Our Wedding Blog

8 Things We’ve Learned Since Becoming a Wedding Venue

Lesner Inn has been in business for quite some time now and we thought it would be helpful to share with you some insights that we’ve learned throughout the years of being a wedding venue! From things specific to the venue side of weddings or just some generic tips, we hope you can take at least one or two of these and use them during wedding planning!

Hiring Help for your Wedding is Important Waterfront Wedding Venue Hampton Roads (3)

You may not need a wedding planner or assistance designing your wedding, but having someone to put all the pieces together on the day of, and get you down the aisle is crucial! Enjoy the day you’ve worked so hard on planning, and spent so much money on. Let your hired vendors do what you hired them for – and hire a day of coordinator to make sure they do!

Right: Sweet Adeline by Jenn Marie

Do’s & Don’ts for Booking Vendors

  1. Do decide on your entire wedding budget BEFORE booking vendors. Once you decide on an overall budget, select your catering (sometimes your venue includes your catering). The scariest number you’ll see while planning your wedding will be from the food and beverage. About 80% of your entire budget should go towards the food and beverage, and the remaining towards other vendors such as flowers, music, photography, etc.
  2. Don’t commit to a specific date until you book your venue. Definitely come up with a season or month that you like to have your wedding but sometimes if you narrow it down to just one date, you may have a hard time finding a venue that has it available depending on how close that date it is.
  3. Do book your venue first THEN start booking other vendors based on the date that you booked your venue.

Trust Your Vendors

Once you’ve booked your vendors, be sure to actually use them and the knowledge they’ve acquired from previous weddings. Your vendors do numerous weddings a year so they are aware of how things go and the best ways to do things. Go to them for advice and listen to them if they have a recommendation for certain things to make your wedding perfect!

Wedding-Photos-On-The-Water-Lesner-Inn

Above: Paige Ryan Photography

Be Open with Your Vendors

Trusting your vendors and being open with your vendors go hand in hand. Being open about everything from the start will make the process with your vendors so much easier. Discuss with them your vision, your budget, what you would like from them the day of, and so on. If you’re not open with them, then you may not be getting the best of the best of what they can offer you!

echard_wheeler_lesner-dual-entree-plated-mealAlways Do a Tasting

You could think you have your heart set on certain food until you taste it – everyone makes things differently or you could be pleasantly surprised and love something you usually wouldn’t order. It is also important to keep your guest’s taste preferences in mind, it’s your wedding but you are hosting them and want to make sure there is a little something for everyone. Also be conscious of your guest’s dietary restrictions – if someone has a shell fish, gluten, peanut, etc. allergy that will be super helpful to tell your catering company beforehand so the meal can go as smooth as possible.

Left: Echard Wheeler Photography

Allow for Hiccups

You’ve worked really hard to plan an event, but with every event, there’s always the risk of things not going exactly as planned. That’s okay! You’re having a wedding and reception to invite friends and family to celebrate the love between you and your fiancé. So enjoy the time together and prepare to be a go with the flow sort of person for that day!

Have a Support System

As fun as wedding planning can be, it can also be very stressful. Planning an event anywhere from 50 – 200 guests is no easy task especially when you may be doing it for the first time in your life. You’ll want to celebrate with them on the good days and have their support on the more stressful days of wedding planning!

Waterfront-Virginia-Beach-Wedding-Lesner-Inn (76)

Above: Jessica Boudreaux Photography

We have truly learned a lot over the course of our years as a wedding venue! We have seen almost everything you could possibly see at a wedding and just wanted to share what we learned with our future couples! If you’re just starting out or nearing the end of wedding planning, we hope you can use these to your advantage!

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An award winning catering facility in Virginia Beach

What People are Saying

  • Mr. & Mrs. John­son

    MARCH 10, 2018
    ENTIRE VENUE

    Working with Lindsey and the Lesner Inn was great! I planned the majority of my wedding from out of town and Lindsey could not have been more patient with my constant emails. The venue looked beautiful at the reception and my guests loved the views and the food. The crab cakes were everyone’s favorite. Thank you so much to the Lesner Inn team and & Lindsey for such a beautiful wedding!

  • Mr. & Mrs. Jurko

    JUNE 22, 2018
    LESNER HALL & SUNSET DECK

    I could NOT be happier with the service from Lesner Inn. Our coordinator Liz was SO helpful each time we met with her and had questions. The ceremony and receptions spaces were absolutely beautiful. If I had to do it all over again I wouldn’t change a thing and I would recommend this venue to anyone!

  • The Bells

    SEPTEMBER 24, 2016
    LESNER HALL & SUNSET DECK

    Alexis, We just wanted to say thank you for all that you did Saturday & all the planning leading up to our wedding day. We had such an amazing day! And we really appreciated you making sure we were taken care of throughout the night. You’re amazing at what you do & helped our wedding day turn out to be perfect! Thank you again!

  • Jon & Brit­tany Wil­son

    JULY 15, 2017
    LESNER HALL & SUNSET DECK

    Girls at the Lesner Inn, Wow! I can’t believe it’s been just about a year since Jon and I came through the doors and knew that this would be the place we say “I do”. You guys are awesome and made planning a breeze even for this bride who didn’t have it all together. Thank you guys so much for everything, our day was perfect!

  • Kyle & Elise Miller

    APRIL 8, 2018
    LESNER HALL & SUNSET DECK

    Lindsey!
    I am speechless! Friday was truly amazing. You went above and beyond to make our day so special! We loved every second of the night. Thank you also for the champagne glasses and kitchen towel. You are so sweet! Everyone raved about the night. You and Lesner Inn are AMAZING!
    Love you
    Kyle & Elise Miller

  • GIVEAWAY TIME!! 💛 We have partnered with The Back Deck on a special engagement party giveaway! One lucky couple will receive a percentage off their party at @thebackdeck and an engagement basket from Lesner Inn to keep you in the wedding planning mood! You don't have to be a Lesner Inn bride to participate so be sure to tag all of your engaged friends! 🥰 To enter: 1. Like our photo 2. Follow both Lesner Inn & @thebackdeck 3. Tag 2 friends 4. Extra entry - share to your story and mention Back Deck & Lesner That's it!! The winner will be announced next Monday. 💃🏼 _ 📸: Sara Tiffany Photography
  • As always, these sunsets are complimentary with every Lesner Inn wedding 😍 • • Photo: Cortese Photography & Film
  • A big ole smooch with your best friends by your side is the perfect moment 😘 • • Photo by Cynthia Tenney Photography Gown: Ava Clara Couture Bridal Designer: Kenneth Winston Florals: Norfolk Wholesale Floral
  • Casual Sunday weddings for the win 🙌 • • Photo: Timeless Tides Photography
  • Literal tears from how cute this is 😍😭 • • Photo: Leah Ariel Photography, LLC
  • Something light, bright, and beautiful to perk up your Tuesday 😍 Photo: Skylar Wyatt Photography Flowers: Fluttering Flowers
  • Sparkler exits will never, ever get old 😍 • • Photo: David Champagne Photography Hair: The Hair Days MUA: BlushTones
  • Dad, thank you for being someone I can look up to no matter how tall I grow. Happy Father's Day! ❤️ • • Photo by Sarah Vanderford Photography
  • Can you even imagine a better view?! 😍😍 • • Photo by Luke & Ashley Photography Florals by Kelly Gish Floral Designs Dress from Ava Clara Couture Bridal Hair/MU by Haleigh’s Hair Fur from Frances Kahn
  • One of the many perks of the Sunset Deck is that it is open to the Lynnhaven River but is still covered in case of less than perfect weather! Our couples are still able to have their ceremony on the water and take pictures on the deck after with no fear of getting wet! 🤗 • • Photo: Dustin Lewis Images Bouquet: Norfolk Wholesale Floral Hair/Makeup: Makeup by Kim Porter
  • Isn't this just the sweetest sweetheart table?? 💕 • • Photo by Luke & Ashley Photography Florals by Kelly Gish Floral Designs Tableware by West Elm Bottle of Taken Wine Company Linens from Waterford Event Rentals, LLC
  • The dock outside the Waterside Deck is just the perfect spot for a waterfront kiss 😘 • • Photo: April Renee' Photography Florals: Sterling Myers Hair: Stephanie Michelle Hair MUA: Sydney Balmer Gown: Kenneth Winston
  • 🇺🇸 Happy Memorial Day 🇺🇸 • • To those who courageously gave their lives and those who bravely fight today, THANK YOU! • • We hope everyone has a great Memorial Day with their loved ones honoring our soldiers ❤️💙
  • It might have been raining before the wedding started but that didn't damper Sara and Jibri's mood ❤️ David Champagne Photography had the chance to capture a few shots after the rain stopped and look how beautifully they came out! • • Hair: The Hair Days MUA: BlushTones Bouquet: Black Iris Florist
  • Complimentary breath taking sunsets with every Lesner Inn wedding 😍 • • Photo: Who's That Girl Photos
  • "I will love you for the rest of time" ❤️ • • Photo: April Renee' Photography Florals: Sterling Myers Hair: Stephanie Michelle Hair MUA: Sydney Balmer Gown: Kenneth Winston
  • There's so many ways to decorate the Waterside Deck for cocktail hour! We love when couples change it up and allow their own vision for the room come to life 😍 • • Photo: Luke & Ashley Photography Greenery: Fluttering Flowers Lighting: Stage Right Lighting Bar from yours truly 💕
  • When the groom sees his bride walking down the isle and his instinct is to wave 😍👋 • • What would be your first instinct? Wave, cry, or smile?? • • Photo by Luke and Ashley Photography
  • Kisses are even better during your first dance 😘 • • Photo by Lia Everette Photography
  • As much as we love the water view on the Sunset Deck, we absolutely love grand staircase photos 💕 • • Photo by Luke & Ashley Photography Florals by Fluttering Flowers Bouquet by Kelly Gish Floral Designs Dress from Ava Clara Couture Bridal Hair/MU by Haleigh’s Hair
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