Situated on the banks of Cayuga Lake are the Inns of Aurora, a collection of luxurious historic inns. Together they make up one of the most beautiful properties in the Finger Lakes. When my husband and I were deciding how to celebrate my upcoming 35th birthday, we didn’t know where to go. Should we go to Hudson Valley? The Catskills? Staycation somewhere local? We chose the Inns because we wanted a romantic destination close enough in case our interns needed us, but far enough to feel like we were on vacation. At just over 1 hour and 15 minutes, it was perfect!
According to BRIDES, the Inns of Aurora is the “perfect place for a weekend wedding.” Country Living named it “America’s best-kept secret.” So we booked a stay to find out for ourselves. Read on for the behind-the-scenes of our stay and find out why it just might be the ultimate Finger Lakes wedding venue.
We began our weekend visit with a site tour with Nancie Arquette, Sales Manager for the Inns of Aurora. Nancie has been with the Inn for 15 years and is well-versed in the properties and the town’s history. We met at The Aurora Inn, which
Our first stop on the tour of the Inns of Aurora was the Lakeside Room where members of the wedding party wait before walking down the aisle. The Lakeside Room is also where part of the cocktail hour takes place after the wedding ceremony. It is also able to accommodate up to 96 for an intimate wedding through the end of October. Guests enjoy their meal inside the room and dance under the stars on the patio. During the winter months, the Lakeside Room can accommodate up to 60 with dancing.
Then we ventured onto the patio where all the partying happens. Remember, it was a wintery March day, so I’ll share these photos with you instead (but you can see more in my Instagram highlights under Inns of Aurora.
What I really love about having a
We continued our tour of the Inns of Aurora with a stop at the Rowland House. The house comprises 10 contemporary sleeping rooms and sitting areas to enjoy your stay. Each guest room is impeccably decorated in vibrant color schemes and original modern art.
If a couple reserves all the rooms at the Rowland House, they may opt to host their rehearsal dinner there. The private dining room seats up to 22. The whole first floor (which, again, is gorgeous) has room for 50 for a standing reception. Guests can sit inside and spill outside on the porch or expansive back lawn.
Couples may also have their wedding ceremony behind the Rowland House as well, as captured by Mary Dougherty. For more intimate weddings, the Rowland House can accommodate up to 22 seated in the Private Dining Room or up to 50 for a standing reception style wedding. This is great for smaller or destination-style weddings that want to limit the size of their wedding to a more manageable guest count.
Finally, the E.B. Morgan House is the third property that’s able to host intimate weddings and events. Stay tuned for updated capacities and details!
Our last stop on the tour of the Inns of Aurora was the Schoolhouse. The Schoolhouse is the property’s
After we said goodbye to Nancie and Tracy, we ventured south to Ithaca for lunch and hiked to Taughannock Falls. Currently, there are 43 total sleeping rooms at the Inns of Aurora. Thus, many weddings have guests stay in Auburn and Ithaca and shuttle them to the wedding. The Hilton Garden Inn in Auburn is about 25 minutes North of Aurora. Forty minutes South are a Marriott, Hilton Garden Inn, and other properties in Ithaca.
After our scenic hike, we checked in to our room for the evening. Our Innkeeper Sean Corbin took us on a short tour of the home and pointed out all its amenities, from quiet reading nooks, games, to complimentary wine, and Biscoff biscuits (my favorite!). Each property at the Inns of Aurora comes with its own innkeeper. They are on site 24/7 and see to all your needs. Sean’s welcoming demeanor and attention to our comforts is a shining example of the quality of service you will receive at the Inns of Aurora.
We chose to stay in Room 5 as most wedding couples prefer this room. It has a beautiful view of Cayuga L
After basking in the beauty that is Room 5, we enjoyed some birthday champagne and watched a B list movie. We could do that because the interns were babysitting Grandma and Grandpa. Then it was off to dinner at 1833 Kitchen and Bar at the Aurora Inn. We would have walked, but it was windy and only in the
I honestly can’t think of a more picturesque location for a wedding weekend in the Finger Lakes. The Inns of Aurora has transformed this historic town into a luxury resort spread out among the various buildings. If you want beautiful natural scenery, lake views, and best in class service, definitely consider the Inns of Aurora. I would love to work with you to make your wedding weekend a relaxing and beautiful reality. Revel in the company of your wedding guests knowing there’s a team of hardworking individuals that will see your wedding is everything you imagined.
It’s no surprise that the Inns of Aurora was nominated for Travel and Leisure’s 2019 World’s Best Awards. Each property is impeccably decorated. The service and staff are amazing. And the setting is the best in class for a wedding weekend in the Finger Lakes. Let’s plan your modern wedding there together!
Max seated capacity in the Aurora Inn Tent: 200
Max seated capacity in the Lakeside Room: 96 (May-October) or 60
Max standing capacity in the Rowland House (for buffet): 50
Max seated capacity in the Rowland House private dining room: 22
Total guest rooms at the Inns of Aurora: 43 (with plans for expansion in 2019 and 2020)
Neary places of worship: St. Patrick’s Catholic Church and the United Ministry of Aurora Presbyterian Church are a short walk from the Aurora Inn
After Party Location: Fargo Bar & Grill
Local Points of Interest: MacKenzie-Childs and Jane Morgan’s Little House Ltd.
Nearest Airports: Ithaca (37 mins), Syracuse (1 hr 06 mins), and Rochester (1 hr 20 mins)