Blog ~ Frankies 457

Three Great Restaurant Reception Venues in NYC

Wondering where to eat after saying “I do”? As an NYC elopement photographer, I’ve joined hundreds of couples for their intimate receptions around the city. I’m constantly on the lookout to expand my list of the best elopement restaurants NYC has to offer!

How to select a great post-elopement restaurant in NYC

New York City has no shortage of amazing places to eat, and the limitless options are both a blessing and a curse. I think there are three key questions you need to ask before digging into your choices:

  1. What’s the guest count?
  2. What neighborhood do you need to be in?
  3. What kind of food do you want served?

Once you have it narrowed down to that level, you’ll want to start asking more specific questions that will guide you on where to reach out to:

  1. What’s the budget?
  2. Do you want a private or a semi-private space?
  3. How much do you want to style the space?

Best Elopement Restaurants NYC

While I can’t list every fantastic restaurant option out there, I can name some of the best elopement restaurants NYC has to offer. Here are three really solid choices that might be just what you’re looking for.

Frankies 457 Spuntino

This Carroll Gardens Italian restaurant serves family-style meals in a private carriage house out back that seats around 60 people. The addition of a seasonal tented opening extends the capacity to around 100. The rest of the space behind the restaurant is a patio garden that some couples will use for their ceremony, for cocktail hour mingling, or for an extended setup for dessert and dancing. While the space comes with a lot of charm built in, most couples opt to style it out with floral arrangements, place settings, and other personal touches.

The private carriage house at Frankies 457 in Brooklyn

Frankies 457 has clean Italian styling and delectable foods

Wedding couple celebrating with guests at Frankies 457 in Carroll Gardens

Website: Frankies 457 Spuntino

Best nearby hotel: 1 Hotel Brooklyn Bridge

Best nearby ceremony location: Brooklyn Bridge Park

Haven’s Kitchen

I must love old carriage houses, because Haven’s Kitchen is another great restaurant located in one. Near Union Square in Manhattan, this spot is mostly known for its first floor sustainable farm-to-table cooking school and its third floor loft event space. The private dining room on the second floor for up to 40 people is the true hidden gem for anyone eloping, though! A huge bonus to this space is the bar/fireplace area that takes up the rest of the second floor, which makes for a fantastic spot for an intimate ceremony or a laid back mingling over some farm-fresh cocktails.

Haven's Kitchen is a great elopement reception restaurant venue near Union SquareIntimate lunch elopement reception at Haven's Kitchen near Union SquareFarm-to-table dishes shine at Haven's Kitchen

Website: Haven’s Kitchen

Best nearby hotel: The High Line Hotel

Best nearby ceremony location: The High Line

Charlie Bird

I recently stumbled into this West Village Italian restaurant on a recent elopement and the private dining room in the back really blew me away. This hip space is definitely for a smaller crowd, maybe up to 14 total, but it has some really great styling and could stand pretty well on its own.

Best elopement restaurants NYC include Charlie Bird in the West VillageWedding couple and guests toast in the private dining room at Charlie Bird in NYC

Website: Charlie Bird

Best nearby hotel: The Dominick

Best nearby ceremony location: Manhattan Marriage Bureau (City Hall)

But what about all the other amazing restaurants in NYC? Can they host elopement receptions?

While there are a number of NYC restaurants that are well-known for having an amazing dedicated space for private dining, you don’t need to limit your search to these exclusive setups. Almost any restaurant will entertain the idea of booking out the entire space, even if they’ve never hosted a private event before. So let your taste buds guide you, and don’t be afraid to approach your favorite neighborhood spot!

Are you planning an NYC elopement? Click here to see more information on elopement photography and let’s chat!

How to Find the Perfect Elopement Officiant

Unless you’re getting married at City Hall, selecting your elopement officiant will be one of the biggest decisions you’ll make for your intimate wedding day. Even if you’re stripping away most other parts of a traditional wedding, the ceremony will still be a significant portion of your elopement day. And your officiant will be leading you and your guests through this critical part of the day, so choosing the right fit is key! Thankfully there are many great officiants to choose from in NYC that specialize in elopements.

A friend is the elopement officiant for a Cop Cot wedding

Here are some of our top tips when it comes to selecting the right wedding officiant for your elopement!

How to select your elopement officiant

There can be a number of factors at play that influence for whom you’ll hire as your elopement officiant. If you’re from NYC, you might have a local church that will perform your ceremony because you go there. Or maybe you’re coming from Australia and want to have a very private ceremony that feels a bit like home, so you hire an Aussie officiant (shoutout to the awesome Bettina of Weddings by Bettina). Or maybe you have a friend that will get ordained, register as an officiant in NYC, and then lay down an amazingly personal ceremony for the two of you.

A friend officiates a High Line elopement ceremony

While there may be many personal factors that will guide your decision, here are some key questions you should be asking to start to sketch out what your perfect elopement officiant might look like.

Do you want to have a religious ceremony?

This is obviously a big guiding post of how you’ll narrow down your officiant options. If you’re looking to have a religious ceremony and you’re local, the head of your church or synagogue or other religious institution likely makes sense. If you’ll be having a destination elopement here in NYC then you’ll have to do a little research. Searching for “Catholic wedding officiant NYC” or other similar variations will be a great place to start. Hiring an interfaith minister is another great option, such as the wonderful Annie of Rev Annie NYC.

A religious elopement ceremony at Riverside Church

Do you want your ceremony to be formal or laid back?

If you’re looking to set up a more formal elopement environment, then you’ll want an officiant that can be equally as formal. The whole team at Officiant NYC is amazing at running a very sophisticated ceremony no matter the location or number of guests.

If you skipped the previous paragraph after seeing the word “formal,” then hiring someone that can inject a bit of fun into the elopement ceremony while still being heartfelt is what you’re looking for! Daniela at Once Upon a Vow is exactly that kind of officiant, and she’s one of the first people I think of for elopements that are looking for a laid back vibe with heart.

A laid back Wythe Hotel elopement with Once Upon a Vow

Will you have any guests in attendance?

If you’ll have some guests along, you’ll want an officiant that can take the reigns during the ceremony and ensure everyone has an amazing experience. Think about it like stage presence. You’ll want someone that can pull you and your guests in closer before the ceremony starts, making sure that everyone is present and ready to give you their full attention and love. If you’ll be having the ceremony outside, you’ll need someone that can speak over the dull roar of traffic nearby, or the N train rumbling across the Manhattan Bridge overhead. And most importantly, you’ll want someone who can pronounce you married with gusto!

Frankies 457 wedding with Judges for Love

Set up calls and get to know them

My last tip to finding the perfect elopement officiant is to get on the phone and chat in depth. Once you have a few options bookmarked, go through and book a phone consultation with each one. You should feel completely comfortable with your elopement officiant and fully trust that they can create the experience you’re looking for. It’s of course helpful to check out their website and read reviews, but hopping on the phone and having a conversation with someone will usually tell you all you need to know.

Amanda of Officiant NYC performs a ceremony at Grand CentralSome of my favorite NYC elopement officiants

Bettina – Weddings by Bettina
Daniela – Once Upon a Vow
Hope – A More Perfect Union
The whole team – Officiant NYC
Annie – Rev Annie NYC
Peter – Our Wedding Officiant NYC

Looking for more great elopement information? Check out my essential guide to eloping in NYC!

The Frankies 457 Wedding of Katherine & Quin

I’m so excited to finally share the Frankies 457 wedding photos of Katherine & Quin! They had an amazing Brooklyn elopement that started at the new 1 Hotel Brooklyn Bridge and went well into the night at Frankies 457 Spuntino in Carroll Gardens. With about 60 guests in attendance this was definitely one of my larger elopements; with a first look, a small bridal party, a live jazz band, and first dance, it had a lot of the components of a more traditional wedding day but with a much more laid-back vibe. Heck, even a guy in a thong made an appearance!

Frankies 457 Spuntino is a fantastic Italian restaurant in Brooklyn with the perfect arrangement to host intimate weddings, either with or without a ceremony on-site. They have a gorgeous a backyard stable house that’s just oozing with exposed wood, candlelight, and cafe lights, which is exactly the vibe Katherine & Quin were going for. The fact that they have killer food too is just an added bonus (the cavatelli & sausage is by far my favorite dish there, and the smell hits you right as you walk in)! The only things to add were a splash of beautiful florals by Bourgeon, a local Brooklyn florist, and a few hand-lettered signs. To handle the logistics they brought in Adrienne of Ruffles & Tweed, a fantastic wedding coordinator that works at Frankies 457 all the time.

Frankies 457 Wedding Photos

1 Hotel Brooklyn Bridge, a great place to get ready on your Brooklyn wedding dayDetail photos of the wedding invitation suite and bridal party bouquetsThe bride's BHLDN wedding dress and Badgley Mischka bridal shoesThe bride's final moments of getting ready with her girlsA toast of presecco with the bridesmaidsBride walking to her first look in Brooklyn Bridge ParkThe wedding couple's first look in Brooklyn Bridge ParkJust after their Brooklyn Bridge Park first lookThe bridal party poses in front of the NYC skyline from Brooklyn Bridge ParkThe bride and her bridesmaidsThe groom and his groomsmenBride and groom walk past a guy in a thong in Brooklyn Bridge ParkWedding portraits on the Brooklyn waterfront in DUMBOThe bride and groom with the NYC skyline in the backgroundWedding portraits in DUMBOThe DUMBO waterfront is always great for wedding portraitsFinding a pop of color for their wedding portraits with a brilliant red doorWedding details from Frankies 457A backyard Brooklyn wedding ceremonyFrankies 457 tented wedding ceremony in the backyardThe wedding couple kiss after their Brooklyn wedding ceremonyBride and groom celebrating just after their Brooklyn wedding ceremonyCongratulatory hugs just after their Frankies 457 weddingWedding details from the Frankies 457 stable houseBlue Vipers of Brooklyn set the wedding reception mood with live jazzSome of the delicious Italian food at Frankies 457 SpuntinoWedding pies from Four & Twenty Blackbirds of BrooklynDinner reception vibes at Frankies 457 SpuntinoFirst dance at the tented backyard of Frankies 457 in Carroll GardensThe wedding couple and guests dance to live jazz in Brooklyn

Katherine & Quin, it was such a pleasure to spend your wedding day with you and document such an important time in your lives.

Are you planning an intimate wedding at a local NYC restaurant? I’d love to chat!

The Best NYC Elopement Vendors

Wedding coordinator – Ruffles & Tweed

Getting ready hotel – 1 Hotel Brooklyn Bridge

Brooklyn wedding venue – Frankies 457 Spuntino

Brooklyn florist – Bourgeon

Live wedding band – Blue Vipers of Brooklyn

New York elopement photographer – JC Lemon Photography