11 Wow-Worthy Waterfront Wedding Venues Across Massachusetts
Fresh air, crashing waves, and beautiful vistas—what more could you want?
Delivering the latest in style, inspiration, helpful tips and tricks, and everything else you need to know to plan the perfect New England wedding.
When it comes to jaw-dropping wedding-day backdrops, nothing sets the scene quite like being at the water’s edge. Whether you’re envisioning crashing ocean waves or craving serene lakeside vibes, read on for 11 of the Bay State’s most stunning waterfront wedding venues.
Thompson Island Signature Events and Conference Center
Thompson Island offers the best of both worlds: an island setting and Boston skyline vistas. Just hop on a private ferry and journey one mile to the 204-acre nature preserve, which can accommodate up to 2,500 guests. For celebrations of up to 225, reserve the rustic-chic wooden pavilion featuring exposed beams; for parties of almost any size, pitch a tent near the shore, surrounded by oak trees, fields, and wild flowers.
Thompson Island, Boston, 617-830-5175, thompsonisland.org.
The White Elephant
For breathtaking ocean views from a quaint island, the White Elephant on Nantucket can’t be beat. To get to the resort, guests can hop on a ferry from Hyannis or even from New York City and enjoy the salty ocean breeze while you prepare to you say “I do” on the hotel’s verdant lawn. After your ceremony, move to the Harborview Terrace to dine and dance the night away under the stars and harbor lights with up to 300 loved ones.
50 Easton St., Nantucket, 508-228-2500, whiteelephanthotel.com.
The Institute of Contemporary Art
At the ICA, every affair is a true masterpiece. Swap vows out on the museum’s plaza with Boston Harbor as your backdrop, then head inside to share a first dance amidst world-class contemporary art. The museum has four event spaces that can each be transformed to fit your unique vision, including a window-lined theater that can seat up to 325 guests.
25 Harbor Shore Dr., Boston, 617-478-3100, icaboston.org.
Looking to treat your guests to the complete coastal New England experience? Celebrate your love at the Wauwinet, a 19th-century Nantucket inn where you can mingle with loved ones at Topper’s—the property’s waterfront seafood restaurant—or pitch a tent on the seaside lawn. For weddings with more than 60 guests, you’ll have the full run of the charming shingled hotel, which features 32 rooms that were renovated earlier this spring. Plus, you can round out the wedding weekend with activities such as kayaking and paddle boarding, complementary bicycle rides, as well as bay cruises and oyster tours on the Wauwinet Lady—the inn’s private 21-passenger boat.
120 Wauwinet Rd., Nantucket, 617-243-7802, wauwinet.com.
Wychmere Beach Club
A Wychmere wedding means only one thing: oceanfront glamour. At the 20-acre property located on the Nantucket Sound, host a private beach ceremony before dancing the night away in one of several breathtaking reception spaces, including a waterfront tent that accommodates up to 500, as well as three indoor options that boast driftwood floors, ample sunlight, and sparkling chandeliers. Another perk you can count on at Wychmere? A devoted team who will ensure not a single detail gets overlooked.
23 Snow Inn Rd., Harwich Port, 508-432-1000, wychmerebeachclub.com.
Wequassett Resort and Golf Club
This five-star resort promises a luxurious atmosphere and beyond-stunning scenery, including a manicured lawn and English-style gardens. Wequassett offers an array of indoor and outdoor event spaces that’ll take you from your rehearsal dinner through your day-after brunch without leaving the resort—plus pools, a golf course, tennis courts, and a private beach to keep guests busy all weekend long. Host the main event in the Pavilion—which offers water views, two reception rooms, and a wrap-around porch—or the Garden Terrace, a permanent tented structure with floor-to-ceiling accordian-style glass doors.
2173 Route 28, Harwich, 508-432-5400, wequassett.com.
Chatham Bars Inn
Dreaming of tying the knot with your feet in the grass or your toes in the sand? At the Chatham Bars Inn, which features both a sprawling lawn and a private beach as ceremony-space options, you can take your pick. The hotel’s indoor reception spaces are equally outdoor-centric. The Harbor View Room, for example, boasts panoramic views of the Atlantic as well as access to the grounds for lawn games and bonfires. Plus, whether you’re craving a farm-to-table, family-style dinner with ingredients sourced from the inn’s own nearby farm or an oh-so-New-England clambake, the resort’s culinary team can cater to almost any whim for up to 250 guests.
297 Shore Road, Chatham, 800-527-4884, chathambarsinn.com.
John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum
If you’re a history buff, look no further than this presidential party spot. Bask in the wedding-day glow as you look upon the Boston Harbor Islands from the museum’s towering glass atrium, or take time to stroll through the elegant galleries during cocktail hour. Then, as the sun sets on the harbor, dine and dance to your heart’s content with up to 500 friends and family members.
Colombia Point, Boston, 617-514-1600, jfklibrary.org.
The Crane Estate
This historical 2,100-acre estate is a seaside stunner with something for every style. Host your ceremony on the grounds overlooking the Grand Allée, then throw a tented reception off of the Great House’s ballroom with up to 250 guests. Looking for a more coastal vibe? Opt for a ceremony at Steep Hill Beach, followed by a tented affair on the private lawn that rests above the Atlantic. Alternatively, channel farmyard charm at the Barn at Crane Estate, which accommodates up to 140 guests.
290 Argilla Rd., Ipswich, 978-356-4351, thetrustees.org/crane-estate.
Lake Pearl Wrentham
Lake Pearl Wrentham proves you don’t need to be by the sea to throw a spectacular shorefront celebration. The venue is a hidden gem with 25 acres of lawns, gardens, a private park, and a beach (read: a nearly endless array of venue options). For your ceremony, host up to 150 guests at the Boathouse Pavilion—a lakeside open-air chapel. Then, when it’s time to bust a move, head to the Victorian Tent. Available from May through October, the tent sits in the center of the park and features a wood parquet dance floor. Lake Pearl’s indoor reception spaces are equally appealing, though, with crystal chandeliers, hardwood floors, and water views.
299 Creek St., Wrentham, 508-384-3003, lakepearl.com.
Boston Harbor Hotel
From glimmering chandeliers to picturesque water views, the Boston Harbor Hotel is the pinnacle of sophistication. With six elegant venues, the hotel is a perfect spot for an intimate dinner or a 500-guest bash. Plus, a stress-free wedding day is all but guaranteed with the help of the hotel’s experience on-site wedding planners and culinary pros, who will work with you every step of the way to ensure your fairy-tale dreams become a reality.
70 Rowes Wharf, Boston, 617-439-7000, bhh.com.