An Allegheny County Courthouse Wedding: 5 Things that Make it Unique

An Allegheny County Courthouse wedding probably isn’t what you think.  This hidden gem of a downtown venue is challenging the old-fashioned misconceptions of a “courthouse wedding”.  When they hear that term, most people think of something fast, inexpensive, stress free, and simple.  Sure, you can certainly have that kind of wedding at the Courthouse.  But you can also have a sophisticated, lavish soiree full of gorgeous details for as many as 200 guests.  From the multiple event spaces to the gorgeous architecture to the location itself, here are 5 unique features that make the Allegheny County Courthouse an excellent venue choice for any Burgh Bride!

A Historical Setting

Be a part of history as you make history.  The 130-year-old Allegheny County Courthouse is on the national registry of historical landmarks and is thought of as one of the finest examples of Romanesque Revival architecture.  Designed by H.H. Richardson and often considered his masterpiece, the Grand Staircase was completed in 1888.  Since then, it has witnessed political movements, pivotal moments, and now wedding celebrations.

A Jaw-Dropping Place to say I Do

The exchange of vows always sounds beautiful.  Now it can look beautiful too.  If you really want to wow, think outside the box when it comes to your ceremony location.  It’s almost as if the Grand Staircase at the Allegheny County Courthouse was built with a wedding in mind.  Imagine standing on the marble landing under stone arches as your guests look up and are transfixed by the flow of natural light and Gothic architecture.  There is many a pretty church in Pittsburgh, but I dare them to try and compete with this type of setting.  Your guests will be talking about this one for a looooong time.

And an Even More Beautiful Place to Celebrate

The only thing that can top a ceremony on the Grand Staircase is a reception in the private Family Courthouse Courtyard.  Between the wings of the county building sits an outdoor space large enough for 200 people.  However, because it’s secluded and enclosed, it still feels intimate and personal.  You can dine and dance under the stars surrounded by stone architecture and arched window frames, or the area can also be tented in case of inclement weather.  Either way, there’s no prettier place to celebrate a Pittsburgh wedding.

Picture-Perfect Photo Ops

With the ivy-covered walls of the Family Courthouse Courtyard, the breathtaking windows above the Grand Staircase, the bubbling courtyard fountain, the colorful lobby murals, or the striking nooks and crannies of the hallways, there are plenty of backdrops for extraordinary portraits.  Wedding photographers are always on the hunt for interesting settings and unique scenery and there is plenty of both to find at the Courthouse.

A Convenient Location

Nestled on Grant Street in the heart of downtown Pittsburgh, the Allegheny County Courthouse is surrounded by all that your guests could possibly need or want.  Out-of-towners can stay at one of several hotels within walking distance, while local folks can park at lots across the street or nearby.  The nightlife of downtown Pittsburgh has had a recent renaissance, which means your celebration doesn’t have to end with the last dance.  Continue the festivities at one of the new hip, urban bars in the area, or make a short trek across a bridge to party on the North Shore or South Side.

If you still need more convincing on this incredibly awesome wedding venue, check out the Allegheny County Courthouse in the Burgh Brides Vendor Guide!

Introducing Katie Lynn’s Photo Booth!

So much thought goes into planning out every.single.detail of your wedding.  It should be the same case with your photo booth.  With endless opportunities for customization, Katie Lynn's Photo Booth becomes one more wedding element where you can let your personalities shine!  The open-air concept keeps things nice and classy, while encouraging all of your guests to get in on the fun.  Click on over to the Burgh Brides Vendor Guide to learn all about them!  (See what I did there?  😉 )

Traveling Heart Productions: 4 Reasons She’s One of my FAVE Wedding Videographers

Do yourself a HUGE favor – save room in your wedding budget for a videographer.

Now do yourself a second favor – hire Traveling Heart Productions.

I promise that you will not regret either move.  Christina has been filming nuptials for four short years, but you would think she’s been around for decades.  Her films are KILLER compilations of excited smiles, heartfelt vows, memorable moments, and epic dance floor battles.  While pretty or quirky details get her excited, Christina focuses on the PEOPLE, not the stuff, that make your wedding special.  That’s just one reason why I know you’re going to love her, but here are 4 more!

This ain’t your grandma’s wedding video.

Long gone are the days of stationary tri-pods and films that bore you to tears.  Christina’s work is modern, fresh, and youthful!  Her approach to both filming and editing is contemporary yet classic.  That means she’s still on the hunt for those traditional wedding details and happenings, but she approaches them with a fresh perspective.  It’s bright and whimsical, instead of a snooze-fest.  Millennial couples want more out of their wedding day than older generations did, and THP will definitely deliver on that front!

You’ll cry…and then laugh…and then cry some more.

It’s touching when a wedding can make you cry.  It’s fun when it can make you laugh.  But a wedding video that can do both?  Now that’s something!  Christina has an uncanny ability to capture both ends of the spectrum and weave them seamlessly together in a film that will give you ALLLLL.the.feels.  While she’s listening for those sweet words or that funny speech, she’s also watching for those tender, once-in-a-lifetime moments.  The end result is a combination of emotion and light-heartedness that you’ll be hard pressed to find elsewhere.

She’s got an ear for great music.

I’m such a sucker for good song lyrics and a beat that makes me want to dance.  Christina manages to set her films to music that has both.  Selecting the right song that fits the couple, their wedding style, and Christina’s way of film-making is no easy feat.  Yet, she manages to get it right every time and the music is one of the things I love most about her work.  Of course, if you want a special song to accompany your wedding footage, Christina can make that happen too.  But personally, I’d trust the background to her musicality 😉

You’ll have so much fun working with her.

I say this from experience – Christina is an absolute joy to be around!  Her energy and zeal for life are invigorating while her ability to find the fun in just about any situation is inspiring.  You’ll be spending a lot of time with your wedding videographer, so you better make sure you get along.  I can’t imagine anyone NOT having fun around this lady!  Her smile brightens a room and her laid-back yet passionate nature make her a pleasure to work with.  Just you wait and see!

A winning combination of style and sweetness make it easy for me to pick Traveling Heart Productions as one of my favorite Pittsburgh wedding videographers.  I just know you’re going to love her too!  Visit the Burgh Brides Vendor Guide to see more of her (amazing) work!

Introducing Oh Joyful Day & A Special Offer!

Heart-warming and heart-felt, the work of Oh Joyful Day is some of my favorite!  This wedding stationery designer uses her unique hand-lettering skills with her love of color and whimsical touches to create dreamy stationery suites.  From invites to day-of pieces, her work is sure to wow!  See more of it in the Burgh Brides Vendor Guide!

Plus, you can earn two free 8 x 10 prints when you book Oh Joyful Day to do your invitations and mention Burgh Brides!  The prints could be anything – bar menus, cards and gifts signs, vow prints, anything!

Favorite Pittsburgh Bridal Shower Venues from Olive & Rose Events

Still need a place to host your pre-wedding party?  Lucky for you, Kim of Olive & Rose Events is guest-blogging today about her favorite Pittsburgh bridal shower venues!  From downtown to the North Hills, the South Side to the Strip, there are hidden gem venues all over this city.  Some are charming, some of quirky, and some are downright classic.  But ALL of them are a perfect locale to celebrate your new relationship status!

From Kim…

Morning Glory Inn

Looking to host an elegant yet laid back garden party shower?  Morning Glory Inn is your place.  Formerly a row of 1892 townhouses, Morning Glory Inn oozes charm.  What better way to celebrate a special occasion than enjoying food and drinks with your loved ones in a gorgeous brick courtyard?  The rental fee and food prices are both reasonable and the on-site attendant allows you to relax and know that everything is being taken care of.  We also love that the retractable roof allows for a back-up plan in case of inclement weather.

Favorite Pittsburgh Bridal Shower Venues from Olive & Rose Events featured on Burgh Brides

Capacity

40 guests.  Please contact them for more information if your guest count is higher than that.

Helpful to Know

Showers are only booked on Sundays due to the amount of weddings that are booked on Saturdays.  Shower hosts may choose from the in-house caterer or a list of required caterers provided by the venue.

Tarenbee

Built in 1889, Tarenbee was originally St. Paul’s German Evangelical Lutheran Church.  Historical features abound including a working Estey antique pipe organ, original stained glass windows, antique hand-carved altar, and the original hemlock hardwood floors and exposed beams.  If you are a native Pittsburgher, you probably know Tarenbee’s owner, Michelle Wright from WTAE news.  Over the course of a year, Michelle and her crew undertook the renovation and transformation of this gorgeous space.  We love this space not only for its historic elements, but for the new upgrades including WiFi, a handicap accessible ramp and commercial kitchen.  You’ll also be hard pressed to find a shower venue big enough to accommodate up to 85 guests – making this the perfect choice if you have a large guest list!

Favorite Pittsburgh Bridal Shower Venues from Olive & Rose Events featured on Burgh Brides

Capacity

Chapel Capacity is 50 – 85 guests and the Gathering room holds 20 – 40.

Helpful to Know

You are permitted to serve alcohol, but are required to obtain liquor liability coverage.  Tarenbee makes it easy to rent all the items you need for your shower including flatware, wine and champagne glasses, and chair covers.  Food and beverages may be brought in or party hosts may select a caterer.

Sapphire & Lace Cottage

It will only take you about 30 seconds on the Sapphire & Lace website to see why we are completely obsessed with the cottage!  The entire space is totally “Pinterest-worthy” and the ladies are an absolute delight to work with.  We love that the cottage offers two great packages that can really work with any budget.  Being able to bring in outside food and beverages is always a big cost saver and allows hosts to really customize the type of food they want to serve.  The Sapphire and Lace team are total design professionals, so they are going to ensure your event is both beautiful and memorable.

Capacity

25 people for sit-down and up to 30 for cocktail style

Helpful to Know

The Sapphire and Lace ladies offer a bunch of fun a la carte options including upgraded linens, farm tables, floral centerpieces, a floral crown for the bride and a bouquet bar that can serve as a fun activity/favor for guests!

PointBreezeway

Charm, charm, and more charm.  This place exudes it.  PointBreezeway is actually Lauren’s childhood home and boasts two historical rooms, the Team Room, and the Speakeasy.  The space features floor to ceiling French doors, handmade café tables, and amazing natural sunlight.  We absolutely love that Lauren has created not just a venue, but a true gathering space.  The flexibility to bring in your own food and drinks is a huge plus and you truly need very little in the way of decorations.

Capacity

Inside seating for up to 40 guests with additional outdoor seating

Helpful to Know

The rental fee includes use of the space for 4.5 hours, tables, chairs, dish ware, and glasses.  The lovely team at PointBreezeway will also supply fresh flowers for the tables, use of the house WiFi and Sonos speakers and a personal host that will assist with setup, logistics and breakdown.  You will also have an on-site parking attendant to direct guests.

Hotel Monaco

Trendy and gorgeous yet still welcoming would best describe Hotel Monaco.  From the unique décor to the amazing staff to the gorgeous view from the rooftop, everything at Hotel Monaco is designed to stimulate the senses and create an unforgettable experience.  When planning your shower, the linens, food, and alcohol are all taken care of by the hotel, so there's no need to coordinate with a bunch of different vendors.  Kristen, their Catering Sales Manager, is an absolute pleasure to work with and will be able to answer any questions you may have.

Favorite Pittsburgh Bridal Shower Venues from Olive & Rose Events featured on Burgh Brides

Capacity

The Rialto Suite will hold 40 nicely, but the hotel has various spaces to accommodate groups of just about any size. If you’re a sucker for a rooftop on a gorgeous day, Hotel Monaco has one of the best rooftop spaces in the city.

Helpful to Know

There is a rental fee that includes use of the space for 4.5 hours, tables, chairs, dish ware, and glasses.

The Terrace at Hyatt House

Have. You. Seen. This. Terrace?  The tented area is such a romantic, gorgeous spot for your shower.   If you are looking for a venue that you’ll be able to basically walk into and have everything taken care of for you, Hyatt House is your spot.

Favorite Pittsburgh Bridal Shower Venues from Olive & Rose Events featured on Burgh Brides

Capacity

The Hyatt House offers three unique spaces that fit a group of just about any size.

Helpful to Know

You will work with a professional event coordinator to make sure your event is pulled off without a hitch.  Space rents for a four hour time slot.  Need rooms for out of town guests?  Hyatt House can help you create a room block with easy online booking.

Carnegie Coffee Company

Italy’s best espresso and hand-crafted food.  Say no more.  Carnegie Coffee Company is another totally “Pinterest-worthy” space located in the old Carnegie Post Office.  The décor is fun and inviting while still maintaining some of the building’s original charm.  The prices are great and the friendly staff will work with you to create a flawless event.

Favorite Pittsburgh Bridal Shower Venues from Olive & Rose Events featured on Burgh Brides

Capacity

If you are holding your shower doing business hours, the space accommodates up to 35 guests.  For events held after hours, the space boasts room for 150 guests.  During business hours, you will have private use of the mezzanine level.  After hours, you basically have access to the entire space.

Helpful to Know

If you opt for a shower during business hours, the food must be purchased from Carnegie Coffee Company.  You will have the ability to run a tab for guests’ drinks.  For after hour events, you may order food from Carnegie Coffee Company or bring in outside catered food.  After hours, there is a barista charge, but guests can indulge in unlimited drinks from the espresso bar, coffee, tea, and smoothies.

Slate Studio

Style and flexibility.  This place is a dream for anyone that really wants control over the look and feel of their shower or event.  You’ll be hard pressed to find any other venue in Pittsburgh that gives you such a beautiful blank canvas to design to your liking.  The team is a joy to work with and can recommend top vendors within your style and budget.

Favorite Pittsburgh Bridal Shower Venues from Olive & Rose Events featured on Burgh Brides

Capacity

Up to 125 guests

Helpful to Know

From the room layout to the vendors to the décor, everything can be customized and designed around your vision.  You have the flexibility to use any caterer or bring in your own food and drink.  You can serve alcohol at your event, but insurance is required.

The Union Hall at Bar Marco

Bar Marco is a full-service events space in a turn of the century firehouse building.  With its textured ceiling and huge windows, the space is absolutely gorgeous.  We love the look of the long banquet tables, but there are a number of ways to configure tables and chairs in the space.  The rental fee is quite reasonable considering everything that is included and the food is always amazing!

Favorite Pittsburgh Bridal Shower Venues from Olive & Rose Events featured on Burgh Brides

Capacity

Bar Marco can host showers for groups as large as 60 attendees.  If you plan on playing a lot of games or want more space for mingling, it would be best to cap your guest list at around 50.

Helpful to Know

As a “hospitality included” restaurant, you won’t need to worry about those pesky service and gratuity charges surprising you at the end of your party.

Smallman Galley

There are so many reasons to love Smallman Galley for a shower or special event.  The space itself is industrial cool perfection. Smallman Galley is actually two bars and four restaurants all in one space, which creates a totally unique dining experience.  They describe themselves as a restaurant incubator and food hall and because all four of the restaurant concepts partake in catering each event, the food is always guaranteed to be phenomenal!   If a good cocktail is your thing, they specialize in local, draft beer, small vineyard wines, and craft spirits and cocktails.

Favorite Pittsburgh Bridal Shower Venues from Olive & Rose Events featured on Burgh Brides

Stone Swiess Photography

Capacity

Smallman Galley can accommodate up to 24 guests in the Private Dining Room and Patio areas and 100 – 200 guests in the entirety of the space.

Helpful to Know

Are you busting at the seams with creative ideas for your party?  Smallman Galley has an awesome Brand and Marketing Manager that would love to partner with you to make your event truly one-of-a-kind

Introducing Owl Cleaners & Pittsburgh Gown Preservation & A Special Offer!

Your bridal gown deserves special attention even after the wedding day.  Let Owl Cleaners & Pittsburgh Gown Preservation remove all of the grime, dirt, and stains that represent the FUN time you had.  From full preservation to cleanings and treatments and everything in between, this company has been taking care of precious garments for over 60 years.  Trust the most important thing you'll ever wear to no one else!  Visit them in the Burgh Brides Vendor Guide to learn more!

They're also offering $25 off your wedding gown preservation package if you use code BURGHBRIDE.  Call 866-OWL-CLEAN or visit the Owl Cleaners website.

Owl Cleaners & Pittsburgh Gown Preservation - Pittsburgh Wedding Dress Cleaners & Burgh Brides Vendor Guide Member

Introducing Brides by Benedetti!

Want to have a REAL celebrity hair stylist take care of your wedding do?  Then you HAVE to meet Brides by Benedetti!  Courtney is the former Head of the Hair Department for The Tonight Show and has worked on the manes of many recognizable names.  But her greatest joy comes from working with brides and making them look like an enhanced version of themselves on their big day.  I'm thrilled she's now a part of the Burgh Brides Vendor Guide so waste no time going to check out her work!

La Pomponnee Beauty Artisans: 7 Reasons I LOVE This Hair and Makeup Team

Wanna “get dolled up” on your wedding day?  Meet La Pomponnee Beauty Artisans.  This salon is a favorite of mine and I just know you’re going to love them too.  From their French-glam-meets-urban-chic vibe to their friendly stylists to their unmatched beauty skills, La Pomponnee is THE hair and makeup team you want working for you on the most important day of your life.  Here are just a few reasons why!

La Pomponnee Beauty Artisans: 7 Reasons I LOVE This Hair and Makeup Team

Their reputation precedes them.

La Pomponnee was started by owner Kristen in 1992 with three chairs, one manicure table, and one treatment room.  Since then, it’s grown into two locations, a mobile styling RV, a team of 60+, over 1,000 bridal clients, and one killer reputation.  The La Pomponnee crew is known for being extremely passionate, well-educated, professional, stylish, and kind – all the things you’d want in someone trusted with your face, hair, skin, and nails.  They’ve received several “Best of the Burgh” nominations and “Best of The Knot” awards, each of which were totally deserved!

They work with and learn from the best in the biz.

Kristen is whole-heartedly committed to staying on top of the latest trends and newest techniques.  That’s why her team is always provided with opportunities for workshops or trainings.  Many of them have even worked as part of the AVEDA runway styling team at New York Fashion Week and (my favorite) New York Bridal Fashion Week for designers like Carolina Herrara, Naeem Khan, Monique Lhuillier, and Kelly Faetanini.  Not only are these just super cool bragging rights, but experiences like this allow the La Pomponnee team to bring you up-and-coming styles, news ways of doing things, and a better overall client experience.

They're a beauty power house.

I mentioned their team of over 60 talented individuals.  This includes hair stylists, makeup artists, estheticians, nail artists, massage therapists, and even barbers (because we can’t forget about the groom and his guys!).  Booking your wedding vendors can be a really daunting process.  You have to scour the Internet, read reviews, get referrals, stalk their social media pages, have a consultation, etc. etc. etc.  At least booking your wedding day beauty team can be a little bit easier with this one-stop-shop!  You can secure everyone in charge of your wedding look in one fell swoop!

They'll keep you looking beautiful from “Yes” to “I do”.

With a diverse menu of services, La Pomponnee can have you looking your best from the moment you get engaged to that very last dance of the wedding night.  Getting beautified for your wedding is a long process and one that should be started months before the big day.  Think regular massages to reduce the stress of planning, trims and color touch ups to make sure your locks are in their best shape, and even make up lessons so you can recreate great looks after saying “I do.”  Their team can help you throughout the entire engagement and beyond!

They give your natural beauty a dose of glam.

It’s easy to see why La Pomponnee’s tagline is “where nature meets glam.”  Their goal is to make you feel comfortable and confident in your own skin, but with a little oomph.  They kick things up just a little bit with their line of AVEDA products, which harness the power of plant-derived ingredients.  All AVEDA products are also cruelty-free and made in a responsible way using post-recycled packaging.  Earth-lovers and beauty-lovers can finally unite!

They'll bring the party to you.

Just a few weeks ago, La Pomponnee launched something the Pittsburgh area hasn’t seen before!  The Beaute Mobile is LP’s new styling station on wheels!  Complete with beauty chairs, bright lights, and mirrors, this RV has been converted into a small home for La Pomponnee’s traveling hair and makeup team.  It’s perfect for events like bachelorette parties, festivals, or wedding venues that don’t have a dedicated getting-ready space.  There’s nothing like having your hair and makeup team come to you on the morning of the wedding.  And with LP’s Beaute Mobile, nothing’s stopping that from happening now!

They're some of the nicest people you'll ever meet.

Not to get all sappy or anything, but owner Kristen is one of the most genuine and generous people I’ve ever met.  The passion she has for her art, clients, and staff is evident within just a few moments of meeting her.  This lady is hard-working, driven, and isn’t satisfied until you are, and this infectious energy has seeped into every single team member at La Pomponnee.  I love going to their salon simply because they’re good people to be around!  THAT’s the kind of person you want there on your wedding day!

If you’re still on the hunt for some beauty experts to help you “get dolled up” on your big day, or even if you’re just looking for a new place to get your hair cut, La Pomponnee definitely gets my glittery stamp of approval!  Go see more of their work in the Burgh Brides Vendor Guide!

Introducing Seven Springs Mountain Resort!

When it comes to breathtaking outdoor views and stunning indoor setting, Seven Springs Mountain Resort brings the best of both worlds.  With several venues – both inside and out – plus on-site entertainment, an award-winning staff, and a commitment to making your wedding day everything you dreamed, Seven Springs is an excellent venue choice for that couple looking for something unforgettable.  Learn more about them in the Burgh Brides Vendor Guide!

Introducing Kelli Burns Entertainment!

Just like the intro to this video says, you have one chance to do it right.  “It” being your wedding music, and Kelli Burns Entertainment will definitely get it right.  This team of talented DJs is known for their professionalism, signature bridal party introductions, and going above and beyond to make sure the music and entertainment are perfect.  Managed by one of the few female DJs in the local industry, KBE is a new member of the Burgh Brides Vendor Guide and I can't wait for you to meet them!  Go say hi and learn more!