One of the last things you may be thinking about when you shop for wedding venues is how the layout of the space will effect dancing during the reception. There are a few very important tips to keep in mind so you can start creating a successful reception from the get-go.DANCE FLOOR: FRONT + CENTER When ... read more

One of the last things you may be thinking about when you shop for wedding venues is how the layout of the space will effect dancing during the reception. There are a few very important tips to keep in mind so you can start creating a successful reception from the get-go.

DANCE FLOOR: FRONT + CENTER
When deciding where in your room you’re going to place the dance floor, always opt for the dead center of the room. This means even the guest seated in the farthest corner will not have too long of a walk to get to the dance area. When the dance floor is in a corner, basic Feng Shui tells us that dancing is not the focus but just a “side” activity.

L-SHAPED LAYOUTS
If your venue space is L-shaped, make sure the head table, cake, and dance floor are placed where they can be seen at both ends of the room. You don’t want half the guests to miss out on seeing the toasts or first dance. Plus, guests who can’t see dancing will be much less likely to get up and join in.

STAIRS/MULTIPLE LEVELS
This may be the most challenging lay-out of all. It can be hard to encourage guests to walk a few feet to the dance floor even when their favorite song is playing. Asking them to get on an elevator, climb a flight of stairs, or even walk to another room can significantly cut down on dancing. If your venue is on multiple levels, do your best to concentrate activities as much as possible in one centralized area. You may also arrange your seating chart so that guests you know for sure will not dance are seated in the areas least accessible to the dance floor.

BAR/BATHROOM LOCATIONS
To maximize dancing, you want the bar and the bathrooms to be located as close to the dance floor as possible. There’s always a chance that guests will walk out to grab a drink, then get to chatting, or see their car in the parking lot and not return. Use the casino philosophy… keep your guests circulating where you want them to be – at slot machines or, in your case, on the dance floor.

DANCE FLOOR SIZE
Remember that a dance floor that’s too big looks empty even when it’s packed. When the dance floor appears to be sparsely populated, guests who were on the fence about dancing will think, “No, not that many people are dancing.” Shy guests want to disappear into a sea of people and not be a spectacle – they don’t want to have four feet of open space around them, feeling under the spotlight. And, if your dance floor does end up not accommodating all your guests, they’ll just dance on the carpet or in the aisles…then everyone will talk about how awesome your wedding was that people were dancing in the aisles! Either way, erring on the side of a smaller dance floor is a win-win.

Here is what I recommend to clients:

DANCE FLOOR SIZE

DANCERS TOTAL GUEST COUNT

8′ x 12′

16-28

25-45

8′ x 16′

24-28

46-65

8′ x 20′

32-36

66-100

12′ x 20′

48-60

101-125

16′ x 20′

65-70

126-140

16′ x 24′

80-85

141-155

16′ x 28′

96-105

156-170

16′ x 32′

112-120

171-190

20′ x 32′160

191-240

{Top image via Platinum Pro}

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