Ah! I love when friends choose an AMAZING Ohio hotel for a wedding venue. I was pumped to learn I’d finally be attending a wedding in the historic, Renaissance Cleveland Hotel. I’d been there multiple times for OHLA events, but this was going to be one of the most beautiful weddings of the year and the venue couldn’t be more perfect.
TJ and I arrived for the rehearsal and were ushered into the Ambassador Ballroom. All I could think was wow. How had I never noticed this room before!? Casually tucked off the main lobby, the Ambassador Ballroom had high ceilings, gorgeous molding and enormous windows with views of downtown. I couldn’t wait to see this place decked out for the night. We spent some of our free time that evening scoping out some of the other areas of the hotel. One can’t help but be drawn to the enormous fountain on the other side of the lobby. It’s surrounded by windows pouring natural light into the space and accented by a sparkling chandelier. The following night, we made sure to capture a picture in our finest!
The night of the wedding, we slipped into the bar for a quick snack. Sometimes, the simplest foods are overlooked. So when you order a standard quesadilla and it makes you drool, you know the rest of the menu has to be good! TJ was impressed with their well priced beer selection (and that they played the West Virginia University game for him all evening!). Shortly after we downed our snack, we were swept into the Ambassador Ballroom. On a personal note, the ceremony itself was one of the prettiest yet. The newlyweds are into theater and the uplighting was magical.
The hotel managed a swift room flip while guests mixed and mingled around that unforgettable lobby fountain, only to re-enter the Ambassador Ballroom – a completely transformed space. I couldn’t wait to tuck into what was sure to be an amazing meal put on by the culinary team at the Renaissance. I noticed a new trend in banquets – the server actually introduces themselves to your table before starting food service. I love that! It makes the experience totally different. And the gentleman serving our table was fantastic! I wish I remembered his name, because he definitely deserves a kudos.
After dancing the night away, we were so happy to be staying at the Renaissance that evening. Our room was perfect. TJ was happy with the not-so-common well air conditioned room. But for me, it was the bed. Those pillows and triple sheeting were calling my name and it was heavenly for sore dancing feet! Sweet dreams were easy coming!
We’ve spent over a year chatting about my hotel experiences – whether personal or for work. Please tell me you knew this was coming…
Like everyone does after a long night at a wedding, I was up by 7 and ready for a brisk walk. Luckily, my dad was also staying at the hotel and I get those genes from him! We both set out to enjoy the crisp, fall air and early morning sun. We headed around the corner to one of my favorite spots in Cleveland – East 4th Street. Usually, this little artery is clogged with people drinking, laughing and celebrating life. But on this particular holiday morning, it was just us and the pigeons. But it was beautiful! If you aren’t a morning person, I strongly encourage you to, just this once (!) get up early, and see the city you’re in at a different time of day. Sometimes it’s better than at night!
Next time you’re in Cleveland check out one of the great hotels I’ve written about recently. There are so many to choose from, you can’t go wrong!
“People don’t take trips, trips take people.” – John Steinbeck
Side note: I had a lot of compliments and questions about my dress featured in the top picture. I want to give a quick shout out to the designer, Geetha Minton with GKM Design. The hotel industry is working hard to combat human trafficking. This custom, handmade dress helps. A portion of proceeds from dress sales go to help rescued women in India. Coincidentally, Geetha is married to an Ohio hotelier. Together, we can impact the world.