128 South and Bakery 105 are two uniquely appointed historic venues located in downtown Wilmington, North Carolina. 128 South opened its doors in February of 2010 and Bakery 105 followed suit a few years later. Located across from each other on Front Street, the venues provide couples with two very different venue options from which to choose. 128 South provides full-service catering and staffing for both locations and has developed a reputation for producing exceptional food and providing exceptional service (reviews at https://www.weddingwire.com/reviews/128-south-wilmington).
Their most recent addition is that of The Cottage on Orange Street, a bridal suite (or a groom suite) available for daily rental. It serves as an ideal location for the bridal party to gather and get ready for their big day. The close proximity of The Cottage to 128 South and Bakery 105 makes for a compelling venue trio for our clients. However, The Cottage is available to rent for anyone.
What is your philosophy for your business?
Historic venues, exceptional food, exceptional service.
How many people can this venue accommodate?
This is a more complicated question than most people realize. Of course there are a maximum number of people permitted in the venues, but there are a variety of other considerations that impact the number of people that can be accommodated. These include food service style, band vs. DJ, ceremony and reception or just reception, etc.
128 South’s “sweet spot” holds between 110-135 guests and Bakery 105’s “sweet spot” holds between 135-180 guests. Each venue can accommodate more than the numbers indicate, but we have found that these are the best guidelines for the greatest overall experience.
Does your venue have its own day-of coordinator?
We do offer a day-of coordinating service for an additional fee but we encourage our brides to explore the wealth of talented planners and designers available in our area.
Do you have a set list of vendors that couples have to use?
We provide a list of vendors to our brides; however, we do not require they use the vendors on the list. We have found the list to be a helpful tool guiding our clients to a starting point for vendors, particularly for our destination brides.
Are there any decoration limitations that couples need to be aware of?
We do have a few restrictions, mostly having to do with anything that will leave permanent damage to the venue (ex. nailing in walls) or that present a hazardous risk (ex. candlesticks, candelabras). Our staff is always available to answer questions about decoration do’s and don’ts.
How many weddings per week does your business typically accommodate? Do you schedule more than one wedding per day?
We do not schedule more than one wedding per day. The number of weddings booked in a week depends on the season; recently we have seen an upswing in bookings for weekday weddings. Weekday weddings can be a great cost-savings option for today’s couples who are often footing the bill themselves.
What do you feel sets you apart from other venues?
The level of service provided by our team and staff from beginning to end and the quality of our food sets us apart from other venues. We aim to exceed our client’s expectations and are constantly working to better meet the needs of today’s couples.
Is there a particular wedding that has moved or inspired you?
A few years back we were honored to host a ceremony and reception for a beautiful couple. At the time, the bride, Chere, had just beaten cancer. Her infectious spirit and incredible determination to overcome her illness coupled with her steadfast strength of her husband-to-be, Pablo, was inspiring. There wasn’t a dry eye in the house that incredible Sunday afternoon. Fast forward three years later, Chere is one of our amazing event coordinators and her husband is our operations manager. Talk about a moving story.
What do you feel is the greatest reward of being a wedding venue?
We have the distinct honor to participate in the milestone events that will be carried in our couples’ memories for a lifetime. That honor comes with a very real and specific responsibility to vet everything just right.
Do you have any advice for couples for the day of their wedding?
Enjoy it. At the end of the day, you get to marry your special someone. That’s the part that really matters.
What is the greatest piece of advice you have ever received and why has it stuck with you?
You don’t have to know how it’s all going to turn out. You don’t have to know what’s waiting for you twenty steps down the road. You just have to take the next step or maybe the first step and then the next and the next. People often ask why we thought opening an event venue in the middle of the most severe economic recession of our generation was a good idea, I don’t know that we thought it was a “good idea.” In fact, we knew it was a huge risk. But we also knew it was that next step we were supposed to take. Apply this to business, life choices, relationships, self, anything and you may be surprised at how the road will rise to meet you and where it takes you from there.
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