Whitlock Inn

Whitlock Inn

Sep 12
Whitlock Inn

I’ll go ahead and spoil the ending of this entry for you. Remember how at Primrose, we loved the physical venue, but were a little wary about the service and amenities? Nothing game-breaking, just not quite sold on that side of things yet? Whitlock Inn is the opposite.

Whitlock Inn was the second place we visited, actually right after Primrose Cottage on the same day. Located right off the square in downtown Marietta, it’s a good bit further from the church than Primrose Cottage was, and parking is a bit more difficult; whereas Primrose had people park in the church parking lot next door, Whitlock has a parking lot across the street and an officer available to escort people. The road it’s on is a lot more trafficked as well.

When we walked in, the physical house is very different from Primrose, though also very old and historical. This was more like an antebellum mansion (that is, if I actually know what an antebellum mansion looks like) with a classic wrap-around front porch, large rooms, high ceilings, a grand central staircase, etc. In terms of actual floor space, the house wasn’t that much bigger than Primrose, but it felt bigger from how it was laid out and how the space was used.

Here, too, we met the director of the inn who showed us around. We started upstairs with the bridal suite, although in this case it was a much smaller little room — not that that mattered to us since our ceremony is off-site, but worth noting. We were given a bit more flexibility with how to use the space around the house in this case, but much of the area was set up in such a way that there wasn’t a whole lot of customization that we could immediately think of.

Like Primrose, Whitlock’s house part serves as a de facto large foyer area for the ballroom, although in this case, the ballroom and dining room were significantly smaller than Primrose. Rather than a large room dedicated to serving food, food was served down a wide hallway leading to the ballroom area. Inside the ballroom (incidentally, ‘ballroom’ might not be the right word for it at all) was a small dance floor, clearly the size for the traditional wedding dances but not for actual dancing for the guests. Not a huge problem for us since we have a strict policy against the “Chicken Dance”, “Cha Cha Slide”, “Cupid Shuffle”, or any other group dance song that generally makes us want to impale our ear drums with the nearest lit candle and gouge out our eyes with soup spoons. Still, though, it might be nice to have the option for normal, non-terrible dancing. No swing dancing, though.

The ballroom opens up onto a small garden courtyard area, not as big as Primrose’s but also more open, such that tables could conceivably be placed out there. Conceivably, but we wouldn’t really want to. It might be nice for others, though, and I feel like at least 100 people worth of seating could be fit out there. Without that, though, seating is limited to inside the ballroom, and although our guide insisted 125 people could be accommodated, I had my doubts. The room was presently set up for 64 people (they said 80, though I only counted 64 seats) and only had room for two or three more tables before the room started to get prohibitively blocked off by seating.

None of these things are objectively bad; I actually quite loved the place. Its apparent size makes it seem very glamorous, but its obvious age makes it somehow quaint again. Visually, I personally preferred it to Primrose, but functionally it wouldn’t quite serve our needs in terms of size, and the location right off a busy square wasn’t ideal for us. I’d still highly recommend for slightly smaller receptions, however.

The place where Whitlock really shined, however, was in the services they offered. The first that struck me (as a guy) is that a lot more was included in Whitlock’s fee; they had more consideration built in for decorations and flowers, for example, whereas at Primrose my impression had been that those are all extra. The food was ideal as well; whereas Primrose assured us that we could change and request anything we wanted, Whitlock actually built options into the menu itself. While there might not have been anything tangible to the difference, Whitlock just gave a feeling of more freedom with what we wanted to plan, as well as being (what felt like) a little more up front about the things that would necessitate extra fees.

Verdict

When we left, Caitlin and my thought was, “Can we just have Whitlock’s staff and director come do the reception at Primrose’s facility?” Not literally, of course, but that would be the best of both worlds for us. Whitlock was great if only it was a little more functionally suited to our needs, and I’d highly recommend it to anyone else.

(Image credit Whitlock Inn.)

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