Getting married in New York City

Hi everyone,

My fiance and I are planning our wedding in Ladies Pavilion, Central Park, New York City in April 2016.  Neither of us like fuss, so going away ourselves and having something intimate is perfect for us.   

We haven't been able to book it just yet as the April 2016 flights/hotel deals aren't available and we were going to book a deal with the Wedding included.

Anyone else getting married in NYC or has gotten married in NYC and any tips?

The current plan is to have the Wedding, then get our photos taken by a photographer, then maybe a horse drawn carriage around Central Park followed by champagne back at the hotel, change of clothes and out for dinner and to an event or a famous site. 

Any recommendations gratefully received  image


  • Alice1988Alice1988 Posts: 3

    Hi Tina,

    I'm getting married in September in Central Park (conservatory gardens) this year, we've only been planning it since the start of the year, with the help of a wedding planner. We found it hard to try to sort out the central park wedding permit as you have to sent a US equivalent of a postal order to them, I'd recommend a planner for the ceremony like we did, she sorted our ceremony, flowers, photographer etc, and we've planned the evening meal and everything else ourselves. I thought we could do it without any help, but I'm really glad we opted for a planner, especially one who specialises in Central Park weddings.


    Hope this helps!

  • Tina20Tina20 Posts: 14

    Hi, thanks so much for the reply.  Huge congratulations on your forthcoming wedding, not long to go now!

    We're now thinking of booking the hotel/flights through a holiday website, and booking the wedding separately, the people we've contacted about booking the wedding can arrange all the extras such as the photographer, bridal bouquet and button hole, personalised ceremony etc. I agree with you, I definitely don't think I could do it without some sort of help, I want everything to go as smoothly as possible. We're supposed to book this month, very excited, it's such a big step. 

    Are you having many going to your wedding? As it's just the two of us we just want something really simple. Haven't planned the evening activities yet, we're thinking dinner in a lovely restaurant, and then maybe going up the empire state building or to a show in Madison square gardens.  Can't wait!

  • Alice1988Alice1988 Posts: 3

    Thanks! Congratulations to you too image 

    We booked our flights and hotel after our date got secured, not sure if it's different ours being the Conservatory Gardens, but we couldn't get our wedding permit from Central Park until after 1st Jan this year, it might be worth checking that out. That's the thing you need a postal order for which I think is impossible to get unless you have a contact there, as they don't accept cash/cheques in the post.

    We have 18 guests, which I was surprised that many people said yes to be honest! Ours is pretty simple, I don't like a lot of fuss, we've decided after the ceremony to have a walk through the park and do a boat ride before our meal at a steak house.

    I think the Empire State building after is a great idea, especially for photos! 

  • Rachel159Rachel159 Posts: 1

    Hi. ????. I'm getting married 14th october 2015. We are doing it at ladies pavilion Central Park aswell. 

    Its just me me and my other half. No other guests. We have went with a package that includes everything horse and cart in Central Park , champagne, flowers, photographer everything you need. this is through a wedding planner if you would her details.

    i have also booked my hair and make up.????.

    looking for a good restarrant to have a meal in after ....but so many to choose from.



  • DrunnerDrunner Posts: 23

    We just got married in New York (4th June) and did it all ourselves.


    Happy to answer any questions or provide any tips image

  • jamborinajamborina Posts: 52

    That sounds like a perfect day.  If it wasn't for close family, I'd have loved to do the same.

  • Hi Drunner, did you get married in Central Park? If so, did you have any issue paying for your permit? x

  • ps: where did you have your wedding dinner? We get married in New York Nov 3rd 2016. Can't wait x

  • DrunnerDrunner Posts: 23

    Hiya, no we didn't get married in Central Park, we got married in Jefferson Market Garden. It was ours for the whole hour & was gorgeous.

    After much searching we eventually plumped for dinner at the Hyatt Andaz on 5th Avenue. We had a semi-private room and the food & service was spot on.

  • The Jefferson market garden looks fab! Do you mind me asking how much you were required to contribute? Your dinner venue looked fantastic too. I'll bet you had a gorgeous day. Thanks for your response x

  • DrunnerDrunner Posts: 23

    It wasn't cheap! Much, much more than a permit for Central Park. But we weighed up the cost of Jefferson & the fact the garden is closed to the public for the hour & it's entirely yours vs the openness of Central Park & that random people might be wandering by & watching.

    I know most people who got married in Central Park say they didn't notice onlookers but it wasn't something either of us was comfortable with. JMG was private.

    The rate depends on the day of the week you want it for.

    We also didn't go anywhere else for photographs. The garden was so gorgeous there was no need to go elsewhere! We also took that into consideration when weighing everything up.

  • Thanks Drunner. I emailed them but they don't offer ceremonies in November which is a shame, but Central Park will be lovely. Who was your officiant? I'm gathering names but i'm struggling with information re what to budget for one in NYC. Would you mind me asking what you might suggest round abouts what to budget? Thanks x

  • DrunnerDrunner Posts: 23

    No problem, happy to help! 

    Our officiant was Judie Guild and she was lovely, I would definitely recommend her.

    We paid $325 for Judie to be our officiant, and this is pretty much middle of the road as far as fees go...there are others who are cheaper (and a lot more are much more expensive!) but this was the kind of common figure we came across.

    There was another officiant we had looked at & I think she was about $250 (can check if you like). We liked the look of her but got a better feeling about Judie, who was lovely to deal with & very prompt at answering all my emails (of which there were a few!).

    She will help you with readings, structure of the ceremony etc. She also dealt with the marriage licence part - we got our licence in person at City Hall (which you must do) but she deals with the legal paperwork after the ceremony.

    We  went on honeymoon straight from New York to California and our marriage licence was waiting for us when we got home! She had actually filed it the day after the wedding, so she's very quick in sorting that out.

     Oh, and Central Park in November will be lovely (but cold). Crisp & autumnal - perfect!


  • Oh thank you! Nice to get an answer to that question. I've emailed a couple previously but no responses so I think i'll definitely check her out. We've been before the beginning of November and loved Central Park in the Autumn so that's why we chose it. Can't wait. Any other advice please send it my way or I might pick your brain as time goes by :) x

  • We got married in central park in May, did it all ourselves-it was so straight forward you don't need a planner.  Also the permit is really easy to get, you can pay with a card, don't need money order! Can give advice/recommendations if still needed?

  • Donna53Donna53 Posts: 12

    Hi there. I am getting married in New York on the 13th August. We decided on Times Square for the venue. We booked it via Virgin and we got a wedding planner for over there which has been a great help and she answers all questions plus guides you through the process. We have hired Vito Khan for our wedding photography and Sharon Becker for my hair and make-up. For the photography it costs $500 for 2 hours plus the photographs - from what I hear he takes a lot! We are also planning on taking the horse and carriage ride through central park and getting photos done Times Square, Brooklyn Bridge / NY skyline and of course pics of us in the horse and carriage ride. We are planning on heading to Benjamin's Steakhouse for a bite to eat and then head to one of the many rooftop bars NY has to offer!

  • Alison243Alison243 Posts: 2

    Hi guys! Congrats! 

    We eloped this year to NYC in May and we also chose ladies pavilion. We decided to do it all ourselves. I can't recommend my photographer and officiant enough. Or my hair and make up lady for that matter. I'm happy to share some photos and if you have any questions please ask away. Best thing we ever done! 

    Alison xx

  • Tina20Tina20 Posts: 14

    Hi everyone

    I loved reading all the posts! 

    I bought my wedding dress on Sunday in a sample sale, it's absolutely gorgeous, am very excited, makes it feel all the more real!  Roll on April 2016! 

    No one has ever mentioned a permit to me for Ladies Pavilion in Central Park?  Do I need one?  The money order of €35 for the marriage licence is included in any of the packages i've looked at. 

    It does work out cheaper to book hotel/flights and the wedding seperately, however as i'm from the UK I was concerned about paying in dollars over the internet for the wedding so thought it might be easier to book with a local travel agency and pay for the hotel/flights/wedding altogether in sterling, although it does work out at a few hundred pounds more for the convenience.  I figured if there were any hiccups, at least I'd have a shop to go in to to discuss!  We're thinking of booking with Virgin Holidays, we've discussed a few deals with a very helpful girl in our local shop and we just need to confirm all and then that's us booked! 

    I love the idea of a horse and carriage ride or a boat trip after the ceremony, something really different and memorable.  We were then going to go back to the hotel and change our of our wedding clothes (sob) and put on regular clothes for the evening celebrations, a nice meal somewhere and then some sort of event or activity. 

    Heading away to get married seems more and more popular these days!  Hotel/flights/wedding from the UK to NYC for 5 nights is under £4,500 as opposed to £15,000 to do the whole event at home with guests.  Saves us more money for buying our house together. 

    Good luck to everyone posting here, I'm so excited for us all   :-)



  • Yes get a permit for ladies pavilion if you're getting married there, it just means you get priority if someone else wants to use it at the same time.  And its straight forward to do-I think costs about £15.  We used a little pavilion thing further around the lake but had to wait 5 mins as there was already a couple there getting married when we arrived! It was no problem at all-we took some photos while waiting, but if you can book it, I would.  Honestly you don't need a package for the wedding, its so cheap and easy to do yourself, I think you'd end up spending a lot more getting someone else to do it.

  • Tina20Tina20 Posts: 14

    Thanks, I read up a little more on the permit, you definitely need one for larger parties, and it's optional for smaller parties if you want exclusivity.  I'll do it   :-)

  • Hi ladies

    ive just sent an enquiry off to the officiant about getting wed in Central Park on 31st Oct 2016.

    This is my first step in getting the wedding sorted and I'm so excited. Can anyone who has married or booked a wedding here let me know if you need a permit or any special permission to marry in Central Park? Also how do I go about arranging this and what does it cost? 

    many thanks

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