The 411

New venues and bridal salons you need to know about now.

Stephen STARR Event's ARTS Ballroom.


Philly’s got some fab new venues for your Big Day soiree:

  • Stephen STARR Events’s ARTS Ballroom—located off the Avenue of the Arts at the former Hotel Sylvania site—has room for up to 250 in its Grand Hall, with mahogany floors, mezzanine balconies and a granite staircase. They’ll serve your favorite food and drinks from any Starr restaurant—or a 1923-grand-opening-gala-inspired menu. Prices start at $125 per person, and you provide the alcohol.
  • VIE, the latest venue from Joe Volpe (of the Cescaphe Event Group) is a 17,000-square-foot ballroom on Broad Street that can be completely customized depending on the size of your wedding (it fits up to 1,200 standing). The space features tile-mosaic walls and state-of-the-art video capabilities, with areas for live cooking stations and a lush outdoor garden where your guests can take a break from dancing the night away (215-328-5750).

The Philadelphia Bridal Loft.


{The Dress} NEW IN STORE

This season brings even more places in the city to find the dress of your dreams—and outfit your pint-sized attendants.

  • Philadelphian Annie McGuire opened Paris Chic Boutique in NoLibs’s Piazza at Schmidts after her line of bridal gowns was a hit online, and now brides can come here to peruse both her designs and the sample gowns she nabs during trips to New York, or to have her design a custom creation for their Big Day. (Prices average around $2,000; give her four to six months’ notice.) Be sure to check out the selection of veils, belts, jewelry and headpieces.
  • Also new at the Piazza is Fiona’s Childrens Special Occasion, a shop that caters to your littlest ’maids, offering many darling brands of flower-girl dresses, including nationally adored but locally based Joan Calabrese’s Couture and Mon Cheri lines. (Joan is even happy to meet you and your party at the shop during your appointment!) Owner Karen Clarke even stocks some classic designs for your adorable ring bearer.
  • And on the new-digs front, Philadelphia Bridal Loft has just relocated to a charming new space in Center City after a few years in West Philly. They schedule just one bridal appointment at a time, giving you and your entourage the run of the whole store. You’ll find names like Tara Keely by Jim Hjelm and St. Pucchi; shoes and jewelry; and this great deal: The Loft offers a free veil with your gown purchase.



Originally published in the Fall/Winter 2011 issue of Philadelphia Wedding.

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