Since CharlotteFive published its story on The Assembly Room’s abrupt closure in January, there has been an outpouring of support for couples looking for new places to say “I do.” Kyra Brock, the events and catering manager for SpringHill Suites Charlotte Uptown, was the first to reach out, sending CharlotteFive a direct message over Instagram early Thursday morning.
“My director of sales saw the story before I did and sent it to me,” Brock said. Without being asked, she typed a quick note offering the hotel’s services for any brides or grooms looking for a new space.
Brock said she read about Evan Roberts, the first bride in our original story, possibly having to cancel her food truck caterer and lose her $1,000 deposit to be able to use a venue with in-house catering.
Brock realized then that many other couples would be facing similar circumstances and that the hotel’s rooftop space, which holds 150, would fit all of the weddings mentioned in the story. Through her director and SpringHill’s corporate office, she got it approved for couples affected by The Assembly Room’s closure to use their own caterers for a fee, which could be determined on booking. “I couldn’t imagine being in that situation,” Brock said. “I was hoping we could calm some nerves by swooping in.”
Erick Miller, property manager for yet-to-open reclaimed industrial project Savona Mill, had a similar reaction. He emailed CharlotteFive on Thursday to offer Assembly Room couples first dibs at booking any wedding dates from July 1, 2019, through 2020. “That’s no fun to be hung out to dry,” he said, adding that because the venue will be brand new, they only have a few events booked so far, which means there are a lot of dates to choose from.
When asked about catering, Miller said Savona Mill will be flexible. “If it’s a reputable caterer, we’d work to get them on our approved list,” he said. Jessica Bustamante, who emailed shortly after Miller on behalf of Historic Rural Hill in Huntersville, said they’d also make catering exceptions for Assembly Room couples.
The list of other venues who’ve emailed CharlotteFive, commented on the story or sent direct messages over Instagram has only continued to grow over the past few days. Triple C Brewing Co., Burton’s Grill, GoodRoad CiderWorks, Heist Brewery and 501 Penman all dropped us a line.
“A friend sent me your article on The Assembly Room and I can’t stop thinking of those folks with cancelled weddings (and the stress of planning weddings to begin with!),” said Resident Culture Brewing Company’s co-owner Amanda McLamb over email. “Will you let me know if there is anyone in need of a space? We will do anything in our power to help accommodate them. I am at a loss of words for what they must be feeling!!”
Gavin Toth, owner of Divine Barrel Brewing in NoDa, said he emailed CharlotteFive after a couple affected by the Assembly Room’s closure booked the taproom for their wedding. “I didn’t even know what The Assembly Room was,” he said. The couple had come in the same morning the article came out, but Toth hadn’t seen it yet. He said after they found out about The Assembly Room, they Googled other venues and Divine Barrel came up. “They were actually deciding between us and going to Mexico,” Toth said.
The brewery, which celebrates its first anniversary on March 9, has hosted three weddings so far and has two more on the books. “We’re pretty flexible with caterers and usually lowkey,” Toth said. All couples booking the space have to rent out the entire taproom, but most caterers are allowed.
Beyond the venues themselves, on Instagram and in the story’s comments, CharlotteFive has not only seen brides commiserating over the situation, but also helping one another find new venues. (Shout out to commenter Isabella Ambrosio for suggesting Providence Cotton Mill to bride Amy Magee.)
Stories of upended weddings continue to trickle in — some pushed back until spring 2020, some rebooked at new venues, others still in flux. “We did everything we could to not change our date as many of our guests from out of town already had plane tickets since we sent out our invitations in December,” wrote Magee, who is now re-planning her wedding in just 53 days. “I love the new venue but it is completely opposite feel from the Assembly Room so we have literally had to start all over.”
For those couples still trying to book a new venue, here are a few that have reached out to us. (Please note: Venue descriptions were provided by venues and edited for brevity.)
Contact: Mike, 704.358.0459
Venue Description: Dating back to 1925, the Conroy building, also known as 501 Penman, is a historic venue space featuring exposed beams, brick walls and hardwood floors. It’s ideal for couples seeking an industrial look.
Contact: Elizabeth Bowman, 704.676.5806, firstname.lastname@example.org
Venue Description: Conveniently located near the city’s most upscale and trendy neighborhoods, this venue boasts five booking spaces. An in-house culinary team who can craft signature cocktails and indoor and outdoor event spaces are some of their perks.
Contact: Gavin Toth, 980.237.1803, divinebarrel.com/private-events/
Venue Description: Divine Barrel calls their style “industrial farmhouse.” The space is warm and inviting space, with Edison bulbs providing soft light throughout and pothos plants hanging from every ceiling truss. The brewery also has a semi-private Barrel Room that can be enclosed as a place for a bride or groom to get ready.
Contact: Brianna Dorr, 704-445-2626, email@example.com
Capacity: Up to 200
Venue description: Located in uptown Charlotte, Kimpton Tryon Park Hotel has more than 9,300 square feet of flexible event space, including the 4,000-square-foot Rhapsody Ballroom, which features 14-foot ceilings and jewel-like lighting elements that create an ideal setting for weddings. In addition, the Berkeley Green Room offers an elegant setting for brides and wedding parties preparing for the ceremony.
Contact: Mary Mayo, 336-707-8600, https://catawbabrewing.com/contact/book-event/charlotte-event-space
Capacity: 180 seated, 230 standing
Venue Description: Experience the romance of ancient beverage making amongst Catawba Brewing’s 200 oak barrels. This is an active barrel aging room, where you will subtly sense the smells of bourbon, wood, and beer as it ages. We are a four minute ride east on Kings Rd. from uptown Charlotte to Plaza Midwood. An exclusively private, barrel vaulted, 4300 square foot ballroom features a wooden bar with 12 Catawba craft beers on tap, plus wine and hard cider. The Barrel Room has a bridal dressing room, optional stage, wooden bar with hand carved statuary, chenille drapes, and dramatic lighting. This beautiful space is nestled into the industrial chic of a 72 year old cookie bakery.
Contact: Nikki Hansen, 704.333.9779, ext. 101 (all event planning here is run through Best Impressions Caterers)
Capacity: Depends on the reception style, but up to 300
Venue Description: Across the street from Triple C Brewing Company, this 10,000-square-foot features a banquet hall, an outdoor patio, and a floor-to-ceiling glass wall to view the new seven-barrel brewhouse. Other features include exposed brick walls, whiskey barrel décor, industrial ceilings, and a bar with 20 Triple C taps.
(*available July 1, venue website not launched yet)
Contact: Erick Miller, 704.962.6463
Venue Description: This yet-to-be-opened venue will feature a mid-century raw warehouse with a combination of brick, colored glass and exposed industrial beams. When the venue first opens, they’ll have approximately 10,000 square feet of indoor space, followed by a large courtyard, and a secondary 5,000-square-foot annex event venue. All can be used separately or together, just open the garage doors.
Contact: Kyra Brock, 704.439.8112
Venue Description: Open since April 2017, this Uptown hotel features a rooftop space named Hornets’ Nest has 200 degrees of floor-to-ceiling windows, that look directly into the skyline. The space has two patios on each side, best for photo-op moments and breathtaking views of the city. Rental of the space includes tables, chairs, table linens, linen napkins, and a wooden dance floor.
Contact: Rick Benefield, firstname.lastname@example.org
Venue Description: Located in Charlotte’s up-and-coming LoSo neighborhood, GoodRoad’s booking options include a spacious event room and a cozy mezzanine. Design features include exposed bricks and beams and a warm, wood-paneled bar.
Contact: Mike Devine, email@example.com
Venue Description: This farm-style wedding location features two venues: a Southern banquet room and a barn. The barn is rustic, yet upscale and is meant for weddings and larger events. Rental includes all inside tables and chairs. An outside deck is also available for rent with the barn for a beautiful outside event.