magazine | Weddings | Wedding Planning

22 Historic Wedding Venues That Have Gotten Better With Time

photo: Nicole Leever
They say youth is a gift of nature, but age is a work of art. There's something timeless and effortlessly romantic about a venue with history in it’s bones. Edges worn and frayed from effervescent laughter and floors weathered from dancing shoes and splashes of champagne. Much like life and most relationships, it's the imperfections that make it oh so perfect. Here’s a list of 22 historic, time worn venues, and like a fine wine, they’ve only gotten better with time. 

Reporter: Katie David | Venue: The Ebell of Long Beach 
Photo: Arte De Vie
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Marigny Opera House learn more

Besides being the iconic place Solange Knowles said “I-do” in front of her very famous sister and brother-in-law, the Marigny Opera House is a re-purposed church in New Orleans' historic Faubourg Marigny, designed by French architect Theodore Giraud and constructed in 1853. The beautiful and historic church was closed in 1997 and repurposed as a non-profit center for local performing artists.  It’s soaring ceilings and interior “lightness” as some say pair perfectly with time worn stones and fairy lights. It’s a magical place for merry and marry-making. 
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Photo: Two Carters
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The Ravington learn more

Originally the Ravington was the Mercantile and Hardware store for the thriving town of Centerton, Arkansas since 1909. Over the years it was a rabbit factory, a hair salon, an auction house, a Methodist church, then an antique store when it was purchased in fall 2015 and renovated and renamed The Ravington. If the devil is in the details, he certainly lives here. With beautiful, exposed brick walls, 18' high original pressed tin ceilings, seven chandeliers, reclaimed barnwood floors and a 200 year old 11' tall door from a Palace in India acting as a ceremony backdrop, you’re covered on style points.
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Photo:The Turnbull
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The Turnbull learn more

Once the site of the Turnbull Ice Cream Cone & Machine Company, The Turnbull sits on the 3rd and 4th floors of the historic building. Think magnificent exposed cedar beams, original steel and brickwork throughout the 10,000 sq.ft of venue space. Running a feasting table down the center of the space, underneath the beams, dripping with string lights and feathered greens, laden with fare to share, would be a wedding to remember indeed.
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Photo:Arvest Bank Theatre at The Midland
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Arvest Bank Theatre at The Midland learn more

The glamour of the 1920’s is alive and well for your wedding at the Kansas City Arvest Bank Theatre at the Midland. Featuring 500,000 feet of gold leaf, five giant hand-cut crystal chandeliers, irreplaceable art objects, and spectacular wood and plasterwork it’s a stunning showpiece from another era, modernized with every technology for this one.
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The Bell Tower learn more

The Bell Tower, now transformed into a modern, open venue with tons of natural light was one of the first churches built in Nashville by freed slaves after the Civil War in 1874. The renovation includes the original beams as well as the sub-flooring, which is comprised of salvaged wood from homes destroyed during the war. 
BONUS FEATURE: The Tasting Room which lives within the actual bell tower of the 140 year old building. Impress your guests with this one-of-a-kind bar, home to over 100 hand-picked bourbon, whiskey, and scotch selections.
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Keeneland learn more

At Keeneland, a boutique racecourse on 1,200 acres of rolling bluegrass hills in Lexington, Kentucky, you’ll gather where some of the finest racehorses in the world have stretched their legs since 1935.  You’ll also find Keene Place, a spectacular Kentucky Limestone structure dating back to 1806, once home to the original Keene family and now host to some of Kentucky’s most intimate and charming weddings.
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Alderbrook Station learn more

Located in a protected lagoon on the Columbia River in Oregon, Alderbrook Station is a weathered warehouse perched on wood pilings over the river.  With over three floors of space, the first a kitchenette, the second a haven for artists’ studios and the third a dramatic, open event space with high ceilings and views of the river from an observation deck. The historic waterfront property also includes docks, beach access, and a Boat House that has been converted to a residence for your wedding party. It’s a minimalist’s dream and the weathered wood and stones simply add to any marry-making magic.
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Photo: Taylor Rae
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Tranquility Farm learn more

Out in Virginia's horse and wine country lies Tranquility Farm, a historic Quaker farm from 1807, with a rustic barn and an elegant, moss-covered fieldstone manor set on 23 acres of land. Gather at this picturesque farm and vineyard where Jackie Kennedy Onassis used to ride horses along a tranquil river. BONUS FEATURE:Today the silo's interior is a one-of-a-kind space for a cigar & whiskey bar, ceremony or rehearsal dinner.
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Photo: Scott Clark
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Ebell of Long Beach learn more

The Ebell of Long Beach is a former women’s club, of 1920's Spanish Revival design, carefully restored to become a stylish 17,200-square-foot event space. Exposed brick, detailed archways, hand-stenciled ceilings, ornate fountains, a majestic ballroom with a grand fireplace and a sky-lit covered courtyard will infuse your wedding with some serious old school glamour. 
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The Manor House learn more

If you’re looking for a Southern-style plantation in the middle of snowy Colorado, look no further than The Manor House. Built in 1914 by billionaire John Shaffer, who frequently hosted former presidents Teddy Roosevelt and William Howard Taft. Just 25 minutes from Downtown Denver, it boasts panoramic views of the Rocky Mountains, lush lawns and a resorted ballroom with exposed beams and chandeliers.
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Photo:Church & State
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Church & State learn more

A 121-year-old spiritual sanctuary in downtown Salt Lake City is now the home to Church & State, a philanthropic community incubator for growing new ideas. If that’s not cool enough, they’ve kept some of the beautiful chapel elements intact with soaring arches and stained glass throughout.  With over 3,500 sq. ft., the chapel mixes historic grandeur with modern industrial elements to create an uniquely chic space with a special story; a perfect setting to tell yours.
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Photo: Vivian Chen
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Falkirk Mansion learn more

Falkirk Mansion is an 1888 Queen Ann Victorian, just minutes from the Golden Gate Bridge in San Rafael and listed on the National Register of Historical Places. The estate's eleven acres include lush rolling lawns and rose gardens while indoors you’ll find large sun-filled rooms, exquisite coffered ceiling and floor-to-ceiling stained glass windows. Imagine cocktail hour on the open verandah underneath a 500-year-old oak strung with twinkle lights, the air permeated with the fragrance of roses.
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Photo: Matt Lien
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Mill City Museum learn more

The striking Mill City Museum was built on the banks of the Mississippi River, amid the ruins of the old Washburn A Flour Mill, a National Historic Landmark.  Weathered masonry walls frame a delightfully unpretentious outdoor courtyard and allow for room for up to 1000 guests. The crumbling stonework is a beautiful counterpoint to modern updates of steel and glass and a wedding dress would standout in images as otherworldly and utterly stunning.
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The Lake Erie Building learn more

If you’re looking for walls that could tell a story or two… The Lake Erie Building is almost a hundred years old and houses factories, warehouses, offices, a winery, event space, and studios for art, craft, fitness, and dance. Originally built to manufacture the Templar Motor Cars, it’s an industrial, raw space lover’s dream. It has soaring ceilings, exposed beams and tall windows letting in beautiful, natural light, bathing you and your guests  in an otherworldly, rosy glow.
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The Ruins at Kellum Valley Farm learn more

Like a phoenix rising from the ashes, The Ruins at Vellum Valley Farm in Georgia are the product of a blazing fire from 1928. It was once a school and dormitory built by the Carnegie family, the fire destroyed everything but the beautiful stone foundations and chimneys that exist today. In addition to the imperfect perfection of the ruins, the property is set on 20 acres in the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains. The historic ruins are lit at night with twinkle lights and candles, creating an utterly magical wedding back drop.
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Photo: Johnny Wu
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One Jones learn more

Anchoring San Francisco’s mid-Market neighborhood is the Neoclassical-revival style of One Jones, built in 1892 and once the Hibernia Bank. It was the only building to survive the 1906 earthquake and gives off all kinds of swoon-worthy ‘Great Gatsby’ feels for a truly timeless soiree. Marble colonnades, ornate doors in colors mixed by time and six working bank vaults make this special spot reminiscent of another era. 
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Photo:Lodge Room HLP
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Checker Hall learn more

Checker Hall is a neighborhood bar and bistro nestled on the second floor of a thoughtfully restored Masonic Hall in LA’s Highland Park.  Freemasonry began in medieval Europe as a guild for stonemasons, but lived on as a social organization. Vintage charm abounds and with a family style Mediterranean menu, it’s an ideal destination for I-Do’s. For a specialty wedding cocktail choose one of their “fast craft” cocktails, a playful homage to the establishment's Masonic temple past such as the “Chapter Sweetheart.”
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Spillian learn more

Like the hotel from Dirty Dancing come to beautiful life, Spillian is an extraordinary 1880’s Gilded Age mansion built by the Fleischmanns Yeast family in the Catskills. You’ll have 30 acres of forests and meadows, eight bedrooms in the Mansion and hand-selected wines and spirits as the backdrop for a beautiful wedding. With a Cathedral in the woods and a chef’s collective boasting completely custom menu building capabilities, its an all-time gilded age gathering spot.
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Photo:Takk House
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Takk House learn more

Previously a Knights of Columbus building, The Takk House has been transformed into a unique one-of-a-kind space featuring original breathtaking architecture, beautiful wrapping staircases, two large ballrooms - one comes equipped with a built in shuffleboard. With bride and groom suites called “The Rosemary” and “The Barbershop” respectively and a hidden 1920’s bowling alley in the basement, this is a uniquely playful spot with surprises around every corner.
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Photo:Asheville Masonic Temple
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Asheville Masonic Temple learn more

The Historic Asheville Masonic Temple in beautiful downtown Asheville, North Carolina has been in service to the community since 1915 and has now been renovated as a beautiful, new gathering space for up to 400 of your closest friends.  A grand staircase, and open, welcoming foyer spilling into a majestic theater will give a wedding all the drama it so rightly deserves.
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Photo: Amber Gress
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Velaslavasay Panorama learn more

The Velaslavasay Panorama (say that five times fast) is housed in the Union Theatre, a historic neighborhood cinema in the West Adams District of downtown Los Angeles, built in 1915. Drawing on the illustrious history of the great panorama paintings of the 18th and 19th centuries, The Velaslavasay Panorama is an exhibition hall, theatre and garden dedicated to the production and presentation of unusual visual experiences. Between the beautiful, vintage backdrops and historic gardens it’s a wedding venue gem in the midst of an urban jungle.
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The Booking House learn more

If James Bond were to ever get married (again), maybe he would consider a former cigar factory built in 1884 as his marry-making destination? Either way, The Booking House Manheim is three floors of historic character in the form of exposed brick, original wide-plank floors and dazzling chandeliers.
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