Looking at wedding venues

So we finally got up to Lake Superior to look at potential wedding venues. It’s not a totally unusual area to have a wedding, but there are very few places that can do the ceremony and reception all in one, holding more than 50-80 guests. We decided to visit two resorts, Lutsen and the Naniboujou Lodge. Thankfully, they both turned out to be viable options, and each was totally unique.

We started out looking at Naniboujou, which is a longer drive, but closer to Mike’s family’s cabin. It was built in the ’20s as an exclusive club, and still has the over-the-top paint job and original stylized furniture.

I have never seen anything like it.

To hold a wedding there, you actually have to rent out the entire lodge, and they can set up their huge dining room for the dinner/dance part. The downside, though, is that you have to wait until the off-season, which is late October. And the rooms were pretty teeny and didn’t have TVs. Some people might relish that, others might be annoyed. Still, we were just blown away by how unique the interior was, and thought it would certainly be a memorable wedding.

When we got outside to the parking lot we saw this. A sign?

Mike was saying it would have to be a pretty impressive venue to top that one. But when we got to Lutsen the next day, he was impressed. And I was really smitten. The beachside location, where a river runs into the lake is just gorgeous.

And as we toured all of the different lodging options (log cabins, townhouses, condos, some with beds for up to 6 or 8 people), we liked it even more. Hearing that we could choose any date, including the late-September fall color period we’d hoped for, was a bonus.

They also offer hiking tours and sea kayaking lessons, and have a frisbee golf course. The downside is probably the cost, which is a little higher, and the fact that you have to vacate the dining room pretty early, and end your dance by 11 at the latest.

I am a go-with-your-gut type of person, and the more I thought about it, the more it seemed that Lutsen was the type of place I had pictured in my head for a wedding. The views are incredible, and the reception room feels like a blank slate I can decorate how I want, which is really important to me.

So now begins the process of seeing if we can make it work. I really hope we can swing it, because I’m anxious to set a date and get this thing rolling!