Experience the romance and beauty of Manchester!
It’s that most wonderful time of the Year! The time of year when romance is in the air and happy couples are finding unique ways to pop the question – also known as engagement season!
Whether you’re looking for a special place to ask that once-in-a-lifetime question – or you’ve already asked and you’re planning your storybook day when you will say “I DO”, come to Manchester, Vermont, and experience the romance. Natural beauty, rich history, and our welcoming community are why Manchester has become a top destination for engagements, wedding celebrations, elopements, and special events!
Spring is hopeful, Summer is lush, Fall’s colors are vivid, and there is something truly magical about winter. The snowcapped mountains glisten in the morning, and the snowflakes shimmer in the sunlight, providing an unforgettable backdrop for any special occasion. Love is truly in the air all throughout the year in Southern Vermont!
You might not know that Vermont was the first state to pass same-sex civil unions into law on April 26th, 2000. Three months later, the first same-sex couple in the US joined together, right here in Southern Vermont! We led the way then and continue that tradition by celebrating the marriage of all couples, from all walks of life, today.
The best part of hosting your special event here is the setting, of course! Our community boasts some of the country’s most unique venues from boutique hotels to turn-of-the-century mansions to classic barns. And at your fingertips, some of the most talented wedding professionals. From planners to floral designers, bakers and caterers to photographers and musicians… we’ve got the best of the best to help make your special celebration relaxing and memorable.
Whether you are looking for an intimate getaway for two, a small dinner party, a large lavish destination wedding, or a themed event, Manchester, VT has you covered.
To learn more about our various one-of-a-kind venues and find help in planning your special day, keep reading and click through their directories to learn more!
Southern Vermont Arts Center (SVAC). Let SVAC turn your special event into a work of art in one of its three unique spaces. The historic Yester House mansion (built in 1917 and listed on the National Register of Historic Places) is home to 12 galleries filled with original art, a bridal suite, a 68-seat glass-enclosed restaurant, outdoor patio seating, and grand vistas of the Taconic Mountain range. The Wilson Museum gives any event a modern vibe with its wide lobby, dramatic central staircase, vaulted gallery ceilings, and contemporary art exhibitions. The Arkell Pavilion is a 400-seat performing arts pavilion with a state-of-the-art light and sound system, large stage, and glass-enclosed atrium with bar facilities. The SVAC’s main campus sits atop 100 acres of pristine land and the state’s largest sculpture park. Exclusive catering by Church Street Hospitality means that the menus and beverages showcase Vermont’s abundance of local products and celebrate local farms and producers.
Hildene, the Lincoln Family Home, located in historic Manchester Village, offers a historic and majestic backdrop for your dream event. You and your guests will have an authentic Vermont experience, which begins with you walking through The Lincoln Family Home to your wedding ceremony, in their historic formal garden. Look out to the Taconic Mountains to the west and the Green Mountains to the east, with stunning views of rolling fields and the famed Battenkill River Valley 300 feet below. Your guests will be treated to beautifully prepared fresh local food, exclusively catered by Pangaea Restaurant. Some ingredients may have been grown at Hildene Farm. Something old and something new is a wedding tradition at Hildene.
Kimpton Taconic Hotel is inspired by New England’s grand inns of the 19th & 20th Centuries. This stunning location features 86 accommodations complemented by warm and welcoming indoor and outdoor spaces designed for gatherings. The Taconic features flexible event space with an indoor ballroom, outdoor covered terrace, and event lawn! The hotel takes pride in delivering restaurant-quality cuisine for its catered events, no matter how intimate or grand. Elevated bar offerings compliment farm-to-fork cuisine, incorporating classic cocktails, artisanal spirits, and a wide selection of Vermont craft beers.
Equinox Golf Resort and Spa. Whatever your special celebration vision is, Equinox can bring it to life. Nestled in the idyllic Green Mountains, The Equinox provides a stunning backdrop for your dream wedding and the perfect balance between historic charm and modern amenities. Whether you’re hosting a lavish banquet for 200 or an intimate gathering for your nearest and dearest, their team will ensure that it exceeds your expectations. Their team of wedding experts will meet your every need with grace and professionalism, always focused on helping you make memories, not to-do lists. The Equinox Resort, where dreams do come true.
The Wilburton Destination Resort is an elegant historic estate in Manchester Village with a 1902 mansion, rolling lawns, gardens and fabulous views – the perfect location for a destination country wedding. The Wilburton can accommodate 225 guests for a wedding reception and up to 130 overnight guests on its 30-acre hilltop and nearby mansions. There is room to roam, surrounded by thrilling mountain views and art to inspire your creativity. The resort will help you plan a full weekend of activities for your family and friends to enjoy together, including rehearsal dinner, bonfire, brunch, farm tours and hikes. Enjoy the sparkling pool, tennis, and lawn games – right on property!
The Old Gray Barn, tucked into a hillside overlooking the pristine meadows of the Mettowee Valley, has the ideal Vermont rustic charm. It is located just 3 miles from the Dorset Village Green and 9 miles from the town center of Manchester. It is a truly special place in an area of natural beauty, fit for the most luxurious or relaxed of celebrations. The 2-story barn features exposed rough-hewn beams and rustic light fixtures, a viewing balcony perfect for cocktail hours and after-dinner lounging, a bride’s room, large sliding barn doors that open to a wood deck, and various lawn spaces ideal for extending the celebration outdoors. The picture perfect backdrop ensures that you can transform The Old Gray Barn into the wedding you’ve always dreamed of having.
WHERE TO STAY
From luxury resorts, boutique hotels, B&B’s and quaint inns – to modern motels, Manchester, VT has many unique lodging options for you and your guests.
Hampton Inn and Suites is centrally located in downtown Manchester. Reminiscent of a historic New England farmhouse, this uniquely designed hotel embodies tradition with modern sensibilities. Outdoor seating areas with a fire pit and lush landscaping will make you feel right at home.
Built in the 1880s as a private residence, the Inn at Manchester and the four beautiful acres it resides on, provides visitors with in-town convenience in a lush, country atmosphere. Twenty-one thoughtfully appointed guest rooms, including twelve suites, span three floors of the Main House, Carriage House, and Celebration Barn.
Tucked away in the heart of Green Mountain National Forest is the Palmer House Resort, Ascend Hotel Collection, a boutique hotel in Manchester Center, VT. Enjoy year-round activities on the lush, 16-acre manicured grounds. The Palmer House Resort, Ascend Hotel Collection provides you with all you need to create lasting memories and a new home-away-from-home.
To check out a complete list of area options check out the “Where to STAY” tab on manchestervermont.com.
REHEARSAL DINNERS/ WELCOME RECEPTIONS/ FAREWELL BRUNCHES
Many of the above venues are wonderful options for any and/or all of your ancillary events, but if you are looking to experience even more of Manchester, VT, the options are endless. Many local restaurants provide the perfect settings to host your rehearsal dinners, welcome receptions, or farewell brunches.
The Raven’s Den Steakhouse and Taproom caters to a variety of tastes; from a tender and juicy Black Angus steak, to a classic seafood dish, to a plate from the salad bar stocked with seasonal produce, handcrafted dressings, Vermont cheeses, and freshly baked bread. Visitors can enjoy an upscale meal in the dining room, a custom cocktail in front of the stone fireplace, or a grass-fed burger in the tavern.
Union Underground is a cozy GastroPub with Vermont vibes in a rustic, industrial atmosphere – all underground in the heart of Manchester Center. Known for its great food and drinks, as well as frequent live music and events, Union Underground is a great place to relax and grab a bite. Savor fresh cuisine with ingredients provided by local farms, and a variety of drafts on tap from breweries around the area. A unique experience not to miss!
Be sure to stop into the Dorset Bakery for a little taste of Vermont. They offer American baked goods, Provincial-style decor, and a warm, inviting atmosphere. Their bakery features hand-made crusty loaves of bread, morning pastries, unique sandwiches, healthy salads, tasty soups, decadent sweets, and more… all made from scratch using fresh, local ingredients.
To check out a complete list of area options check out the “What to TASTE” tab on manchestervermont.com
Need help keeping yourselves and your guests busy in between planned events? Manchester, VT is a destination that offers a wide variety of must-do activities and adventures! Experience world-class shopping at many of our designer outlets or local boutiques. Tour year-round historical sites – like Hildene, the Lincoln Family Home, or experience arts and culture at places like the Southern Vermont Arts Center or the Dorset Theatre Festival. Stroll downtown and stop in at one of our unique artisan galleries, like Tilting at Windmills Gallery, Helmholz Art Gallery, or Epoch Artisan Gallery.
Of course, being in Vermont would not be complete without experiencing the great outdoors. Nestled in between the Taconic and Green Mountains, Manchester, VT is a four-season outdoor recreation mecca. No matter the season, unique outdoor adventure awaits you and your guests.
Check out our Experience tab to learn more.