Say “I Do” in One of These Dreamy Garden Wedding Venues
Find a naturally green and floral-filled backdrop.
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Garden Weddings for Nature-Lovers
“Life begins the day you start a garden,” one Chinese proverb says. So, what better place to kickstart your journey as a married couple than on a beautifully cultivated plot of land? From neat rows of vegetables and romantic English-style beds to modern sculpture parks and elegant plots on historic mansion grounds, check out these romantic garden wedding venues.
Ships of the Sea Maritime Museum
Savannah draws visitors from all across the world who want to soak up the idyllic ambience of its many public parks and squares. With romantic Spanish moss draped from its ancient oaks and year-round greenery, it’s the perfect town for an intimate garden wedding. Set on block west of City Market, Ships of the Sea Maritime Museum is one of the city’s most popular places to tie the knot. Housed in the former home of shipbuilder William Scarborough, the long-running maritime museum boasts the largest privately-owned garden in the historic district with two gardens spread across two acres that can accommodate up to 1,000 guests.
Nasher Sculpture Center
With one of the finest collections of modern and contemporary sculptures on the planet, this Dallas Arts District sculpture garden smoothly combines man-made design with greenery. The indoor and outdoor museum features more than 300 masterpieces by famed artists like Richard Serra, Willem de Kooning and Pablo Picasso throughout the sunny galleries inside its sophisticated Renzo-Piano-designed building and throughout its lush garden grounds. It’s hard to find a hipper, more cosmopolitan outdoor setting to say “I do” than this cultured venue. Artsy couples can eat, drink and dance with friends and family among giant Calders and Mirós during a wedding that both pays homage to the beauty of the natural world and the human mind.
Salamander Resort & Spa
This five-star resort is set on 340 picturesque acres overlooking the lush foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains. A trip here is like traveling back in time to simpler days on the land—but with indoor plumbing, Wifi and all the other modern comforts you want. The resort has 60,000 square feet of outdoor function space. It’s all lovely but, for those who respect a green thumb, the intimate Culinary Garden is hard to beat. Offering vistas of both the nearby pastures and rolling hills in the distance, this gorgeous space is filled with the scent of fresh seasonal herbs and vibrant vegetables peeking out from all the greenery. The space can accommodate up to 120 seated guests for a true garden-to-table dinner and 175 for a roaming reception around the plants.
Chihuly Garden and Glass
Dale Chihuly’s vibrant glass sculptures have such an organic feel; many look like exaggerated flora or an illustration straight out of a Dr. Seuss book. These flowing pieces fit right at home in the landscaped garden of Seattle Center's Chihuly Garden and Glass. The winding garden path takes visitors past crimson camellias, dogwoods and a giant glass works of fiery yellow and orange. Couples who want to enjoy the full garden experience with protection from the city’s notoriously drizzly weather can celebrate their union in the Glasshouse, a fully translucent structure with a vibrant 100-foot-long glass masterpiece hanging from the ceiling that overlooks the greenery and offers prime views of the Space Needle.
Eolia Mansion at Harkness Memorial State Park
Named after the island home of Aeolus, god of the winds, Eolia Mansion, the former summer home of the Harkness family, is set on over 230 breezy seaside acres overlooking the Long Island Sound. The place is bursting at the seams with Gilded Age splendor, and its restored historical gardens epitomize elegance with a rainbow of flowers, burbling fountains and secluded vine-covered passageways. Eolia’s dreamy vibe has made it a top pick for local wedding planners and photographers, like Brehant Creations, who styled a romantic bohemian shoot on its grounds with a 10-foot-tall triangular arch dressed with custom macrame and whimsical flowers
“We wanted to keep it somewhat simple while incorporating some edginess,” said Cait Fletcher Reardon of Cait Fletcher Photography.
The name says it all. Translating to beautiful garden in French, this appropriately titled venue looks like it has been plucked straight out of The Secret Garden. Under a canopy of old, twinkle light-wrapped oak trees, the lushly landscaped venue features native plants, flowers and groundcover that highlight a winding brick staircase leading to a series of stone landings. Some are connected via quaint wooden bridges—amping up the fairytale feel and the dramatic entrance to the altar. Cascading waterfalls flow down the greenery-covered hillside right next to the steps, winding its way into a stream bed that babbles into Cane River Lake. The place is so beautiful, you and your guests will wish you could stay forever.
Built in 1926, this Neo-Classical Revival home was designed for heiress Irene Moore Smith and her husband, cardiologist Dr. James Alexander Lyon. Back in its heyday, it was a top destination for Washington socialites, who roamed its formal boxwood gardens with stone archways and trickling fountains. Now, it’s listed on the National Registry of Historic Places, the centerpiece of 153-acre Rockville Civic Center Park, and one of the area’s top wedding venues. Its flagstone walkway makes the perfect aisle for a garden wedding full of old-world charm. While many couples choose to celebrate their union inside the elegant home, others choose to dine and dance under a white tent on the beautifully manicured lawn.
Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden
Coral Gables, Florida
This 83-acre botanic garden has an extensive collection of rare tropical plants, including flowering trees and vines, as well as the greatest living collection of palms and cycads on the planet. Its lush landscape is home to 30—yes, 30!—species of native butterflies. It’s like visiting a remote tropical paradise and is just a 10-minute drive away from the University of Miami, which is why it’s one of the most coveted wedding venues in the entire state. Make an entrance as you walk down the oolitic limestone staircase and past the lily pool to say “I do” at the Bailey Palm Glade, or stride down the tree-lined aisle as guests watch your first kiss against the key-hole vista backdrop of Pandanus Lake at the Allée and Overlook (pictured above).
Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum
It’s not hard to find a beautiful outdoor wedding venue in Tucson, a city that boasts an average of 286 sunny days per year. This 98-acre art gallery, natural history museum, zoo, aquarium and botanical garden takes advantage of the area’s lovely ambience. It features two-miles of walking paths through 21-acres of a prime Sonora Desert habitat, including 56,000 individual specimens of 1,200 different types of plants and a towering Saguaros reaching toward the sky. Couples can say “I do” in front of the dramatic desert views of the Boomjump Patio or in the shaded Desert Garden surrounded by lush greenery and bright blooms that are illuminated by string lights.
Brooklyn Botanic Garden
Brooklyn, New York
Full of flower beds, rolling lawns and elegant old trees (including its famous cherry blossoms), Brooklyn Botanic Garden is an oasis of natural beauty nestled among the concrete and brownstones of one of the largest cities on the planet. It’s one of the top wedding venues in all five boroughs, where celebs like Jamie-Lynn Sigler, Katrina Bowden and Ben Jorgenson have tied thet knot. The century-old, glass encased Palm House is absolutely stunning. After saying “I do” in one of the nearby ceremony locations, such as Magnolia Plaza or Cherry Esplanade (which lights up with a quilt of pink and white flowers in the spring), guests can sip cocktails on Lily Pool Terrace, then do the “Cupid Shuffle” under the dome of the historic greenhouse.
Missouri Botanical Garden
St. Louis, Missouri
This 79-acre garden is hailed across the globe for its diverse and gorgeous settings that include a 14-acre Japanese garden, its founder Henry Shaw’s original 1850 country home and one of the largest collections of rare and endangered orchids in the world. Its iconic Climatron was the first geodesic dome to be used as a conservatory and is designed to accommodate a healthy tropical rainforest habitat with more than 2,800 plants including cacao, coffee and the scarce double-coconut, which produces the largest seed in the plant kingdom. The world-renowned institution offers couples six garden ceremony sites to celebrate their nuptial union and three event sites including the recently renovated Spink Pavilion, originally built by Shaw, that overlooks the grand plaza with its three reflecting lily pools and Climatron.
Chicago Botanic Garden
More than 1 million people wander around the 385-acres that make up the Chicago Botanic Garden every year. The world-renowned living plant museum features 27 stunning displays (including one of the best public displays of bonsai in the nation) set on nine islands surrounded by four natural areas. The place is so big, it’s easy to forget that it's in the middle of a major metropolitan area. The living history museum offers nature lovers seven different outdoor spaces to wed that can accommodate up to 1,500 guests. But, if you want to seal the deal among the fragrant blooms on the Rose Terrace or walk down the aisle of the elm allées in the Esplanade, be prepared to pay. Wedding receptions at this desirable venue start at $180 per person in addition to a facility rental fee.
This Harvard University research institution, formerly owned by diplomat Robert Bliss and his wife Mildred, is known for its world class collection of Byzantine and Pre-Colombian artifacts—as well as its well-preserved garden. The historic plot was created by Mildred in close collaboration with renowned landscape designer Beatrix Farrand. In 2014, National Geographic called it one of the 10 best gardens in the world. As many as 200 guests can enter through the first floor of the historic mansion on the way to your garden ceremony. Pledge your love in front of a romantic brick wall surrounded by a sea of colorful flowers and shrubbery.
The McBryde Garden
Fantasizing about a dreamy Hawaiian wedding? Look no further. The McBryde Garden combines 100 acres of verdant tropical landscape with majestic cliffs, dramatic ocean panoramas and grand waterfalls tucked away in the historic Lawa’i Valley. Oh, yeah, and it’s home to nearly 20,000 living plants, as well as the largest collection of native Hawaiian flora in the entire Pacific. From intimate ceremonies with just 25 of your closest friends and family in front of the secluded Waihulili Waterfall, to a lively fete for 400 in the meadow with the sound of waves crashing on the nearby sand, this spectacular stretch of land is like the modern-day Garden of Eden.
Murrells Inlet, South Carolina
Founded by Archer and Anna Hyatt Huntington in 1931, Brookgreen Gardens has been the Myrtle Beach area’s floral jewelry for nearly 90 years now. The 9,127-acre property preserves the natural and cultivated landscape and even elevates it with more than 2,000 works of art by more than 425 artists–the most significant collection of outdoor sculpture art made by American artists in the entire world. It even has a Lowcountry zoo that cares for native animals who are unable to survive in the wild. Tie the knot under the Spanish moss-covered oaks at what USA Today readers voted “One of the Most Romantic Wedding Locales in South Carolina.” Just look at that photo!