27 total reviews
Housing Works was an amazing place to get married. My husband and I actually had a great time at our own wedding and we owe so much of that to Housing Works/ Amanda. Amanda helped us with all the planning and on the day of the wedding she helped us through the entire event from start to finish, from wrangling family members for speeches to keeping us on track with our timeline. The great thing about Housing Works/Amanda is that they are fun people to work with - plus they are flexible. They will set up the space and run your event according to how you want it to go. For example, we started with cocktails first and then got married after cocktail hour followed by dinner/dancing. We got married on the staircase instead of having a formal ceremony and it was no problem at all. And the venue is so beautiful and unique and the food/service is top notch. We received so many compliments on our wedding and we truly loved our wedding!!! Thank you Amanda and Housing Works!
Housing Works is an amazing place to get married in New York City. Not only are they an extremely affordable option, but the staff is helpful and fun to work with. They are very accommodating to our needs, as we wanted a vegetarian wedding. Their staff made sure we got exactly what we wanted within our budget. The bookstore itself is a quirky and unique venue, and it is definitely a memorable location.
Everything about my wedding at Housing Works Bookstore in Soho was absolute perfection. From the planning, to the group tasting, and the actual night. Nick the head waiter was amazing. Josh our event planner is one of the sweetest people I have ever met. The planning was easy and the atmosphere was romantic, intimate, and so different from usual catering hall weddings. All of our family and close friends RAVED about the delicious food, and extraordinary service. I highly recommend this venue if you are A. a lover of literature and philanthropic causes B. looking for a romantic wedding in a chic spot and C. tired of the usual catering hall weddings.
My husband and I just got married at Housing Works bookstore on Saturday, November 1, 2014. When I say it was everything we could have wanted and more, I truly mean it. We hosted 80 people for an intimate ceremony at 6PM (we opted to close the bookstore early for the event) followed by a dinner reception and dancing. Amanda was awesome making the initial arrangements and walking us through the various options. Josh who ran the event on the day of is spectacular as was his amazing staff who made sure Greg and I always had everything we needed. When our drinks were low, someone was always there to offer a refill and make sure we were enjoying the day. I used to run weddings in college so I know what goes into making an event run smoothly and on time and Josh's execution was flawless. We started the day assuming that at some point, something would go awry and I can honestly say I was happily surprised that nothing went wrong!! For dinner we opted to do a duet option of salmon and vegetable lasagna and they were both fantastic.
Both Greg and I loved the bookstore and everyone involved in making the wedding such a beautiful evening all around. Our guests could not say enough about how beautiful a venue it is. If you're looking for a venue for an intimate wedding, we can not recommend this location enough.
My only recommendation would be to buy a lot of votive candles for the tables, bar and windows (we bought 300 and used almost all of them!) The candles really add to the decor.
Kate & Greg Price
I'm so glad I had my wedding here! Not only are you helping a great cause, but the atmosphere is lovely, the setting is unique, and the staff/coordinators are fantastic. The wedding went off without a hitch, and my guests raved about the great time they had. I give them my highest recommendation!
Housing works and their event manager Amanda were incredible! I can’t express how much they brought our event together and how grateful we are that we found them. We are a queer couple who really didn’t want a “traditional” ceremony and had phobias about the whole marriage/wedding thing. We honestly didn’t know how we would do it in a way that wasn’t cheesy or uptight. Amanda and Housing Works helped us realize we could have an event that was totally our own and reflected our own values and creativity and was just incredibly intimate, relaxed and down to earth. They are totally responsive on email, very reliable and then add a bunch of extra touches in so you have nothing extra to stress about on the night. I can't recommend them highly enough!
My daughter's a journalist who lived in NYC for a few years before moving abroad. When she and her boyfriend decided to get married, she told me that her first choice of venue was "Housing Works" in Manhattan. A bookstore? I was not convinced. I love books, too, but how would that work?
The answer: Amazingly, beautifully, wonderfully! A unique and very beautiful store, close to NYU and Washington Square. The staff, led by Josh and Amanda, helped us through every planning stage, not an easy task with the bride and groom in Istanbul, the groom's family in NJ, and the bride's Mom and Dad (me) in Bahrain in the Persian Gulf. But it worked seamlessly. Really.
And on the day, it was pure magic. Great staff, delicious food, lots of wine, many toasts, much dancing and laughing. Josh oversaw every detail with great humor and calm.
Every father of the bride wants only one thing: his daughter's happiness. And Jenna glowed with joy and love. The pictures all show shelves of books as a backdrop for my lovely daughter, her very lucky husband, and our happy families and friends, all having a great time. Thanks to Housing Works.
There's an afterglow too. All profits go to help the homeless and victims of AIDS in New York. That's not why we chose the venue, but it was very nice touch.
Thanks. Tom and Bonnie
First of all, the space is GORGEOUS. It's a beautiful bookstore, warm and inviting. The event managers - Josh and Amanda - were so kind, flexible, and patient. We really enjoyed working with them and we were so relaxed knowing that we were in good hands. Actually, everyone working at Housing Works was really kind and attentive. So many of our guests came up to us exclaiming about the beautiful space and the wonderful staff. The food was delicious and the booze choices excellent. We really had the most perfect wedding for us. Definitely recommend!
We were delighted with both Amanda and Josh and everyone at Housing Works. The evening was perfect, from the unusual and beautiful venue, to the great food. It was definitely an evening to remember.
The planning process and execution of our cocktail wedding reception went so smoothly. Our coordinators, Amanda and Josh, made sure the process from the tasting all the way thru to the end of the wedding was flawlessly managed. Though we were too busy to eat too much ourselves, our guests raved about the variety of cocktail appetizers and desserts.
It's a unique place in Manhattan to have a party, and it's certainly a place where both you and your guests will remember what a great time yuo had!
I don't have enough superlatives for Housing Works. They were so easy to work with and made the event unforgettable. The payment plans are very reasonable and for New York a real bargain. They're great with advice in the planning and gave us advice that actually made things cheaper for us when they could've had us spend more money instead (like having the after party in the bar across the street for free!). The staff leading up to the event and at the event itself was so helpful I can't thank them enough. All our guests were so impressed with the uniqueness of the venue and they also commented on how great the food was. Everything was fantastic!
The venue is magical - the most gorgeous bookstore you can imagine with winding stairs, a balcony overlooking, and tall ladders that push across the beautiful shelves.
But the people are really what make Housing Works such an ideal location to be married. Amanda and Josh were so excited about our wedding at every step of the game. They were always only an email away with the best ideas and advice. I felt like I was in the best of hands. And the staff the night of our wedding was pleasant and kind and fun to be around. Every time I turned around there was someone there to make something easier.
You know it's amazing when the bride LOVED every minute of her wedding planning!! Thank you, Housing Works!!
My husband and I cannot say enough good things about working with Housing Works for our wedding! It was everything we wanted it to be—personal, unique, intimate, quirky and completely hassle-free! Amanda and Josh did such an incredible job coordinating all of the details and making sure we and our guests were well taken care of all night long. We have received nothing but rave reviews from our guests, commenting on the beauty of the space and incredible way the bookstore was transformed into a wedding venue. The food was fabulous—we chose the cocktail party option with a specialty food table, and the food was hot, tasty and plentiful. We will never forget our wedding and at the end of the day, we got to feel good about the money we spent, knowing that we were helping to support an amazing charity that gives aid to so many who need help.
We didn't even know that Housing Works Bookstore did weddings until we read it on a BuzzFeed list. But we're so happy we did! They are AMAZING and really were a big factor in what ended up being an amazing day. The top reasons to pick Housing Works:
1. The staff are awesome. They are both very chill and completely on top of everything, and super nice and fun to boot. Service on the evening of was faultless.
2. The venue itself is beautiful. We didn't have to decorate at all because it's already a lovely space.
3. Our guests were able to shop for books throughout the evening! Many people really loved this. (Our recc: make sure you include this in your remarks - that you can buy books - because people won't even realize they can, and it's a missed opportunity for HW and for your guests.)
4. They do everything in-house. It's not the cheapest venue we saw, but for value it's pretty unbeatable. The convenience alone makes it a deal - both in terms of location and because of how many items we were able to check off our list just by picking Housing Works. You pick the linen colors, they have all the furniture, and they do all the catering and service. We originally were planning to do a very DIY wedding where we sourced all the vendors ourselves, until we realized that that REALLY meant. Housing Works was the perfect solution for us.
5. The food. The food! It was sooo good. I still think about it fondly and wish I could eat some more. They have so many great options - vegetarian, gluten-free, etc. you can pick great items to please the dietary needs of your guests, and not feel that you have to compromise on what *you* want. We did a reception instead of dinner, and people really raved about the food.
6. If you feel a little guilty about spending so much on yourself/for a wedding (which we did), the fact that you're supporting a really meaningful nonprofit helps alleviate the guilt a little bit.
It's also a pretty unique venue. We've been to 50 weddings (ours was the 50th) and many venues in NYC multiple times, but had never even heard that Housing Works Bookstore did weddings. So chances are you will be able to provide a unique experience for your guests, as we did!
Four thumbs up!
Working with the Housing Works team was the best decision we made on planning our wedding. Initial discussions on packages and prices were informative and helpful compared to other NYC venues (no hidden costs etc..) and allowing us to set minimum guest numbers and finalise guest counts only 3 weeks before the day was massively helpful due to the amount of overseas guests attending. The pre day meetings and follow ups were timely and helpful and Amanda and Josh couldn't do enough for us (including re-scheduling a tasting for us when we missed the first) in answering questions etc.
On the day of the wedding the entire team were amazing - from setting up in record time to dealing with 1001 crazy family requests before our ceremony started to keeping our drinks topped up at all times! The bar and wait staff were friendly and helpful without being overbearing and big props to the chefs as the food was amazing.
Every one of our guests remarked on how great the venue, staff and food were and what an amazing night it made. We'd definitely recommend them to anyone who asked
Brilliant wedding. Turned out way better than we expected. Venue was perfect. Josh was amazing. Everything went so well and smoothly. People just loved this venue - totally intimate.
We had about 80 guests which was perfect. We hired a magician to walk around. Really great idea. Live band for the beginning. Dj for the dancing at the end. Photo booth and ice luge. I recommend you copy everything we did as it was perfect! Also, get the cup cakes from Molly's cup cakes- they're the best. Wholefoods did the flowers which saved us on cost. We had a sit down dinner and not buffet as we thought that's more classy.
Our wedding at the Housing Works Bookstore Cafe 6 weeks ago was perfection! And that comes not just from me, but from almost every single one of our 85 guests. We had our ceremony there, followed by a sit-down dinner and dancing, and every detail went off without a hitch.
I can't speak highly enough about Amanda, the events director, and her second in command, Josh, along with the lovely waitstaff and top-notch kitchen. Having worked in the food industry myself - both front and back of house - I can be particular, and these folks knocked it out of the park. They know how to run an event smoothly, and they warn you ahead of time about things you should consider. They were able to recommend a number of vendors who have also worked in the Bookstore before, and that was also a huge help.
One thing that we particularly loved about our Housing Works wedding is the fact that the money we were spending for this special day was going to be used to support Housing Works' mission - fighting AIDS and homelessness in NYC.
And you couldn't find a more NY venue! It's located on a cobblestone street in Soho, in a huge two-level space, with an arcade around the second level, allowing your guests to watch the ceremony from above. A bonus is that if you get ready in the neighborhood (we stayed at the Nolitan - which I also highly recommend), you can bring your photographer along as you walk up Elizabeth Street to Prince, and use all that great Soho streetscape for your photos!
The Housing Works Bookstore is a special place.
Housing Works Bookstore Cafe in Soho and The Works Catering: Amanda was so friendly, helpful, and competent. Not even one tiny thing went wrong from start to finish. Food was amazing and guests loved it. The butternut squash lasagna is out of this world. If you love books, this venue is more charming than you can even imagine. Finally, the proceeds go to support a good cause, so it is a venue with values.
We had a cocktail style rehearsal dinner for about 80 people at the Housing Works Bookstore - and we loved it! Working with Amanda and Josh was really fantastic. They made the whole process very easy and made sure everything went smoothly. The tastings were especially great because they were held In the space, which was fully decorated so we had a sense of what it would look like during our event. The transformation of bookstore by day to event space at night was really amazing. Everything was beautiful, the food was super, and all of our guests had a great time! It's really a beautiful space, and we really appreciated that the proceeds go straight to the Housing Works charity. It made our night truly unique and memorable.
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Housing Works Bookstore Cafe in Soho
Host your storybook wedding with 100% of proceeds benefitting the homeless living with HIV/AIDS. This Soho bookshop resembles an Ivy League library with its spiral staircases, mahogany balconies, and rows of books. The Works Catering, also operated by Housing Works, serves amazing seasonal fare.
- Price Range: $$$
- Amenities: Indoor Ceremony Area, Liquor License, Onsite Catering, Onsite Parking, Onsite Wedding Consultant, Wheelchair Accessible
- Capacity: Up to 250
- Style: Banquet/Reception Hall, Loft/Raw Space, Mansion/Historic Site, Museum/Gallery, Unusual/Alternative
awards and affiliations
- The Knot Best Of Weddings 2013