Another year, another award! Opal28 was given an Oregon Bride Award for Best Intimate Venue in Portland again this year. If you've ever visited this small and cute nook near East Burnside Street, you will agree that the award was appropriate and well deserved. The team is hard working, fast responding, and clearly love the environment they've created for themselves and their clients. It's truly special to witness people doing what they love with a full heart and open mind. The ladies at Opal28 are just that.
Because I love this venue so much, and know the team is an infinite source of knowledge, I decided to ask them some questions we've all been wanting to ask the venue owners, but aren't sure how to. The hard work is over, my friends, and Margot and Kristi provided. Dive in below with our quick Q&A, and if you have any unanswered questions or are dying to know more, comment below and I'll do my best to find your answers.
What is a value you hold that you believe to be the most important part about choosing a venue?
MARGOT: Choosing your venue sets the tone for your special day - we value the connection we make with the bride and groom to not just be the location but the memorable setting for your best day ever!
KRISTI: Taking a tour is so important. When you find the right venue for you & your fiancé, its often instant! You have to imagine your friends & family in the space. The venue is the backdrop for your wedding, so makes sure it has a look you are excited about. Perusing all of the venue photos really help to sift through what speaks to you.
When you meet brides for the first time, what are some of their most asked questions?
There are usually questions about the timeline & flow of the space. We commonly flip rooms & utilize our outdoor patio. The general "flow" of the event is what we spend the most time explaining to couples (ceremony here, cocktail hour there, dancing here....etc). Many couples come in with the "standard" list of questions (probably found on The Knot or Wedding Wire) so we get a lot of payment schedule, or liquor license and insurance specifics. Once you LOVE the space & are in the contract phase is where these are pertinent.
On the flip side, what questions are you asking the couple for the first time?
"What is your guest count?" (and know that 20-30% of your invited list won't attend). This is the most important question for Opal 28 because our space is so unique the number of attendees really determines the style & flow of the wedding and how the space is best utilized.
What sets Opal28 apart from other venues in Portland? We all know you're an Oregon Bride Award holder, so what brought you to that point?
MARGOT - Our urban location, vintage meets modern styling and our attention to details sets us apart. We can be as full service as our clients want which provides a lot of options to use our services or outside vendors. Portland is so vibrant with talent!
KRISTI: We try to make everything as easy as possible. We don't like the idea of tacking on a bunch of extra charges like a cake cutting fee or room flip fee. With the venue rental, you have access to anything we have on site (chairs, platters, forks, knives, napkins, linens). Also, we do not have a preferred catering list, we want our clients to utilize the vendors they love!
Do you have any future plans or dreams for the venue you can share with us?
MARGOT - We are considering making the outdoor patio space more winter friendly - with the Oregon rain we want to be able to provide a comfortable indoor - outdoor space that captures the beauty of all our NW seasons.
KRISTI: I am always on the look out for additional decor items or serving ware items that are inline with our style!
If you could give couples only one piece of advice for their wedding, what would it be?
MARGOT - When planning for the number of ceremony chairs be sure to exclude any people standing at the alter with you - this eliminates empty seats during the ceremony and before the ceremony begins, delegate someone to escort people to any open seats close to the front. Also, if at any point the planning becomes frustrating drop the binder and go do something fun with your fiancé!
KRISTI: Your wedding day is one of the only days in your life when all of your friends & family are in one place. On the day of, don't forget to take a moment to look around and soak in all the love - the day goes so fast!