The Berkshires: A Bucolic and Beautiful Wedding Destination

By Stacey Marcus

Published January 21, 2016, issue of January 21, 2016.

The hills are alive with the sound of wedding music in the Berkshires. We asked area experts to share why the area is the perfect place to tie the knot.

“The Berkshires, long known as a bucolic destination filled with world class culture, is also the perfect spot for a destination wedding,” said Lindsey Schmid, Director of Marketing at Berkshire Visitors Bureau.

“Not only will you find memorable wedding facilities that will inspire such as rustic barns, gilded age mansions or lush hilltops, but you will find exceptional wedding services from caterers, photographers, florists and more. Aside for the nuptials themselves, a wedding in the Berkshires allows your guests an inspired vacation full of culture and access to the great outdoors.

Memories are created here that are not soon forgotten. So as you start you wedding planning, you need look no further than the Berkshires!”

Here are some magical spots to host a wedding in the Berkshires:

Norman Rockwell Museum

Norman Rockwell Museum
Walt Engels, courtesy of the Berkshire Visitors Bureau
Norman Rockwell Museum

“Norman Rockwell Museum is a truly special place for weddings,” said Lisa Lewis, Director of Membership and Events. “From spectacular vistas of the Berkshire Hills, to a private viewing of the world’s most significant collection of original Rockwell art, the museum offers a perfect blend of warmth, culture, and history.”

The museum was founded in 1969 in Stockbridge, where Rockwell lived the last 25 years of his life. In addition to 574 original works of art by Rockwell, the museum also houses the Norman Rockwell Archives, a collection of over 100,000 various items, which include photographs, fan mail, and various business documents.

Cranwell Spa and Golf Resort

Cranwell Spa and Golf Resort
Tricia McCormack, courtesy of the Berkshire Visitors Bureau
Cranwell Spa and Golf Resort

“No matter what the season, weddings are special weekend affairs at Cranwell Spa and Golf Resort,” said Norma Probst, Director of Sales and Marketing.

“Couples can have their wedding toast on the Rose Terrace, offering a 60-mile view of the surrounding hills and feast at a wedding banquet for up to 200 in the historic 3,000 square-foot renovated ballroom featuring 16 foot high windows and panoramic views. To begin the festivities, the Meadow View dining room terrace overlooks surrounding trees, providing the perfect setting for rehearsal dinners and the Mansion dining rooms offer bright settings ideal for a sumptuous departing brunch. The resort also offers the finest spa amenities and an historic golf course rounding out a weekend that wedding guests will be sure to remember.”

MASS MoCA

A wedding space at Mass MoCA
Courtesy of the Berkshire Visitors Bureau
A wedding space at Mass MoCA

“Say ‘I do’ beneath our upside down trees, or raise a glass among the best art of our time,” said Jodi Joseph Director of Communications, MASS MoCA (Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art). “From our renovated, 18th century museum lobby cum-reception space, to walking down an aisle framed by Sol LeWitt wall drawings, MASS MoCA’s spaces for weddings – almost limitless in capacity or fantastically intimate – are truly jaw dropping.

Hilltop Orchards, home of Furnace Brook Winery

Hilltop Orchards
Courtesy of the Berkshire Visitors Bureau
Hilltop Orchards

According to winemaker John Vittori, owner of Hilltop Orchards, home of Furnace Brook Winery, “Couples are looking for a unique authentic one-of-a-kind setting that truly embodies natural beauty. We offer a rustic rural venue in an unpretentious sustainable agricultural setting. We have some of the best views in the Berkshire’s overlooking the orchards and the Berkshire Hills!”

Isabella Freedman Retreat Center

Isabella Freedman Retreat Center
Courtesy of hazon.org
Isabella Freedman Retreat Center

Looking for a gorgeous setting in a sustainable community? Consider the Isabella Freedman Retreat Center, where you will find farm-fresh food, a lovely lake and lush green mountains. Along with a beautiful setting, you will find comfortable accommodations, delectable food, myriad activities, and a warm and wonderful staff.

Main Street Hospitality Collection

Couples looking for a variety of venue options should check out Main Street Hospitality Group, which owns and operates properties that have a strong sense of place and express a unique and personal approach to hospitality. “Our hotels are distinct, authentic destinations. We are connected to their communities and offer comfort, fun, individuality and style in a meaningful way. Our properties are architecturally significant, while remaining in harmony with their surroundings,” said Brian Butterworth, Vice President of Sales.

He notes four properties:

The Red Lion Inn, at 125 rooms, three restaurants, nightly music and full catering facilities, is perfect for large rehearsal dinners, small receptions, brunches and overnight accommodations. In operation in the same location since 1773, couples can feel they are a part of history.

Hotel on North, at 45 rooms, is also a good match for similar gatherings. Hotel on North is a brand new hotel that can offer some cache for couples about to get married. It has been featured by Architectural Digest as a top new hotel in the United States as well as in Design New England Magazine.

The Porches Inn at MASS MoCA is a 45 room boutique inn and does not feature food and beverage facilities, utilizing caterers to provide these services (although they do provide breakfast). It is a great spot for small gatherings with some interesting amenities like a bonfire pit and a gazebo and deck perched on a hill overlooking the Inn that can host small ceremonies.

The Williams Inn “On the Green” in Williamstown is a 125 room hotel in a great location that provides great value. It can also host larger functions than the other properties.

Learn more at berkshires.org.



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