Brookgreen and Sea View named top wedding spots in state

  • Thursday, June 19, 2014



Brookgreen Gardens and the Sea View Inn are among a usatoday.com list recognizing 10 of South Carolina’s most beloved coastal wedding spots.

The list is composed of destinations both on and off the sand featuring unique aspects that will create a memorable wedding day.

Beach-minded couples looking for gorgeous weather, wide beaches, picturesque settings and fantastic food are flocking to South Carolina to tie the knot.

Brookgreen Gardens offers an impressive variety of locations for any altar-bound couple.

Brides looking for spectacular foliage and surroundings rich in history are sure to be impressed with the majestic beauty that Brookgreen has to offer.

The horticulture staff and volunteers plant 60,000 caladiums in the Live Oak Allée Garden that bloom in abundance from early summer through the late fall.

The garden is comprised of 300-year-old live oak trees, which provide a backdrop that is sure to please any fairy tale bride and groom.

How much does it cost to rent the facilities for a wedding at Brookgreen?

According to Helen Benso, vice president of marketing at Brookgreen, the site rental fee, including a one-year membership, ranges from $1,500 to $7,500 and depends upon the anticipated number of guests, the section of the gardens chosen, and date selected.

Kym Bailey, manager of private events for Brookgreen noted that the gardens can handle from two to 600 guests comfortably. She also mentioned that Brookgreen has 31 weddings on the calendar for 2014.

Benso noted that the number of weddings held at Brookgreen varies from year to year, but averages about 20.

Brides looking to step back in time and get a little sand between their toes are turning to the charming, laid-back atmosphere of the Sea View Inn on Pawleys Island.

A barefoot paradise, the Sea View Inn has been welcoming guests to its tranquil setting since 1937.

Rob Henry, assistant manager at the inn, was not surprised the Sea View Inn had made the usatoday.com list.

“This is a special place, and people that come here as children to vacation are coming back here for their weddings,” Henry said. “The atmosphere at the Sea View is very unique.”

Henry understands the “return theory.”

After majoring in business and hospitality at The College of Charleston, he returned home to work at the inn instead of taking a position at a larger hotel chain.

“I worked here in high school, and it was just a natural progression for me to come back here after college.”

The tantalizing, teasing scent coming from the kitchen may have been a hint as to why some brides choose the Sea View Inn for their wedding destination. “The food is a huge draw,” Henry noted.

Most brides book the entire inn for their wedding, and with that comes three meals a day from some of the finest cooks in the country.

The cost of a wedding at the Sea View inn is usually determined by the number of overnight guests who will be attending.

Room rates, which include all the sea breeze that one can take in and three meals a day, range from $155 to $275 per night.

Brides may also opt to reserve the inn for their rehearsal dinners, and receptions without the overnight option for their guests.

Couples looking to book summer nuptials will have to look elsewhere, because the Sea View Inn does not disrupt the reservation list of their loyal patrons, many of whom consider themselves family, and some who have been coming to the inn for 30 years on the same week each summer.

“I’m just not sure that we would ever make an exception for a summer wedding,” Henry said. “I don’t think we would even do it for a celebrity.”

Rounding out the usatoday.com top 10 list were: The Sanctuary at Kiawah, The Inn at Palmetto Bluff- Montage Resort, Lowndes Grove, Boone Hall Plantation, Wild Dunes, Charleston Harbor Resort, Seabrook Island, and Sea Pines at Hilton Head.

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