By Julianna Flamio, Daily Free Press Staff Writer
The average Boston bride dropped $35,560 on her wedding last year, ranking the Hub eighth in the United States in money spent on weddings, according to a press release on an XO Group Inc. survey.
Boston surpasses the average wedding budget of $27,021. The survey of 18,000 brides revealed couples’ budgets are increasing year after year for the first time since 2008.
Couples in New York spent the most on their weddings last year, with an average cost of $65,824.
New England landed on the survey’s top most expensive weddings twice more, with Rhode Island ranked as the fifth most expensive and Connecticut as the 11.
Veronica Alexandra, the founder of Boston-based Blue Ivy, said she plans weddings anywhere from $5,000 to $1 million, but Boston weddings seem to gravitate toward anywhere from $30,000 to $90,000.
“If you’re looking for a classic wedding, you’re going to need around $45,000 to 50,000,” Alexandra said.
Couples cannot even do a wedding in Boston for $35,000 unless they are doing it in a restaurant, she said.
Au Soleil Catering Director Maura Devaney said in an email that Au Soliel typically caters weddings at deCordova Sculpture Park and Museum in Lincoln and Space with a Soul in Boston.
“I think that it’s accurate that we would be the eighth most expensive city, especially behind the markets cited in the article,” Devaney said. “Our typical bride might fall on the higher side of this spectrum.”
Alexandra said Boston is an expensive city to host weddings because New England in general is known for its distinguished families.
She said the Boston Public Library, the Museum of Fine Arts and the State Room may be popular for clients of higher-income backgrounds with unlimited budgets.
“The thing is that the city is so limited with options that it becomes very difficult for people with high tastes,” she said. “They really only have those three options and call it a day.”
Emily Tenney, events manager at the BPL, said the library is not the most expensive venue in the city, but it certainly can be difficult to book a wedding there.
“Even right now we do have some availability. It’s just those May and June Saturdays that book pretty quickly,” Tenney said. “Those we’re having people book somewhere between 14 and 18 months in advance for those prime weekends.
Space rentals range from $6,000 to an upwards of $20,000, with the courtyard as the most popular space and Bates Hall and the Reading Room as the other two popular library spaces, she said. Tenney said last year the BPL hosted about 75 weddings.