And we have a few guesses as to why that is… starting with one of the biggest wedding truths out there: cocktail hour is king. If you asked 10 people (and we’re talking guests) – point blank – what their favorite part of the wedding day is/was, we’d be willing to bet that at least seven of them say it was the cocktail hour. I’d be one of them, to be honest!! From incredible bites to bingeable signature sips, the best cocktail hours have guests hoping they could go on forever; interestingly enough, some brides and grooms are actually indulging that wish by offering an extended cocktail hour.
Now, while we certainly can’t dismiss the tradition of sit-down dinner receptions and plated feasts in flights of fancy, newlyweds have been having them for centuries, we can understand why couples are loving the idea of a continued cocktail hour. We put together some thoughts on why this service trend has taken off, and given that our couples call the shots here at Leonard’s Palazzo, we’re more than happy to consider tweaks to the typical cocktail hour.
…. Especially if it means they’ll enjoy more of the day. If an extended cocktail hour can ensure that the just-married pair can get their portraits and family photos ticked off the list before the reception begins + they have some extra time to stop by for some shrimp, steak or sushi before they’re whisked away for reception prep, well then, we’re ALL for it.
Guests can truly try it all.
One of the biggest complaints that I’ve heard from guests – regarding cocktail hour – is that it was so overwhelming, gluttonous, and gargantuan, really, to get through in only one hour’s time. And that’s pretty disappointing, 1) for the invitees who come for the celebration of love+marriage and stay for the perks of the par-tay and 2) for the couple+their family who have spent a lot of money in order to curate the best day ever – not only for themselves but for their VIPs. An extended cocktail hour allows the couple to go a bit overboard (as a couple always does with their first fete fare), while affording their guests the full experience. By the time everyone convenes for the reception later on, they’ll be able to compare ‘score cards’ of culinary conquests and see that they truly did try it all. No regrets ✌️
Everyone can load up on extra liquid courage.
Is it us, or does everyone feel more comfortable visiting the bar during cocktail hour than during the reception? Maybe it’s just the weight of the name: cocktail hour, that encourages guests to drink a bit more during their pre-reception rounds of the venue, but by the time dinner begins and there’s a change in surroundings (from ceremony to reception – cocktail hour room to reception room), momentum kind of dips off. And how is that any way to precede a night of dancing? If cocktail hour gets bumped up to 1.5 or 2 hours, then guests can have extra time to a nurse another drink and dial up their confidence to hit that dance floor in a big way. Also, not a bad decision to keep the heavier drinking up front. If most guests do the majority of their drinking earlier on in the night, then they’ll be more likely to limit their liquor later on.
The mixing and mingling time can marinate some more.
Not only is cocktail hour a pretty necessary part of the wedding day run-of-show, for the couple (to get their photos and/or greetings out of the way) and for the venue/vendors (to set anything up if, perhaps, the ceremony space is doubling as the reception space), it’s also decidedly important for guests who may end up sitting together during dinner never having met before. With an extended cocktail hour, there’s some more time built in for getting to know one another. Breaking the ice at an actual ice sculpture seafood bar? Bonding over some deliciously-comforting BBQ? If there are cocktails involved and a stunning assortment of food to be found, anyone can make new friends! You never know, too, your extended cocktail hour could be the prelude to an epic meet-cute for some of your currently-single friends.
Whether you want to give your cocktail hour a little extra cushion or would even prefer an entire cocktail hour reception, you can count on Leonard’s Palazzo to make it an occasion worth remembering. We pride ourselves on the coolest cocktail hour experience ever. Tinkling glasses announce its arrival. Our gifted mixologists preside over spectacular onyx-topped bars. And guests are sure to be sighted sipping away and shamelessly indulging themselves in a sampling of extraordinary delicacies dreamed up by our award-winning master chef.