I'm a wedding photographer based in Ottawa Ontario, but travels worldwide. My photography approach is intentional, honest and editorial. An organic approach to capture fleeting moments. This blog lives to inspire your wedding photos and provide you planning tips.
Aquatopia Greenhouse (Carp, Ontario) – Nature enthusiasts, this is the venue for you! Enjoy the clean aromas of nature all around you and host your ceremony amid lush foliage. Downtown Ottawa is only a 30-minute drive away. Aquatopia can accommodate 150 guests, making it ideal for weddings of all sizes. Want a tropical wedding but hate the giant costs? This location is precisely what you’re looking for.
Horticulture Building (The Glebe, Ottawa, Ontario) – Looking for an industrial building with high ceiling and tons of natural light? this is the perfect spot. Conveniently located at Lansdowne Park, the venue can accommodate a large guest list of 150+, have your ceremony and reception all at the same place.
All Saints Event Space (Sandy Hill, Ottawa, Ontario) – By collaborating with onsite staff, transform this venue into your desirable event. For formal dinner receptions and cocktail parties, they can cater to up to 200 attendees. With three and four-course menu options, your meal will include luxe foods made from sustainably sourced ingredients. Both stunning and affordable, costs include everything from seating to linens, staffing, and anything else necessary to deliver your dream day. Plus, it’s only a 9-minute drive to downtown Ottawa!
Adelina (Gatineau, Quebec) – Adelina Barn is a simple wedding merely 20 minutes outside of Ottawa. A bright and airy barn overlooks 53 acres of grassy fields and countrysides. Adelina Barn is a highly customizable indoor and outdoor space. It has key features including a pergola veranda and stunning scenery. Between the months of May and October, the venue can accommodate upwards of 85 guests.
Evermore Weddings & Events (Almonte, Ontario) – At Evermore, rustic meets luxe. Located just 35 minutes from downtown Ottawa, There are tonnes of gorgeous touches as well, from water fountains to a bocce court! Evermore features a glamorously rebuilt 1870s barn that overlooks 45 stunning acres of agriculture and woods. Other key features include a barnyard veranda, a grand tent, and French-inspired courtyards. Evermore is an incredible venue for your once-in-a-lifetime event!
Le Belvédère (Wakefield, Quebec) – Le Belvédère will undoubtedly make your special day unforgettable. With the spectacular scenery of the Gatineau Hills, Le Belvédère has been awarded one of Ottawa’s ideal wedding spaces on numerous occasions! The luxuries involve luxe dining and a great outdoor terrace that can cater weddings for up to 200 individuals. Le Belvédère is a 35-minute drive north of Ottawa, found as Ottawa’s only cliffside reception venue.
Billing Estate Museum (Nepean, Ottawa, Ontario) – The now almost 200-year-old country house is found surrounded by eight acres of greenery. It is a genuinely calming and captivating venue with privacy curtousy of gardens and beautiful greenspace. The Billings House, located 11 minutes from downtown Ottawa, is one of the city’s oldest structures. The Ottawa wedding venue has a classically inspired look and offers views of the Rideau River. If you seek both a scenic and historical backdrop for your special event, this is the place to go!
Stonefields Estate (Carleton Place, Ontario) – Right from the beginning, staff is fully invested in making your day perfect; Full tours are provided by the estate owners themselves. Stonefields can organize the big wedding of your dreams in their breathtaking 120-acre location with a minimum guest count of 85.Over a 10-time award recipient, Stonefields Estate will provide you with top-tier service and a day beyond what you could imagine. Situated in Carleton Place, Stonefields is a mere 35-minute drive to Downtown Ottawa. They have everything from indoor to outdoor venues. The Stonefields experience includes overnight accommodations in the Farmhouse for a maximum of eight guests.
Strathmere (North Gower, Ontario) – Strathmere, built in the mid-1800s, is a place built on love. Staff go the extra mile to guarantee every aspect is perfect. With over 200 breathtaking acres of rural property to choose from for your venue, a wedding planner will handle all aspects of your special day! From ceremony setup to greeting guests, they have it covered. There are plenty of possibilities for a larger affair or perhaps a more intimate day. Space ranges from 50 to 175 for dinner, a max of 200 for the reception, and 33 guest rooms to spend the night! Found 40 minutes from Downtown Ottawa, Strathmere is the ideal place for a private wedding away from noises of the city.
Orchard View Wedding & Event Centre (Greely, Ontario) – This 20,000 sq ft venue can be found surrounded by a gorgeous lake and offers enchanting indoor and outdoor options. There’s plenty of potential, from vows on the terrace to stunning photos taken lakeside (by yours truly, wink wink). The interior sites can cater from 10 to 400 guests, whereas the exterior venues can satisfy anywhere from 50 to 2,500 guests. If a grandiose wedding is what you’ve always dreamed of, Orchard View is here to deliver! Bonus- in under 35 minutes, you can be Downtown Ottawa!
Bleek & Bergoment (Goulbourn, Ottawa) – Bleeks & Bergamot is a newly introduced gorgeous farm venue featuring both indoor and outdoor options. There are no guest minimum requirements, which is perfect for those who would rather opt for a more intimate day. They can cater events of up to 150 people. They even offer special pricing for small weddings of 50 people or fewer! 35 minutes from Downtown Ottawa, this location is the perfect distance. Not too far from the city, but far enough away to enjoy nature and historical sites!
The Herb Garden (Almonte, Ontario) – The Herb Garden is a stunning outdoor wedding venue that runs seasonally from May to September. In the on-site Heritage barn, up to 104 people can be served for a sit-down dinner. If you wish to include more guests, they can cater to 120 people with rentable tents. They have even partnered with local hotels to offer your guests a discounted rate for overnight stays! The Herb Garden is situated on the outskirts of Stittsville, about 40 minutes from downtown Ottawa.
Flo Garden (Cumberland, Ontario) – Flo’s Garden is situated in the captivating town of Cumberland, only 25 minutes east of the city. The 150-year-old farmhouse is surrounded by beautiful gardens and fields that make for scenic backdrops. The land is easily adjustable to fit your style, with event space consultants to assist you in making it a reality. The venue itself can accommodate 100 guests, while the covered barn can accommodate up to 50. If your guest list exceeds 50, you will need to rent a tent. Say your vows encircled by willow trees.
Temple Sugar Bush (Lanark, Ontario) – Are you looking for something both woodsy and classy? Temple’s is tucked away in the core of a maple forest. Experience your wedding dinner with as many as 200 guests seated in front of a stone fireplace. The site is near the city but a world away found 90 minutes from the Core of Ottawa. For your dream country wedding, Temple’s is the way to go.
Andaz (Downtown Ottawa, Ontario) – You’re in the heart of it all, right in the Byward Market! Select from the Dalhousie Salon (located on the second floor) or both indoor and outdoor rooftop lounges. Take in the stunning views of Ottawa with parties of 20 to 120 guests. Andaz is the desirable smaller Ottawa wedding reception venue, with luxurious menu options and roof terrace wedding photography.
Fairmont Château Laurier (Downtown, Ottawa) – Since its founding in 1912, the Fairmont Château Laurier has organised a multitude of special events, especially weddings. The Fairmont Château Laurier has a number of lavish private rooms that can satisfy various party sizes. The ballroom is something out of a fairytale! Overall, the elegant venue can fit 50 to 400 guests. Nearly 5 minutes away from Parliament, this is a must-choose location if you want to be close to it all! There is plenty of hotel and Airbnb options nearby for travelling guests, or stay in the luxe hotel itself!
TwentyTwo at the Westin (Downtown, Ottawa) – Only four blocks to Parliament? If you want stunning views and high-quality food, this is the place to go! When you step into this fabulous new 3,200 square foot room, you’ll be able to experience 270º panoramic views of all of Ottawa’s key parts. Parliament Hill, the Ottawa River, and the Gatineau Hills beyond. With room for up to 175 reception guests, there will be plenty of space for all of your loved ones and more!
Ottawa Art Gallery (Downtown Ottawa, Ontario) – you can chat about the sky lounge perfect for cocktail hour with a beautiful view of downtown Ottawa, the Alma Duncan Salon with one wall covered with windows which they can use for the ceremony and be flipped for the reception during cocktail hour. The jackson Restaurant that can be used for a more intimate reception.
National Gallery Of Canada (Downtown Ottawa, Ontario) – Each space at the National Gallery can be morphed into an unique event space. Rooms can compensate up to 120 guests, depending on the size of your event. The room offers a tranquil vibe, perfect both during the day and evening. It even has stunning views of Parliament Hill. Partnered with its own glass rotunda, outdoor garden, and private outdoor terrace, a beautiful day awaits you.
National Arts Centre (Downtown Ottawa, Ontario) – Over 28,000 square feet of event space offers space to host up to 400 guests. This space, located in the heart of downtown Ottawa, provides amenities such as heated indoor parking and wheelchair accessibility. Bonus, the bride and groom will receive a complimentary hotel room at the Novotel Ottawa, included in your wedding package! It’s unlike any other Ottawa wedding venue!
Orange Art Gallery (Hintonburg, Ottawa, Ontario) – Just outside Little Italy (only 6 minutes from downtown!), you’ll find Orange Art Gallery. Orange Art Gallery is located just outside of Little Italy (only 6 minutes from downtown!). Enjoy the outdoor deck, which is furnished with unique decor and classic lighting. Guests will adore the vintage Bar Room, that helps both indoors and on the deck. Both floors are 2500 square feet and highlight the 120-year-old building’s authentic architectural features. The photos will be spectacular thanks to the 12ft ceilings and numerous huge windows that allow lots of natural light. The Orange Art Gallery can facilitate 120-150 people for a dinner or cocktail wedding.
Museum of Nature (Downtown Ottawa, Ontario) – Envision yourself exchanging vows in a Scottish castle. Or perhaps getting married where you had your first date, in the dinosaur wilderness. Wherever you decide, the Canadian Museum of Nature can help make your wedding dreams come true. Wedding events for up to 200 people can be held in these award-winning spaces. Whether you want a formal sit-down dinner or a light, intimate cocktail reception, the museum can help!
Why do I personally love restaurant wedding venues? the food is always execptional! Of course a lot of other venues such as Stonefields Estate have incredible house chefs but you can’t say that for all wedding venues. If you are foody and prioritize providing the best meal and want food to be one of the highlights of your wedding day, you can’t go wrong with a restaurant venue.
I have listed some of my favourites below but don’t hesitate to ask your favourite restaurant to see if you can host your wedding at their place.
Umbrella Bar (The Glebe, Ottawa) – Say hello to Umbrella Bar, the perfect downtown venue featuring a stunning waterfront. Unlike other places, food service for your event is delivered in various forms from hors d’oeuvres to begin, a three-course plated meal (or buffet!), and late-night food stations to finish off the evening! The patio provides an excellent space for an outdoor ceremony or cocktail hour!
Sidedoor Restaurant (Byward Market, Ottawa) – Floor-to-ceiling windows. Canadian contemporary meets Asian cuisine. Champagne toasts. With a plethora of packages available to choose from, Sidedoor has something for everyone! A maximum capacity of 350 guests (depending on the room rented) offers a vast reception space as well as a high-class design. Plus, it’s under a ten-minute drive to the downtown core.
Lago Bar & Grill (The Glebe, Ottawa) – Are you looking for a sophisticated setting for an intimate wedding or a larger space for a bigger group? Lago can help supply both! Do you want a modern setting for a small wedding or a large space for a large party? Lago can help supply both! Lago features picturesque water views of Dow’s Lake in Canada’s capital and is located just 11 minutes from downtown! One of their key features includes a two-story entertainment area that is both modern and open in design. Their main dining space can seat up to 250 or 440 people standing, perfect for a larger gathering.
Restaurant e18hteen (Byward Market, Ottawa) – Want a simple day with little stress? Restaurant 18 is here to serve you! Partnership with various vendors including officiants, florists, DJ services, and more allows your day to be as stress-free as possible. The entire restaurant hosts a max of 175 people (standing) with various package options depending on your wedding size. Found right in Byward Market, your conveniently located near it all!
Sala San Marco Event & Conference Centre (Little Italy, Ottawa) – With over 30 years of service, Sala San Marco takes pleasure in being one of Ottawa’s premier wedding and celebration venue. This luxe location features over 8,000 square feet of space for you to plan. From high ceilings to gorgeous chandeliers, an elegant day is guaranteed. They have rooms for both bigger events (160 guests) and more intimate weddings (80 guests)! Found in little Italy, Sala San Marco is only 7 minutes from the downtown core.
Fairouz – Fairouz Cafe is a one-of-a-kind middle Eastern-inspired cafe for wedding parties of up to 40 people to celebrate your special day (located right in the Byward Market)! Their covered patio offers a breathtaking background during the warmer months.
North and Navy (Downtown, Ottawa) Looking to have exceptional farm-to-table dishes, North and Navy is a wonderful choice for your intimate wedding reception, great for smaller wedding guest or an elopement.
Mill Street Brew Pub (Downtown, Ottawa) – Found right in Downtown Ottawa, you’re near it all! You’re right in the heart of downtown Ottawa, so you’re close to everything! Historic stone walls and modern glass describe the architecture, providing it a luxurious and rustic feel. It is suitable for both large and small gatherings (with a max of 120 guests) and can house all your special moments from the engagement party to the wedding day itself.
This venue is for couples that want to have intimate weddings with less than 50 guests. The beauty of smaller weddings is that you get to spend more quality time with everyone on your guest list. You also have the opportunity to allocate more of your money to things you deem a priority might that be food, decor or hiring your favourite photographer and videographer.
The Knox Wedding & Event Venue (Merrickville, ON) – The Knox Wedding Venue is situated in the center of Merrickville, Ontario’s heritage town. Found only 45 minutes from Ottawa, this refined and classy site is the perfect blend of both classic and modern. Built in 1861 as a church originally, the space has since been upcycled to organize weddings and other important moments. There are countless stunning details, such as gothic windows that let in plenty of natural light (ideal for photos!). The Knox offers a breathtaking and one-of-a-kind indoor and outdoor venue for you and up to 80 guests to enjoy!
The Cumberland belle ( Cumberland, Ontario) – Unsure of which way to go, wedding size-wise? The Cumberland Belle is perfect for those still deciding as they can accommodate both elopements and more traditional weddings with space for up to 75 guests. The website even includes various resources and recommended vendors to help alleviate some of the extra stress! From overall planners to officiants, they can help with it all. A simple 24-minute drive and you can be in the heart of Ottawa!
The Wakefield Grand (Wakefield, Quebec) – The Grand is tucked away between six acres of woods and ponds in Wakefield. The ambience is a mix of French and European architecture, with a splash of beach house vibes thrown in for good measure. This space can host a max of 28 people but is best suited for groups of 10-20 individuals. The menus are extremely versatile, the choices are up to you! Meals are crafted using local and seasonal ingredients. This venue is great for a short stay away from home, as it is only 29 minutes from downtown Ottawa!
Drake Devonshire (Prince Edward County, Ontario) – The Drake, a 13-room luxury hotel with an eatery, bar, and gorgeous event spaces, is a must-see. Stunning artwork and meals that proudly highlight the produce from local farmers. You can be in the heart of Ottawa in under three hours! With a maximum capacity of 75 attendees, this is an excellent choice for intimate weddings. Exchange your vows in front of the most scenic background in PEC.
Refuges Perchés (Mont- Tremblant) – A combination of the great outdoors and rustic cabin vibes, as well as the ideal location for you and your partner to elope. What more could you ask for? Your stay includes unconventional luxuries like an outdoor firepit and a rustic shower. Plus, the entire cabin is run on solar power! With a capacity of 4 people to stay overnight, this is the perfect micro-wedding location for outdoor enthusiasts. In under 120 minutes from Ottawa, you’ll arrive at this stunning location.
Lynee Knowlton (Durham, Ontario) – If you’ve been searching for the ideal retreat for your intimate wedding, look no further! This venue is 100 acres in size and includes access to the treehouse and cabin, including a bar, seating area, fireplace, and pool. 6 hours outside Ottawa, this is the perfect intimate space for up to 40 guests. On the evening of your wedding, the treehouse will be prepared to hold only the newlyweds. Spend a restful morning next to each other, celebrating your special day and all that awaits you two.
Jabulani Vineyard and Winery (Richmond, Ontario) – Looking for all the rustic vibes? With its large beams, glowy lights, wine barrels, and woodsy harvest seating, this venue screams rustic charm. Jabulani is in Richmond, Ontario, located just 35 minutes from downtown Ottawa! The winery can hold up to 180 folks inside and 100 folks outside on the patio. A stunning nearby river, shining water features, a waterfall, and a country road await you.
Le Pont Couvert (La Conception, Quebec) – A beautiful wedding venue, situated on a covered bridge over looking Riviere Rouge. Located in the heart of the charming village of La Conception just a 10 minutes drive from Mont-Tremblant. Enjoy the beauty of nature and have everything you need in one location.
Ivy Lea Club (Thousand Island, Ontario) – The Ivy, situated on 45 acres of idyllic land overlooking the St. Lawrence River is found in the core of the Thousand Islands. The hotel is 90 minutes from downtown Ottawa. An elegant main banquet room serves a gourmet menu centred on steak, seafood, and fresh locally sourced produce. The private Loft on the second floor of the Eatery can seat up to 60 guests for a sit-down reception and 75 guests for a cocktail reception. The main level dining room can cater up to 110 guests for a sit-down reception and 130 guests for a cocktail reception.
Compass Rose Suites (Prince Edward County, Ontario)
Throughout the 100 acres, their venue also offers two beautiful outdoor wedding locations. From a little ceremony in their beautiful greenhouse to a larger reception in the barn, they provide all the best options to make your special day that much better! Finish off the evening with the most magical moments by the bonfire! Up to 12 guests can stay in the farmhouse’s three suites. This is the perfect spot for breathtaking (FIX)
Drake Devonshire (Prince Edward County, Ontario)
The Drake offers the ideal lakeside celebration with the most stunning natural venues. The location is the ultimate low-stress choice because they handle all of the aspects of your food, design and musical entertainment! Thanks to PEC’s natural wonders, vineyard tours, beautiful beaches, and lively artistic community allow for so much to explore. Plus, gorgeous shots in the meadows, gardens, and woods!
If possible pick a getting-ready space that has lots of windows to allow natural light. Make sure to reserve one room in the house or hotel to be kept clean with minimal to no clutter.
Andaz Ottawa Byward Market – You’re situated in the center of it all, located in the Byward Market! Pick from the Dalhousie Salon and both indoor and outdoor rooftop seating areas. Take in the breathtaking views of Ottawa with groups ranging from 20 to 120 people. Andaz is a popular smaller wedding reception venue, offering luxurious menu options as well as roof terrace wedding photography.
Le Germain Hotel Ottawa – From unbeatable prices to free cancellations, this place continues to prove how great of an option it is! Located right in the heart of Downtown Ottawa, this place is a perfect place to stay after visiting a venue nearby. The service is great, and the rooms are gorgeous and have even prettier views. Enjoy added luxuries from a 24-hour gym, continental breakfast, and room service. Plus, it’s pet friendly!!
Fairmont Château Laurier – The Fairmont Château Laurier has a multitude of luxurious private rooms that can fit a variety of party sizes. The ballroom looks like it came directly out of a storybook! In general, the classy venue can cater 50 to 400 guests. This is an essential site if you want to be close to everything; It’s only about 5 minutes away from Parliament! There are numerous hotel and Airbnb options nearby for visiting guests, or stay in the posh hotel itself!
Ottawa Marriott Hotel – There are tons of rooms to choose from, ideal for various getting-ready spaces depending on the wedding party size. There are also tons of amenities from a chic restaurant and bar to a fitness centre. It is also equally kid-friendly with tons of activities, an indoor pool, and a games room to keep them occupied! This hotel is merely a 3-minute walk from all the Downtown Ottawa action!
The Westin Ottawa – One of the most luxe hotels with insanely gorgeous views of Downtown Ottawa, the Westin would make for a stunning getting-ready space. Imagine getting ready for your special day and having incredible scenery in the background of each and every photo. It is also conveniently located next to some of Downtown Ottawa’s popular attractions and possible reception venues. With such spacious suites, you’ll feel at home away from home with everything you need at your fingertips!
Alt Hotel Ottawa – This hotel is conveniently located in midst of Downtown Ottawa. It’s right next to shops, small businesses, and restaurants. Get ready with your girls in the morning, have a place to stay after your magical day, and hit the town the next day! They have the best luxuries you wouldn’t even think of: Rainfall showers, Nespresso coffee machines, HD tv – you name it! With nothing but raving reviews, this is the place to be.
Perfect Airbnb Locations for getting ready with your wedding party. Enough space and natural light. Get $95 off your first Airbnb Booking Click Here
Still not seeing exactly what you want? Message me, let’s chat — I want to help you through this process! I have lots of vendor connections and can make sure you find a space that fits your vision!
If you like this you might want to check out HIRING A WEDDING PHOTOGRAPHER? HERE’S WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW
Mary Calotes is an elopement and wedding photographer based in Ottawa, Ontario. Specializes in capturing genuine moments that gives you all the feels.