12 total reviews
If you are looking for a unique venue in Norfolk, you must go check out the Hermitage museum & gardens. After looking at (not joking) 33 VENUES (!), my now husband and I found the Hermitage and it had everything we wanted.
It was extremely tough to find a venue where we could get married and have the reception at the same location, which the Hermitage allows. All of the staff at the Hermitage are amazing, especially Lil with any and all questions you may have and taking care of all the details. They aren't pushing or tough to talk to either which was great for an out-of-town bride.
All of our guests absolutely loved the venue as well. It was absolutely perfect! We are so happy!
After searching for a venue with beautiful water views and a vibrant garden we found the Hermitage Museum and Gardens. They had a great spot for the ceremony and the reception was held on the water under a tent. All the guests raved about the gardens and the breathtaking sunset over the water; many locals didn’t even know it was there. The process beforehand was very smooth and they were more than willing to work with us!
This place is gorgeous! We had our wedding ceremony and reception here on June 9th 2012. After reading the other reviews I must say there are a few things I would agree with. The Hermitage is a Museum first..therefore you should keep in mind that when you originally book the event you will need a lot of rentals. I had no idea it would cost so much! I had 130 guests and it was about $10.000 for the venue fee and everything we needed to rent in order to hold the event outside. Of course they would push you to rent a tent, the weather is unpredictable and you would rather have the back up plan just for peace of mind. It didn't rain on us but it did end up being slightly hotter than expected and the tent provided shade. Also Lil who is the event coordinator is very nice, she responded to all my emails and my phone calls promptly. However you must keep in mind that she works for the Museum. She is not a wedding coordinator! If you want one of those you will need to hire one. Our wedding was planned in about 8 months which is insane but after everything was said and done and the dust settled we couldn't of had a more perfect wedding! We even got to see the fireworks from Harbour Fest! This location is top notch and although we almost doubled our budget it was totally worth it!
It was a bit difficult to work with the Hermitage, although it was perfect and so beautiful, the woman in charge was hard to get in contact with, and I felt lazy. She waited until the day before to tell us our layout had to change completely. She was rude, and I have nothing positive to say about our interactions.
It's always changing, visit the first of the month, then the last, and you'll see what I mean. It is never not beautiful there. Talk about picture opportunities, views, perfect May weather :)
Plus, Lil is great to work with. The Hermitage was our first venue visit, and our last - one visit and we knew it was it. Talk about saving on decorations - who needs it with views like this?
I fell in love with the hermitage the moment I set foot there, the grounds are gorgeous and it's the perfect setting for an outdoor wedding. Only downside was that choosing this venue made me go drastically over budget in the end. There is a large fee to simply rent the venue, then there is the cost of all the rentals you need to actually have an event there. They also have exclusive contracts and a list of preferred vendors that you're encouraged to use to avoid the hassle of insurance and approvals. So you don't get to shop around for the cheapest vendors and rentals. Overall I loved the place and the photos are gorgeous, but be prepared to spend a little bit.
You will not need many decorations or flowers if you choose to get married in this beautiful garden. The scenery is second to none. Lil, who is the wedding coordinator, is professional and welcoming. Be aware that you will need your own planner for this venue, as it will reduce any stress that comes with a difficult outdoor venue like this one. It can be costly when you include the fact that you have to rent EVERYTHING for the wedding (tables, chairs, etc.)That being said, pictures are amazing, and the Hermitage is a stunning backdrop for a lovely day.
Absolutely beautiful! Loved the site and the general atmosphere
the hermitage was soo beautiful. The attendents that they had were not as helpful as i thought they would be. A lot of my guest complained about them.
The Hermitage Museum and Gardens was an absolutely beautiful place to have a wedding. We decided to have both our ceremony and reception at the Hermitage, and with a little help from Mother Nature, we could not have asked for a more beautiful setting for our special day. If you are looking for an outside wedding, this is the place to do it.
HOWEVER, brides be warned, because the Hermitage does not provide anything other than the venue and beautiful setting, you must buy or rent everything (literally) for your event. Which can make it an expensive decision (a tent can cost up to $2,500 and there is no rain alternative option other than more tents), not to mention it can spread you in a million directions trying to organize it all. That said, I highly recommend getting, at least a day-of, wedding coordinator to help execute all the details and make sure all the moving parts come together for your special day. There are a lot of vendors to coordinate when you have your wedding outside of a physical building/hotel, and making sure all the hands are talking can be quite a challenge for a bride. (I used As You Wish Weddings and Events, and Julie was heaven-sent!)
Also, the Hermitage's wedding/event manager does very little to help you with your wedding other than collect the necessary paperwork. And if you can deal with her somewhat-blah attitude (or put your planner on her), you will have an amazing event.
We lived in Ghent for many years and loved this place. Its like having your own historic home on the water for a day - it had sentimental value for us since my grandmother was a buyer for the Sloane family in Manhattan in the turn of the century.
HOWEVER, please be aware you need to hire in your own power ($3000 minimum), a tent and they encourage you to use their vendors. We lucked out since we loved them.
It is extremely difficult to find someone to talk to while planning. I had to go to the director of the museum in order to get anything moving which was ridiculous after the amount of money we have them. I was even asked to send out insurance forms for all my vendors. Then, I had to change the contract 5 times since phone numbers, addresses etc were incorrect.
If not for Pearl Taylor our wonderful planner, Cuisine & Co, and Blue Steele I would have changed my location since it took forever to get a contract that was correct (3 months ladies). The staff (with the exception of Colin and Melanie(the director) who we love...was rude to our guests that night. You have to pay them to be there which is fine its a museum, it must cost extra for them to smile though)
I would recommend the Chrysler Museum, Founder's Inn or Inn at Warner Hall all places we considered.
Absolutely amazing place to be married. We were married under a huge magnolia tree right on the Elizabeth river. No weddings can be held inside the museum but they have a great back up plan. The pretty much force you to reserve a tent, but look at it as wedding insurance. No dogs allowed, so if that is an issue, you might want to consider something else. I cannot say enough nice things about the place, friendly staff, beautifully maintained grounds. Perfect outside wedding if you want to be near water but not on the beach.
Thank you so much for choosing to have such a special event, your wedding ceremony here at the Hermitage Museum. The gardens and river are a beautiful setting to a wedding ceremony and reception. We would like to apologize for the misunderstanding ab...
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A Picturesque Venue for Your Special Day
The grounds of the Hermitage are sure to enchant guests on your special day! Featuring breathtaking gardens and stunning waterfront views, your occasion will be truly extraordinary! Choose from the intimate Rose Garden, the waterfront, grotto, or under the beautiful setting of trees by the river.
- Price Range: $$
- Amenities: On the Water, Onsite Parking, Outdoor Ceremony Area, Outdoor Reception Area, Outside Caterers Allowed, Site Fee, Tented Area, Wheelchair Accessible
- Capacity: Up to 300
- Style: Mansion/Historic Site, Museum/Gallery, Unusual/Alternative