This week’s featured venue post was written by Disneymooner Vanessa. To read more about her wedding, please go to our private Disneymooner Forums. Vanessa had her wedding ceremony at American Adventure Rotunda followed by a Living Seas reception.
It is hard to pinpoint when I decided I would have a Disney wedding, but I had my mind made up long before I met my husband. I knew about the Disney Wedding Pavilion, but beyond that I did not know anything about having a Disney wedding. After getting engaged I thought that a Disney Fairy Tale Wedding would exceed our budget; however after doing some research I soon discovered that I was wrong.
Once we decided on getting married at Disney I realized that I wanted something different compared to the traditional ceremony. The wedding pavilion is a beautiful place, but it did not fit the quintessential Disney experience that I was looking for in a location. While researching video and photography vendors online I came across a sample video of a wedding inside the American Adventure Rotunda. When I watched it, I instantly fell in love with the location for our ceremony.
My husband and I are very political, so the grandeur of the rotunda reminded me of this connection that we have together. An added bonus was that Epcot is my family’s favorite park. Many of our guests had never been to Disney World prior to our wedding, so I knew the location would completely amaze them.
A lot of brides choose to use this venue for a reception; however the site requires a minimum of 100-150 guests that we would not have been able to meet with our small guest count of only 50. Having our ceremony there allowed us to utilize the space with our small group. The current site venue fee for ceremonies in the American Adventure Rotunda is $2,000 plus tax.
An added bonus to the location is that the Rotunda is Epcot’s only indoor ceremony location. It was great to be able to plan our wedding without being worried about the weather.
There are several tips I learned along the way while planning our ceremony in the Rotunda. First, ask to enter from the side entrance instead of the main doors. Many of the wedding videos I saw of the bride entering into the Rotunda were washed out as they opened the main doors and light flooded in from behind her. I asked for our ceremony to be set up facing the side entrance and our planner had me enter in from inside the National Treasures Exhibit. She also mentioned the option of having me come down the elevator from the Parlor reception venue although that is not what we did in the end.
Another tip is to save on spend your money wisely when it comes to decorating. The rotunda is very ornate, so you do not need to spend a lot of money on added décor. The standard issue chairs that come with the facility rental fee do not blend well with the Rotunda’s background. We decided to pay for chair covers to solve this problem. The covers were more affordable compared to renting completely different chairs.
An important videography and photography tip is to ask your vendors to take photos from the second floor. The aerial view during the ceremony is amazing. In addition, we asked our photographer to take a group photo with all of our guests looking up towards the second floor after the ceremony was over.
There are some limitations in terms of the music offerings that can be used at this location. We paid for a keyboard player which sounded great with the acoustics of the room. One other thing to consider is the time of your wedding. Since the World Showcase does not open to outside guests until 11 a.m. weddings in this area must take place during the morning. We had a 9 a.m. ceremony which meant my day started at 4:30 a.m. Only receptions are allowed at the site in the late evening.
Four years later I would still pick the same ceremony location. The American Adventure Rotunda was the perfect fit for our personality and budget. It gave us an in-park experience that none of our guests will ever forget.
To read more about Vanessa’s wedding join our private forums, including her recaps.