About this Vendor
New England Aquarium
Plan a wedding or rehearsal dinner at Boston’s most unique venue, the New England Aquarium. Customizable location, entertainment and catering options set against an awe-inspiring backdrop create a completely unforgettable event.
Amenities + Details
Outdoor - Covered
For more details about amenities, please message the Venue.
$$$ – Moderate
Waterfront, Museum, Tented
Food + Catering, Planning
Great waterfront wedding venue!Reviewed on 9/16/2014 J E
The Aquarium offers not only a beautiful and unique setting for a downtown Boston wedding, but a great team. Emily in sales and Abigail the event coordinator were both accessible and easy to work with. From the initial venue tour to planning the details as the day approached, everything was transparent, organized and professional. We really appreciated how proactive Abigail was in finalizing details and timelines, and she was an excellent resource. When my husband and I arrived at the Aquarium for our reception, we could fully relax and enjoy the party, knowing that we and our guests were in such good hands. And it's a great place for a party! Our cocktail hour was outdoors on the harbor and the dinner/dancing was in the tent. The setting on the water is beautiful, and guests could explore the aquarium throughout the night. If the weather hadn't cooperated or if we had preferred, we could have had cocktail hour in the aquarium itself, which is a great option. The food was excellent and everything ran seamlessly. We heard so many complements about the venue from guests. The setting is beautiful on its own and there are less expensive food and beverage options available, but it would also be possible to go all out with food, beverages and decor. There's a lot of flexibility, and we felt it was a good value relative to other Boston venues we considered. We would absolutely recommend the Aquarium to other couples and would do it all over again if we could!
Fabulous Service + Amazing VenueReviewed on 11/11/2010 Kathryn W
I can't express enough how impressed I am with the experience I had with the New England Aquarium. From the time I contacted them in regards to planning my wedding to the end of wedding, the staff provided support that was above and beyond. They helped us with all the planning (food, linens, chairs, a place for the ceremony, coordinating with our cake vendor and DJ - everything), were there for day of the wedding support, and made sure that our wedding was perfect. Throughout the night, a staff member was checking in with my husband and I to make sure we had everything that we needed (including multiple champagne refills!). The food was absolutely amazing (guests are still commenting about it to me), and having our pictures taken in the Aquarium provides us with memories we will always look back on and treasure. I cannot recommend the Aquarium more - if you have your wedding here, you will not be disappointed.
Review for New England AquariumReviewed on 9/21/2008 Amanda P
We got married in front of penguins with an amazing backdrop of the main tank. The entire main building of the aquarium was ours for the night for both us and our guests to enjoy! The food was excellent and the staff really kept on top of everything and made different transitions as seamless as possible.;Since it was the Aquarium there were of course some lighting issues. A lot of our family members had issues with their cameras trying to get the right setting to capture us and the penguins at the same time. Our professional pictures came out great but some of our family members were disappointed in the quality of their personal photos. This venue is also better for smaller weddings. We had about 150 guests and we wanted to keep everyone on the same floor which was kind of pushing it with the space limitations. This venue offers the option of seating some of your guests on the higher levels to alleviate the space issues but if you really want to make everyone a part of your wedding it's best to try to keep all of your guests on the first level. So if you want a large wedding you might want to opt for the Aquarium's tent facilities on the wharf and you can always opt to rent out the Main Exhibit Hall as an additional site that your guests can visit.
From the moment we toured the Aquarium, we knew that this is where we wanted to have our wedding. We were looking for a place on Boston's waterfront that was unique but that would host the ceremony, the cocktail hour, & the reception all in one. This was the spot for it all. The sales manager Emily walked us through everything to help us envision our day. She made us feel so excited to set the date. The catering manager & day of coordinator, Abigail, was the next person we met with. She was FABULOUS from start to finish, efficient in returning emails throughout our planning, wonderful in coordinating with our other vendors, & fantastic at dealing with week of stress that a bride can bring to the plate! She went above and beyond to make everything work.. All more fantastic than I could have ever imagined! We had our ceremony outside overlooking the water. The cocktail hour was hosted inside around the fabulous exhibits all dressed up to host such an event & very interactive for the guests! The reception was in a covered tent behind the aquarium with the water as the backdrop. The waitstaff was prompt, courteous, & very professional. The bartenders were fabulous & even helped "design" one of our specialty drinks. The night was seamless & I wasn't stressed thinking about anything that night, as I was so comfortable in knowing the the AMAZING Abigail was there to help with any last minute issues to put all of us at ease. The food was amazing. Who would think that food prepared in a kitchen at an aquarium would be so fantastic?! We were blown away and still have guests that say to us.. The food at your wedding was incredible! Not many people can say that their food was memorable at a wedding! Overall, The New England Aquarium blew us away with their ability to meet all of our needs of hosting our dream wedding. Thank you for the best night of our lives.. Thanks Abigail! xo, The Genoas
Aquarium weddingReviewed on 12/09/2015 Brian S
Every piece of the wedding was perfect. From our first visit through the end of the night it was amazing. The staff, particularly Abigail, was incredibly helpful. She guided us through the process, gave us a lot of good advice kept things on track! She also made every crazy request we had seem routine whether it was adding beer from small local brewers, last minute photobooth addition or changing our menu! And the actual wedding -- I can't imagine a better location. The food was spectacular. everyone had a blast in the building and then we rocked out the dance floor all night. It was the perfect night for us and we could go on raving about every aspect of the people, the facility, the location and well...everything.
Unique Venue & Excellent Team to Work With!Reviewed on 10/12/2015 Samantha G
As soon as we visited the Aquarium and toured the space with Sales Manager Emily, we were sure it was the perfect place for our wedding. The Aquarium is such a unique and cool venue and the Special Events team was amazing, from our first visit, through the whole planning process, and managing every detail of our special day. Abigail, our Catering Manager, was incredibly organized, responsive, and thorough in her responses to all of our questions along the way and provided great recommendations for other vendors including the officiant we ended up hiring. We really appreciated the personalized attention we received including a private tasting; even though NEAQ hosts weddings almost every weekend, it never felt like it! On our wedding weekend, we had total confidence in Abigail and the Events team, but we were particularly impressed and grateful for the amazing service we received from all of the attendants and other event staff as well. Our guests had an amazing time and, from the ceremony to the reception, our wedding was everything we had dreamed of and more!
Best day everReviewed on 10/08/2015 Kimberly O
The aquarium was the best venue from initial contact through the end of our wedding. Emily was so helpful when we were booking the venue. She answered all of my questions and never made me feel silly for the random things I asked. She was always prompt and very pleasant to work with. Once we booked the venue we were transferred to Abigail's care. She is also fantastic! Her attention to detail and responsiveness was always appreciated. She knows her stuff! She is really helpful in the planning process and helps everything go smoothly the day of the wedding. Our guests loved our venue, the food, the staff, everything! We couldn't have asked for a better day or venue for our wedding.
ABSOLUTELY PERFECT!Reviewed on 9/17/2015 Janet B
We recently got married at the NEAQ and I don't think I can accurately express how happy I am with their service. First of all, we did a tour with Emily who was so responsive and wonderful in getting us started with our contract. Once we picked the place the planning process began with Abigail who is not only INCREDIBLY professional and amazing at her job but who responded to every concern within a day of my emails. We had such a pleasant experience planning the wedding that we weren't sure it could get any better. However, the day of was incredible. Everything went on without a hitch and Abigail was beside us every step of the way and always made sure we were fed, happy, and stress free. Planning a wedding can be an incredibly stressful experience but having a good time around you is essential to making this process less so. The team at the NEAQ is not only a good team, but an amazing one. Not one detail was overlooked and I have gotten the greatest compliments on how fabulous, unique, and delicious everything was for our wedding day. Do not have doubts about having your wedding here, it is 100% worth it!!!!! You will not be disappointed.
Gorgeous venue with great staffReviewed on 9/17/2015 Alla H
My partner and I had an amazing wedding at the Aquarium. We had the ceremony and reception outside on the deck overlooking the harbor and cocktail hour inside the Aquarium by the penguin enclosure. It's a beautiful area, and it's a ton of fun being able to look at the animals during the party. The food is delicious, with a New England-y slant, and there are good options for vegans and people with other food restrictions. Abigail, the venue coordinator, was unbelievably helpful. She helped us keep track of everything we needed to do and provided us with vendor recommendations and reminders as time went on. On the day of, she was great about accommodating surprise food changes, taking care of details that never occurred to us, and even helped us finish one of our DIY projects last minute. Everyone on staff worked hard to make sure that we weren't worried about anything and had a good time. The venue was totally welcoming to offbeat ideas and queer couples, and I'd highly recommend working with them to anyone.
Loved the aquarium!Reviewed on 9/16/2015 Allison S
Our wedding was so wonderful. The aquarium was the perfect setting and surprising romantic...couples could mingle with others, or go off and see the marine life. Everything went off without a hitch, and Abigail was a huge help in the whole panning process.
Wedding of Our Dreams!Reviewed on 9/06/2015
My husband grew up boating and on the water. I grew up with a love of sea animals, so when my husband suggested the New England Aquarium as our wedding venue, I knew it was the perfect choice. The experience exceeded our expectations. Everything the staff did--from the coordinator Abigail Stephens down to the wait staff--was perfect. We had a simple ceremony outside, cocktail hour in the Aquarium, and reception in the tent outside. Leading up to the wedding, Abigail answered our questions speedily and had helpful suggestions. When we changed our minds about adding a champagne toast like 5 days before the wedding, she added it without a bat of the eye. She also worked with our vendors--DJ, String Trio, Photographer, Cake, Flowers, etc.--during the planning so that they vendors were comfortable and ready to go on the big day. The day of the wedding, everything was laid out perfectly from our seating chart to card table and guest book to wedding cake to gifts for our guests. The ceremony went off without a hitch and the staff moved the guests smoothly to the cocktail hour inside. I've had so many guests tell us it was the best wedding cocktail hour they ever attended. The setting was unique and fun and the food was delicious. On to the tent for the reception. Again, everything flowed smoothly and on schedule. We had the buffet dinner and people were not standing around waiting, but got food timely and were able to enjoy themselves. And the food was terrific. Almost everyone made it a point to tell us how much they loved all the dishes, especially the short ribs. My husband and I had wait staff assigned to us and our plates were full and we never had to look for so much as a glass of water--it was all taken care of. I honestly can't think of one thing that went wrong. I highly recommend this venue if you are looking for a unique and fun venue, with great water views and also very elegant.
Unbelievable Experience and Service at NEAq!Reviewed on 8/11/2015 Kate B
I could not be happier with our choice to go with the New England Aquarium for our reception and ceremony venue. Since the wedding, all my parents have heard and I have heard is that everyone just loved the venue. It was such a unique place and memorable. The staff was outstanding. Emily was great to work with at the beginning of the process and Abigail - I think Abigail is a total saint in the eyes of my mom! Once we signed the contract, they passed us off to Abigail and man, does she know her stuff! She was so efficient at managing the process - making sure that we knew exactly what to be prepared with, asked all the right questions, and on the day of, she managed everyone like a pro - ring bearer and flower girls included! From the tasting to the night off, the entire staff was incredible. You could tell they all wanted it to go great and it showed through in every interaction I had with them. If you are looking for a great Boston location with a beautiful waterfront view and fantastic service - look no further! Plus, it's kind of cool that at least the obscene price tag you have to pay for a wedding reception in the city is at least going to support a great organization! :)
Thank you!Reviewed on 7/14/2015
We had our wedding reception at the Aquarium and it was amazing! Everyone is so wonderful and easy to work with. It was virtually seamless from the day we booked until the event. We could not be more pleased. Our guests were raving about the view! We highly recommend the New England Aquarium for any event!
Great Wedding VenueReviewed on 7/02/2015
The Aquarium was a fabulous wedding venue. The event planner helped us each step of the way to plan our perfect wedding with experience, attention to detail and a smile. The tent looked beautiful with a great view of the harbor. The fact that our guests could wander through the aquarium during the reception made it unique. The chef worked with us to choose a wondeful meal and the wait staff took care of our every need.We received many compliments! Thanks Abigail!
June Wedding!Reviewed on 6/24/2015
Everything was fantastic! Weddings are never easy and non-stressful affairs but Abigail took as much off of our plate as possible and was extremely helpful and kind from start to finish. The venue was fantastic, our guests raved and many said it was the best wedding they've ever been to. Once in a lifetime experience!
A+ Wedding VenueReviewed on 6/15/2015
I just had my wedding reception at the New England Aquarium a couple weeks ago and it was just beautiful. The emails and calls and personal notes keep rolling in from our wedding guests about how much they loved our wedding especially the venue. The food was absolutely delicious, the staff was awesome, venue beautiful. Abigail who is the wedding coordinator is so, so wonderful to work with. She made the entire process so easy. It was such a unique wedding venue and so beautiful. The New England Aquarium impressed us so much and we are beyond happy that we made the choice to have our reception there. Abigail and team did an amazing job, Thank you Thank you!!!
Fabulous, different wedding with Sharks!Reviewed on 4/09/2015 Lindsay W
We were looking for atypical wedding venues and since most of our guests were coming from out-of-town, we wanted something that would show off Boston. We looked at several museums and other area landmarks and the aquarium was one of the few places that were actually within our price-range. It was probably the best possible place we could have asked for in terms of both service and quality. For summer weddings, they rent a tent in back on the harbor but since we were married in March, we needed to do it inside. We were given the harbor-view cafe for ceremony and reception and the west-wing gallery (shark and ray touch tank and jelly-fish room) for the cocktail hour. This was PERFECT for our small wedding (around 70 people). They assign you an event-planner from the minute you contact them and she was the best person I could have asked for. She led me through everything from day one and the aquarium took care of everything from catering to furniture and linens. They also had multiple people also on-hand during the event to make sure everything went smoothly. They completely transformed the room from ceremony to reception. During the cocktail hour, my guests and I got to touch sharks and rays--you couldn't ask for a cooler wedding activity! And the harbor-view cafe has the most gorgeous view of both the city and the harbor. We got tons of amazing photos in and around the aquarium. This location made for an incredibly memorable wedding and the service was AMAZING. I could not have asked for a better venue.
NEAQ - 5 starsReviewed on 3/24/2015
My wife and I recently held our ceremony, reception, and dinner at the NEAQ. The service, quality, and professionalism exceeded our expectations. This was a march wedding and the NEAQ hosted our wedding entirely indoors. We received multiple comments that this was the coolest wedding they've ever been to and also received wonderful comments on the food, especially the h'orderves. There is no question that the NEAQ is more likely to be a pricier venue then some other more traditional venues - but we loved the aquatic theme and the event coordinator, Abigail Stephens, was incredibly helpful in getting all our specifications and needs just right. My wife and I would highly recommend the venue to those who are interested in a non-traditional venue. -J
Amazing wedding venue!Reviewed on 11/05/2014 Courtney k
My experience from start to finish was amazing! Abagail is so much fun to work with and makes sure every detail is perfect! She reached out to each vendor I chose to work with to figure out every detail with them! I was told by everyone who attended this was the best wedding they have ever been to. The staff was amazing as well!! Would choose this wedding all over again if I could! Most amazing day of my life thanks to Abagail!! Would reccomend to everyone!
Amazing!!Reviewed on 9/24/2014 Meredith C
The venue was amazing. Guests were so excited and stunned that they could have free roam of the aquarium. Being right on the water in boston harbor was amazing too!! Abigail was my wedding coordinator and he was fantastic! she answered all my emails right away and really made me feel so so special. they did a GREAT job setting everything up and just really made it a perfect event. It was a little pricy because everything is al la carte. Meaning.. you chose your apps and pay per piece. So no packages. We chose the scallops and chicken with prosciutto and raviolis for main dishes. Everyone loved it! The main dish came with salad and bread. We chose the Cesar salad and heard from MANY people it was the best they ever had. I would highly highly recommend this venue to anyone who wants a fun and unique location! you really cant get any better than partying with penguins. fyi- there are restrictions on flowers and what you can bring into the aquarium because of the animals, so check with them before you get your heart set on any particular flower.
INCREDIBLE!! Couldn't ask for anything more.Reviewed on 9/23/2014 Jackie S
I cannot say enough amazing thing about the New England Aquarium!! From the beginning, Abigail (our catering manager) did an INCREDIBLE job assisting us with any questions or special requests we have. I would email her various ideas and pictures and she would always respond promptly and professionally. In addition, she worked with us on dropping off our centerpieces/decorations/etc early in order to avoid stress the weekend of. As far as the venue itself, it is so unique and lends itself perfectly to a wedding cocktail hour and reception. We held our cocktail hour at the West Wing Gallery and our reception at the Harbor View Cafe. Our guests kept coming up to us and telling us how much fun they were having and what a good idea it was to have it there! The Harbor View Cafe, while it looks somewhat like a cafeteria during normal aquarium hours, was transformed into an elegant reception venue. In fact my family couldn't believe it was the same space as when they first looked at it. Overall I would HIGHLY recommend the New England Aquarium, based off of both the service as well as the venue itself.
NE Aquarium went above and beyond!Reviewed on 9/21/2014 Melissa C
I can't say enough good things about the process and our actual wedding at the NE Aquarium! From the planning process with emily to the planning and day of events with Abigail, these ladies are calm, collected, and are top notch! The venue is a dream and the ceremony was beautiful. Guests are still calling me a month after to tell me how much fun they had at the wedding and how great the venue is! FYI the food is also killer here! If I were to do it again I would absolutely chose the team at the NE Aquarium! (seals and penguins included)
Amazing Wedding!!Reviewed on 9/21/2014 Leah W
We absolutely loved having our wedding at the New England Aquarium! We were looking for a very Boston location that was not a hotel, and we could not have been happier. The staff were wonderful to work with, Abigail (the event coordinator) especially. She was organized, energetic, positive, and a pleasure to work with so closely! On the day of everything went off without a hitch. The flow from the ceremony on the back terrace (they block off the walkway so strangers aren't watching or in your pictures) to the cocktail hour was seamless. So many people commented how amazing it was to be in the NEAQ for a formal event and how much they loved the venue. The reception was just as seamless. The timeline we planned worked beautifully, the food was delicious (as we were told by all our guests - we loved it at our tasting), and everyone danced till the night ended. If you have the opportunity to hold your wedding at the NEAQ, we highly suggest you grab it!
Made Planning a BreezeReviewed on 9/16/2014 Laura G
I can't say enough good things about Abigail and the event team at the NEA. We planned our wedding from over 400 miles away, which could have complicated matters significantly, but the team at NEA did everything they could to make us feel confident and happy about our choices. Every step of the planning process, from the tasting, to the drop-off of our wedding accessories the day before, and all of the last-minute decisions in between, were handled with grace and efficiency. The day itself was a joy- our guests are still raving about our unique cocktail hour in the Exhibit Hall (where else can you party with penguins!?) and the seated dinner we planned was wonderful. Abigail worked with us throughout the planning process to recommend vendors who were familiar with the venue and to help coordinate plans with those who were not. The result was a beautiful evening that ran smoothly, leaving us free to enjoy ourselves. We highly recommend the NEA if you are looking for a beautiful venue- and a significant reduction in stress during the planning process!
NE Aquarium WeddingReviewed on 9/15/2014
Our wedding was July 5, 2014 at the Aquarium and I cannot say enough about the venue, staff and incredible location. Abigail was our main contact and she handled every single thing from A to Z. Her attention to detail is incredible. The catering staff was amazing from the first tasting to the actual day of and the food was beyond expectations. The Ben & Jerry's ice cream bar was one of the most talked about parts of our whole wedding. We got married at the aquarium as well and had the reception and cocktail hour there. They closed the sidewalk off around the ceremony site so it was still private and the views out to the harbor were incredible. It's kind of like you're on a boat. Having the aquarium to your self during the cocktail hour with the cool lighting, passed apps and the bars set up is an unreal experience. I would get married here again in a heartbeat.