{expert tip} Why Heritage Properties Make Some of the Most Fabulous Wedding Locations

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From the Spring/Summer 2015 issue of The Wedding Ring ONTARIO Magazine

When you’re planning your dream wedding, location is everything. You likely want space yet privacy, plenty of gardens yet also plenty of parking, outdoor options and indoor ones, history and architecture yet modem amenities … That’s why scouting heritage properties can unveil that ultimate venue option you’ve been looking for. In this featured article, the team at The Ring spotlights two eritage London properties; Elsie Perrin Williams Estate and Grosvenor Lodge, two venues that London brides and grooms have fallen in love with …

ELSIE PERRIN WILLIAMS ESTATE

Located in Northwest London, the estate, known as Windermere, was purchased by Daniel S. Perrin in 1894. Nine years later, Perrin presented the estate to his daughter Elsie as a wedding gift for her forthcoming marriage to Dr. Hadley Williams, a prominent London surgeon. While abroad during World War one, Elsie had the estate house demolished and the current house constructed.

The spacious estate house, now known as Elsie Perrin Williams Estate, was built by architect John Moore in the early L 900’s using sketches drawn by Mrs. Williams as the basis of his design. Stucco walls, wrought iron balconies, a red clay tile roof and beamed ceilings are only a few of the unique qualities that make the Elsie Perrin Williams Estate as timeless in design as it was years ago. On her death in 1934, Elsie Perrin Williams bequeathed the estate to the city with the provision that her housekeeper have lifetime use of the property. Following the housekeeper’s death, City Council approved Heritage London Foundation’s request to open the estate and grounds for public use. The home and surrounding parklands are, today, an elegant venue for wedding ceremonies and receptions, social gatherings, craft and trade shows, wedding shows and other corporate and private functions.

When you choose Elsie Perrin Williams Estate for your wedding day setting, you’re indulging in the luxury of having a century-old mansion to yourself for the entire day. It can accommodate up to 120 guests indoors and plays host to both indoor and outdoor weddings, on a sprawling, gorgeous property.

More about Elsie Perrin Williams Estate

Elsie Perrin is located at 101 Windermere Rd in London and is reviewed (prices, details, references) in The WeddingRing.ca and books quickly. To find if your date is available, contact Jan Dickinson and the team at 519-432-6620, by email at info@elsieperrinwilliamsestate.com or online at elsieperrinwilliamsestate.ca.

GROSVENOR LODGE

Located just minutes from the heart of downtown London, Grosvenor Lodge is an English Tudor house built in 1853 as the country estate of London pioneer Samuel Peters and his wife, Anne. Peters was a prominent land surveyor, engineer, architect, and founder of Petersville, later known as London West.

The verandah gave the house a connecting link with the surrounding grounds and provided a place for the family to repose in the shade during the hot and humid summers (this stifling heat would have been a surprise to people coming from England’s gentler climate). There is a small summer house on the grounds which may well have been used for serving afternoon tea during Anne’s heyday as the chatelaine of Grosvenor Lodge.

The imposing house, designated as a heritage property in 1972, is an outstanding example of the Tudor Gothic style featuring stepped gables and massive chimneys. It remained in the Peters family for three generations. Heritage London Foundation took over the management of the Lodge in 1992 and it became the London Resource Centre for Heritage and the Environment. The resource centre provides a home with office support for heritage, environmental and other non­profit groups. The Society for Learning in Retirement joined the Lodge in 2013 and conducts a wide variety of study groups during the week, with weddings and corporate events taking place on evenings and weekends.

Today, Grosvenor offers local couples a 159 year old mansion in the heart of the city for their wedding, with lovely features such as a winding staircase, hardwood throughout, stained glass windows, beautiful gardens, the wrap-around porch (large enough to host guests’ tables!), the gazebo and countless other architectural highlights. One of our favourite features of the Lodge is the stained glass window over the front door that has the initials S and A, for Samuel and Anne, entwined in a Victorian love knot.

More about Grosvenor Lodge

Grosvenor Lodge is located at 1017 Western Road in London and is reviewed (prices, details, references) in TheWeddingRing.ca. For other details, email Jan Dickinson and staff of Grosvenor Lodge at info@grosvenorlodge.com. They can be reached by phone at 519-645-2845 or online at grosvenorlodge.ca.