you get started.
Fairmont Banff Springs, also known as the “Castle of the Rockies,” is a Scottish baronial castle and fairytale setting for couples wanting to be surrounded by Banff’s natural beauty.
The outdoor terrace, which looks out onto the Banff National Park, is a popular choice for ceremonies—and it’s unsurprising as the view is so stunning it hardly seems real. For indoor celebrations, the Cascade Ballroom offers couples a grand ambiance with panoramic views of the Bow Valley, dazzling chandeliers, refined hardwood floors, and blue, burgundy, and gold decorations.
The Alhambra Ballroom, another gorgeous space in the Spanish Renaissance style, features a custom cast-bronze door, expansive windows, high ceilings, and 4 chandeliers that cast a romantic glow in the room. If couples prefer an intimate ceremony and reception, the Ivor Petrak Room is a charming environment with a central chandelier and sweeping Bow Valley vista view.
In addition to the venue’s elegant spaces, the culinary team can craft fresh food that honors local cuisine and can be served as a buffet, plated meal, or stations. Popular dishes include teriyaki beef skewers, jalapeño cream cheese fritters, chilled shrimp, grilled chicken breast, and other savory treats. An assortment of desserts is also available.
Typical Cost: Ceremony site fee ranges from $500 – $6,000. Reception site fee ranges from $1,200 – $27,000. Meals average $100 per person.
Bonus: Need something to do between wedding events? Sink into vacation mode by utilizing the resort’s Willow Stream Spa, championship golf course, and world-class skiing, among other activities.
Set on 9 acres of soaring, fragrant pine trees in Banff National Park, Buffalo Mountain Lodge is one of the area’s best wedding venues featuring spectacular indoor and outdoor event spaces.
The two-story Wapiti Longhouse is one of the most utilized areas, exuding mountain-chic with a magnificent ceiling, vast fireplace, and tasteful alpine wall hangings. Often used for smaller gatherings, the Wainwright Room provides a bounty of natural light, making it an ideal space for wedding photos. The Strathcona Room, on the upper floor of the Main Lodge, can be used for indoor and outdoor wedding events and features awe-inspiring backdrops with lovely balcony and picture windows.
Many of the wedding and elopement packages offered by Buffalo Mountain Lodge include tables and chairs, barware, glassware and flatware, a bartender, and specialty wine and accommodations.
Typical Cost: Site fee ranges from $800 – $3,000. Meals average $60 per person.
Bonus: Couples, wedding parties, and guests can immerse themselves in the venue’s rustic majesty by staying in one of the 108 guest rooms that come fully-equipped with amenities such as fireplaces, plush beds, clawfoot tubs, and staggering mountain views.
The resort’s grass-covered terrace is a must for outdoor ceremonies, appearing to float among pines and backed by a remarkable mountain vista. Couples can host larger receptions in the Wildrose Ballroom that sparkles under a massive central light feature and tasteful recessed lighting, while smaller groups can enjoy a reception in the resort’s Primrose or Eden restaurants, both of which are fit for royalty. All spaces include large windows that open to breathtaking views of the surrounding forest and mountainscapes.
Set-up and chair removal, gift tables, the guestbook and cake, a raised head table (in some rooms), table numbers and stands, an easel for the seating chart, place cards, and personalized menus are all included.
Typical Cost: Site fee ranges from $2,500 – $25,000. There is a minimum of $100 per person for food and drink.
Bonus: Couples can enjoy 10% off much-deserved pampering at The Rimrock Spa.
With a prime location in the Canadian Rockies, a sightseeing chairlift, stylish dining at Cliffhouse Bistro, and the occasional spotting of wildlife, Mount Norquay is a unique and memorable setting and one Banff’s best wedding venues.
Inside the 24,000 square-foot timber-frame Cascade Lodge, couples can use Kika’s Café, the Lone Pine eatery, and the venue’s large patio for a wedding ceremony—as well as the extraordinary Lone Pine Lawn at the base of the chairlift.
Mount Norquay provides chairs, setup, a guestbook signing table, a water station, full use of furnishings, plates and silverware, a portable dance floor and podium, and an in-house sound system. In addition, attentive staff is present to ensure your wedding events go off without a hitch.
The venue offers all menus, including à la carte items, dinner buffets, plated dinners, food stations, and more. Wedding cakes and other specialty food items can be procured from outside vendors if you wish.
Typical Cost: Site fee starts at $1,200. Food and drink minimum is $10,000 – $14,000.
Bonus: The chairlift, surrounded by nature, offers a distinctive setting for photos.
5. Deer Lodge
Acclaimed for its picturesque aesthetic during any season, Deer Lodge, constructed in 1923, is a venue that exudes Banff’s countryside character and one of the best wedding venues in the area. This character is exuded through the original hand-hewn log structures and décor and modern luxuries such as feather comforters, a dry wood sauna, and a rooftop hot tub that looks out onto spectacular views of Victoria Glacier.
Couples can exchange vows on the outdoor patio, which is whimsical after a snowfall, and hold receptions in the Mount Fairview Dining Room or Caribou Lounge and Gallery. The Mount Fairview Room emanates rustic-chic vibes with its 20-foot wood beam construction and geometric, supporting posts—and the Caribou Lounge and Gallery, which was originally a log cabin teahouse built in 1921, provides a similar ambiance. If you adore the thought of posting up in a cozy cabin in the woods, Deer Lodge is for you.
Typical Cost: Average of $15,000 for 50 guests.
Bonus: The venue has a “rent your own lodge” option, allowing couples to book the entire establishment, ensuring the function, guest rooms, and amenities are reserved for the happy pair and their loved ones.
Bailey Gaddis is a travel writer and author of Feng Shui Mommy: Creating Balance and Harmony for Blissful Pregnancy, Childbirth, and Motherhood. In addition, she works as a childbirth preparation educator and birth doula who supports mothers-to-be and new mothers. 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.