by Rebecca Druckenmiller

As a bride, choosing a venue was a difficult decision for me but then I started thinking more like the wedding consultant that I am and things really fell into place. 

 Now, what do I mean by this? Well I have been privileged to work in some amazing venues in this city and I’ve also worked with the most incredible venue managers. 

As a bride, there were literally dozens of places that I wanted to get married in. 

My fiancé was probably going crazy with me saying, “well there’s this place that has this incredible staircase and area for ceremony and this venue that has the most amazing architecture and this venue has the most incredible food”. 

 I realized though that I needed to focus and do what we tell our brides to do all the time, nail down a basic guest list number and figure out your budget.  Just by doing this you will know how much per person you have to work with, whether you can afford a site fee, and how much space you will need for your event. 

With my guest list (approximately 150) and my budget (I took my total budget and chopped it in half then divided that by my guest list number to give a price per person)

 I was able to narrow my incredibly long list down to some top contenders. 

 I also tried to think of what type of event I wanted to throw.  Many brides like the big ballroom look, while others are going for a more modern feel.  Still others want a unique space to transform or a historic location to explore.  By thinking about what look and feel we wanted for our event and also thinking about who we are as a couple I was able (okay WE were able) to choose the most amazing venue for our wedding. 

 (photo by Faith West)

 The Knowlton Mansion was the summer residence for William Rhawn, president of a successful bank in Philadelphia in 1879.  Located in the Fox Chase section of Northeast Philadelphia, this three-story home features incredible Victorian architecture with richly colored stained glass windows, geometric patterned woodwork, brass chandeliers and hardwood floors.   (info from  Today, this restored mansion serves as one of Philadelphia’s incredible event venues and is the location of my wedding! 

The reason I chose Knowlton had a lot to do with the look and feel I was going for with my wedding.

Not only was the space a good size for our guest count but also the price was right where we needed it to be and with Conroy Catering I knew I was in good hands with the meal selections.  The space also really lends itself to a warm, cozy winter wedding reception.  I want my guests to walk into the mansion from the cold winter air to a warmly lit space decorated with candlelight to give it that intimate and cozy feeling. 

I want them to feel like we’re inviting them into our home for the evening to enjoy an incredible meal and celebration with all of our closest friends and family. 

Dan and I also really love this city, Dan grew up here and I’ve been living here since college.  I have a lot of family in Allentown so I love that we’ll be bringing them down to this historic location in the city that we love so much.  Another necessity for me was to be able to do my ceremony on site as we are going to be doing a blended ceremony (Jewish, Christian-more on that later). 

 (ceremony location photo by Laura Novak)

Kelly Devlin with Conroy Catering has been absolutely fantastic to work with already.  She’s so responsive to any of my questions and very accommodating when we want to show the space to our family (my mother lives in Georgia so I’ll be bringing her over to take a look at the Mansion). 

 I’m so excited to get married here and I know my guests are going to love the place. 

Next up…Photography!