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From fish and chips to Harry Potter – top tips for picking the perfect wedding venue

Get tips from this fabulous wedding venue Aberdeenshire

Are you engaged? Looking at places to wed, or simply dreaming of the big day? Then you’ll love our tips for finding your perfect wedding venue – from Harry Potter to fish and chips…

Finding a wedding venue

While congratulation messages are still fresh on your social media and bubbles may be flowing at your engagement toast – you can be sure that questions about your wedding venue, will already be coming thick and fast.

Finding the right wedding venue can seem like an endless task, looking around hotels, dropping into wedding fayres or spending weekends travelling to venues. Keeping track on what set menus are offered and which day and evening options to go for, can leave even the most organised of couples, feeling bamboozled.

Add in the advice, from friends and family and it can be easy to lose sight of what you really want from your big day.  That’s where The Cowshed comes in – if you’re after a wedding venue in Aberdeenshire, with that something extra, free-rein on food choices and views to boast, then The Cowshed may just be the one. They are also on hand to give you their best wedding venue tips…

wedding checklist

7 top tips for choosing your perfect wedding venue

1. Familiar setting

Think about where you love going and what is special to you as a couple. Is there somewhere that means a lot to you both, it could be as simple as a particular beach or even your favourite restaurant. Choosing something familiar gives you that extra layer of reassurance when so much else is going on. It can also mark the place you met and add extra sentimentality to your special day.

At The Cowshed: Most of our couples have been to The Cowshed restaurant before. Some have even had first dates here. It’s important to our couples that our staff are already well known to them, so they can trust the staff to do an outstanding job on their wedding day.

2. Quality of the food

There is nothing worse than serving luke-warm food to your guests or running out of deserts on what should be your special day. The wedding breakfast or take-away tea if you prefer, should be about the food you love, so now is the time to be adventurous and thinking about how to make it unique to you as a couple. Wedding cuisine should also add that something extra, a treat for all guests. So top quality chefs with the best ingredients should be top of your wish list.

At The Cowshed: Think award winning roast beef and a complete choice of food. The bride and groom tell us what food they would like and we endeavour to make it happen. Over the years we’ve had everything from traditional roast dinners to macaroni cheese or even pizza! Everything we do on the day is delivered to our usual high standards.

3. A venue with space and scenery

Photographs are such an important part of your day, as they capture those magical moments for decades to come. It’s therefore imperative that you choose a backdrop to your wedding that represents you as a couple. A landscape or scene that you both feel comfortable with. Not only for the photographs but for the pictures you build in your own head for the day and the atmosphere a place can evoke.

At The Cowshed: We have brilliant multi-functional neutral rooms which are perfect for any wedding set up. The conservatory area is ideal for pre-service canapés and drinks, with the main room boasting beautiful views for the service. It can also be transformed into a big dance floor later on. There are two large decking areas which are perfect to spill out onto in finer weather. Here the stunning backdrop is the perfect place for wedding photos and selfies with guests as the sun sets on your perfect day. Crathes Castle is also nearby which provides another picture perfect photo opportunity.

tables set at wedding venue in Aberdeenshire

4. Experienced wedding planners

Weddings have so many moving parts that as a couple it’s impossible to keep track of everything and that’s where the professionals come in. Some venues even have their own wedding planners on site to ensure your day runs so smoothly. Good wedding planners should be invisible, in the nicest sense –  leaving you unaware that they are working behind the scenes. Pick carefully, ask around and talk to other couples to see who they used. Look for experience. A good wedding planner will be happy to show a portfolio of weddings and testimonials. Do they understand you as a couple? Can they deliver what you want? An experienced wedding planner should be able to swoop in and take all the stress away.

At The Cowshed: With 30 years experience our manageress knows weddings inside out. With professionalism and an eye for detail, she ensures your day runs like clockwork, so you have a hassle-free day, knowing you are in safe hands. All that you need to do is enjoy your day.

5. Bespoke options at the venue

You may already have set ideas what you want for your day, including themes that represent who you are as individuals and as a couple.  Or you may feel overwhelmed and be opting for a more simple style. The point is it should be about what you want as a couple, rather than feeling like a conveyor belt wedding. Look for venues that are flexible and go the extra mile to help you achieve your dreams, who understand what you are asking rather than running with what they have done before.

At The Cowshed: From having your top table in a circle in the middle to Harry Potter wedding themes, or fish and chips, our staff are on hand to ensure you can have your day as plain or as fancy as you want.  Flexibility is our aim and there are no hidden cost, all you have to do is say it and we will make it happen!

6. Unique use of the venue

No-one wants to share their special day with another couple and their wedding guests, bustling for space at the bar or being ushered out halfway through eating your trio of deserts as the room is set up for the next wedding. A wedding day should be unique and stress feel. If you are hiring a venue, then you want to feel that it’s yours for the day. To take your time, unflustered to enjoy the surroundings. Be careful to ask the venue where it will be the only wedding that day and also whether the public are allowed on site.

At The Cowshed: You are guaranteed peace and quiet as there are no other weddings on site. Instead of feeling like you’re on a conveyor belt, time schedules are completely customised, giving our couples a relaxing feel to the day. With a large car park, even a  wedding guest bus can turn, meaning guests are delivered safely and on time with the venue sitting an accessible 16 miles from Aberdeen.

seating at The Cowshed wedding venue in Aberdeenshire

7. Potential to return to the venue

A wedding is not just for a day, it is a date you will remember and that needs celebrating year after year. Many couples forget to think to the future yet their wedding venue can provide the perfect backdrop for extended family gatherings, a quiet drink or  a christening  in the future.  It is also nice to think that you could return year-after-year to celebrate your wedding anniversary. When looking for a wedding venue, ask staff about special events in the future and whether the venue is only available for weddings. It’s always good to think ahead and ensure you have the perfect place to celebrate in decades to come.

At The Cowshed: The onsite restaurant makes it the perfect excuse for couples to come back year after year to celebrate their wedding anniversary. From reminiscing about the big day to enjoying the award-winning cuisine, The Cowshed is on hand to make the date one to remember now and in the future.

Wedding venue with a view in Aberdeenshire

Tucked amongst rolling hills, just 15 minutes out of Aberdeen, in Banchory. The wedding venue in Aberdeenshire is predominately known for its delicious award-winning food, with a straight forward philosophy of choosing local seasonal Scottish ingredients and cooking them as simple as possible. The stunning scenery and award-winning chefs, may be familiar to many as a restaurant, but now also offers bespoke weddings on site.

The actual venue stands on the site of an old Aberdeenshire dairy and is named after the old ‘Cow Shed’ that still stands in the adjacent field.  With a modern design and stylish and simple interior, The Cowshed is a unique venue. It’s not your usual hotel or country house, it’s a nice wedding venue, focused on the food and the service. Where else would you find award winning roast beef,  macaroni cheese or even pizza for a wedding lunch! It’s a beautiful setting, with stunning views across fields and experienced staff on hand.

Joy Buchan, The Cowshed

A Wedding Venue in Aberdeenshire – Paul and Jenna – April 2022

Having a wedding at The Cowshed means you can be absolutely guaranteed the wedding of your dreams but don’t just take our word for it, meet one couple who had a picture perfect day…

On the location…

We chose The Cowshed because it was a beautiful setting. Delicious food. Good parking for guests and very reasonably priced. We wanted somewhere just for a ceremony, drinks reception and canapés, that was also unique and very stylish. During the wedding planning process, the staff were incredibly helpful and went above and beyond to make the planning process as easy and stress free as possible. We visited the venue a number of times and the owners and the manager always made time to meet with us and discuss the wedding event. In terms of themes, we were keen to keep costs low and we felt that the restaurant and the backdrop of the countryside and the hills were enough of a theme without having to add anything else. My husband and I, wanted a space that was special and gave us a real sense of occasion without being too stiff and formal. The Cowshed ticked this box for us.

On the food…

We had a range of delicious canapés. The sesame sausages and brownies in particular were a big hit. There was plenty for everyone and I also asked for the kids to have some specific food – they very much enjoyed their macaroni and ice cream.

On the day…

The weather on the day wasn’t great so we decided to take our photographs inside in the conservatory with the hills as a beautiful back drop. Had we decided to take the pictures outside, we had a number of beautiful spots chosen.  Our 80 guests arrived at 11.45am by coach and were asked to settle in the conservatory. Some seated, some standing which worked really well. We loved this set up as it allowed us to accommodate the large number of children we had there and also it made it feel very relaxed. I walked down the aisle to ‘Sally Gardens’, a song my papa used to sing for my mum. I met Paul at the far end of the conservatory, where the registrar stood.  Our niece read a poem and our friend sang a song whilst we were signing the register. We walked out to Status Quo’s ‘Rocking All Over The World’.  We then went into the restaurant followed by all our guests.  Canapés were served with Prosecco and there were plenty of staff to cater for us. We were so grateful to all the staff for their hard work, that we even went back there the evening after the wedding for dinner with the family. We also plan to return on our first anniversary.

What our guests said…

Guests told us that it was the best wedding they had ever been to. They said it was beautiful and relaxed in equal measure. For Paul and I, it was a perfect day. Everything was taken care of. All that we needed to do was turn up and say “I do”.

Our wedding in a sentence…

An unforgettable day in a romantic Scottish setting.

Find out more:

If you are after somewhere special to cater for you every need on  your wedding day, then contact the friendly Cowshed team on: 01330 820813 or email them at:

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