Turn Your Love Story Into an Iconic Exhibit at One of These Museum Wedding Venues

Memorialize your love alongside exquisite artifacts.
Bride and groom walking down steps of Baltimore Museum of Art wedding venue
Photo: Lynn Dunston Photography; Venue: Baltimore Museum of Art
Hannah Nowack The Knot Senior Weddings Editor
by
Hannah Nowack
Hannah Nowack The Knot Senior Weddings Editor
Hannah Nowack
Senior Editor
  • Hannah writes and edits articles for The Knot Worldwide, with a focus on real wedding coverage.
  • Hannah has a passion for DE&I and plays an integral role in ensuring The Knot content highlights all voices and all love stories.
  • Prior to The Knot Worldwide, Hannah was the Social Media Editor at Martha Stewart Weddings.
Updated Apr 10, 2024

What do museums and weddings have in common? They're both platforms to showcase something special, from art to love. With this in mind, it's no surprise that many nearlyweds search for museum wedding venues to host their celebrations. Whether you are looking for a wedding venue near you packed with history or a science museum wedding venue is more your speed, we've gathered some museums across the country that you should consider when booking a wedding venue.

Want after-hours access to iconic exhibits? Trust me, there's sure to be a fun museum wedding venue below that fits your style.

Museum wedding venues in this story: Art | History | Maritime | Science | Natural History

Art Museum Wedding Venues

Calling all fans of Rodin and Matisse—these art museum wedding venues need to be on your radar. Since you and your partner will be dressed to the nine on the wedding day, how amazing would it be to dazzle alongside beautiful artwork?

The Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York, New York

How amazing would it be to pose for wedding portraits on the very steps that Hollywood royalty ascend alongside Anna Wintour on the first Monday in May? The very same steps that Blair and Serena frequented in the original Gossip Girl. The Metropolitan Museum of Art, affectionately known as The Met, is not only the host of the iconic Met Gala but it is also an iconic museum wedding venue in NYC. This notable location welcomes seven million visitors annually to view collections that span 5,000 years of art. If you want to be one of those visitors it's important to note that The Met is only available for wedding receptions and after-parties, not ceremonies.

  • Guest Capacity: 750 in the Great Hall, 800 in The Temple of Dendur, 400 in Carroll and Milton Petrie European Sculpture Court, 400 in The Charles Engelhard Court in the American Wing
  • Price: Inquire for pricing
  • What Couples Love: The Iris and B. Gerald Cantor Roof Garden, the Museum's dramatic open-air space, offers unparalleled views of Central Park and the New York City skyline.

Peabody Essex Museum in Salem, Massachusetts

The Peabody Essex Museum in Salem is one of the loveliest museum wedding venues Massachusetts has to offer. This notable wedding venue has received The Knot Best of Weddings award an impressive 11 times and even become a Hall of Fame recipient for the award. One especially sought-after space for wedding portraits is the PEM's historic East India Marine Hall beloved for the natural light the Greek Revival space is flooded with thanks to its arched windows. And a great component of booking a museum as a wedding venue is that couples can "come back and visit our wedding venue anytime," as one PEM reviewer noted.

  • Guest Capacity: From 60 to 270 depending on chosen event space.
  • Price: From $5,500 to $10,000 depending on scope of event
  • What Couples Love: The museum's uniqueness is a selling point. One couple "chose the PEM because it was so different from all the other wedding venues that we had ever been to."

National Museum of Women in the Arts

There's no shortage of museum wedding venues across DC. However, while the halls of many are packed with patriarchal contributions to history, the National Museum of Women in the Arts (NMWA) celebrates the significant contributions women have made to the art world. Not only are the works housed in this museum amazing, but the building itself is a sight to behold with marble interiors and dazzling chandeliers.

  • Guest Capacity: 300 guests for a ceremony, 450 guests for a seated dinner reception.
  • Price: Inquire for pricing
  • What Couples Love: The museum's second-floor mezzanine is a great location for cocktail hour.

Orange County Museum of Art in Costa Mesa, California

Wondering what museum wedding venues Los Angeles and the surrounding SoCal area have to offer? This is your sign to consider the Orange County Museum of Art in Costa Mesa, California. The museum was designed by Pritzker Prize-winning architect Thom Mayne of Morphosis Studio and boasts the only rooftop terrace in Orange County where guests can dance the night away.

  • Guest Capacity: From 150 to 500 depending on which event space is booked.
  • Price: Inquire for pricing
  • What Couples Love: Working with the museum's wedding professionals is a highlight. "The staff was wonderful to work with and the acoustic sound that this venue was able to produce was astounding," says one reviewer.

Heard Museum in Phoenix, Arizona

In case you haven't heard, the Heard Museum wedding venue needs to be on your radar. This museum, founded in 1929, is dedicated to the advancement of American Indian art and has nine event spaces couples can choose from depending on the scope of their wedding. When couples book this stunning museum, known for its Colonial Spanish architecture, they can also work with the museum staff to coordinate having talented local performers, from flute players to basket weavers and beadwork artists, involved in the celebration.

  • Guest Capacity: From 50 to 1,000 depending on the event space chosen.
  • Price: From $1,500 to $6,000 depending on date and event space booked.
  • What Couples Love: The architecture, courtyard, and tranquil fountain are highlights. According to one reviewer, "Our guests raved about the space."

SF MOMA in San Francisco, California

SF MOMA wedding venue in San Francisco, California
Photo: Larissa Cleveland Photography,
Location: SF Moma

The San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, known colloquially as SF MOMA, was established in 1935 as the first museum on the West Coast devoted solely to 20th-century art. The renowned modern and contemporary art museum boasts a collection of 33,000 pieces and welcomes more than a million visitors annually. For marriers who want to wed here, there are five different spaces to choose from. One of those spaces is the Sculpture Terrace which is home to Stele I (1973) by Ellsworth Kelly, an impressive 18-foot panel sculpture made of a panel of weathering steel. Nearby is the equally impressive iron sculpture, Spill (1987) by Tony Cragg.

  • Guest Capacity: From 150 to 450 depending on the chosen event space.
  • Price: From $8,000 to $18,000 based on chosen event space.
  • What Couples Love: This museum is particularly attractive to couples who've visited during their relationship and have fond memories with their partner that they wish to build on.

PAFA - the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

While there are many Philadelphia museum wedding venues to choose from, PAFA is an especially good choice for couples who care about adaptability and customization. According the to venue, they are equipped with "galleries and spaces to transform into incredible settings for any event imaginable." Notably, PAFA has two buildings, one more contemporary and the other packed with historic charm, to fit any wedding style.

Find your kind of venue

From barns to ballrooms, discover reception venues that feel like you.
  • Guest Capacity: Up to 285
  • Price: Estimated $4,200-$6,600 for 100 guests
  • What Couples Love: "It could not have been more apparent that they had our very best interest at heart," says one reviewer. "They constantly worked with us and our vendors to make our wedding beautiful beyond anything we could have imagined."

Denver Art Museum in Denver, Colorado

The Denver Art Museum wedding venue offerings span 11 indoor spaces and five outdoor spaces making it an option that can truly work for any couple and guest list. Beyond having a multitude of spaces to book, the museum is also home to an incredibly varied collection of art that spans 18,000 objects from the 1500s to present day. Additionally, the museum has partnered with trusted caterers to make the planning process seamless so you don't have to do the guesswork of finding the best one to hire for a wedding at this museum.

  • Guest Capacity: From 10 to 10,000 depending on which space is booked.
  • Price: From $1,000 to $24,000 depending on selected event space.
  • What Couples Love: Couples consistently rave about the professionalism of the staff and how "the service was outstanding."

Milwaukee Art Museum in Milwaukee, Wisconsin

Looking for all the Milwaukee Art Museum wedding venue details? Look no further. The museum, founded in 1882, boasts a collection of 25,000 works of art and is located on the picturesque shore of Lake Michigan. Couples can choose from six distinct event spaces within the museum. One of the most notable is Windhover Hall, the museum's illustrious grand reception hall with 90-foot-high ceilings and postmodern details.

  • Guest Capacity: From 85 to 1,000 depending on the selected event space.
  • Price: Inquire for pricing.
  • What Couples Love: According to reviewers, the staff is organized and an "absolute pleasure to work with throughout the entire process."

The John and Mable Ringling Museum of Art in Sarasota, Florida

Florida is home to many museum wedding venues, but one especially notable spot is The John and Mable Ringling Museum of Art in Sarasota, Florida. Nestled on 66 acres of waterfront land, the museum wedding venue in Florida is home to charming replicas of ancient Greek, Roman and Baroque statues. While the venue is best known for larger weddings, they also have microwedding packages for couples whose guest list doesn't exceed 25 people.

  • Guest Capacity: From 200 to 400 depending on the chosen event space.
  • Price: From $20,000 to $27,000 depending on the chosen event space.
  • What Couples Love: Couples are enamored by the museum's beauty. "The grounds are breathtaking and our guests were astonished," remarked one reviewer.

Contemporary Art Museum St. Louis in St. Louis, Missouri

Known informally as CAM St. Louis, the Contemporary Art Museum St. Louis is a unique museum wedding venue as it is a non-collecting museum that hosts no permanent art exhibitions. As such, weddings here are truly one-of-a-kind and every couple will have a different and distinct experience for their celebration. Past exhibits have included work from Kaws, Ed Ruscha and Yoko Ono.

  • Guest Capacity: 350
  • Price: $1,500–$2,000
  • What Couples Love: "The venue is absolutely stunning and we appreciated having such incredible art as the backdrop for our special day," remarked one reviewer.

The Neon Museum in Las Vegas, Nevada

The Neon Museum wedding venue in Las Vegas, Nevada
Photo: POPography,
Location: The Neon Museum

A museum dedicated to iconic neon signs? It's hard to imagine a more creative place to say "I do" than The Neon Museum in Las Vegas, Nevada. Couples who book The Neon Museum get to exchange wedding vows surrounded by non-operational, vintage Las Vegas signs in a rustic environment. The museum, opened in 1996, sits on 2.62 acres of land located 10 minutes north of the Vegas Strip.

  • Guest Capacity: 50
  • Price: Starting at $2,500
  • What Couples Love: The museum's eclectic nature is a selling point for couples. "Our guests were in awe of the museum and the history of the signs," notes one reviewer.

Baltimore Museum of Art in Baltimore, Maryland

The Baltimore Museum of Art in Baltimore, Maryland, is home to 95,000 objects, more than 1,000 of which are iconic Henri Matisse pieces. The collection also includes works from Pablo Picasso, Georgia O'Keeffe, Louis Comfort Tiffany, Edgar Degas and many others spread across the museum's impressive 210,000 square feet. Not only are the works contained in the museum impressive, but the building itself is also a sight to behold. BMA is housed in a stunning neoclassical building that sits on the campus of Johns Hopkins University and is decorated with eye-catching Ionic columns.

  • Guest Capacity: From 180 to 500 depending on the space booked.
  • Price: $5,000-$9,000 based on date and space booked.
  • What Couples Love: "The event space is so beautiful," says one reviewer.

New Orleans Museum of Art in New Orleans, Louisiana

The New Orleans Museum of Art (NOMA) is the oldest fine arts institution in New Orleans and was established in 1911. While the Louisiana art museum initially opened with just nine works of art, it now has a collection of nearly 50,000 pieces, including 90 sculptures on display in the museum's 12-acre sculpture garden. The museum's 3,365-square-foot Great Hall is especially enticing to couples. The hall is surrounded by a mezzanine level that's elevated by Ionic columns and features magnificent millwork.

  • Guest Capacity: 200–1,200 depending on chosen event space.
  • Price: From $8,000–$12,500 depending on scope of event.
  • What Couples Love: The striking building attracts couples. "The museum is beautiful," says one reviewer.

History Museum Wedding Venues

If you're a history buff, consider booking a history museum wedding venue for the celebration. From Smithsonian national museum wedding venues in DC to local history museums scattered across the US, there's something for everyone and every era.

The Bryan Museum in Galveston, Texas

The Bryan Museum in Galveston, Texas, is a relatively new museum (opened in 2015), but nonetheless, it is one of the world's largest collections of historical artifacts, documents, and artwork relating to Texas and the American West. And for couples who want to utilize The Bryan Museum as a wedding venue, the museum's exquisite Renaissance Revival-style building makes a lovely backdrop.

  • Guest Capacity: 140
  • Price: From $3,200–$14,000 depending on event space and date chosen.
  • What Couples Love: The museum grounds are a selling point for couples. "The grounds were pristine and the glass conservatory was a one-of-a-kind place for the reception," says one reviewer.

Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture in Washington, DC

While there is no shortage of Smithsonian institutions to choose from as a wedding venue in DC, the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture (NMAAHC) is especially notable and worth considering. The museum is "is a place where all Americans can learn about the richness and diversity of the African American experience, what it means to their lives, and how it helped us shape this nation." The museum's sustainable LEED Gold-certified building is in the shape of an inverted pyramid and is inspired by Nigerian Yoruba culture. Sweeping views of DC are visible from the rooftop of the museum and many couples choose to take portraits or host cocktail hour atop the building.

  • Guest Capacity: From 60–400 based on chosen event space.
  • Price: Inquire for pricing
  • What Couples Love: Many couples select this museum as a venue as a unique way to celebrate culture and heritage.

Museum of the City of New York in New York, New York

Fans of the original Gossip Girl series will recognize the facade of the Museum of the City of New York as the filming location for the entrance to the Constance Billard School. Couples can choose from six different spaces in the Georgian-style museum to create the celebration of their dreams. Notably, the second-floor reception hall overlooks Central Park. For those worried about weather, the courtyard and terrace can be tented in any season so both the interior and exterior of the museum can be enjoyed at the wedding.

  • Guest Capacity: 200
  • Price: $5,000–$25,000
  • What Couples Love: Couples are consistently impressed with the staff's service. "We had zero problems at all during the entire process, from touring the venue to landing the contract, to the day of. It was a perfect experience," said one reviewer.

Chicago History Museum in Chicago, Illinois

The Chicago History Museum wedding venue in Chicago, Illinois, needs to be on your list of possible wedding venues. Tucked away in the heart of Lincoln Park, the museum is housed in a charming historic building with Georgian architecture, high ceilings, grand windows and exquisite molding. Although the museum is minutes away from downtown and the lake, guests feel transported back in time in this magnificent museum. The museum has been awarded The Knot Best of Weddings every year since 2011, even making the Hall of Fame.

  • Guest Capacity: 300
  • Price: From $4,000–$9,500 depending on day of the week.
  • What Couples Love: The staff at the museum make the process a breeze for couples. "From our first tour to our big day, they were there every step of the way to help answer questions and put our minds at ease, ensuring that our day would go as smoothly as possible, and it absolutely did," recalls one reviewer.

Liberty Hall Museum in Union, New Jersey

For couples who want to know what museum wedding venues NJ has to offer, look no further than Liberty Hall Museum in Union, New Jersey. The museum was erected in 1772 (and hosted its first wedding just two years later in 1774!) and sits on 23 acres of manicured grounds. The museum's glass-enclosed porch is a popular spot for couples to take wedding photos because of the dreamy natural light that fills the space. The museum hosts weddings from May through October.

  • Guest Capacity: From 24 to 150 based on chosen event space.
  • Price: Inquire for pricing
  • What Couples Love: (pulling sentiments from reviews?)

Smithsonian National Museum of the American Indian in Washington, DC

A museum wedding venue that also boasts sweeping views of the US Capitol? Yep, that's what's in store for couples who book the Smithsonian National Museum of the American Indian in Washington, DC.

  • Guest Capacity: From 80–500 based on selected event space. Couples with guest lists up to 1,500 can also book the entire building for an event.
  • Price: Inquire for pricing
  • What Couples Love: This thoughtfully curated museum gives couples a meaningful way to honor heritage and celebrate history.

Maritime Museum Wedding Venues

If you love the sea and all things aquatic then perhaps a maritime museum wedding venue is the way to go. To help your wedding venue research, we've gathered a few notable maritime museums for you to consider.

Maine Maritime Museum in Bath, Maine

What better place to host a maritime wedding than in the "City of Ships"–Bath, Maine? The Maine Maritime Museum campus sits on 20 acres along the waterfront of the Kennebec River and is a lovely choice for nautical couples. As a fun bonus couples can charter a cruise boat through the museum for a memorable rehearsal dinner or day-after brunch.

  • Guest Capacity: 150
  • Price: $6,000–$8,000
  • What Couples Love: The venue's proximity to water is a major bonus. "On the shore of the Kennebec River, it was a perfect indoor-outdoor combination venue," says one reviewer.

Herreshoff Marine Museum in Bristol, Rhode Island

The Herreshoff Marine Museum in Bristol, Rhode Island, is situated on Narragansett Bay and is perfect for couples who want to celebrate New England's coastal charm. Many to-be-weds select the museum's red brick pier as a ceremony site so they can exchange vows with waves and sailboats on the horizon. For a reception, couples can either host a tented affair on the grounds or welcome guests into the Hall of Boats to dine while surrounded by exquisite watercraft.

  • Guest Capacity: 240
  • Price: From $2,000–$6,500 based on scope and date of event.
  • What Couples Love: Couples feel that this venue is a good deal. "The price was reasonable and I would definitely recommend it," notes one review.

Science Museum Wedding Venues

If you and your partner work in STEM then you might want to host a wedding at a science museum wedding venue. Beyond getting to celebrate your love, your guests might just learn a thing or two at these science museum venues.

The Bishop Museum of Science and Nature in Bradenton, Florida

For those on the hunt for engaging museum wedding venues Florida has to offer, consider The Bishop Museum of Science and Nature in Bradenton, Florida. If you like the idea of a celestial wedding celebration, consider the museum's planetarium for an out-of-this-world cocktail hour space. Other museum highlights include a manatee habitat, an indoor oak tree and a turtle pond.

  • Guest Capacity: From 60 to 350 depending on event space booked.
  • Price: $1,200–$4,100
  • What Couples Love: The museum exhibits are a big attraction. "The courtyard was stunning and let's not forget the manatees, they were a huge hit with my guests," reads one review.

Science Museum of Minnesota in St. Paul, Minnesota

If the heat of Florida is too much for you, journey north to the Science Museum of Minnesota in St. Paul, Minnesota. The museum, which opened in 1906, contained fossils, interactive physics displays, information about the science of sports and much more. Both of the museum's two event spaces afford attendees sweeping views of the Mississippi River.

  • Guest Capacity: 160–250
  • Price: Approximately $6,050–$10,850 for 100 guests
  • What Couples Love: Couples love the venue's versatility. "The outdoor patio was a great place for people who wanted to escape the dancefloor, and the view was just stunning," reads one review.

International Museum of Surgical Science in Chicago, Illinois

Do you come from a long line of surgeons? Celebrate your penchant for the medical field with a wedding at the International Museum of Surgical Science in Chicago, Illinois. This 10,000+-square-foot museum, founded in 1954, boasts a collection of more than 1,000 rare texts, 7,000 medical artifacts and 600 paintings.

  • Guest Capacity: 100
  • Price: Starting at $7,500
  • What Couples Love: Many couples appreciate the museum's excellent staff. "The staff was great to work with throughout the planning process and up through the event itself," reads one review.

Strategic Air Command & Aerospace Museum in Ashland, Nebraska

Prepare for your wedding to take flight at the Strategic Air Command & Aerospace Museum in Ashland, Nebraska. The museum, also known as the SAC Aerospace Museum, has seven distinct event spaces you can choose from, each packed with unique sights to behold. In one space there is a SR-71 "Blackbird" jet and in another, there are B-52 and B36 aircraft. The museum, which celebrates impressive feats of aviation, is conveniently located between Omaha and Lincoln.

  • Guest Capacity: From 75 to 2,000 depending on the event space chosen.
  • Price: $1,800–$3,000
  • What Couples Love: The unique displays at the museum as a highlight. "Our guests loved looking around the museum, and they thought it was the coolest thing ever," recalls one reviewer.

Natural History Museum Wedding Venues

Are you interested in everything from fossils and fungi to floral and fauna? Celebrate the history of the natural world with these engaging museum wedding venues.

Houston Museum of Natural Science in Houston, Texas

For couples searching for Houston museum wedding venues, the Houston Museum of Natural Science in Houston, Texas, is worth checking out. While the museum has 11 different event spaces couples can choose from, one especially popular option is the paleontology exhibit in the Morian Hall of Paleontology. The space is two stories tall and the length of a football field and is packed with fossils dating back to the Cretaceous period. Other exhibits include a Fabergé display, a collection of gems and minerals, a section on Malacology (the study of mollusks) and a mesmerizing Foucault Pendulum.

  • Guest Capacity: From 20 to 900 depending on selected event space.
  • Price: From $1,000 to $11,000 depending on event scope.
  • What Couples Love: Couples like how unique the museum is. "We wanted something different and couldn't stand the thought of having the standard ballroom be where we remembered the most important day of our lives," notes one reviewer.

San Diego Natural History Museum in San Diego, California

Want a California museum wedding venue? Consider the San Diego Natural History Museum in San Diego, California. Nestled in SoCal's iconic Balboa Park, SDNHM (known locally as The Nat) boasts the park's only rooftop terrace. The museum has a variety of add-ons available for couples, but one especially notable offering is the childcare services they have available for those planning adults-only weddings. They also have 60-foot-high ceilings in the spacious main atrium to accommodate a wide variety of entertainment (past guests have hired aerialists!) and allow for pet-friendly ceremonies.

  • Guest Capacity: 190
  • Price: $4,800–$32,000 based on scope of event.
  • What Couples Love: The versatility of the museum is a draw for couples. "If you're looking for a unique venue to host your wedding, you can look no further than The Nat. The prices are excellent, the museum is beautiful and its activities are great for guests of all ages," shares one reviewer.
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