I am a very self-aware person.
For instance, just today, I realized that I'm a bit of a drama queen. Situations arise, blood pressure skyrockets, hours pass, situations diffuse. That's pretty much how I operate.
I also know that I'm pretty transparent. Not in a shallow sort of way, but in a I-can't-hide-my-emotions-well-at-all-unless-I'm-really-trying-and-I'm-absolutely-no-good-at-surprises kind of way.
So I'm sure you've all guessed that the Danada House is my favorite. Heck, I might have said that already. But that's besides the point.
I'd heard of this place during my original 3 searches for venues, but it was barely a blip on my radar. First, I thought it was going to be uber-expensive. Second, I tend to ignore places in cities I rarely visit, including Wheaton.
But I searched it out and low and behold, this is what I found:
The splendor that is the Danada House.
It's pretty without being over the top, it's classic without being outdated, it's unique without being odd, and best of all, since it's nestled back on the grounds of the forest preserve, it offers us the natural setting we've been looking for.
And while the outside of the atrium isn't nearly as pretty, (see below):
The inside more than makes up for it!!!
Look at all the natural light!!! Windows --- tons of them! And a skylight! And some weird lighting that I'm sure will look great once it gets dark. And it seats 250, which means we'll have ample space!!!!
Though the fee to rent it is a bit high ($3,200), the fact that their caterers are more than reasonable makes up for it. Priced out, a menu comparable to Montefiori is $10,500. And that includes tax and gratuity. And a full bar.
What we don't like is the location. It's at least a 30 minute drive from the church. Couple that with the only available ceremony times (2:30), and the available reception time of 6:00, and we have quite the gap.
So, we've brought back up the possibility of having a secular ceremony on the grounds.
And the price to have the ceremony (basically the cost of renting the chairs) is cheaper than the donation to the church.
There's much, much more I could say about this (including the fact that the florist I want has done many events there!), but I'll stop for now. The manager let me know that they're showing the house this Sunday from 9:30-11 am, before a wedding. I'm working with Tom to see if we can make it over there.
We'll keep you updated! :)