Longwood and Minimum Pricing

  1. You have chosen to ignore posts from nyc521. Show nyc521's posts

    Longwood and Minimum Pricing

    Hello - this weekend my fiance and I visited the State Room and naturally really loved the space.  However, we are cautious, especially given that I've read some negative reviews on the minimum pricing structure.  Any State Room or Longwood brides out there with negative or positive experiences?  Thank you!!
     
  2. You have chosen to ignore posts from whatawagSBNy. Show whatawagSBNy's posts

    Re: Longwood and Minimum Pricing

         Veronique - the ballroom in Longwood Towers - is where friends were surprised to find they had to pay (after the fact) for the Valet parking for every single guest.

         At one point the manager or whoever had given them these cards for this day only to send to or have handed to guests going to park  at no cost for the wedding.  Apparently no one ever mentioned they would get a bill (including a 10 dollar tip added to cost)  as they thought this was complimentary, had not been discussed at all.   Bye-bye to over 3 K unexpectedly.
         They do throw great parties, but ask to take and read any agreement, every page, none of them reeling stuff off and hovering - we really have to go, I have people waiting!  while they have 3 pages of fine print!
     
  3. You have chosen to ignore posts from Summer2010. Show Summer2010's posts

    Re: Longwood and Minimum Pricing

    I just don't understand how something like that happens with the valet parking.  This is something that should have been in her contract.  Did she ask them if there was a charge when they gave her the cards?  If they said no, why didn't she ask for it in writing?  I would definitely have wanted something like that spelled out in writing so that I could feel comfortable that I wouldn't be charged for it regardless of where the event was.

    I am getting married at Belle Mer next July so my wedding is still coming up.  So far everything has been great though.  You just need to ask a LOT of questions and anticipate things so that there are no surprises.  I heavily negotiated and discussed my contract over the course of a month because I wanted to make sure I didn't get hosed.  In the end I felt confident that there weren't going to be any (major) surprises.  I am a lawyer though, and I do a lot of contract review for my career, so this came more naturally to me.....

    If you have any specific questions I would be more than happy to help. 
     
  4. You have chosen to ignore posts from nyc521. Show nyc521's posts

    Re: Longwood and Minimum Pricing

    Thank you Summer for this and the reply to the other post.  I think that if we are cautious going in (like you said you were) then we will be okay.  I'm also not hyper about every little detail, I just want it to be a great party in a memorable space, and I think (hope) that State Room will deliver.  I have been to weddings at Veronique and they were amazing - I was actually a bridesmaid in one and the bride raved about the staff there, so I've been surprised to hear these reviews.  I actually also have a friend that was married at Belle Mer, and while I didn't go to the wedding, I know they had a great experience as well (and he is an event manager so he would know).   Thanks again for your help!
     
  5. You have chosen to ignore posts from Summer2010. Show Summer2010's posts

    Re: Longwood and Minimum Pricing

    You're welcome and let me know if you have any other questions.  The view at the State Room is unbelievable and would have likely ended up being our venue if we had decided to have our wedding in Boston. 

    I recommend crunching the numbers.  At first we thought we may not be able to fit the state room or Belle Mer within our budget but we did the math and as long as 100% of our guests don't RSVP yes, we will likely end up UNDER budget.  The beauty of Longwood is that if you think you are going to have budget problems, you can always pick less expensive food options.  They do have some good options where you would be under $100/person for food which is not bad at all.  

       
     
  6. You have chosen to ignore posts from whatawagSBNy. Show whatawagSBNy's posts

    Re: Longwood and Minimum Pricing

    In Response to Re: Longwood and Minimum Pricing:
    I just don't understand how something like that happens with the valet parking.  This is something that should have been in her contract.  Did she ask them if there was a charge when they gave her the cards?  If they said no, why didn't she ask for it in writing?  I would definitely have wanted something like that spelled out in writing so that I could feel comfortable that I wouldn't be charged for it regardless of where the event was....
    Posted by Summer2010


         I think the coordinator who had given them a presentation and tour, turned things over to a business manager, who then held 1 copy of a detailed multipage contract out for Bride, Groom, and Bride's father to look over, while he skipped, 1 paragraph this page, turn to another, him verbally summarizing.

         If the bride's mother, who entertained lavishly for years personally  and arranged functions for her father's law firm, been there, it would not have happened.  The manager would have cooled his heels for 15 to 30 minutes as she read uninterupted, systematically asking questions to clarify, and checking of her personal list of questions as they went.

         The point I am making - this can be a 30K to 80 K transaction.  Treat it like one.  Phrases like - "will be greeted by our courteous valets at the portico" - need questions like - who pays, fixed price, tip only, what rates.
        I heard the bride say she remembered the above, and remembered saying - how nice, it is such a beautiful first sight of our wedding.
         And thinking   that the parking was courtesy parking (free or included)  not a fancy way of saying, our own expensive professional personnel who can be trusted with your Mercedes.

    Not a con job - just a slick presentation of the packages for people who do not check on details.
     
  7. You have chosen to ignore posts from framerican51008. Show framerican51008's posts

    Re: Longwood and Minimum Pricing

    Is Belle Mer run be the same people?
     
  8. You have chosen to ignore posts from whatawagSBNy. Show whatawagSBNy's posts

    Re: Longwood and Minimum Pricing

    I think Bel Mar , Ballroom Veronique, State Room  and I heard they had another planned and on hold since the economy tanked.

    All run by Longwood Events.
     
  9. You have chosen to ignore posts from Summer2010. Show Summer2010's posts

    Re: Longwood and Minimum Pricing

    Yes Belle Mer is run by Longwood as well.

    I guess your explanation makes sense whatawag.  They are definitely sales people but I see right through that and didn't let it sway me.  Like I said, I spent almost a month with the contract before signing.  They definitely make references to services that are available but they charge extra for them. 

    An example is the bridal suite.  When we toured Belle Mer they showed us this great suite and said something like "and this is available for you 1 hour before the ceremony and all night for hair/makeup touchups, etc."  I took that to mean that it is included for no additional charge.  No one else could use it if I wasn't so why would they charge?  Then I got the contract and the contract inferred that the bridal suite would be available, but for an extra charge.  During the negotiations I made sure there was something added stating that the bridal suite would be available free of charge.  I did this with anything like that I could think of so that there will hopefully be no surprises later!!
     
  10. You have chosen to ignore posts from whatawagSBNy. Show whatawagSBNy's posts

    Re: Longwood and Minimum Pricing

       Somehow, because it is a wedding, and sometimes the first thing booked, I think a lot of people do not listen well or question things.  But weddings are big money at any Longwood place,  many others.  Any place with a 25 to 40 K minimum.
     
  11. You have chosen to ignore posts from whatawagSBNy. Show whatawagSBNy's posts

    Re: Longwood and Minimum Pricing

       Somehow, because it is a wedding, and sometimes the first thing booked, I think a lot of people do not listen well or question things.  But weddings are big money at any Longwood place,  many others.  Any place with a 25 to 40 K minimum.
     
  12. You have chosen to ignore posts from dkb6248. Show dkb6248's posts

    Re: Longwood and Minimum Pricing

    Here is a link to a post a few months back from a bride who had trouble with The State Room.  Please read it before you sign a contract.

    http://www.boston.com/community/forums.html?plckForumPage=ForumDiscussion&plckDiscussionId=Cat%3aLifestyleForum%3a9630Discussion%3a1595cac6-9e0f-4b7f-aa55-12ebfa12cf71
     
  13. You have chosen to ignore posts from cosmogirl. Show cosmogirl's posts

    Re: Longwood and Minimum Pricing

    nyc, your post last week said you were hoping to spend around $30K,  including the band, and you had 200 people?

    I don't know what the State Room told you, but that isn't possible there with all their add-ons and service charges.  If it was, we would ALL get married there.
    (well, not really, but it's a venue that's considered out of reach by 90% of Boston brides.)
     
  14. You have chosen to ignore posts from whatawagSBNy. Show whatawagSBNy's posts

    Re: Longwood and Minimum Pricing

    I noticed something when reading a Veronique contract, and State Room has changed too.

    Where they used to have set minimums by season and day of the week, maybe a little room for negotiation but not much -

    now they have flexible minimums according to the demand for the date.  If they have 4-6 requests for a date pending, it is not first come first served at the Friday night in May rate.  They set a high demand rate, which can bump it up 5,000  or more if they can find someone willing to pay the extra to get the date.
        Low demand dates, booked closer in a week with no functions, they are dropping rates to keep the bottom line and the staff -  they are not consistently full any more.

         The web site explains this.
     
  15. You have chosen to ignore posts from trex509. Show trex509's posts

    Re: Longwood and Minimum Pricing

    Thanks for finding that thread, DKB.  That's the one I remember about the State Room.  Maybe their policies have changed, but sounds like you *really* need to get everything in writing before you give them any money.  I probably wouldn't trust them.
     
  16. You have chosen to ignore posts from lizinboston. Show lizinboston's posts

    Re: Longwood and Minimum Pricing

    I honestly would much rather have a down payment to a new house than spend 30-50k on a wedding, but hey, that's just me......yes it's an important day, but it's one day....
     
  17. You have chosen to ignore posts from Summer2010. Show Summer2010's posts

    Re: Longwood and Minimum Pricing

    In Response to Re: Longwood and Minimum Pricing:
    I honestly would much rather have a down payment to a new house than spend 30-50k on a wedding, but hey, that's just me......yes it's an important day, but it's one day....
    Posted by lizinboston


    I don't understand the point of this post.  It is completely irrelevant and adds nothing to the thread. 



    Anyway, I saw some of the other negative posts about Longwood before I decided to book Belle Mer and they were very helpful in ensuring that I did not have the same problems as some other brides.  I can see where some of these problems can come in if you are "wowed" and don't pay attention to the contract.  The contract they have you sign does not set out the pricing for anything other than the site rental and the ceremony if you have it on site.  It also states your event minimum amount.  Otherwise, the rest of it is just a service agreement and all of the details are filled in after.  They have a completely customizable menu so they don't put the menu cost in because you pick that much closer to the wedding.

    Some of these negative posts though, seriously, the people who signed the contract must be idiots.  For example, in one, the bride said that some mysterious $5,500 setup fee showed up.  Ummm that is the site rental fee.  Someone else complained about being charged for the bridal suite.  The contract says that those spaces are available for an extra fee.  Sure, they made it sound like it was included when I toured but as soon as I read the contract I knew they would try and charge me for it so I made sure that part was stricken and they stated it would be complimentary. 

    Another complaint in that post is about vendor fees being significantly different when quoted by the vendor and when quoted by Longwood.  Any genious can figure out that if they let you apply the cost of teh vendor to your event minimum, they do the work to secure the vendor, pay the deposit, pay the tip, pay for vendor meals, etc. that Longwood is going to expect to make money off of it.  Would you expect them to provide that for nothing??  I asked first what % upcharge it would be so that I knew and then I included that in the contract. 

    Read any contract VERY VERY carefully.  Ask for anything ambiguous to be spelled out.  Anticipate issues that may come up and have them cleared up via addendums to the contract.  This is good advice no matter where you are getting married. 
     
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