The Best Venues in Upstate New York for an Intimate Wedding or Elopement
I was in your shoes not long ago… trying to plan a beautiful wedding while trying to keep the focus on togetherness.. Planning a wedding is difficult enough on its own. But then once you throw in the “intimate” and “experiential” curve balls in there, so many couples feel stuck.
While planning an intimate wedding can be fun, it can be difficult finding the perfect place to host your event. Many couples deciding to elope with loved ones or host a smaller wedding celebration want a venue that goes above and beyond.
Sometimes, you just want to elope near home
I love traveling and totally vibe with the hype around destination elopements – there’s really nothing like it. However, many couples want an elopement experience without having to travel far or sacrifice the presence of loved ones. When inviting loved ones, it can be uncomfortable asking everyone to get a passport and travel thousands of miles to celebrate. Trust me, I totally get it!
Born and raised in Upstate New York, I've become very familiar with all the little gems New York State has to offer.
To help those wanting an intimate and focused experience, I spent months scouring the internet and connecting with local professionals to discover the very best intimate wedding venues in Upstate NY.
To create this list, the venue had to be unique and photogenic, but above all had to offer an experience. I wanted to highlight the venues that thought outside the box and gave an inclusive, non-traditional wedding itinerary.
Although there are many other venues I would love to include, I really wanted to highlight those that pull you away from the distractions of society and offer the opportunity to truly unwind and focus on being together.
Each of the venues listed below are privately owned, have insurmountable views, incredibly talented in house chefs, farm-to-table cuisine, and comfortable accommodations for all of your guests. I only listed venues that immerse you in nature and continuously put your marriage at the center of everything.
These venues go beyond beauty
Not only have I visited each of these venues personally, but I’ve also been able to meet the venue owners and ask all the questions an eloping couple would ask. Pricing, lodging, distance to the nearest airport… I cover it all.
Through this journey, I’ve developed some great relationships with the owners and trust in their ability to provide exceptional service to each and every couple that comes their way.
Now sit back, get yourself a cuppa (or adult beverage – I’m not judging), and let me guide you through some of the best intimate wedding venues in Upstate NY!
*All photos from venue websites unless otherwise noted
The Best Intimate Wedding Venues in Upstate New York
Wondering how to have a memorable wedding? Look no further.
Cedar Lakes Estate offers the perfect blend of rustic elegance with modern innovations, all tucked in an incredible outdoor setting. From the lake to the mountains, the estate offers endless amenities. Luxury overnight accommodations, multiple indoor and outdoor event venues, and even a pool-side patio. The estate also offers a fully restored 5,400 square foot barn and an open-air pavilion with bistro lights and an oversized fire pit to host your event.
I won’t pretend that the Cedar Lakes Estate wedding cost for a weekend event isn’t steep. However, not only do you and your guests have full and private access to the entire property Friday through Sunday, but you’re also served delicious and local farm to table cuisine throughout your entire stay.
For those looking for a simpler affair, Cedar Lakes has weekday availability. However, you may be sharing the 500 acre resort with other guests.
Peak season runs April to November, and booking at least one year in advance is recommended.
Address: 1 Team Usa Way, Port Jervis, NY 12771
Nearest Airports: John F. Kennedy International (102 miles or 2h drive) -or- Newark Liberty International (72 miles or 1h30m drive)
Did someone say GOAT YOGA?!
The Gilbertsville Farmhouse is a rustic and glamorous barn weekend wedding venue and glamping retreat camp. The Gilbertsville team is dedicated to giving you the gift of days, not hours, to celebrate with the people you love most in life. From Friday morning through Sunday afternoon, the 125 acre property is exclusively yours.
Weddings are expensive. You deserve a space and team that is worth every penny. A space deserving of your love and trust, and a team as invested in your wedding as you are.
Sharon Boustani, Owner
And c’mon, who wouldn’t want to wake up to yoga with goats?
Address: 336 Coye Brook Rd, South New Berlin, NY 13843
Nearest Airports: Syracuse Hancock International (79 miles or 1h45m drive) -or- Greater Rochester International (165 miles or 3h drive)
The Wadsworth Homestead
Photography by Alyssa Vanzo
Although the homestead has been the private home to six generations, the Wadsworth family decided to open the property for public use in 2011. Thank goodness!
The homestead retains much of it’s original decor, in turn offering an elegant and antique charm amid 300 acres outside Livingston County. Whether you host your intimate wedding on the back deck overlooking the Genesee Valley or inside the beautifully curated mansion itself, the Wadsworth Homestead offers nothing short of an inviting atmosphere.
Address: 4 South St, Geneseo, NY 14454
Nearest Airports: Greater Rochester International (32 miles or 35 minute drive) -or- Buffalo Niagara International (60 miles or 1h15m drive)
When I first came across this venue, my jaw hit the floor and I got all those butterfly feelings in my stomach… where on Earth was this place when I was planning MY wedding?!
Seriously, this place is pure magic.
With safari-style glamping tents and immediate access to some of the most beautiful hiking trails of Upstate NY, Firelight Camps is one you must check out! Not only is this one of the only glamping wedding venues offered in New York State, Firelight Camps also offers amenities such as sunrise yoga, in-tent massages, and guided hikes through the scenic Buttermilk Falls State Park.
Address: 1150 Danby Road Ithaca, NY
Nearest Airports: Syracuse Hancock International (65 miles or 1h30m drive) -or- Rochester International (98 miles or 2h drive)
Featured in major wedding magazines such as Vogue, Junebug Weddings, and Green Wedding Shoes, Foxfire Mountain House is one of the dreamiest venues for couples craving a back yard feel.
Although they host weddings up to 150 guests, the folks at Foxfire Mountain House are masters at serving smaller + more intimate affairs. Accommodations for up to 28 guests, fresh flowers in guest rooms, and welcome meals and day-after breakfasts for all site guests, they consider every little detail necessary for making your guests feel comfortable.
Address: 72 Andrew Ln, Mt Tremper, NY 12457
Nearest Airports: Stewart Airport (58 miles or 1h drive) -or- Albany International (82 miles or 1h20m drive)
The Kester Homestead is a privately owned wedding venue featuring full service wedding planning, day of coordination and styling, and in-house floral services for both intimate and traditional weddings. The property features many opportunities to host your event, as well as a historic farmhouse to shelter your loved ones for the weekend celebration. Not going to lie, this is a personal favorite of mine in all of Upstate New York.
There’s just something about the old world charm this property offers, without being too rustic. Not only does the Kester Homestead have a gorgeous barn they have renovated for larger receptions, but they also have a carriage house and lawn set-up with bistro lights, vintage rugs, and farmhouse tables to ensure that perfect “backyard” feel.
Owners Mackenzie and Blaine make you feel right at home with their incredible hospitality, and are completely transparent with their pricing and offerings on your website – so you can trust that these two are going to deliver you the most incredible weekend experience for you and your loved ones.
If you’re looking for a quiet place to spend a weekend with friends and family while celebrating your new marriage, please look no further than The Kester Homestead.
Address: Kester Road, Memphis NY 13112
Nearest Airports: Syracuse Hancock International (20 miles or 30m drive) -or- Rochester International (80 miles or 1h30m drive)
A “Gather Greene wedding” is truly a “gathering wedding.”
This Hudson Valley event space offers all the essentials for a memorable wedding experience: incredible views of the Catskill and Berkshire mountains, wooded trails, massive rolling green fields, and a modern luxe 4,000 square foot open-air pavilion to host your main event.
But, it doesn’t stop at the views.
The Gather Greene cabins are one for the books… “all the comforts of a tiny hotel room, in the middle of the woods.” Each of their 17 climate-controlled cabins comes with a king-sized bed, full bathroom, mini fridge, and a private outdoor deck for lounging.
The best part? Because Gather Greene believes time in nature is such a valuable part of your experience, they’ve suited each of the cabins with a grand, floor to ceiling picture window so you and your guests are never without a view.
Address: 176 Levett Rd, Coxsackie, NY 12051
Nearest Airports: Albany International (36 miles or 45 minutes) -or- Newark International (130 miles or 2h10m drive)
Tucked away in the hills of the Hudson Valley, The Windrift Hall is an out-of-place English Cottage – perfect for the modern couple looking to host their immersive wedding or elopement.
The historic house at Windrift Hall sleeps up to 14 guests and is surrounded by 14 acres of garden and meadows, making it the perfect place outside New York City to get some peace and quiet so you can focus on each other and your loved ones.
I could easily picture an urban city elopement followed by an intimate family celebration at The Windrift Hall – complete with oversized white and dried floral arrangements, tapered candles, and glasses of champagne everywhere.
Address: 256 Smith Rd, Coxsackie, NY 12192
Nearest Airports: Albany International (32 miles or 40 minutes) -or- Newark International (135 miles or 2h15m drive)
I am so excited to share some of the best intimate wedding venues in NY. I hope you found this list helpful! If there is anything else I can help you with in your search, don’t hesitate to reach out.
Other Elopement Planning Resources
Because so many couples have never eloped or hired a professional photographer before, I have created this guide which walks you through the process of hiring me to photograph your elopement and explain what the process of working with me looks like every step of the way.
Facebook0Tweet0Pin0 Eloping Abroad: Tips, Tricks, and Good-to-knows This post could just be titled “Finishing Strong When Traveling Abroad” because many of these suggestions are targeted towards those traveling internationally. However, many couples who do elope end up eloping abroad –