Venues Hot List: Brilliant new openings

Venues Hot List: Brilliant new openings

Our Venues Hot List pick of brilliant new openings offer space, style and glorious surroundings – and you can be one of the first couples to host your wedding there

Words Isabella Eckett

Our Venues Hot list of brilliant new openings show just how much scope there is to have a unique and magical party. As we enter a new era of weddings, the magical process of planning still starts with the venue. Here, we have chosen our favourite new openings for romantic celebrations with plenty of style.

The Mitre is one of the most talked-about new openings – and with a star at the helm

The Mitre, Hampton Court

A must for our Venues Hot List, and one of the most talked about new openings since lockdown, this 36-bedroom boutique hotel down by the river is the first to be unveiled from the new The Signet Collection. Founded by Hector Ross (mastermind behind the Beaverbrook and Bel & The Dragon), the gourmet hangout is set to be a fantastic wedding venue. You’ll find a light-flooded orangery and large terrace looking out over one of the nicest bits of the River Thames with Whispering Angel Boat House. The jewel in The Mitre’s crown is, no doubt about it, Culinary & Operations Director Ronnie Kimbugwe, a foodie extraordinaire with a clear culinary vision. Wedding packages include Espresso Martinis for the toast, a beautiful bridal suite and munchy midnight feast.

Venues Hot List: Brilliant new openings
The iconic Petersham Nurseries has added a stylish new venue in Covent Garden

Petersham Nurseries, Covent Garden

Family owned Petersham Nurseries started out as a greenhouse in Richmond 20 years ago and has grown, organically, into the Instagram-famous brand it is today. The second location opened recently in Covent Garden, a welcome green oasis in WC2 for bespoke weddings with country style – and a perfect setting as this is London’s old flower market. The Victorian light-flooded gallery space has twinkling Genoese Chandeliers with modern artwork lining the walls. There’s also the option of the Private Dining Room or The Petersham Restaurant for an elegant fine-dining feast. There’s a beautiful courtyard for alfresco drinks and the in-house florist will ensure signature wild flowers take centre stage. Always mindful of the Slow Food Philosophy, menus are seasonal with an Italian twist, ingredients coming straight from the family farm.

Beautiful Bourton Hall has its own chapel and sumptuous spaces for a celebration

Bourton Hall, Warwickshire

This is the newest addition to the established Country House Weddings collection. A slice of Tuscany in the heart of Warwickshire, it hosted its first wedding this November after an extensive refurb. The Italianate mansion is set in 12 acres of colourful gardens and houses a stunning former Catholic chapel. Inside the main house, there’s an impressive sweeping staircase, banqueting hall and 20 bedrooms for your guests. Plus, you’ll find a Gate House Lodge for the night before. Marry outside under the Portico, a super-romantic setting ideal for those craving a destination wedding. Fittingly for a venue in Arden country, the Lady Bourton Honeymoon Suite has a dressing area with doors onto a balcony of almost Shakespearean splendour where you can take in the views of the Leam valley and Draycote Water in the distance.

Chapel Barn Estate in Suffolk is a laidback home from home with chic rustic style

Chapel Barn Estate, Suffolk

Wilderness Reserve’s latest addition, Chapel Barn Estate, is a masterclass in laid-back luxury. Based around an original 15th-century farmstead, this exclusive-use wedding venue is set amid the best of English nature in the heart of Suffolk: rolling wild-flower meadows, woodland and a beautiful lake. The collection of one-off period properties accommodate up to 90 overnight guests, and Chapel Barn itself is the place to say I do. In true Wilderness style, you’ll find fabulous outdoor activities. Facilities include indoor and outdoor swimming pools, a cinema, spa and hot tubs. For the wedding night, there’s a hopelessly romantic one-bed shack; on a private island accessed only by rope bridge.

Venues Hot List: Brilliant new openings
The Falcon in Northamptonshire blends old and new

The Falcon, Northamptonshire

This former coaching inn in Castle Ashby has been extensively restored into a chic country retreat. Opened last September, it’s set to be a Northamptonshire hotspot plus go-to wedding destination for couples seeking glamorous surroundings in a picturesque corner of England with fabulous road and rail connections. Intimate weddings can be held in the Stables or Private Dining room. The Falcon will work hand-in-hand with local farmers to deliver the freshest menus. There are ample photo opportunities on the triple-tier-lawn and you can even take over the whole hotel, which boasts 22 boutique style bedrooms. Wellness is at the core of everything they do here, with refreshing wild swimming and guided nature walks on offer, meaning your guests will leave feeling renewed and restored.

The Harper in Norfolk is a newly opened gem from Bijou Weddings

The Harper, Norfolk

Renowned wedding specialists, Bijou Wedding Venues are set to open their first hotel in the coming spring and we can’t wait. Set to be a Norfolk gem for glamorous country weddings, this former glass-blowing workshop is now a lofty space brimming with original features. It’s ideal for smaller weddings or you can take over the hotel exclusively. In total, there are 32 boutique bedrooms and you and your guests will also have access to the luxury spa. The restaurants, Ivy’s and Stanley’s, promise to serve up a feast. There is an in-house sommelier for delicious wine pairings and the kitchen is well equipped to manage any request. We love super-cosy The Den area for intimate weddings. Outside, The Yard is filled with herbs and flowers and an outdoor grill plus firepit for colder months.

With decadent rooms and fabulous grounds, Holmewood Hall in Cambridgeshire oozes style

Holmewood Hall, Cambridgeshire

Looking for a venue to hold a grand ceremony? Recently opened and lovingly restored to its former glory, this Tudor-style mansion is fast becoming a go-to for glamorous couples and we can see why. The decadent Gold Room is breathtaking, with a 50-foot aisle and 18-carat gold-leaf ceiling. The Banqueting Hall is a superb space for your wedding breakfast and your guests will want to check out The  Vault for a late-night tipple. In summer months, you can marry outside at The Bandstand looking out over rustic parkland. The property sleeps 40 across beautiful accommodation, including the bridal suite with four-poster bed and statement chandelier. Hiring out this spectacular venue ensures you will host an unforgettable celebration.

The Walled Garden at Cowdray is a magical place steeped in history and romance

The Walled Garden at Cowdray, Sussex

An exciting new addition for the Cowdray Events Team, this Tudor Walled Garden sits adjacent to the dramatic Cowdray Ruins (a spectacular backdrop for wedding pics). Think Alice in Wonderland for the setting – you’re even given the rusty key to unlock the original heavy oak door. You and your guests can celebrate in this colourful and historic outdoor space, enjoying the delicious scents filling the air from the garden’s plentiful herbs and lush fruit trees. The venue has just installed a state-of-the-art live streaming facility for your ceremony so all your loved ones can watch from all over the world.


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