2018 was one of the rainiest years of the decade. In fact, out of 52 weekends in the year, 28 had rain! With this rainfall trend on the rise because of changing climate, couples should consider how their venue will function—and appear in photos—in case of rain. Sidenote: if you do have rain on your wedding day, your job is to embrace every single JOYFUL moment and let your wedding planner and photographer handle logistics! I will say though, after shooting around 120 weddings in the Austin area, some venues are easier and prettier when there’s bad weather. For this blog post, I am sharing 5 favorite venues with the prettiest Plan B’s.
When considering the venue’s rain plan from a photographer’s perspective, I am looking for a Plan B ceremony site that is fully covered to truly protect us from the elements. In addition, we photographers LOVE natural light coming in, so windows are extremely helpful. In short, it needs to be protective and it needs to be pretty.
1.With its gorgeously modern, clean indoor chapel directly attached to its reception hall and getting rooms, Canyonwood Ridge is the absolute best for its Plan B. In fact, most of my couples have chosen to get married inside the spacious chapel even when the weather is perfect! That said, my couples made the decision day-of to move the ceremony indoors once to escape the heat (over 100 temps in July!) and another time when it was cold (below 30 degrees in December). Most importantly for me, the indoor space in the chapel photographs beautifully no matter the weather. I could take ALL of the photos inside the chapel if I had to, and I’d still be very satisfied with what I got. Lastly, since everything is connected, there is no running around outdoors under umbrellas. The driveway in the front allows you to be dropped off and picked up, a feature that is extremely convenient in bad weather!
2. Another favorite in Austin is Barr Mansion. The Plan B ceremony space is bright and white and full of light! It overlooks a beautiful garden and feels modern and clean inside. The best part of Barr Mansion when it is rainy is having the gorgeous porches to shoot on. Now, it will not work for sideways rain since it’s just covered and not enclosed, but I have definitely done bridals, couples portraits, and small groups on the porches.
3. I once shot a wedding with full on torrential downpour, lightening, and booming thunder at Vista West Ranch. And do you know what? It was gorgeous. The babies breath on the windows made a beautiful backdrop for the ceremony, and light still managed to come in through the windows. The bridal suite is connected to the reception hall which is used for the Plan B ceremony site, so the girls were not walking in the rain. They just came straight downstairs. The Plan B does involve flipping the room, which I am sure was no easy feat for the staff! Still, I was very impressed with how pretty it was, and the storm surprisingly added beauty to their ceremony.
4. All the cool things happened in Georgetown as soon as I graduated from high school and left! Ha! The Union on Eighth is a gem of a wedding venue with its modern industrial vibes. The ceremony and reception spaces are super cool. Giant windows line the walls of the ceremony space and while the outdoor spaces were not necessarily covered, the paved ground was comfortable on our feet when puddles began to form a bit. Since the indoor area is a big part of its charm, you basically have a beautiful built-in Plan B.
5. The last venue on this list is Prospect House. In the case of rain, the indoor cocktail hour space is converted to a ceremony space, and is beautiful! I love how modern and clean it looks. The only thing I would keep in mind would be that the sides of the space are screened in, so the protection it offers may not be the best in the extreme cold or sideways rain. Still, it is such a beautiful indoor space, and the groomed sidewalks and grass around aren’t bad at all when it is wet out.
Other venues with great covered spaces include Hotel Ella for its beautiful porches and the Chandelier of Gruene for its indoor chapel. I definitely recommend know exactly what protocol is if you have to go to Plan B due to weather. That way, your coordinator can make it happen and you can focus on enjoying your day! Always, always keep in mind that the weather does not have to be perfect for your wedding day to be the perfect day! Embrace JOY no matter what and enjoy every single second!
You can see Canyonwood Ridge weddings here, Barr Mansion weddings here, Vista West Ranch weddings here, Union on Eighth weddings here, Prospect House weddings here, Hotel Ella weddings here, and Chandelier of Gruene weddings here.