5 Things to Consider When Selecting an Event Venue

5 things to consider when picking an event venue

When you are faced with the daunting task of selecting an event venue there are many things you want to consider before making your final decision. Here are the five most important considerations in selecting an event venue:


When choosing an event venue you must consider the location and ensure that everyone will be able to get there by taxi, car or public transportation. You have to ensure there is ample parking space for the amount of guests and cabs that will visit the location without too much of a wait and that people can access public transportation if needed.

Size and Comfort

Take careful consideration of what you will be doing during your event and assess the comfort level your guests will experience at the event venue. Make sure it will not be too tight if people need to line up for a buffet and that the set up will allow people to get in and out of their seats without difficulty.

Also be sure there are ample washrooms and parking spaces available so people are not left waiting in line or stuck in traffic coming or going to the event. Is there an area people can get some fresh air to get away from the noise and crowd? Think of the event and make sure the venue suits your guest’s needs.

Services and Amenities

Make sure that the services offered match your needs. Be certain that if you are having a live band or DJ there is space to dance as well as proper electrical outlets to accommodate equipment. If renting equipment at the event for presentations make sure they are suitable and user friendly; you don’t want to have to fiddle around with it the day of your event. Look at the chairs, tables, lighting, and decor to make sure it will all work to provide an enjoyable event for your guests. Taste the food, look at the dishware and ask questions about bar service, wait staff, etc. As well be certain any special deliveries such as flowers, large displays and equipment can be received without issue.


Get a complete point by point quote to ensure there are no hidden fees. Also ask about cancellation costs, and insurance. You don’t want to end up paying for an event that might be cancelled because of a venue problem.


Make sure you review the agreement thoroughly and look for refund policies, deposits and cancellations fees. You never know what can happen to change your plans.

These five considerations will help you find the perfect event venue to please your guests and make your life a little less stressful.

8 Ways to Customize Your Wedding Venue

wedding venue ottawa

Your wedding venue is the backdrop for your reception. That means that everything must be perfect to set the ambiance you are seeking. Here are eight wonderful ways to customize your wedding venue:


Lighting is one of the greatest way to create ambiance at your wedding venue. Use candelabras, chandeliers, all over lighting, up lighting along walls, back lighting, lit ice sculptures and even the old standby of white fairy lights to enhance the decor at your wedding venue. Coloured lighting can also be used to match your theme colour cast on walls and ceilings.

Mother Nature

A lovely trend is using real trees and branches to add a touch of nature to your wedding venue. Trees such as birch and willows are elegant and delicate and when paired with fairy lights, ribbon, crystal or mirror decorations to catch the light you can create a truly enchanting wonderland. You can also go overboard with flowers creating arches, wall hangings, garland, and additional floral arrangements along walls or flanking the dance floor.

Table Configuration

Consider using an unusual table configuration. Line up round tables to form an interesting endless table, use square or rectangular tables or mix and match various shapes and sizes.


Get creative with fabric and consider draping walls behind the head table, creating a tent like effect on the ceiling or using fabric to create little tents above tables for an Arabian Nights feel. Provide your own accent table linens in more vibrant colours or patterns that better suit your personality and theme.


Rent furniture and create a lounge area for your wedding venue where guests can sit and enjoy martinis.

Gift Table/Guest Book

Create an interesting display for your gift and reception tables. Accessorize with details about yourselves, antique family photos, meaningful items such as a silver set your grandparents received at their wedding or something fun to match the theme of your wedding.

Food Stations

Create food stations that guests can visit at their leisure. Have stunning ice sculptures, displays of fruit, fountains, candles and floral displays that are unique and stunning to add dimension and interest to each station.

Use More Glassware

Add more glassware to your table such as different coloured glass goblets, crystal water jugs or decanted wine in crystal jugs for sparkle.

Your wedding will be more memorable using any of these unique ideas to customize your venue.


6 Ways the St. Elias Centre Can Make Your Corporate Event a Success

corporate events ottawa

All eyes are on you when you are responsible for planning corporate events. That means you have to find a venue that will provide all the details and services you require. Here are six reasons you should hold your next corporate event at St. Elias Centre.

Picturesque, Convenient Location

The St. Elias Centre has stunning views located across the shores of Mooney’s Bay in Ottawa. It is beautiful all year round and is easy to reach by car or by public transportation. Upon arrival you will love the quiet elegance, high ceilings and dazzling chandeliers. You can have a professional, corporate setting or customize the venue to meet a themed or celebratory feel.

Exceptional Menu

Corporate events tend to have attendees from all levels from administrative staff to upper management. This means you want a venue that can provide an exceptional menu that is flavourful and beautifully presented without blowing the budget. St. Elias is able to work with you to prepare food for business luncheons, cocktail parties or sumptuous sit down meals.

Accommodating Space

Corporate events can vary greatly in the number of people attending. The St. Elias Centre is designed to offer rooms for as many as 400 and as little as a handful for brain storming sessions and upper management all day meetings. As well, there is plenty of ample parking on site.

Outstanding Services

Corporate events can take time to plan but at St. Elias their professional staff are experts in event planning and will take up very little of your time. Their outstanding service is designed to make things easy from menu planning to making sure your room is set up when you arrive.

Budget Friendly

You will find St. Elias Centre can offer you the services you require to meet your budget. Affordable menus, reasonable room rental rates and equipment will all come in at a very acceptable quote.

Presentation Ready

Corporate events require presentation provisions and you can be certain to have everything you need from podiums to excellent lighting and sound. You can use their A/V equipment or bring your own. Everything will be ready to go to keep you on schedule without delay.

St. Elias Centre can provide the perfect spot for your next corporate event. You will stay within your budget, execute each detail professionally and impress all those in attendance with little effort on your part.

Why You Should Choose the St. Elias Centre for Your Wedding Venue

why you should choose the st. elias centre for your wedding venue

Your wedding is one of the most anticipated days of your life. You want everything to be perfect from the wedding gown to the ceremony, flowers and venue. Here are just a few reasons you should choose St. Elias Centre as the perfect wedding venue.

The Perfect Backdrop

A momentous occasion requires a majestic backdrop that will be elegant and magical. You want to know that every detail has been custom designed to meet your needs and that you do not have to break the bank to do so. That means you need a wedding venue that has already set the stage and you need only add a few props to make it yours.

At St. Elias they provide a setting with elegant decor, well-appointed common areas and a picturesque setting your guests will appreciate. They provide the perfect ambiance and the minute details such as your colour choices, linens, centre pieces and design details.

Impeccable Food and Service

Your meal must be a tempting and pleasurable experience that keeps your guests happy and allows you to sit back and enjoy each morsel without a worry. At St. Elias they have top chefs who can offer you a menu that is inspired and customized to your needs. They pride themselves in paying attention to every detail for beautiful presentation and have an attentive, professional staff who are trained to provide the most accommodating service to meet your wishes. Everything about your meal will reflect the theme and elegance of your wedding and will be expertly executed.

Flexible Space

When looking at St. Elias you will find that they can accommodate any size wedding from a small and intimate cocktail party to a full sized wedding with all of the fanfare. There is ample parking and you will find the space that is perfectly suited to your needs.

Affordable Elegance

At St. Elias you will not be handed a bill with a number of hidden charges you were not told about. You will be given a detailed quote for the services you have requested that lists each item including the room, linens, P.A. system rentals and even the details of cost for the set up and risers for your head table.

At St. Elias you will have an idyllic wedding venue that provides the customized services you need to create the ultimate backdrop for your reception.

10 Events You Can Host at the St. Elias Centre

10 events you can host at st. elias centre

If you’re in charge of planning corporate events than you know it can be a challenge to find the perfect venue with delicious food, exceptional service and stunning surroundings. At St. Elias Centre in Ottawa, you will enjoy planning any event with helpful staff, impressive gourmet menus and rooms that can accommodate small or large events.

Here are 10 examples of events you can host at the St. Elias Centre:

1. Training Sessions and Seminars

All you need from quiet, spacious rooms to access equipment, you can train staff, hold seminars or even offer seminars for clients while offering yummy lunches or a great dinner or buffet at the end of the day.

2. Product Launches

Having a beautiful backdrop to launch new products and services can add to the appeal and allow you to get a better turn out especially if it is at a convenient location.

3. Company Awards

If your company holds staff awards the St. Elias is the perfect place for corporate events designed to celebrate. Good food, as well as podiums and ample seating will allow you to present awards and offer a celebratory meal to show your appreciation.

4. Charity Events

If you hold a lot of charity events to raise money you can always use a convenient location to get a better turn out and raise more money.

5. Shareholders Meetings

When it comes to corporate events a shareholder meeting is not the time to scrimp. Elegant surroundings and well prepared food shout success without being to extravagant to make people think you are spending their dividends.

6. Team Building

Perhaps the most hated of corporate events, if you choose a spot that says you care people might be more open to participating.

7. Customer Appreciation Days

Corporate events are not always about the company, sometimes they need to be about the client.

8. Industry Networking

A growing trend for larger corporations such as retailers networking events allow a group of like companies or mutually beneficial vendors and services to meet and share ideas and information.

9. Holiday Parties

One of the most anticipated corporate events of the year, you want elegance, taste and indulgence.

10. Press Conferences

Hopefully it is to announce good news and not deflect bad. Either way a central meeting place will be more convenient.

Don’t let finding a place to hold your corporate events slow you down, instead depend on St. Elias Centre.


6 Things You Didn’t Know About Wedding Reception Venues

things you should know when selecting a wedding venue

Couples dream of planning their big day, they dream of the clothes they’ll wear, the food they’ll eat and of course the venue where it will all take place. What most couples don’t take into consideration are unpleasant wedding surprises.


To help you avoid some of these unpleasant surprises here are six things you didn’t know about wedding receptions:


Many venues only allow you to use their own decorations. This can prove disappointing when planning weddings, as Ottawa couples want to meet their exact specifications.

Decorations will play a major role in setting the mood for your reception. Although it is nice to have your choice of linens you want to know your reception hall will work with all of the vendors you need to create the beautiful backdrop you want for your once in a lifetime moment.

Bar and Wine Service

Not all receptions have the same bar and wine service. Be certain you understand what your price includes. A cash bar means your guests will have to pay for their drinks. However, there are other options such as an open bar which provides all drinks throughout the evening or a host bar that serves drinks for an allotted period of time. This is usually charged with a certain amount per guest, but allows them to consume unlimited drinks during the time allotted.


Be very careful about what your venue will provide regarding set-up. You do not want any misunderstandings on your wedding day. Define what will be set-up and by whom. Make sure you coordinate with florists and any other vendors you hire in hand with your venue. Have it in writing what they will be doing, and what they expect your other suppliers to do themselves. This is very important if you want to avoid disappointment.

Floor Plan

Do not proceed with a wedding reception venue until you understand how the room will be laid out. You do not want to end up without enough space for a dance floor, a head table no one can see or tables so close together people can not get in and out of their seats comfortably.

Special Meal Requests

You might not know all the special diet requests for all of your guests when looking at venues, but make sure you ask how guests are accommodated. With many people with dietary restrictions you want to make sure everyone can be given food that is both safe and diet appropriate.

Additional Fees

Make sure you find out if there are any additional fees such as a cake serving fee or more importantly a cancellation fee if something were to happen.

Ottawa couples will feel more comfortable knowing their wedding plans will go smoother by knowing these important facts.


What to Look for When Searching for a Business Luncheon Venue in Ottawa

business luncheon venue in ottawa

A business luncheon requires a special setting that allows you to engage in productive conversation and presentations, improve relationships and impress. Finding the right venue for your business luncheon takes special attention to ensure things go as planned from the convenience of the location to the serving of the final cup of coffee.

The ideal spot will have outstanding service, ample space and equipment, superb food and a welcoming atmosphere where interruptions are minimal.

Here’s what to look for in your search for the perfect business luncheon venue:

Exceptional Menu 

You need a menu that can provide everything from vegan meals to assisting with possible food allergies (or even aversions) so your clients or team members can enjoy their meal without any concerns or embarrassment.

This means when planning the menu you want to check with the client and/or team to ensure there aren’t any allergies you need to worry about. As well you want to look for a venue that can provide a pre-set menu that is often a good idea if budget is an issue or you can choose from a regular menu to provide variety.

Buffets also work well for larger groups as people can pick and choose what they wish to eat. Look into coffee service, water, etc. as well so that everyone has what they need throughout the luncheon following the meal.

Number of People

Your business luncheon venue has to be able to accommodate your head count. You want to know that they have the room for your group as well as a private area for your meetings or presentations.

Make sure you discuss your head count and that they have ample parking, bathrooms and seating for larger groups.


You want a location that can be easily reached by everyone preferably accessible by car or public transit. Unless you are providing transportation for a team meeting, keep in mind not everyone has a car.

You also want a location that is presentable, well maintained and has pleasing decor that will make people feel comfortable.


If your business luncheon will include presentations ensure your venue can accommodate your equipment or better yet provide dependable equipment you can use. Make sure they have someone on site available in case there are any technical difficulties to avoid interruption or delays.

Finding the right business luncheon venue will ensure your event is successful.

Have Your Corporate Christmas Party at the St. Elias Centre

Corporate Christmas Party in Ottawa

‘Tis the season of corporate Christmas parties. Finding the right venue can be challenging unless you know where to look.

Having the inside scoop on one of the hottest venues in the Ottawa area can make booking your Christmas party a snap. Here are five good reasons to have your corporate Christmas parties at St. Elias Centre in Ottawa:

Beautiful Location

The St. Elias Centre is located across from the picturesque shores of Mooney’s Bay in Ottawa. Stunning views can be enjoyed from the facilities made even more attractive in a winter wonderland.

The venue itself boasts elegant chandeliers, stunning high ceilings and your own dazzling party decorations can be added if desired. Conveniently located for those who take public transportation and those who drive, guests will be happy to make the short trip to these elegant facilities.

Sumptuous World-Class Menu

The holidays are all about indulgence and joy and at St. Elias corporate Christmas parties are highlighted with tantalizing menus with world-class gourmet meals. Fresh ingredients and an exotic specialty of Lebanese delights makes St. Elias one of the most desirable venues in the Ottawa area.

You can select from a number of menus and provide guests with a simple cocktail party with mouth-watering appetizers or provide a full sit down meal. Festive buffets can also provide the perfect option for your holiday guests.

Spacious Facility

The St. Elias Centre can accommodate up to 400 guests and can also handle more intimate occasions for smaller corporate Christmas parties. Parking is also available for up to 400 vehicles. A/V equipment is available if required, or you can bring your own equipment.

Outstanding Services

St. Elias Centre provides top quality services that makes planning your event a snap. They have all of the talent to provide top-notch, festive linens to match your decor, first class menus and attentive, professional servers to make your corporate Christmas party a huge success.

Cost Effective

You will find St. Elias Centre is also very flexible to suit any number of budgets. They can work with you to make your event spectacular based on your needs as well as your budget. You can work with their caterers or opt to use an outside caterer, pay for the drinks or arrange to have a cash bar.

Whatever your requirements St. Elias Centre will be happy to accommodate your needs for the perfect, affordable corporate Christmas parties.

5 Tips for Hosting a Business Luncheon

Hosting a business luncheon is no different than hosting a major event. You have to make all the same arrangements and take in all the same considerations.

Here are five tips for hosting a professional business luncheon that will knock their socks off:

Choosing the Date

First consider the purpose of the business luncheon. If you plan on having a keyword speaker make sure you have their dates of availability first. Then consider things such as potential conflicts including a Friday or Tuesday of a long weekend, popular vacation times during the summer as well as holidays. You want to avoid these as people are less likely to be available.

You can also consider doing a quick survey of guest availability for smaller groups as this will help you narrow down the most appropriate dates. When working with high rollers speak to their assistants to find out their schedules so you don’t inconvenience them with too many calls or emails. This will just make your business luncheon seem like a hassle.

Choosing a Venue

Your business luncheon should have an air of importance and a good way to make this seem like more than the average luncheon is to choose a spot that is not just a local restaurant. Look for venues where you can have a private room with a special menu to show much thought was put into the meeting. This will make you look professional as well as provide a place you can focus on the task at hand instead of getting caught up in what’s going on around you.

Look for corporate event venues that can provide an intimate room for smaller luncheons and larger rooms as required. An event venue will also have many perks such as presentation equipment so you don’t have to worry about it should you need it.

Choosing a Menu

A big part of a business luncheon is of course the lunch. Make sure you work with a venue that can provide a delectable menu your guests will enjoy thoroughly.


You want to ensure you send out invites well in advance of the luncheon to ensure key players are available. If you don’t give enough notice they might accept the invite, but then send someone in their stead.

These tips will help you have a business luncheon that is both memorable and successful.

Choosing a Venue for Your Next Event

Your event venue can make or break your event. Follow these five easy steps and you are certain to make your next event a huge success:

Date and Time

Nothing is more frustrating than finding the perfect event venue only to discover they do not have your date and time available. Before you arrange for a tour or get too emotionally attached, call and check availability. Unless your date is flexible, not checking availability first can end up in heart ached.

Number of Guests

It’s a good idea to have a solid estimate for the maximum amount of guests you are expecting. This will have an impact on the event venue you select as all facilities have maximum capacities for the amount of people they can safely and comfortably fit into a hall or conference room. As well you want to be clear how the room will be set up as this will affect the amount of people. List if you require a seating area for presentations, need tables and chairs for dining and/or participants to be able to take notes, require a dance floor and need to accommodate entertainment on a stage for a band or DJ.


Once you know you can be accommodated at the event venue arrange for a tour of the site. Be certain to check out areas such as washrooms, cloak rooms and common areas to make sure they are well maintained. Check out parking as well and see if they have valet parking if you require it. Make sure you are shown the actual room you will be renting as you don’t want to look at a grand ball room when in fact the only thing available is a smaller less grand room. Take notes and ask questions so you cover all of your bases.

Event Venue Details

Pay attention to details such as lighting and sound. If it is a day event you want to have nice windows with a view. If it is a night event you want to be certain the lights can be dimmed for more intimate, elegant surroundings or brightened if it is not that kind of event. If you will be doing presentations make sure they have the proper equipment.

When you are planning an event, choosing a venue is half the battle. In fact, with the right event venue you can actually win the war.

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