A New Orleans courtyard wedding venue is oftentimes at the top of my client’s list of wedding day priorities. And for good reason! Truly, it really doesn’t get more romantic and iconic than a New Orleans courtyard wedding near the French Quarter. On top of that, New Orleans courtyards are historic, full 0f charm–and not to mention a dream to design if you’re a New Orleans wedding planner and designer, like myself!
If you’re considering a New Orleans wedding and can picture nothing other than a New Orlean courtyard venue, then start here. Whether you want a small, romantic intimate New Orleans wedding or something more with a modern industrial vibe, these are hands-down my top five favorite New Orleans courtyard wedding venue ideas.
It’s no secret that the New Orleans Pharmacy Museum is my favorite French Quarter courtyard venue in all of New Orleans. Nestled on Chartres Street in the iconic French Quarter of New Orleans, the Pharmacy Museum was once an apothecary dating back to 1823. It features exhibits of early medicines, superstitious cures, and more. (Yes, you read that right!) As you walk through the gorgeous museum, you’ll enter into the exposed brick courtyard space full of lush tropical palm trees. In the middle is a stunning fountain that is original to the space. Let’s just say, I get all the feels when I walk into this space.
Michelle’s Planning & Design Notes: Having planned and designed at the New Orleans Pharmacy Museum many times over, I can tell you with confidence that the design options are limitless. My favorite way to approach this courtyard is to let the courtyard speak for itself and then to bring in little romantic details and decor elements that complement look and feel. The built-in archway makes for a natural ceremony spot. To really enhance the space, I love added bistro lighting and chandeliers for the trees. And custom lounge vignettes are a total must!
A short stroll from my all time favorite courtyard in New Orleans, Brennan’s Restaurant courtyard is iconic New Orleans. Brennan’s is a Creole restaurant on 417 Royal Street in the French Quarter of New Orleans. It’s full of charm and surrounded by years of history (if those walls could talk, oh the stories they would tell!). A little history on Brennan’s: The iconic pink building was originally a private two-story French Quarter mansion constructed in 1795, built for Don José Faurie and later housed the Banque de la Louisiane, the first bank in Louisiana from 1841 to 1891. After changing hands many times, it officially became Brennan’s Restaurant in 1956. The owners renovated the building and the new Brennan’s was unveiled in the fall of 2014. (That was the first year Brennan’s played host to a wedding in its opulent courtyard!)
Michelle’s Planning & Design Notes: Despite the expansive renovation the new owners have kept a lot of the space original to 1795. The courtyard and its amazing fountain is one of those historic details that hasn’t lost one bit of its charm. Whether you’re hosting an intimate seated dinner or a cocktail style reception, the historic yet timeless courtyard is full of possibilities–making it a perfect fit for our exclusive list of five perfect New Orleans courtyards for your wedding.
The Beauregard-Keyes house is a Victorian-style property with this incredibly lush garden full of greenery and a charming brick walkway that leads you back to a show-stopping fountain. The courtyard is intimate, historic and makes for an amazing wedding backdrop. Like all of the courtyards on my list here, the property itself is full of rich history and stories.
The stunning home was designed by François Correjolles in a style that sought to combine the notion of a Creole cottage with Greek Revival features. After changing hands numerous times, the Beauregard-Keyes family took over the home. At that point, it was restored and the beautiful garden and brick walls were re-built in the courtyard.
Michelle’s Planning & Design Notes: It’s like the secret garden meets an iconic New Orleans courtyard venue. So if you’re looking to host a small romantic, ceremony in a courtyard that is hidden in plan site this courtyard is a great option to consider.
Steeped in jazz history, this circa 1803 building and courtyard is New Orleans French Quarter at its finest. It was set up as an art gallery in the French Quarter in the 1950’s. To attract customers, the owner had local jazz musicians play for tips. The music drew attention; in 1961 new management turned it into a music venue and gave it the name. The venue brought in top jazz talent from all over the world and today guests still stand in line for hours just to get in and listen to jazz. The venue itself is intimate–filled with incredible music relics and memorabilia and making for a fun wedding backdrop.
Michelle’s Planning & Design Notes: Having hosted many ceremony and cocktail hours here, I love this space for intimate gatherings of 70 or less and no bridal party. It’s small and old and rustic but that’s what makes it so beautiful.
Rounding out my top five perfect New Orleans courtyard venues for your wedding is Race and Religious. Located in the Lower Garden District of New Orleans, this location hosts three homes, including a bougainvillea-lined courtyard and a swimming pool area lit by gas lamps. The lush courtyards are filled with tropical mature palm trees. Two outdoor wood burning fireplaces just add to the ambiance and make it an easy choice for a fall wedding in New Orleans.
Michelle’s Planning & Design Notes: For those who want to go the extra mile, I simply love hosting ceremonies under the bridge that connects the carriage way to the main house, intimate seated dinner in the back courtyard and corn hole and/or a cute tap truck full of spirits in the front courtyard. The all-out dance party takes place under the bridge, where the ceremony was hosted, while the DJ spins tunes from above.