Welcome to our wedding planning blog series! This week we are featuring No25 Fitzwilliam Place, wedding co-ordinator Denise, who has an impressive thirteen years experience!
"No 25 Fitzwilliam Place is a private venue in the heart of Dublin. Located on a quiet corner of the Georgian mile...the elegant space provides the perfect backdrop for intimate gatherings, wedding receptions and ceremonies.'
For those of you who are familiar with fine dining establishment, Suesey Street, No25 resides just next door, in fact they are sister venues!
To begin our visit, Denise guided me through the Georgian venue, before leading us to the classic yet modern Lovett Pearce lounge, where we conducted the interview.
When did No25 start hosting weddings & events?
The house was renovated in 2012 by the owners, the Kelly family for weddings but we had been hosting corporate events prior to that.
It is an exquisite Georgian building, it must be steeped in history. Do you know anything about it’s past functions?
We are currently researching the history of the house. So far we do know that the house has had many uses including a doctor's surgery and a family home. The first owner was Henry Read, a renowned sportsman who represented Ireland in three sports: Rugby, Tennis & Cricket.
Worth noting for all the avid sports fans out there!
The house has been so tastefully decorated in keeping with the original period, who designed the interior?
Owners the Kelly family designed the renovation with each room paying homage to a different Irish architect. Most of the paintings are by Irish artists and were curated by the owners also and the objets d’arts were sourced from Rowell Design, Donnybrook.
Even though you are city centre, it is so peaceful here. What do you think the best thing is about city weddings?
So many couples go for a country house but I feel there’s something both chic and unique about a city wedding.
I love the intimacy of this venue, how many do you cater for?
We can cater for 20-60 guests for dinner in the Gandon Suites which is on the second floor. For the evening we can cater for up to 100 guests.
If couples don't get married onsite where can they go?
Most would have their ceremony onsite, we can accommodate this in the Eileen Grey Suite or the Gandon Suites. Alternatively, they would go to the Grand Canal Registry, which is just a 10 minute walk from here. We do strongly suggest couples walk back from the registry office as they can take in the sights of the Royal Canal which is very scenic and ideal for photo opportunities.
Is this an exclusive venue? Do you charge for that?
Yes our couples have exclusive use of the venue but there is no extra charge. Included in the package is the venue hire as well as your fine dining experience.
You also cater for corporate events, would the preparation involved differ much? How so?
The core set up is much the same. However, weddings are a lot more detailed and personalised.
What are the advantages of having a small wedding venue?
The attention to detail and service is the biggest one. As a couple you get more quality time with your guests.
Can you avail of a bar extension?
There’s actually no need as we hold a restaurant licence so we can serve alcohol until 1.30am.
How do couples find you?
We advertise on a couple of wedding platforms including Wedding Dates, One Fab Day and weddingsonline. Our couples also find us through google.
Describe the No25 couple.
Our clients are often International who don't have large parties or families to cater for. We also get a lot of same sex couples and couples getting married for the second time around.
You mentioned that the wedding tasting takes place in Suesey Street, nextdoor.
What 3 things should couples bare in mind when tasting/choosing the wedding menu?
Choose what you want as a couple and not focus too much on your guests dietary requests, as we can cater for all of them separately.
Speak up; being an intimate venue, we can offer a lot more in terms of detail of service and presentation.
Ask your sommelier. You can meet our inhouse renowned sommelier Simon Keegan, who will advise you on how best to complement your dishes with our vast cellar of wines.
Having worked in top wedding venues both here and the UK, how do English and Irish weddings differ?
Irish weddings can be quite similar in proceedings but although still formal, they tend to have less pomp and ceremony. There's always a little more room for fun at an Irish wedding!
What is the most lavish thing you have seen during your career as wedding co-ordinator?
There have been so many! I once worked in a victorian style venue in the UK so the couples requested everybody, guests and staff alike, to dress in costume. I had to don Victorian dress complete with bustle for the day! At another wedding, a groom surprised his bride by arriving via helicopter!
Do you have a favourite wedding memory?
It would have to be my own wedding. My husband, Jonas is Dutch, we were hoping to get married in Amsterdam but we ended up in Winchester. It turned out to be a very intimate wedding of just 20 guests but it was just perfect.
What attracts you to this role?
Meeting different people and guiding them through what can be an overwhelming process of wedding planning and seeing it come to life on the day. I have to say, with a small ceremony room you really feel the love in the air, its really quite special.
What is your top wedding tip?
Don't be influenced by family members, do what suits you as a couple. That's what its all about after all!
How have weddings changed in the last 5 years?
Perhaps in the budget, while the amount has remained the same, couples seem far more conscious or aware of how it is allocated, despite traditions.
Do you work with planners or directly with the couples?
In the last year I have only worked with 1 planner so more so directly with couples. With us being an intimate venue, we can afford to zoom into the detail that other bigger venues cannot so there is less need for a planner.
When do you start to feel relaxed on the day of a wedding?
To be honest I've been coordinating weddings & events for 13 years now, so I'm very organised and I rarely get stressed. Once the venue is ready, I light the candles, open the door and get ready to welcome the guests.
What one thing can couples do to make their day less stressful?
Keep it simple! Don't overthink everything and concentrate on each other.
As soon as I entered No25, I was completely enamoured by the high period ceilings and original flooring that lines the hallway. The house's elegant beauty continues throughout, from the marbled fireplaces, to the feature wall panelling and exquisite chandeliers. Each room has been renovated with a great appreciation for history as well as a sophisticated eye for design. Even with it's high period ceilings, the house does not compromise on that warm, homely feel you desire when hiring an exclusive wedding venue. I fully recommend couples with a penchant for fine food and design to view this venue when planning their stylish, intimate wedding. Don't be surprised if you see a familiar face either, TV show The Restaurant's John Healy is No25's & Suesey Street’s charismatic Maitre D!
Thank you so much to Denise and her team for their warm welcome and allowing us to keep up with them at No25! If you would like to discuss your wedding or event with Denise, please find her contact details below.
Sales & Events Manager | No. 25 Fitzwilliam Place
T: +353 (1) 669 4646 No. 25 Fitzwilliam Place, Dublin 2, Ireland Email: Denise@25fitzwilliamplace.ie Website: 25fitzwilliamplace.ie