The charm and history of Nicollet Island Pavilion are sure to blow you away! From the exposed brick to the waterfront views, the If you have a large guest count, this waterfront Minneapolis wedding venue has got you covered. We wanted to give you all the insider details of the space, so we interviewed Alana Koderick from Mintahoe, who manages the venue. Let’s dive in!
How old is your building, what is its history and when did you start doing events?
The building itself is 130 years old. It originally was built as a Williams Brothers Boiler Works in 1893 and has lived on with its rich and historical character. In 1976, the venue was acquired by the Minneapolis Park Board where it was restored to the beautiful venue, we all see and love today.
What do you think the best feature of your venue is?
It’s so tough to specifically pinpoint what our “best feature” would be when Nicollet Island Pavilion has so many amazing features! Our top three favorite “best features” of this venue would have to be the location, the indoor to outdoor accessible space, and of course the incredible view of the city, the skyline, and the Mississippi River.
What do you think is the biggest challenge of working in your space, and what are some best practices for it?
When it comes to weddings, due to the Historic nature of this venue we do not have an official bridal suite. We do have a cozy room tucked away for brides and their party to sneak away if they need some privacy, and though it’s unique, its accommodations are not as standard as most bridal suites. We overcome that challenge by offering our brides/wedded couples and their wedding parties the option of getting ready across the street within walking distance where they’ll have access to aesthetically pleasing bridal suites filled with accommodations to fit their needs.
What do you think is the perfect number of guests for your venue, assuming everyone will be sitting at a table at one time? What is the benefit of having this number of guests?
In our opinion, a comfortable guest count for a wedding in this spacious venue would have to be 250 guests. Although this venue has the capacity of holding much more due to the indoor/outdoor accessibility, 250 is a great guest count for their dinner service without it getting too crowded. This also gives the guests options to have designated space for playing games, making fun memories at the photo booth, and/or any other kind of setup that’s unique to the wedded couple. That being said, we have had great parties for 700+ at the venue!
What is the most interesting thing someone has done at a wedding at your venue?
Each wedding has its own unique style and we’re so lucky to be a part of each special day that comes our way. A particular moment that stands out to a lot of us would have to be when we hosted a beautiful Indian wedding that honored the tradition of Baraat at the ceremony. In this traditional wedding procession, the groom ceremoniously rode an elephant down blocks of the streets to the ceremony surrounded by their family and friends. It was truly a beautiful and amazing tradition to behold. It’s special moments like those that make our jobs such a blessing!
Do you require a professional planner or day of coordinator at your venue? Why or why not? If you don’t have one or have one that doesn’t do a good job, how does it affect you as a venue and the wedding as a whole?
We currently do not make that a requirement. We prefer to have that choice be made by the wedding couple whether to have a Day of Coordinator/Professional Planner. If the bride and groom choose to hire a Day of Coordinator/Professional Planner it would be more of a hands-on experience for the whole duration of the night. If the couple chooses to go without a Day of Coordinator/Professional Planner, then it would be a hands-on experience with one of our staff managers/leaders to onlook everything, making sure everything would go smoothly until that staff manager would trust that everything will continue to go smoothly for the duration of the night. Leaving them to enjoy the entirety of the night while in good hands. Both options can work depending on the couple’s needs and requirements. Either way, we all have the same goal: to make this the best day they could have ever imagined.
Thank you to Alana for taking the time to do this interview and provide an inside look at a wedding day at Nicollet Island Pavilion! If you are getting married at this venue and still need a planner, we would love to chat. Check out our services or send us a message to get started!