Images of the Museum of Natural History and Metropolitan Museum of Art (Lobbies)
Planning a winter ceremony?
Between December 1st and April 1st, do plan to marry indoors. If the weather is nice, then you can always move the ceremony outside.
Free Indoor Winter Wedding Locations in NYC: These are really only suitable for elopements.
Select Hotel Lobbies (i.e. hotels with large lobbies & relaxed staff, like the Roosevelt Hotel)
Staten Island Ferry
Grand Central Terminal (between 10 AM and 3 PM to escape highest congestion)
If you are comfy with crowds: Chelsea Market (factory turned foodie mecca) or Limelight Marketplace (church turned nightclub converted to artsy mall)
Public Atriums (usually only open during weekdays): Ford Foundation; Winter Garden at World Financial Center; Trump Towers; 60 Wall Street; 180 Maiden Lane at Seaport; 590 Madison Ave…..My vote is for the Winter Garden at the World Financial Center.
Museum or Landmark: Ever dream of a stately, classy environment? Maybe the Brooklyn Museum of Art? The cafe areas at the Rubin and Asia Society are also very nice. The Museum of Sex might be kind of fun too. Tried and true museums include the Museum of Modern Art, Museum of Natural History, and Metropolitan Museum of Art….Rumor has it that the American Indian Museum staff smiles when couples enter for photography. Eloping permits much imagination.
By the way, the Forbes Gallery (Fifth Ave & 12th) offers free admission. Both the Met and Mus. of Natural History are by “donation” only. I usually give $2-5.
Almost Free Wedding Venues: Room rentals or per person under $50 hourly.
Private Room at Restaurant (cost? the food)
Top of the Rock (indoor / outdoor)
Inexpensive Winter Wedding Locations ($350 to $600 per hour for the site itself; you could also have a small reception at most of these places for additional fees.)
Historic Sites: Mount Vernon Hotel & Museum; Merchant House; Voekler Orth House; Flushing Town Hall; Old Stone House; Bayside Historical Society; Brooklyn Historical Society
Bargemusic (up to 125 or so)
Lofts (from thirty to a thousand guests)
New York Public Housing Works
Private Event’s Room in Hotel (usually $500; or ask for a small wedding package; cost per person for food is usually $80 to $160 and you’ll get the room for the ceremony)
Hotel Ideas: Desmond Tutu Center; New York Palace; Wales Hotel; Library Hotel; B&Bs
Lofts: some smaller lofts will rent the space inexpensively for ceremonies only and/or small weddings
Chapels: I can arrange a chapel for small weddings in either Manhattan or Queens; these packages begin at $750 and average $1000. If you are inviting more than forty guests, it’ll be more like $1500.
Spiritual Center Lofts: I can arrange for your ceremony to take place in a loft-like setting at a spiritual center; these packages begin at $700.
Spring / Summer / Fall Wedding Ceremony Locations
NYC Parks (require $25 permit to officially reserve the space and definitely if twenty will gather): Central Park, Prospect Park, City Hall Park, North Forest Park, Flushing Meadows Corona Park, Tryon Park (i.e. Linden Terrace), Riverside Park, Brooklyn Bridge Park, Astoria Park, Alley Pond Park, High Line, et cetera.
Central Park Covered Sites: Belvedere Castle Plaza; Bethesda Terrace; Ladies Pavilion; Wagner’s Cove; various rustic shelters along water; various underpasses at bridges; bridge/waterfall in upper part of park in Harlem; Cop Cot & gazebo at 69th & 5th also provide some shelter
Prospect Park Covered Areas: Boathouse + Picnic House (heftier fees); Grecian Shelter / Peristyle
“Hole in the Wall Parks”: A number of cute tiny gathering spaces exist on East Side of Manhattan
Washington Market Park: gazebo + community run
Brooklyn Bridge: only suitable if you have less than eight guest due to congestion
Fort Totten (gazebo + public pool)
Gantry State Park (Astoria)
The Beach (Brighton Beach; Long Beach… Coney Island Beach has covered areas if it rains)
Central Park Conservatory Gardens
East Village Community Gardens (one of which has covered stage area if it rains)
Queens County Farm (indoor/outdoor)
Wave Hill (indoor / outdoor)
Planting Fields (tent for extra)
Jefferson Market Garden
Snug Harbor Cultural Center (covered areas available + indoor facilities)
Brooklyn Botanical Gardens (covered area)
Queens Botanical Gardens (indoor/outdoor)
New York Botanical Gardens (privately run, unlike BBG, QBG, and Snug — indoor/outdoor)