Event Venues on the South Coast of England

By May 27, 2019 June 9th, 2019 Venues

Event Venues on the South Coast of England

A review of two fantastic venues for two very different event styles

Earlier this year I spent a long weekend in Milford on Sea with my husband, Sam, and cockapoo, Mabel. As event planners, Keet and I tend to use such getaways as an opportunity to scout for potential venues and seek inspiration – from themes and decor to suppliers and entertainment. What was great about this weekend was that I had the opportunity to visit two very different types of venue that cater for two very different event styles.

South Lawns Hotel, Milford on Sea

Looking for a more relaxed and informal space for your next event? This could be the perfect venue for you. Situated between the New Forest National Park and the Hampshire coastline, this rural venue caters for weddings, private and corporate events and conferences.

With its own bar area and separate entrance, the Cornwallis Suite can cater for up to 150 guests and the space is totally flexible to meet your needs. With a vast terrace area and private gardens, you can take your event outside with space for a marque, barbeque catering and patio games (all laid out and ready to be used).

A few things I like about this venue:

  • If you’re planning a wedding, you can host both your ceremony and reception here – no carting guests between venues. The hotel is licensed to host both civil ceremonies and civil partnerships for up to 120 guests (seated) or 175 guests (standing)
  • There is plenty of free parking on-site
  • The hotel has 26 en suite bedrooms, so guests don’t have to travel far once the event is over
  • Putting this last but the best selling point for me – the hotel is dog friendly! So, if you’re a dog lover, you don’t need to make separate arrangements for your furry companion and they even get a little welcome pack from the resident dog, Roxy, on arrival. If you aren’t a fan of dogs, don’t let this point put you off. There are designated bedrooms for those staying with dogs and a separate dining area. The hotel itself is kept immaculately – not a dog hair or scent to be found
South Lawns Hotel back garden
South Lawns Hotel front terrace
South Lawns Hotel front garden with cockapoo

Highcliffe Castle, Highcliffe

If you’re after a venue that oozes sophistication with added wow factor, Highcliffe Castle should certainly be on your list. Built between 1831 and 1835 during the Georgian Gothic Revival, this Grade one listed building is situated on the cliffs at Highcliffe and a five-minute walk from Highcliffe Beach.

Highcliffe Castle is clearly a magical location for a fairy tale wedding, but the venue also caters for a number of other events, both inside the castle and in the beautifully landscaped gardens. The castle can hold up to 200 guests and you can choose which room(s) to hire to best cater for your number of guests and event type.

A few things I like about this venue:

  • There are four adjoining rooms on the ground floor of the castle that can be set-up to cater for different aspects of your event, should you need it. Great for weddings to save clearing away dining tables to make space for the dance floor
  • There is a stunning stain glass window in the Great Hall. What an unusual and unforgettable backdrop for any dining experience
  • The Wintergarden room, typically used for wedding ceremonies, has a wonderful inside-outside feel with three sides faced with floor to ceiling windows
  • Beautiful Highcliffe Beach could serve as an excellent backdrop for some very special photos – the steps down from the castle are well worth it!
Exterior of Highcliffe Castle
Highcliffe Castle wedding ceremony room
Highcliffe Castle stain glass window in the Great Hall

If this has sparked your interest and you’d like to find out more about hosting an event at either of these venues, we’d love to hear from you.

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