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5 Reasons the Lightner Museum is One of the Most Unique Wedding Venues in St. Augustine

The days of a cookie-cutter wedding in a hotel ballroom are far behind us. With new trends popping up every day on social media, it can be hard to find unique ideas for your wedding that no one has seen before. We all want a wedding that will keep guests oohing and ahhing for years to come. Here are 5 reasons the Lightner Museum is one of the most unique wedding venues in St. Augustine!

 

1. The Historic Significance of the Museum

 

The Lightner Museum, originally opened in 1887 as the Hotel Alcazar, was the vision of famous railway tycoon Henry Flagler. It was built to draw wealthy travelers on Flagler’s Florida East Coast railway on their journeys South for the winter. The Hotel Alcazar was a palace of entertainment, containing a massage parlor, sulfur baths, a gymnasium, a bowling alley, and the world’s largest indoor swimming pool! The building is considered so historically significant that is has been listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

 

William Henry Jackson, photographer, 1843-1942

 

2. Unique Celebration Locations

 

Depending on your guest count, the Lightner Museum has several different venue options for each part of your event. Consider hosting your wedding ceremony inside the Historic Pool. 

 

Historic Pool Wedding Ceremony at the Lightner Museum
Historic Pool photo by Bow Tie Photography

 

If you are looking for an outdoor ceremony alternative, the St. Augustine City Hall Courtyard, located in front of the Grand Lobby, can be booked through the City of St. Augustine for wedding ceremonies of under 100 guests.

 

Courtyard Wedding Ceremony | Kayla & Jonathan's Winter Wedding in St. Augustine
Photo of Kayla & Jonathan’s Winter Wedding in St. Augustine by Once Like a Spark

 

There are also several different options for the location of your cocktail hour, including the Outdoor Courtyards, Outdoor Terrace, and Mezzanine. 

 

Cocktail Hour on the Mezzanine of the Historic Pool | 5 REASONS THE LIGHTNER MUSEUM IS ONE OF THE MOST UNIQUE WEDDING VENUES IN ST. AUGUSTINE
Photo of cocktail hour on the Mezzanine by Sarahdipity Photography

 

Cocktail Hour on the Outdoor Terrace at the Lightner Museum
Photo: Sunglow Photography

 

Lightner Museum Cocktail Hour | Vintage Modern Wedding in St. Augustine Florida
Photo of cocktail hour in the Outdoor Courtyards by Brooke Images

 

With the multiple levels in the Historic Pool, your reception setup options are limitless.

 

Lightner Museum Wedding Reception | Vintage Modern Wedding in St. Augustine Florida
Photo of reception setup in the Historic Pool by Brooke Images 

 

Lightner Museum Wedding Reception | Vintage Modern Wedding in St. Augustine Florida
Photo of reception setup on the Mezzanine by Brooke Images

 

Wedding reception in the Historic Pool of the Lightner Museum | | 5 REASONS THE LIGHTNER MUSEUM IS ONE OF THE MOST UNIQUE WEDDING VENUES IN ST. AUGUSTINE
Photo of reception in the Historic Pool by Sarahdipity Photography

 

3. Curiosities and Exhibits Within the Museum

 

As your guests are guided through the museum, they will see Lightner Museum’s eclectic collection of antiquities, including Winston Churchill’s stuffed lion, a room filled to the brim with breathtaking cut glass, and even a mummy! Better still, they can take in all of the grandeur that is the original structure of the Alcazar Hotel.

 

Fiorela + Colin | Lightner Museum Wedding Reception | St. Augustine Florida
Photo by Andi Mans Photography

Exhibits at The Lightner Museum in St. Augustine Florida

Grand Ballroom Gallery at the Lightner Museum
Photo by Jennifer Blair Photography

 

 

4. Location in Historic St. Augustine

 

With its location in the center of the historic district, your wedding at the Lightner Museum is surrounded by all of the beauty and conveniences that St. Augustine has to offer. Several historic hotels and bed and breakfasts are within walking distance on the tree-lined cobblestone streets. There are always amazing special events taking place in town, including the incredible Nights of Lights during the holiday season. Year-round attractions, such as the beautiful beaches, tours, and historic landmarks will keep your guests entertained on the days before and after your wedding celebration.

 

Castillo de San Marcos wedding photo | 5 REASONS THE LIGHTNER MUSEUM IS ONE OF THE MOST UNIQUE WEDDING VENUES IN ST. AUGUSTINE
Castillo de San Marcos photo by Stout Photography

 

Historic streets of St. Augustine | 5 REASONS THE LIGHTNER MUSEUM IS ONE OF THE MOST UNIQUE WEDDING VENUES IN ST. AUGUSTINE
Photo by Jenn Hopkins Photography

 

5. Photo Opportunities

 

Whether it is capturing your first dance in the pool from the raised mezzanine, or bridal party portraits on the bridge above the Koi pond in the Central Courtyard, the Lightner Museum offers unique photo locations in spades. We recommend talking to your venue coordinator and photographer in advance to discuss using some of these unique locations for photos on your wedding day.

 

Wedding Photos at the Lightner Museum St. Augustine
Photo: Dana Goodson Photography

 

Wedding Photos at the Lightner Museum St. Augustine
Photo: Jason Mize Photography

 

Wedding Photos at the Lightner Museum St. Augustine
Photo: Sunglow Photography

 

There are so many reasons that we think that the Lightner Museum is one of the most unique wedding venues in St. Augustine. We invite you to schedule a private tour with one of our wedding experts to learn more about what makes our venue so spectacular!

 

Contact the Lightner Museum to plan your dream wedding

 

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THE LIGHTNER MUSEUM IS OPEN AND READY TO CELEBRATE!

The Lightner Museum is open and available for in-person tours, weddings, and events!

Our commitment to the health and well-being of all those who walk through our doors continues to be top of mind 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

All staff and vendors are required to wear masks during events, and during any other customer interactions, which include meetings and tours.

If you have questions, please contact our team at

904-217-0077.