Are you searching for the perfect wedding rehearsal dinner venues in Denver? The great thing about this exhilarating city is that you aren’t going to have a lack of options. No matter what preferences you have as a bride, groom, or couple, there is a venue that creates the perfect atmosphere for the kind of rehearsal dinner that fits your personality and style as a soon to be married couple.
Denver is a city that has dozens of outstanding restaurants, but that isn’t the only reason it excels at offering great locations for rehearsal dinners. The city is known for its excellent craft beer scene, amazing mountain views, variety of professional sports, and offering legalized marijuana for recreational use. With so many possibilities, it’s no surprise that you can find a perfect location for your rehearsal dinner – no matter who you are.
Not familiar with rehearsal dinners? That’s okay. The tradition stems from hundreds of years ago when families all came together with the soon-to-be-married couple on the eve of a wedding. Nowadays, things are often less traditional and more fun. The event involves a rehearsal of how the wedding will work, followed by time to eat, drink, and socialize for the marrying couple and those who mean the most to them.
But before you can jump into all the fun that this event can offer, you need to get it all planned out first. Read on, and we’ll offer some tips to help you through the process.
Steps to Plan the Perfect Wedding Rehearsal Dinner
Choosing the right wedding rehearsal venues in Denver is important, but several other planning steps will also need to be done. While that might sound stressful and time-consuming, it doesn’t have to be that way. A rehearsal dinner is an excellent time to bring together the families of both members of a couple to mingle and get to know each other a little better. If you pull things off right, the rehearsal dinner might end up being almost as memorable as your actual wedding.
The steps below will walk you through all the planning you need to do to ensure a great night out with people you care about. But don’t be afraid to buck tradition and make your own rules. After all, the wedding rehearsal dinner celebrates you and those who will be a part of the biggest day of your life.
Pin Down Who Will Be Hosting
In more traditional times, it was taken for granted that the groom’s parents would be in charge of the rehearsal dinner. However, modern times have shaken things up a little. It’s really a matter of preference when it comes to who takes care of the hosting duties. Maybe one set of parents wants to take care of it. If your parents are splitting the wedding costs, you and your future spouse might want to handle the dinner hosting requirements. Communicate with your partner and both sets of parents to determine what the best option might be for all of you.
Consider Implementing a Theme
When you’re kicking off the weekend of your wedding, you want it to be fun and incorporate details that matter to you and your partner. One of the easiest ways to do this is by adding a theme to the rehearsal dinner. You don’t have to limit yourself here. Consider something that really speaks to the two of you as a couple. If you always have a weekly pizza date night, maybe you incorporate that. Those who like to spend time in the mountains could get decorations or choose wedding rehearsal dinner venues in Denver that speak to that.
Choose a Location That Works for You
We’ll talk about some of your options for venues later in this article. However, for now, think about what some of your possibilities are. If you know a few spots that are sentimental to you as a couple, put those on your list as possibilities. Keep in mind that you don’t have to go with a traditional venue. Some people choose to have their rehearsal dinner at a family home. Others look at bars, hotel suites with great views, and venues that aren’t the typical fine dining restaurant. If you and your partner have shared hobbies, the venue could be something that relates to one of those. The possibilities are nearly endless.
Start Making a Guest List
Most people choose to add close family members to their list for the rehearsal dinner. People who are participating in the wedding, including the officiant, are also often invited. It’s also considerate to make your guests aware that they can bring a partner or date to the rehearsal dinner with them. On the other hand, if you end up wanting to invite a large number of people, make sure you have ways to keep costs reasonable. For instance, you might offer cocktails and appetizers or drinks and dessert instead of an entire meal.
Decide on the Appropriate Timing
Tradition dictates that the rehearsal dinner is typically held on the night before the wedding. In most cases, this is on a Friday evening. The rehearsal will often start at around 5:30 PM and last 30 minutes to an hour. The dinner will occur right after the rehearsal, so this might be at around 7 PM. However, again, remember that this is your celebration and you can choose other days or times. Those who are having a wedding on a holiday or a Sunday might have the rehearsal dinner two nights before the wedding ceremony. This can offer extra time to relax and unwind before the big day. If most of the people attending the wedding are coming in late on the night before the wedding, you could even have the celebration in the morning hours on your actual wedding day.
Choose a Menu to Serve
The menu available might vary based on whether the wedding rehearsal venues in Denver that you choose are located inside restaurants, at banquet halls, in hotel event spaces, or at other locations you’re passionate about. No matter what you decide in terms of venue, make sure that the menu is something you consider in the early stages of planning. If you aren’t sure what kind of cuisine you want to provide, try something local. Everyone from out of town will enjoy trying something new.
Send out the Invitations
It’s usually best to send out the invitations for your wedding rehearsal dinner in Denver separately from the wedding invitations. To ensure that everyone has time to prepare for the dinner, it’s best to send these out at least four weeks before the event. If you can send them out six to eight weeks in advance, that’s even better. Think about where people will be traveling from to reach Colorado. If any of the guests are from far away, provide as much notice as possible in case it affects their travel plans.
Be Prepared for Others to Speak
Usually, the host will be the one who welcomes everyone at the start of the event. However, sometimes other guests might want to give a small toast. If you have a moderate or large group at the rehearsal dinner, you may want to choose a single individual who makes sure all the speeches and toasts go off without a hitch. Unlike speeches at the actual wedding, don’t be surprised if these toasts are closer to comedy roasts. You and your soon-to-be spouse should also prepare to make a short speech at some point during the celebration.
Consider the Rehearsal Aspect
While the dinner after the rehearsal is important, don’t forget the actual rehearsal aspect. You’ll want to be sure you have your wedding planner, officiant, venue, and others who are participating on hand to go through the process in anticipation of the upcoming wedding. In most cases, the ceremony rehearsal involves a short run-through of how the ceremony will play out. You’ll practice who walks down the aisle when and with who, where people will stand, and other important details. Be sure you make time to get through the rehearsal before the dinner starts. Add in travel time so that you aren’t late for all the fun you have in store for you once the rehearsal is done.
Plan for Gifts to Pass Out to the Wedding Party
Most of the time, the rehearsal dinner is considered the best time to hand out gifts to all of the members of the wedding party. This is even more important if the gifts include items that they are expected to wear or use during the actual wedding ceremony. This is also a great time to give thanks to your parents for their support, love, and guidance. The gifts you have chosen for them can also be handed out at your Denver wedding rehearsal dinner.
Add Time to Share Reminders
Before everyone finishes dinner and heads home for the night, make sure you share any announcements that might be needed for your wedding day. Check-in with the wedding party to be sure everyone has all the items they should bring, and they know where and when to arrive to start getting ready for your big day. For Denver couples who are having a large wedding, you should also remind guests about pick-up times, locations for transportation, and activities happening the next day so everyone is on the same page.
Tips for Creating a Wedding Rehearsal Dinner Everyone Will Remember
There’s nothing wrong with having a formal rehearsal dinner at a typical location, but you also shouldn’t force yourself into that environment. If you’re more laidback and want something a bit more fun, there’s nothing wrong with that. In fact, your guests are likely to appreciate the ability to let loose before your wedding day. Those who are looking to add a touch more excitement to their rehearsal dinner will find a few ideas below.
Bring in a Band
There’s nothing better than local music to get people in a happy mood to celebrate your upcoming marriage vows. Whether you choose a folk group, a bluegrass band, or a group of mariachi musicians, it can add something special to your event. Guests can mingle and talk to each other while having music in the background to keep things a bit more elevated and fun.
Consider a Picnic
Not everyone is interested in something as casual as a picnic, but for some couples, it really works. Alternatively, you could choose a venue that revolves around an activity that lets you bring your own food. This can save on food costs and offer something a bit less formal to contrast from the wedding itself. You can bring foods that you enjoy along with natural linens and some flowers to create an exciting and fun eating experience.
Incorporate a Slideshow or Photo Montage
One of the staples at many wedding rehearsal dinners in Denver is a slideshow. It can include photos of the couple as babies and then move forward through time to show some of the best times the two people have experienced together up to this point. Another option is creating a photo montage in whatever art style you like the most. Everyone can look at the photos at their leisure and reflect on the relationship of the two people who are soon to be married.
Make the Dinner an Experience
Denver is full of exciting locations that guests will enjoy having the chance to experience. You could create an experience around one of your favorite attractions so everyone coming into the area for the wedding can have the opportunity to take in the sights. While this is most commonly done when you are having a destination wedding, that isn’t a requirement. There’s no reason you can’t spend time at hip hotspots right in your own neighborhood with your family members and friends.
Add Interactive Elements
Some couples enjoy being active and doing new things – which can also be a part of a wedding rehearsal dinner. It might seem like the food has to be center stage, but that isn’t the case. Consider going somewhere that offers fun activities, games, or sports that you can enjoy with all the people you love. Archery Games is a great option if you want to try something new and compete with all your friends. You can bring your own food, order drinks, and have fun learning a new sport with the people you care the most about.
The Top 15 Wedding Rehearsal Dinner Venues in Denver
Now that you have an idea of how to plan your wedding rehearsal dinner and what kind of things you can incorporate to make it unique, it’s time to consider venue options. Denver is a large and diverse city, so you can be sure to have a ton of options. That can be an advantage when it comes to choosing somewhere that fits your style and personality. However, it can also be a drawback if you have trouble making decisions.
Don’t worry. We aren’t going to leave you without plenty of options. All of the wedding rehearsal dinner venues in Denver mentioned below offer unique spaces that could be the perfect location for your event. You can read through the details and get an idea of what to expect so you can narrow down your options and then choose your dream venue.
1. Archery Games
5405 W. 56th Ave, Unit D, Arvada
If you’re an active couple who enjoys staying in shape, getting a little competitive, and keeping busy, Archery Games could be the perfect choice of a rehearsal dinner venue. The business hosts parties and events that are customized to meet your needs. When having a rehearsal dinner at Archery Games, you can bring in whatever food you like and enjoy playing a new game with friends. Reserve as many tables as you want and focus on having a good time. This exciting venue sells wine, beer, and spiked seltzer to ensure everyone has a chance to relax and have fun.
2. The Wright Room at Appaloosa Grill
535 16th. St. Ste. 240, Denver
This is a meeting space located in the Denver Masonic Building. It has two rooms looking over the city and offers in-house chefs to create the perfect meal for a wedding rehearsal dinner. This is a great option for a couple who want a more traditional dining experience. The Wright Room has room for up to 200 guests and offers a variety of services, such as a bar and drinks, cakes and desserts, and catering. If you appreciate a romantic and historic location where friends and family can mingle, this is a great solution.
3. Curtis Ballroom at the Landmark
5345 Landmark Pl, Greenwood Village
The Curtis Ballroom is a contemporary space made for events like wedding rehearsal dinners. It has modern décor and gorgeous views that the couple and their guests alike will enjoy. Anyone who has a penchant for fairytales will appreciate the ballroom setting that looks out over the Denver skyline. While it isn’t located in Denver proper, it’s close by and offers a more affordable option than similar venues in the city. There is room for hundreds of guests, and many items like tables, chairs, and china are provided on a complimentary basis.
4. Antlers at Vail
680 Lionshead Pl, Vail
Antlers at Vail offers more than 2,000 square feet of on-site event space near several wedding venues, like the Donovan Pavilion and the Vail Interfaith Chapel. It makes a good spot for a rehearsal dinner venue, especially if you’re having the wedding nearby. Chef Barry Robinson is available for rehearsal dinners and you can enjoy free appetizers for a reception if you choose to get married at the same location. There is also lodging at this location so that out-of-town guests can enjoy staying in suites or condos while in the area to celebrate the couple’s big day.
5. Earls Kitchen + Bar
1600 Glenarm Pl #140, Denver
If you enjoy a rustic vibe and the drinks are just as important as the dinner, Earls Kitchen + Bar is an excellent location for your rehearsal dinner. This venue is located downtown and offers a hip, modern interior. The menu is composed of contemporary dishes based on global flavors and includes a huge wine collection and many delicious, handcrafted cocktails. You can rent one of the four spaces in the venue or all of them, depending on how many people are in the party. This space accommodates from eight to 300 guests in a reception or seated style to meet your specific needs.
6. Hyatt Regency Denver Tech Center
7800 E Tufts Ave, Denver
The Tech Center at the Hyatt Regency Denver offers more than 30,000 square feet of space and a selection of venue options. The Centennial Penthouse is located on the 12th floor and offers amazing views of downtown and the mountains. The Grande Mesa Ballroom can accommodate up to 800 guests and offers a selection of modern décor. There are options for all sizes of groups and types of wedding dinner rehearsals, as well as space perfect for a reception. Since this venue is located in a hotel, guests at the wedding can find lodging here and be steps away from the dinner event.
7. The Crawford Hotel
1701 Wynkoop St., Denver
If you want to celebrate in one of the most iconic spots in Denver, consider the Crawford Hotel. It’s located inside Denver Union Station and offers a luxurious setting compared to many rehearsal dinner venues in Denver. Wedding guests can stay in the gorgeous rooms and be near all the top attractions of the city. You can set up the dinner during a curated cocktail hour in the Cooper Lounge or try one of the other spaces that fit your needs for the evening. This location offers event planners to help you ensure things go off without a hitch.
8. La Sandia
8340 Northfield Blvd Unit 1690, Denver
Maybe instead of elegance and luxury, you prefer something exciting, vibrant, and a bit more casual. La Sandia is an extremely popular cantina and tequila bar located in the Stapleton neighborhood. It serves a wide selection of Mexican comfort food alongside margaritas and more than 150 tequilas and mezcals. It’s an ideal setting for a rehearsal dinner, brunch, or cocktail party in the city. You’ll have access to a tequila sommelier during the experience to help you find the best drinks for the group. The restaurant also has an events team to help you create the exact experience you want.
9. The Kitchen American Bistro
1560 Wazee St., Denver
Another restaurant option in the city with room for up to 200 guests is the Kitchen American Bistro. The venue is inside the Sugar Building in the LoDo district and offers easy access to attractions like Coors Field, Union Station, and the Pepsi Center. You’ll be inside a simple and clean space with warm reclaimed wood accents that speak to the history of the building. The menu at this restaurant varies based on the season and includes foods thoughtfully prepared by a talented culinary team. The space is A/V ready and open for rehearsal dinners, bridal luncheons, welcome receptions, and more.
10. Fudo – Tea & Wellness Services
2822 W 28th Ave, Denver
If you have a Japanese background or simply enjoy the culture, your ideal Denver wedding rehearsal venue could be Fudo – Tea & Wellness Services. This venue walks you through the process of preparing matcha. It has a capacity that can accommodate up to 50 people and is a great way to connect as a couple with your friends and loved ones before the wedding. The goal of the venue is to help people connect physically, spiritually, and mindfully to create memories that will be remembered at the wedding and beyond.
11. Briar Common Brewery + Eatery
2298 Clay St, Denver
At Briar Common Brewery + Eatery, there are two floors to the venue. Each of them has an outside entrance so that you can rent out one or both for your wedding rehearsal dinner. Both floors at the restaurant come with a full bar with cocktails, wine, and ten beers that are brewed in-house. There are also patios on each floor so you can enjoy great views of the city. The restaurant can accommodate from eight to 80 people for a rehearsal dinner and also offers spaces for other types of parties.
12. Downtown Aquarium Denver
700 Water St, Denver
If you want to enjoy great food and a once-in-a-lifetime experience for your wedding rehearsal dinner, Downtown Aquarium Denver is a great option. A variety of meal choices are available, including steak, chicken, seafood, salad, pasta, and more. However, this destination offers more than just exceptional food. The Nautilus Ballroom is available for events with room for 50 to 250 guests. It comes with helpful staff, audio and visual equipment, an excellent culinary team, and gorgeous views of the skyline from the observation deck. You can also inquire about access to the Dive Lounge as part of your dining experience.
13. Lucky Strike Denver
500 16th St. Suite #340, Denver
Another activity-based venue for a Denver wedding rehearsal dinner is Lucky Strike Denver. Party experts are available to help you create the perfect event for you, your partner, and all of your guests. The great thing about this location is the variety of options in terms of things to do. You can spend some time competing at bowling, head off to play a few rounds of a video game, and then shoot pool with your friends. This venue has a casual dining menu with delicious foods like nachos, pizza, pretzels, and sliders. The drink menu includes dozens of beers, several wine choices, and an assortment of cocktails.
14. Blackbird Public House
305 S Downing St, Denver
Available with space for up to 100 guests, Blackbird Public House is a clean, modern dining establishment that revolves around creating fun times for friends and family members. The restaurant is in a gorgeous location and works well for both formal and casual events where you want a touch of rustic flair. As far as the food goes, this space offers a variety of comfort foods that are both upscale and more accessible. Some of the options include wings, mussels, burgers, and seasonally crafted dishes with fresh ingredients. It’s an understated location that lets you relax in anticipation of your coming vows.
98 North Steele St, Denver
The Denver location of Matsuhisa is found in Cherry Creek in the Steele Creek building and offers a selection of private dining options. You can choose a space for a more intimate dinner or select a more spacious environment if you have lots of guests coming. This restaurant offers modern Japanese dishes inspired by Tokyo, as well as Argentina, Peru, and other locations around the globe. You can try dishes like black cod miso, white fish tiradito, and yellowtail sashimi with jalapeno. The staff at the restaurant can create wine, food, and sake pairings for the ultimate flavor experience.
Final Thoughts About Rehearsal Dinner Venues in Denver
As someone who is about to get married, the rehearsal dinner gives you a chance to relax with the people closest to you and enjoy food, activities, and other things you enjoy. It lets you breathe easier before the big day is upon you and you get to become married officially. Planning a rehearsal dinner in Denver that hits on your personality and style is the perfect way to go into your wedding with the person you love.
When it comes down to it, the venues here are great for many people, but you should select the option that feels right to you. If you’re an active couple who want to blow off some steam before you exchange vows, there’s nowhere better to do that than at Archery Denver. You can get in touch with us now to learn more about your options and get assistance with planning the perfect rehearsal dinner. Make sure to have fun with it!