Where to get get married and celebrate the most important day in a couples life is one of the greatest challenges that couples in North Carolina face in planning their wedding. The Research Triangle area that makes up Raleigh, Durham, and Chapel Hill, offers many great choices of wedding venues depending on the "tone" of your wedding. They range from alumni chic to country casual.
Below is what I've discovered as popular wedding venues throughout the Triangle area. (Be sure to read to the end to see the bonus site just south of the area that shouldn't be missed)
NC State Club - Raleigh
The NC State Club is a beautiful venue on NC State's Centennial Campus.
- Features a magnificent double stair entry hall with very large ballroom to host the largest of weddings.
- Ready to dance the night away? This venue certainly provides the space for a serious party!
- The perfect spot for Rick & LuGina (owner of LA-Dance ) and their crew to show off their abilities at reception.
- The food is truly of 5 star quality.
- This is a luxurious experience for any bride and groom.
- This is private club for those Wolfpack Alumni and you must be a member.
Fearrington Village - Pittsboro, NC
Located in a beautiful country setting outside of Chapel Hill is Fearrington Village.
- This village is built around the Fearrington Farm. It's truly what I call "Country Classy".
- Offers many venues (inside and out) for weddings.
- My absolute favorite and unique venue is "The Barn".
- The Barn is rustic, but provides a gourmet experience.
- Walk through the entry area that used to be horse stalls, you enter the main barn, a large structure that can house the largest of wedding parties.
- The experience is something to behold as you're taken back to a different time.
- I just love the grounds around the barn as they offer me so many opportunities for great images of my couples!
Hill Ridge Farm - Youngsville, NC
Located north of Wake Forest is the Hill Ridge Farm.
- Educational farm with farm animals on its ground.
- If its country casual that you're looking for in your wedding venue, then this is the place for you!
- Offers a separate Barn and Event Center away from the usual workings of the farm
- Perfect for outdoor ceremonies and casual receptions.
- This is a great venue for those DYI (do it yourself) couples.
- I've been privileged to photograph two couples from the same family at this venue. Besides the barn, my favorite feature is the Gazebo!
JC Raulston Arboretum at NC State - Raleigh, NC
Though not located on campus, NC State's JC Raulston Arboretum is a great outdoor venue for weddings and bridal portraits.
- Nationally acclaimed garden with one of the largest and most diverse collections of landscape plants adapted for landscape use in the Southeast.
- The White Garden with it's intimate gazebo and archway is a perfect place for that intimate, outdoor wedding.
- This entire venue is my go to place for portraits.
- My brides love this venue!
- It, as it offers so many opportunities for great portraits with different backgrounds simply by walking from one area to another.
Raleigh Rose Garden - Raleigh, NC
The Raleigh Rose Garden is Raleigh's premiere historic city garden
- Features 1,200 roses of 60 different varieties.
- Venue is very luxurious and an absolute beautiful place to hold a wedding.
- With winding walkways, this venue allows for great separation of the ceremony area from a reception area.
- It's a large venue with an absolutely intimate feel.
- The Raleigh Rose Garden sits on the grounds of the Raleigh Little Theatre, just north of the NC State main campus.
The Royal - Raleigh,NC
The The Royal is located directly across Meredith College in Raleigh.
- Long time Raleigh Residents will remember this building as famous bread bakery.
- The building's architecture is unique and is now part of the National Register of Historic Places.
- Has a very flexible setup providing space for both a separate ceremony area and a large reception.
- Receptions can spill outside to their large patio.
- I had the honor of photographing a Nadia and Tomas's wedding at this location. What made that wedding so fun for me was the incorporation of so many Czech traditions which had everyone smiling all evening long! Nadia's now pregnant so that ball and chain around Tomas has only gotten larger! (They are a wonderful couple!)
Durham Hilton - Durham, NC
The Durham Hilton hotel is more than your usual hotel.
- Enter through a very large covered brick entry way that can create stunning nighttime photographs.
- The ballroom can be magically converted into the most beautiful reception space.
- The lobby offers a spacious sitting area with an intimate fireplace great when guests need to take a break from all the fun for some quiet time
- Great food and what was one of the friendliest hotel staff's I've ever met,
- Certainly a venue for any couple's consideration.
Jones Chapel at Meredith College - Raleigh, NC
Though not set up for a reception, I highlight this venue for your wedding ceremony. The Jones Chapel sits on the grounds of the beautiful Meredith College, surrounded by large oak trees.
- Traditional architecture
- Houses a large 400 seat sanctuary.
- Inside is visually stunning with it's large pipe organ as key visual feature.
- Has a bridal room in the front and a warm inviting library just behind the sanctuary for the groom.
- The library is an excellent location for portraits with it's over sized leather chairs and a stunning baby grand piano.
Childress Winery - Lexington, NC
Though not located in the Raleigh, Durham, or Chapel Hill area, I just had to include one of my favorite venues, the Childress Winery, located just south of High Point, NC. This winery is owned by NSCAR Sprint Cup Series champion team owner Richard Childress. Grab a glass a wine and enjoy this venue!
- One of the most beautiful wedding venues in North Carolina.
- It is a working winery that has been so popular for weddings that it recently moved a portion of the vineyard to allow for expanding their outside wedding facility.
- Has a brides room upstairs on the 3rd floor overlooking the vineyards and wedding space.
- The grooms typically stay downstairs in Richard's favorite room, the Barrel Cave.
- If you love wine and everything it represents, than this is the location for your wedding!
I hope you found this list of wedding venues in the "heart of North Carolina" useful and entertaining. Wedding photography is more than just capturing an event, it's about capturing the emotions, love and experiences.
I'm a romantic at heart (married over 28 years) and truly love photographing weddings. I combine unique artistic lighting and posing with truly personal customer service, creating a high-quality experiences and photographs to be cherished for years to come.