A Guide to Planning Your Wedding at the Boston Public Library

Your wedding day is a momentous occasion, and a celebration of love. Imagine exchanging vows surrounded by shelves of books that have stood witness to countless tales of love and adventure! The Boston Public Library stands as a timeless testament to culture. This venue offers a remarkable setting for a wedding filled in sophistication and charm. In this blog, I share the common questions asked when inquiring to consider a wedding at the Boston Public Library!

Embracing Historical Grandeur at the Boston Public Library: Choosing a Venue Space

When considering a wedding at the Boston Public Library, one is met with a wealth of enchanting venue options, each offering its unique charm and ambiance. All wedding rehearsals can be scheduled during public open hours and are coordinated with The Catered Affair.

Bates Hall

As an illustration to the grandeur of the Boston Public Library, Bates Hall stands out, with its majestic ceilings, rows of antique lamps, and an atmosphere steeped in history— ideal for a ceremonious exchange of vows amidst literary brilliance. This space offers seating for up to 220 wedding guests. And lastly, for an additional fee, the original chairs can be removed to accommodate up to 330 guests with rental wedding chairs.

Abbey Room

The Abbey Room offers an elegant setting for an intimate affair, adorned with intricate woodwork and stained glass windows, exuding an old-world charm ideal for smaller gatherings. You can book this venue space with a maximum of 250 guests, with seating available for 100 wedding guests. Additionally, it features a dance floor that can accommodate up to 70 guests!

The Guastavino Room

This space stands as a remarkable gem, offering a captivating venue for a wedding celebration. All in all, this elegant space exudes sophistication with its striking architecture featuring graceful arches, intricate tile work, and a ceiling adorned with delicate detailing. The room’s warm ambiance, complemented by soft lighting, creates an intimate and inviting atmosphere ideal for exchanging vows or hosting a memorable reception. Above all, with its timeless charm and classical beauty, the Guastavino Room at the Boston Public Library presents an enchanting setting, weaving together the essence of history and romance for an unforgettable wedding experience. Note, this space is much larger than the Abbey Room as it can accommodate 240 wedding guests and has a seated capacity of 180 guests. 

Additionally, this space can be rented for a 1 hour wedding ceremony option. These ceremonies can be booked within a 90 day notice, and must be within a 14 day window of the event. With this option, you can include up to 12 guests (not including your photographer!). However, photos are only permitted within the Guastavino Room and exterior of McKim Building & Copley Square. Another key point: Photo access is not permitted within the building (including outdoor Courtyard).

The Courtyard

With its serene outdoor space enveloped by classical architecture, the courtyard offers a picturesque setting for an al fresco ceremony or cocktail reception. This space must be rented in conjunction with another space and is only available after the Boston Public Library has closed to the public. The maximum capacity for this space is 225 guests and only 200 guests for the wedding ceremony.

The Johnson Building

The recently refurbished Johnson Building, adjacent to the Boston Public Library, offers a spectacular event venue. Because of its captivating design, it boasts custom floor-to-ceiling windows and expansive open space, providing an ideal backdrop characterized by sharp, vibrant lines and a fresh, modern aesthetic. The rental fee for this hall depends on the date and services needed.

Lastly, just a head’s pp! Boston Public Library’s policy requires you to hold both your ceremony and reception there when booking. However, if the ceremony is held somewhere else, the library can still be reserved for a wedding reception!

Booking and Planning Your Wedding: What You Need to Know

Secure your desired date well in advance, considering the popularity of the venue. Collaborate closely with the library’s event team to understand guidelines, space limitations, and any restrictions. Additionally, professional planners experienced in managing events at historical venues can be invaluable in ensuring a seamless experience.

Coordinate transportation and nearby accommodations for your guests. The library’s central location in Boston offers numerous hotel options and easy accessibility!

Interested in Catering for Your Boston Public Library Wedding? 

The Boston Public Library takes pride in partnering exclusively with The Catered Affair, a seasoned provider of exquisite food and beverages for their wedding venue for more than ten years. Because of being renowned for their top-tier quality, The Catered Affair consistently delivers exceptional service to guests and vendors alike, setting an unparalleled standard in the industry.

Frequently Asked Questions about Boston Public Library Weddings

  • How Much is a Wedding at the Boston Public Library? 
    • The anticipated expenses for site fees at the Boston Public Library typically span between $8,500 and $21,500. You can find more information 
  • What are the hours that the Boston Public Library is Open? 
    • The library is open to the public Monday-Thursday 10am-6pm, Friday and Saturday 10am-4pm, and closed on Sunday.
  • What are the times that I could host my wedding at the Boston Public Library?
    • Weddings at the Boston Public Library start at 6:30pm
  • How do I book my wedding at the Boston Public Library? 
    • To book your wedding at the Boston Public Library, you’ll want to email events@bpl.org or call 617.859.2212.

Crafting Your Love Story Amidst Literary Splendor at the Boston Public Library

Above all, planning a wedding at the Boston Public Library is an opportunity to weave your love story into the tapestry of cultural significance. To conclude, embrace the history of this iconic venue, creating an unforgettable experience that celebrates love, sophistication, and the enduring beauty of this historic landmark in Boston. 

Are you engaged or planning your wedding? I would love to capture these unforgettable moments for you! Contact me through my website. I can’t wait to hear from you!

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I'm Genevieve Photography, a wedding and elopement photographer from Boston, Massachusetts. I serve joyful, vibrant couples and specialize in timeless and classic photography.

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