Here at Favourbrook, one of the great honours afforded to us is to play a small part in a great number of weddings, whether outfitting the groom, guests, or the mother of the bride. Every wedding, big or small, is such an incredible and symbolic event, and we're always thrilled to learn that our small contribution went down a treat! One of the biggest decisions a couple needs to make is their wedding venue, so we have compiled some of the most glamorous and romantic that we have come across in the UK. Peerlessly historical, unapologetically elegant, or wildly creative, these venues represent the very best in matrimonial splendour.
Cliveden House - Berkshire, England
Nestled in the heart of Berkshire, Cliveden House offers an enchanting setting for a luxury wedding. The historic mansion, surrounded by stunning gardens and overlooking the River Thames, exudes elegance and grandeur, but it's the history of the place that is the real draw. Originally built in 1666 by the 2nd Duke of Buckingham,the house gained prominence during the 19th century when it became the home of the Duke of Sutherland. However, it was the Astor family's ownership in the late 19th and early 20th centuries that truly transformed Cliveden into a centre of elite social gatherings and political influence. The Cliveden Set, a group of prominent politicians and intellectuals, convened here, influencing British policies.
The estate's serene surroundings and neoclassical architecture have attracted notable figures such as Winston Churchill and Charlie Chaplin. Cliveden also garnered attention due to its involvement in the Profumo Affair, a political scandal in the 1960s that captivated the nation. Who wouldn't want their special day to be wrapped up in such a remarkable history?!
Aynhoe Park - Oxfordshire, England
Aynhoe Park, the Oxfordshire country estate owned by aesthete and art collector James Perkins and his wife Sophie, is a whimsical and extraordinary wedding venue, with its eccentric decor, antique treasures, and expansive grounds. Originally established in the early 17th century, the park's earliest records show its ownership by Sir William Courten, a prominent figure in the East India Company. The estate underwent architectural transformations, culminating in the creation of the current mansion in the 18th century.
The park gained prominence in the 19th century when it became the residence of the Cartwright family, whose ownership saw the development of extensive gardens and ornate interiors, showcasing their affinity for art and design. In the 20th century, Aynhoe Park witnessed a shift in ownership and usage. It briefly served as a school during World War II and subsequently passed through various hands, each leaving their mark on the estate. The most remarkable transformation occurred in recent years when entrepreneur James Perkins acquired the property. Perkins introduced a whimsical and eclectic style, blending traditional grandeur with contemporary and surreal art pieces, making Aynhoe Park a sought-after venue for high-profile weddings.
Bovey Castle - Devon, England
Nestled within the picturesque Dartmoor National Park, Bovey Castle offers a majestic countryside escape, creating an idyllic backdrop for a romantic wedding. Built in 1907, it was originally envisioned by entrepreneur and heir to the WH Smith publishing empire, Frederick Smith. During World War II, Bovey Castle played a significant role, serving as a convalescent home for injured soldiers. Post-war, the castle underwent various ownership changes and conversions, from a hotel to a country club.
Its legacy as a hospitality venue was solidified in the 21st century when it underwent an extensive renovation to reinvent itself as a high-end hotel and golf resort. Today, Bovey Castle stands as a symbol of timeless elegance, blending historic charm with modern opulence, making it one of the finest wedding venues in the country.
The Dorchester - London, England
or those looking to tie the knot in London, there can be no more refined or glamorous venue than the Dorchester Hotel. Opening its doors in 1931, amidst the Art Deco era, the hotel quickly became a symbol of opulence and refinement. Its prime location on Park Lane contributed to its allure, attracting a discerning clientele of celebrities, royals, and dignitaries. During World War II, it served as a haven for foreign dignitaries and hosted various wartime events.
The hotel underwent renovations and modernisations in the ensuing decades, preserving its elegant character. Today, The Dorchester stands as a testament to a bygone era's glamour, seamlessly blending tradition with modernity to provide an exceptional experience for those looking to get married in the capital.
Babington House - Somerset, England
With its beautiful gardens, charming chapel, and spa facilities, Babington House in Somerset provides a blend of intimacy and indulgence that's perfect for a countryside-chic wedding. Now part of the Soho House group, the Georgian manor was originally constructed in the mid-1700s, the creation of Sir Charles Babington, a prominent landowner and member of the local gentry.
Designed in the Palladian architectural style, the house stood as a testament to elegance and sophistication. Over the centuries, it has served as a family residence for generations, evolving through various architectural influences while retaining its essential charm.
Glenapp Castle - Ayrshire, Scotland
Glenapp Castle transports you to a fairytale realm, overlooking the Ayrshire coast and the Irish Sea. The castle's refined interiors, lush gardens, and stunning ocean views create a magical setting for a Scottish luxury wedding that combines elegance and natural beauty. It boasts a rich history that dates back to the mid-19th century.
Constructed in 1870, it was initially built as a private residence for James Hunter, a prosperous Scottish businessman. The castle's design blends Scottish baronial and Victorian Gothic styles, showcasing its grandeur, and making it the perfect hideaway for a wedding.
Peckforton Castle - Cheshire, England
Peckforton Castle's medieval architecture and enchanting surroundings make it a dreamy choice for a fairy tale wedding, especially with its grand banqueting halls. Commissioned by John Tollemache, a wealthy landowner and member of Parliament, the castle was built between 1844 and 1850 in a striking medieval-style architecture. The design, inspired by the romantic Gothic Revival movement, features crenellated towers, battlements, and intricate detailing.
In the latter half of the 20th century, it faced challenges such as maintenance issues and periods of neglect. However, the castle underwent significant restoration efforts in the 21st century, bringing it back to its former grandeur, and reviving its enduring legacy as an architectural masterpiece.