What can I say? This place is as good as it gets. I know of few venues in Michigan that are so truly 5 Star and I have played at nearly all of them. The grounds are perfect, the food looked to be off the charts (more on that later) and the service from what I could see looked stellar. From the time you pull up to the time you get inside it’s a class act. It is located just east of the downtown Rochester, MI “Main Street”. It is flanked on one side by a river and has trees canopied over the patio side as well. It’s truly a site to see – no sense in going on, The Royal Park Hotel in Rochester is beautiful and for a wedding or corporate event it’s a home run.
The conservatory is beautiful and I have deejayed receptions in it and ceremonies both. It is surrounded by a beautiful garden and is simply spectacular. The foyer areas are practically as big as the main ballrooms and are covered in wood, marble and leather. Anyway – just go see it.
The only solid complaint is that of all the places I attend as a vendor, this is one place that must encourage their customers to purchase a vendor platter which frankly tells the vendor they’re not quite worthy of a meal. I say encourage because this is the only place in a long time that I can remember that literally walks the vendors into a room and says here is your turkey sandwich… I play at upper end venues often and pretty much get a real meal wherever I go. The sad part is, at this wedding, the amount of food left over in the buffet could have fed a small army but the photographer and I “never got the hook up”. I’m over it (sort of) but it’s a really tacky move you think they’d have thought through because nothing else is remotely tacky but that!
The Dearborn Inn is located very close to the Henry Ford/Greenfield Village “campus”. I’ve been servicing Michigan brides here for years as a wedding dj and have a lot of experience at this Marriott Facility because they personally refer my dj services to their clients. The paragraph to follow is taken from their website and then I have some comments below and of course a virtual video tour of what the guests will see when attending your Dearborn Inn Wedding Reception.
The Dearborn Inn, A Marriott Hotel, offers an ideal locale near downtown Detroit and the Detroit Metropolitan Airport. Built in 1931 on the grounds of Ford Motor Company, this suburban Detroit luxury hotel, situated on 23 acres, has just completed a multi-million dollar renovation. This Dearborn hotel is close to major corporations and cultural sites such as The Henry Ford. In a setting reminiscent of an American inn, this Dearborn MI hotel features the service and amenities expected of Marriott, along with a unique array of accommodations including the Main Inn, 2 Colonial lodges and 5 Colonial guest homes. An on-site fitness center, outdoor swimming pool and several nearby golf courses offer ample leisure activity. The Early American Room raises the bar for Detroit area fine dining, while two lounges serve classic American cuisine. And with more than 17,000 sq ft of flexible event space, this historic Dearborn Michigan hotel hosts social affairs, intimate weddings or large business events with ease.
The Map to the Dearborn Inn is Here They can be reached: 20301 Oakwood Blvd Dearborn, MI48124 Get Directions(313) 271-2700
Tripadvisor has many reviews on the Dearborn Inn as a hotel but please remember I am rating from the perspective of a wedding dj, not someone sleeping overnight.
The grounds and drive up are absolutely beautiful. The building itself is in great condition and the brickwork and landscape are of showcase quality. The inside has always seemed in extremely good shape as well. The bathrooms are clean, the common areas are beautiful and the ballrooms themselves always seem to look excellent.
The food has always been good and the staff I’ve found to be exceptionally nice. With very little hotel and banquet staff turnover it is a good sign that someone is doing something right because I’ve seen the same faces there for years.
One thing I’ve always thought was neat was that the wedding party and the bride and groom can actually stay in the historic homes on site less than 100 yards from the ballroom doors or of course opt to stay in the hotel itself. WIthin 5 minutes of the Dearborn Inn there are also several famous museums and historic sites as well.
Danceability – I’ve typically had great receptions here. The dynamics are such that it’s a great place rain or shine for a wedding and a wedding reception.
Check out my youtube video below of the Dearborn Inn. (AND one i just updated down at page bottom from a summer 2012 visit to the Alexandria Ballroom – the bride really did an outsanding job decorating her Michigan Wedding Reception – it was supremely elegant)
NOTE: this was a real young couple getting married. The bride was 19 and the groom 21 off to Iraq.
Updated Summer 2012 Video of the Alexandria Ballroom at the Dearborn Inn in Dearborn, MI. This bride did an amazing job making an already elegant room look breathtaking. She matched the regal feel of the hotel’s architecture with her table linens and colors. I can’t believe I am saying this. Yes, I’m married with a child, I don’t have a cat and I only watch HGTV if my wife has control of the remote.
I in error published my venue review of Fox Hills Golf & Banquet Center in Plymouth, MI as a page not a post. So I am posting it here as well.
Fox Hills (I kept calling it country club) is located off N. Territorial Rd. in Plymouth, MI not far from Ann Arbor or the Metro Detroit Suburbs. I was able to make it without any problems in about 40 minutes from Royal Oak. I have always really liked this facility. As a dj I am inclined to say this because it always seems I have a great dancing crowd here. The facility itself plays a role in the success of a wedding reception as well. It’s not just all dj or all crowd. The variables contributing to a great wedding reception definitely include the room itself. Anyway… Fox Hills has 2 facilites onsite. One is the Fox Hills Classic (the older but renovated site) and the other is the Fox Hills Golden. I am sure I played in the Fox Hills Classic before but it has been a very long time. This review will cover the Fox Hills “Golden”, the newer of the 2 banquet facilities onsite.
On its own, with no decorations, no chair covers or flowers etc., I would say its a cut above average. However because of its location on the golf course and amazing views, with just a little bit of dress up it is on par with most any other place in the area. The food has never let me down and coming from a professional banqueteer that is saying something. The rolls actually stand out as excellent and coming from a guy that has tried rolls in hundreds of different places, that is some serious testimony.
The drive into and up to the facility is top shelf as it is nestled into a very country setting. It gets a 9.5 for drive up. I’d give it a 10 but it would need a few more trees. They really clear cut for this golf course and a ten only goes to the entrances with canopies of trees like Addison Oaks in Leonard, MI.
One thing that stood out especially for older guests is the bathrooms are fairly far away. This bride told me no hustles or line dances so… I never got that 5 minute break to make it there and back! How’s that for more than you needed to know?
Like most of the Michigan Weddings I dj at, it’s like splitting hairs when saying which one is the best. It’s like art – it’s comes down to a personal decision. In fact of the handful of Michigan Weddings I review on my Michigan Wedding DJ blog, you should make your decision based more on logistics from the church or core group of your wedding guests. When you see a review on my site I can assure you it’s a nice place. Why I like one place over another is probably tied more to my experiences there as a dj than anything else. It’s a feel thing. I personally love Fox Hills because I have really had great wedding receptions at that location. Not only were the bride and groom great but the guests were too and people danced!
A couple notables on Fox Hills taken directly from their website is:
Protecting the environment has always been a top priority of the family. In 1996, Fox Hills achieved the designation as a Certified Audubon Cooperative Sanctuary by the International Audubon Program sanctioned by the United States Golf Association. At that time, Fox Hills was third in the State of Michigan and among the first 40 in the nation to achieve this award.
Fox Hills was named “National Course of the Year” for its overall management, excellent facilities, programs and environmental practices in 2002 by the National Golf Course Owners Association. The Michigan Golf Course Owners Association named Fox Hills “Michigan Golf Course of the Year” two years in a row in 2001 and 2002.
The Environmental Improvement “Gold” Award recognized the Golden Fox gazebo’s beautiful multi-level perennial garden enhanced by giant boulders and plants selected to attract hummingbirds and butterflies.
The National Association of Women Business Owners named Fox Hills as one of the top 25 women-owned businesses in the State of Michigan.
I hope you’ll find these virtual tours beneficial. Feel free to help me improve them too by leaving a blog post for other things you’d like to hear or see on the tours.
Fox Hills is located at 8768 N. Territorial Rd. Plymouth, MI 48170 their phone number is: (734) 453-7272
The Pine Knob mansion is located at 5580 Waldon Road in Clarkston, Michigan 48348. Here is a link with directions to the Pine Knob mansion and the Pine Knob Carriage House. They are located about 100 yards from one another with the Mansion being a smaller facility up the hill a little. Both of these places have a beautiful place for brides getting married on “campus”. The Carriage House itself has a beautiful pavillion so weather will be less of a threat than it would be at the more intimate mansion up the hill. However having a ceremony at the Mansion has you high up on a hill with quite a vista. Both of these wedding reception venues are located about 40 minutes from Royal Oak Michigan’s I-696/I-75’s interchange, close to where Michigan’s Wedding DJ (Dan Nichols) lives. Anyway, finding it is a bit challenging if you haven’t been there at least once because it’s located in a beautiful housing community. It is however well marked with signs.
OK, so the food is very good but both facilities provide a little bit of a dj challenge as it relates to dancing. I much prefer the Mansion even though the dance area is in a completely different area than the dining room. The Carriage House has the dance floor at the tip of the triangle in the main room. The bar itself is not located near the dance floor nor is it on the way to the bar which frankly creates a challenge for a dj.
Both places are beautiful and really hard to beat as it relates to pure beauty. They are surrounded by the golf course and ski hills so it’s hard to find a bad view. I certainly rank both these wedding reception and ceremony venues as top shelf. The Carriage House holds over double the number of people though as the Mansion does so keep that in mind when booking your wedding.
I’ve dj’d at many events (closing in on 900) and found that any of the Oaks Managment Managed Properties are extremely well run. Not only are they neat and clean but they are beautiful as well. This past week I played for the Lynch/Hagenson family on Sunday, August 10th. It was the 7th or so wedding I’ve done for this family and or their friends. They have been generous with their leads and I can assure you when I die I will be layed out last at a Lynch and Sons Funeral Home. They are kind, loving people and it’s obvious because they attract friends and family of the same character. They got married in the “courtyard” of the facility which is only a short brick paver path away from the wrap around deck and main ballroom. The courtyard area for a ceremony is second to none – it is beautiful, rain or shine. The video as my virtual tours go was a bit shaky but I’ll update it soon enough. I did not record any dance footage this time as Tom, of Artistic Video in Walled Lake will hopefully get me that when he is done editing it. I will post it then. FYI – the Bridal Party pulled off a really good choreographed dance routine. It may not make Vegas but it sure as heck was the best one I’ve seen since I started dj’ing Michigan Weddings in 1990 – complete with tear off velcro pants. Video forthcoming on that. Anyway, check out the virtual tour of Addison Oaks and if you’re booking there, you’ll see my name on their referral list.
If you’re considering a wedding in South Lyon, MI you may or may not have heard of Walnut Creek Country Club. I played an event there in August of 2008 as the Club Banquet Manager needed a better dj experience than he had the last couple of years for a summer members only party. He was actually referred to me by another wedding professional who values my work. What can I say – the drive up was lush green and beautiful. The inside of the club was absolutely beautiful as well. Marble, granite, wood crown moldings, ornate mirrors, high ceilings and more. What struck me was it was “rich” in feel but more contemporary in it’s look. The chef is apparently amazing as he had a huge culinary trophy in the halls from a 2006 award he received. The food was truly outstanding. I’ll give it a 10. It was as good as the best I have eaten and I can assure you as the Michigan Wedding DJ I have dined in most venues in Michigan. Michigan Wedding DJ brings you a virtual tour of this facility. I hope you enjoy it. NOTE: though I have been deejaying in Michigan a long time (nearly 2 decades) this was my first event at this facility. It was a short drive from Royal Oak and took just under 40 minutes from my home near the I-75/696 interchange.
If you’re considering a wedding in Dearborn, MI at Greenfield Village you probably already know one of the beautful places to have a wedding reception is Lovett Hall. This historic building is kept in amazing condition through continuous maintenance and will prove a special place for the right bride and groom. Michigan Wedding DJ brings you a virtual tour of this facility. I hope you enjoy it. NOTE: as a dj of 18 years I have never had bad food at any of the Henry Ford Facilities. They are run really well. In fact the food as I recall is excellent and the service seems to be very good as well. They are located:
20900 Oakwood Blvd Dearborn, MI 48124 Phone Number (313) 271-1621