Lunch weddings are underrated. Most people dream of a big dinner party, followed by a night of dancing. But for other couples who want something more intimate, a lunch wedding is actually a fantastic option. Keep reading to see why lunch weddings are the best!

Last December, we had the pleasure of helping plan a last minute celebration. After some deliberation, the couple decided a lunch reception suited their preferences, and it turned out beyond amazing. The photos used in this post were from that wedding and you will see that it was no less of a wedding! Photos: Mango Studio

Your pick of venues

Modern Romance - Chinese Wedding at Shangri-La Hotel Toronto
Shangri-La, Toronto’s Museum Room

When you are going against the grain, and not wanting what everyone else wants (a Saturday dinner between May-October), you will have lots of options.

Some venues are notoriously booked up for wedding season, especially if you are planning within a 6 month window. You will have your pick of venues, because most have availability for daytime functions. 

Save money

Modern Romance - Chinese Wedding at Shangri-La Hotel Toronto

When you are helping a venue fill a typically empty spot in the calendar, you have some room for negotiation. They will be eager to fill it.

On top of that, your guests won’t eat or drink as much as a dinner. Dinners typically are 5-7 hour events with canapes, 3-4 courses, plus late night foods. With a lunch, you can get away with no cocktail hour, 2 courses and a sweets table and only 2-3 hours of event activity.

You automatically save here as well. Your wallet will thank you!

Unrushed photos

Modern Romance - Chinese Wedding at Shangri-La Hotel Toronto

A typical timeline for a lunch reception will be:

– Makeup/hair
– Ceremony
– Lunch reception
– Photos

Because lunch can’t be served mid-afternoon, you end up having your wedding events early in the day (an 11:00am ceremony is common). You can then take your time in the afternoon taking beautiful wedding photos with your photographer. You won’t be rushing to complete them with a reception afterwards, and you can take all the time you need.

With this couple, we even had time to create a beautiful backdrop for them with some of their floral centrepieces from lunch. It was breathtaking and you would not normally be able to do this for a dinner!

A relaxed day

Modern Romance - Chinese Wedding at Shangri-La Hotel Toronto
With no dinner reception to rush to, you can take your time

Every couple we speak to will want a relaxed, stress-free day. I guarantee you, a lunch wedding will be as stress free as it gets.

Once you get the wedding events out of the way early on, you have a pretty relaxed schedule the rest of the day. You can even do what you want for dinner! Order in at your hotel suite or have a fancy night out at your favourite restaurant, just the two of you. I couldn’t think of a better way to spend your wedding night.

Are lunch weddings for you?

I’ll be the first to admit that lunch weddings aren’t for everyone. It is best suited for couples who don’t care to dance or who have a small guest count. If you aren’t too fussed about wedding traditions, a lunch wedding can be equally beautiful and memorable. Guests will also be thankful that the wedding events don’t take up the whole day too! Take it from me – lunch weddings are pretty great.

See more from this Modern Romance at Shangri-La, Toronto here.


Rebecca Chan is a Toronto wedding planner and day of wedding coordinator providing sophisticated planning for the style-savvy couple. Whether you need planning assistance or wedding day coordination, Rebecca can help you create your dream wedding day. Contact her today, she'd love to hear from you.

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