I had my wedding reception at the North Ritz Club on a Saturday in June 2011, and I cannot say enough about this great venue. I was working as an expat in Australia and was not able to come back to the U.S. to search for a venue myself, so my parents actually found and booked the North Ritz Club before I had even seen it. Of course this could be nervewracking to the normal bride, but I must say, from my first conversation with Nadine on the phone, I was confident that the service and flexibility at the North Ritz Club would be great. I was right. Every single time we visited the venue in the months before our wedding, the staff was extremely cordial and accomodating. The venue's outdoor area, bridal suite and reception ballroom are gorgeous. One of the criteria I had told my parents to look for was a place that wasn't already heavily decorated with chandeliers, overly fancy chairs, etc. so that we would have somewhat of a ""blank slate"" in terms of our decor. This is no easy task when searching for a catering hall, as opposed to a loft-type venue, but North Ritz was just right.
Our ceremony was at a church at 2pm, and since North Ritz had no event booked during the day on our wedding date at the time we printed our invitations, they kindly moved our cocktail hour to begin one hour earlier (6pm) to alleviate some of the gap. On the day of the wedding, our guests started arriving as early as 5:30pm, and George the Maitre'D opened cocktail hour then so that the guests could come inside and eat. I thought this was extremely considerate.
We originally guaranteed a certain number of guests at our reception for discounted rate, but realized through our RSVP process that we might not meet our original number. When we brought this to Nadine's attention, she helped us to work out a new contract with an updated number of guests and rate, which we still found to be reasonable for the area. This eased a lot of stress on our part, and is not something that most vendors would be willing to do.
We had custom stationery for our wedding and North Ritz worked with me so that I could add ribbons and seals with our wedding logo to the menus they printed. They arranged for a custom ice sculpture with our logo on it, even though they typically only include one of two pre-molded ice sculpture designs in their packages. We created a signature cocktail, and the bartenders happily served it to our guests all night. My family is of Indian descent, and the North Ritz Club created an Indian food station at cocktail hour for us. My guests raved about how delicious it was. Speaking of delicious - dinner was fantastic as well, and having been to over 50 events at catering halls in Long Island (huge family!), I must say it was well beyond my expectations. Our cake turned out exactly as I had requested, and was extremely moist and flavorful.
Monica was my bridal attendant, and she was by my side for the entire night, but still gave my husband and I space. I felt like I never had to lift a finger. She bustled my dress with ease, and trust me, it was no easy dress to bustle - eight hooks going through at least 14 layers of tulle! At one point, George, our Maitre'D showed my dad how he was monitoring activity in the reception room on a camera panel. My dad said it was fascinating, and that the potential for any crisis was averted by George's careful eye! The service was phenomenal, with waiters dedicated to each table - no one's water glass was empty at any point.
I consider myself to be quite a tough critic, but I have not a single complaint about the North Ritz Club. I highly encourage future Long Island brides to check it out! You will not be disappointed.