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Destination wedding NYC

On my recent trip to NYC, I made a stop and the newly renovated Marriage Bureau to explore an urban destination. New York is a wonderful place to get married – a short informal ceremony at the Marriage Bureau and a weekend in the Big Apple – what a treat for both you and your guests. By Catherine Lash

Shadeedha and Robert from Brooklyn
Shadeedha and Robert from Brooklyn

Today I am setting the scene for the particulars you can expect to get in the next week or so.  Check back for the logistics of getting married in NYC, or anywhere in New York, and my idea of the perfect wedding weekend in the Big Apple.

I arrived at the Marriage Bureau last Friday hoping to meet a few brides and grooms. Much to my surprise, because it is closed Saturday, Friday is the busiest day and the place is mad with couples.

Recently renovated for 12 million dollars, the bureau is a hotspot for couples who wish to avoid the trouble, cost or stress of large ceremonies. Designer Jamie Drake, (who’s star studded clientele includes Madonna) brought the space back to life by re-creating the original gold accents, marble columns and chandeliers. He also added touches like the ornate radiator covers and beautiful washrooms with full-length mirrors. A gift store inside the hall sells fresh flowers and fake diamond rings, to quickly replace forgotten bands, and a large mural of the New York City Hall is lit properly for photography. The three wedding chambers are somewhat stark but each has been completed with original art, on loan from the Brooklyn Museum, and ipod docks for the 90-second ceremonies.

Leslie and Victor from New York and New Jersey respectively said that the bureau appealed to them because “it was trouble free, pleasant and [had] a great community feeling.” They didn’t seem to mind the wait and were planning a large party with friends and family later in the year.

Leslie and Victor in front of the City Hall mural
Leslie and Victor in front of the City Hall mural
One of the 3 rooms where the ceremony is performed
One of the three ceremony rooms

Another couple, Shadeedha and Robert, were there because they had heard the NYC Marriage Bureau was much nicer than the one in Brooklyn.

Jason Post, deputy press secretary to Mayor Bloomberg, explained that the city invested $12 million into renovation the bureau because the mayor wanted to create a dignified, desireable place for New Yorkers and out-of-towners alike to get married.


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