Photo: Bella Charleston/Ashley Cox
As anyone who’s seen The Notebook knows, when it comes to finding the perfect wedding venue, Charleston South Carolina is it.
Honestly, you could get away with getting hitched anywhere in this stunning city. Its 19th century architecture and cobbled streets are all “I do”-worthy.
To narrow it down a little, we’ve sourced nine of the best.
We cover a variety of Charleston rentals — from national historic landmarks to fresh sun-drenched spaces in the heart of downtown Charleston.
Our selection of event spaces features all sorts of aesthetics and eras. So let’s get started finding the perfect location for the wedding ceremony of your dreams!
1. The William Aiken House
Transport your guests to another time.
This sprawling 1807 property features:
Its museum worthy art, elegant furnishings, and ornate drapes framing tall windows add a stately refinement to the overall experience.
Groomsmen can help each other with their ties as they mingle pre-ceremony in the gentleman's study.
Meanwhile, you and your attendants have the drawing room or one of the two guest rooms as a bridal suite.
We love this property because it can accommodate quite a few (500 guest capacity) while still providing privacy and an intimate feel.
2. The Gadsden House
Those who can’t choose between historical, minimalist, and modern will love the Gadsden House: it has all three!
Located on King Street in the heart of downtown Charleston, this space has floor to ceiling windows, neutral walls, stately fireplaces and ornate chandeliers. All of it tastefully adds an unassuming air of grandeur with none of the fuss.
The multi-story house contains:
We love the way white roses pop when displayed in abundance against the red brick wall that surrounds the courtyard.
The outdoor space accommodates 180 guests, and the indoor venue comfortably hosts 80.
3. Patriots Point
Taking “waterfront venue” literally … consider tying the knot nautically on the USS Yorktown.
The flight deck of the WW2 US Navy aircraft carrier overlooks the Charleston Harbor and skyline. The hangar bays are sheltered while still providing views.
For a more intimate wedding, the fantail provides a more personal setting – though privacy isn’t always guaranteed as dolphins are known to appear!
We love this spot because the stark utilitarian and slightly industrial feel is easily softened, warmed up, and made inviting with strategically placed flowing silks, tea lights, and fresh cut flowers.
It’s the perfect spot for people who like a little edge with their romance.
4. The Historic Rice Mill
Those who dream of a waterfront view but with firm ground beneath their feet will love the Historic Rice Mill.
This event venue features:
We love it for the windows galore, unobstructed views, and of course the classic elements just waiting to be adorned with the finishing touches of your special day.
Photo: Bella Charleston/Abby Murphy Stewart
5. American Theater
Opened in 1942 as a movie house, the American Theater has over 8,000 square feet of event space that showcases art deco at its finest.
With these highlights, it’s the perfect way to incorporate some old Hollywood glamor into your big day:
Treat your guests to a private screening (who doesn’t get a kick out of old home movies?) before moving into the ballroom and dancing the night away, under handmade milk-glass chandeliers.
We love this venue because it’s such a unique spot for special events, and you and your soon-to-be will be stars of the show!
This location is romantically enchanting, a seamless blend of the best of outdoors and indoors. Located on the Ashley river, guests will be wowed upon arrival as they head down the path, past mature oak trees dripping in Spanish moss. The crumbling structure was built in the 1700s, but it’s by no means the oldest thing on-site.
At the center of the property is a massive tree, one of the oldest live oaks, estimated to be thousands of years old. Beyond the tree lies views of the Ashley river.
This property can accommodate large groups, and the parking lot is big enough for 250 vehicles.
We love how captivating and alluring this space is, both ethereal and charming. There’s something magical about dressing up a space that has been somewhat reclaimed by the elements, and is now almost sculpture-like in nature.
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7. Magnolia Plantation Weddings
Built in 1676, this pristine space features immaculate tended gardens and a choice of venues — a wedding planner's dream.
The carriage house — an indoor-outdoor space — is rich in rustic elegance, weathered wood, soft silks, and chandeliers.
The veranda and stretch of bright green lawn has country club vibes; a stately elegance. While the tropical conservatory, an indoor-outdoor space, is perfect for more intimate gatherings.
Set underneath ancient oak trees, the live oak pavilion can be draped in flowers or silks.
Host your rehearsal dinner in one spot, and say your vows in another.
We love the variety of this centuries-old location, and how each of the spaces have their own unique charm.
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8. The Cedar Room
Located at the historic Cigar Factory, the Cedar Room is open, airy, and bright.
Its impressive brick façade, colossal floor-to-ceiling windows, and historic wood columns with chipped white paint add artfully rustic touches. This, combined with smooth wood floors and polished glass light fixtures, explodes with life after a touch of greenery is added.
The courtyard can seat 200, and the Cedar Room capacity is 550 guests.
This venue provides an impressive base to which you can add your own personal touch.
Photo: Bella Charleston/Sean Money + Elizabeth Fay
9. Gibbes Museum of Art
Located at the center of the Historic District, this art museum contains a classical garden that can be rented for weddings.
Say “I do” under a Tiffany-style glass dome in the rotunda gallery. With soaring ceilings, the Gibbes Museum of Art is a stunning place (an art lover's dream) to get married.
It has a touch of whimsy, without skimping on elegance!
Whether you choose to get married in the heart of downtown Charleston or somewhere in the low country, Charleston wedding venues are by far the finest examples of Southern Hospitality. An added bonus no matter which venue you choose.
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