FAQs

What should I expect to spend on the servers and bartenders?

All staffing is through Gulf Drive Cafe. Bartenders & Servers are $200 each without gratuity. We tend to staff 1 bartender for every 100 people, and 1 server for every 25 guests if you decide to have a buffet. If you prefer a plated meal we schedule 1 server for every two guest tables. If you have questions in regards of staffing speak to your Event Coordinator.

Am I allowed to take leftover food from the event with me?

Unfortunately no, due to Health standards and food borne illness, we cannot allow any food to leave the premise once it has been sitting out for more than two hours in accordance with health food regulations. This is why your Event Coordinators work dilligently with you and the Chef to ensure that you order enough food and avoid food waste.

Do I have to pack up my decorations and take them right after the event, and is there a fee to have you do it for me?

One of the many benefits of having your wedding at The Sunset by Gulf Drive Café is that we will set up and take down all your decorations for you within the last half hour of your event, and pack them in the original boxes. This is all included in your Event Management Fee. We do ask that you take your decorations home with you that night as there is usually another event occurring the next day.

Since I am required to rent the linens through you, will I have a large selection?

Yes! We use the leading linen rental company in the area and have over 1000 different colors, prints and fabric to choose from.

Do you have a bridal suite to get ready?

No unfortunately, we do not have a bridal suite. Our brides will need to get ready at a different location, arrive completely dressed and ready for their big day prior to the ceremony beginning. Brides are welcome to come up to 30 minutes prior to the Ceremony and relax in our dining room with a cocktail while she is waiting for her big moment to walk down the aisle.

Can I expect to have another wedding ceremony going on at the same time as mine?

Wedding Ceremonies may be booked in the same day, but not at the same time if it is only a Ceremony and will be hosted in a separate location than your Ceremony. However, you can expect that we only book ONE RECEPTION per day. It is your special day and we want you to feel that our entire focus is on you!

If there isn’t any Gratuity included, should I be expected to include my own Gratuity?

While tipping is welcomed, it is completely discretionary.

Is the 20% Service Fee Gratuity?

No, it is not a tip. The Service Fee is an overhead fee in order to cover discretionary costs of the event that aren’t individually listed on the quote. Some examples for this are: prep cook pay, venue liability insurance, waste collection, cleaners, and so on.

What is the Event Management Planning Fee?

There is a $600 Event Manager Fee, which is required for every event. This fee includes: Day of Coordination, Pre-planning; In take information (30-60 Minutes in person, phone or via email), 60 & 30 day meetings (in person 60 minutes to 1.5 hours or via phone). All Details of Scheduling Staff and Vendors, Organizing Dinner Menu, running of the Ceremony Rehearsal, Ceremony and Reception, from the creation of your timeline and floor layouts, plus so much more. Our Event Management Team will expertly ensure everything runs smoothly so that you can enjoy yourself and not have to worry about the details!

Do you do destination weddings?

Absolutely! Over half of our weddings are destination weddings, and we can do everything with you via Skype, Phone or through Email to make your wedding planning a breeze. However, we do enjoy a Face-to-Face meeting as well.

What do I have to use from you, and what vendors can I bring in?

All Food and Beverage, Staffing, equipment and linens are all required to be provided through our venue. You are welcome to choose outside vendors for your photographer, music/DJ, florist and dessert/baker. In need of some recommendations? Just ask for our Preferred Vendors list and we will be happy to provide it to you.

What kind of lighting am I allowed to use for my Centerpieces?

You may use both Wax Candles and Electric LED candles, please do note that all wax candles must be in a glass enclosure if they are being lit. Specialty lighting is required to be purchased through the venue. If your centerpieces include battery operated stringed lights that is fine as well! During Turtle Season (May-October) we are obligated to lower our side curtains in the hut to adjust the exterior lighting for the Nesting Turtle Laws & Ordinances required by the State of Florida and City of Anna Maria Island. We are happy to educate our couples more about Turtle Season, just speak to your Event Coordinator!

Can you decorate for me?

Yes! Please talk to your Event Coordinator about all of our different decorating packages through our venue, as well as additional décor packages for purchase through Swanky Soiree.

I have a guest with a food allergy. Can you accommodate them?

Absolutely, we take allergies very seriously here and can create custom selections for guests with Celiac intolerance, Lactose intolerance, Shellfish Allergy, Nut Allergy, and so no. Please let your Event Coordinator know and how serious the allergy is, that way they can work with the kitchen to ensure the allergy is handled appropriately.

Are there other areas beside the beach to have my ceremony?

Yes! You may have your ceremony in the private Sea Star Sands area or under the Sunset Tiki Hut.

What happens if it rains?

Our Sunset Tiki has roll down shutters to shield you and your guests from the elements. If you are booking the Seaside Tiki or Seaside Sixties, we will move you into our dining room or our larger, Sunset Tiki, so long as it is available.

Should I get wedding insurance?

Yes, we always recommend wedding insurance. This is one of the biggest days of your life and having insurance will help ease your mind.

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