All imagery and words by Laura Babb, one of Smashing The Glass’s trusted Smashing Suppliers
Good morning STG readers. I’m Laura, a proud Smashing Supplier, and I’m thrilled to be sharing my first ever post for Smashing The Glass. I went off on assignment a few weeks ago, with my camera in hand, to the beautiful Waddesdon Estate.
The Waddesdon Estate is owned by the Rothschild family — a banking family of Jewish origin — and Lord Rothschild is known for his love of and support of the arts. Waddesdon Manor itself is a National Trust property and was designed by an eminent French architect, so it really is quite curious to see a seemingly French chateaux nestled in the Buckinghamshire Countryside.
The estate itself is spread over 6000 acres of land and encompasses 4 different venues that not only cater for weddings but also cater for all budgets and tastes. â€¨â€¨The individual venues are driving distance from each other, so even if they had four weddings happening at the same time, you’d never know and each of the venues feels very exclusive.
Our first stop on our tour of Waddesdon was The Dairy, where we were greeted by the Waddesdon team and steaming cups of coffee served in bone china cups, with beautiful iced biscuits from Waddesdon’s pastry chef. â€¨â€¨The Dairy is a private building on the estate, surrounded by beautiful gardens. There are three spaces in The Dairy where ceremonies can take place and two of them are outside, covered and licensed for a civil ceremony.
There is also an imposing summer house. In the summer it’s covered in roses and would make a beautiful location for your chuppah, or you might prefer to gather your nearest and dearest at the Lakeside Pavilion for a ceremony over looking the lake. This is a large, covered area and it’s also heated so it’s great if you want to be outside in cooler weather. â€¨â€¨Tucked away in the glorious gardens (even in Winter they were very pretty!) is a rustic wooden structure, which is the perfect location for an intimate ceremony or blessing or even as a pretty place for the two of you to sneak away together for pictures.
The Dairy is perfect for up to 110 guests or a marquee can be erected in the Courtyard for up to 200.
the five arrows hotel
The next stop on our trip around the Estate was The Five Arrows hotel. The Hotel is Grade II listed and was originally built to house the architects and craftsmen who worked on the Estate. Your nearest and dearest can stay on site with you, in one of the 16 beautifully appointed rooms and I can just imagine how lovely it would be to have your drinks reception on the perfectly manicured lawn on a summers day.
The Rothschild room holds up to 60 guests comfortably for dinner or you can have up to 120 in an adjoing marquee.
The Five Arrows is also a perfect venue to incorporate into your plans if you’re getting married elsewhere on the estate but planning other activities over the course of a weekend. You could arrange a pre-wedding dinner with all of your guests the night before or perhaps a day-after BBQ.
Our next stop on the tour was the amazing Windmill Hill. Commissioned by Lord Rothschild, the latest addition to Waddesdon is home to the Manor, Estate and Family archives. It houses an array of contemporary artworks and its clean, modern design is perfect for cutting edge couples who want a very modern celebration. I absolutely loved the space and the views over the estate were just breath taking. If you want to celebrate your wedding surrounded by works by prominent artists such as Anish Kapoor then this is the place for you.
Next up we visited Waddesdon Manor (top image) itself, nestled on the top of a hill in the middle of the Estate it really is very imposing. It was closed during the time of our visit but the Waddesdon team told us they also hold private events in their famous white drawing room.
The final stop on our tour saw us head back to The Dairy for a wonderful lunch which was provided by the in-house catering team. The team are able to provide catering for everything from non-Kosher to fully Kosher weddings and are experienced in working with Jewish couples.
Our table for lunch was beautifully styled by Kelly from The Bespoke Wedding Company and featured a spring themed table scape, resplendent with flowers and potted plants from Euphoric Flowers. I just loved all of the daffodils and greenery — it really was like an English garden in the Spring time.
I think the wonderful thing about Waddesdon is that it really is so versatile. From the relaxed Five Arrows Hotel to the beautiful lakeside Dairy and the modern master piece that is the Windmill Hill archive. There really is something for everyone, what ever their taste and budget.
Would you consider Waddesdon for your wedding?