London wedding couple on staircase at Camberwell Arms

Top 15 London wedding venues for less than 30 guests

Top  15 London wedding venues for small weddings

Updated for 2022  – I originally wrote this blog post, and a few others about microweddings, when we were in the heart of the pandemic. Since then I’ve noticed a bit of an upswing in people searching for information about smaller wedding venues for intimate weddings, so I thought it made sense to update the post so we’re not viewing it through a purely covid related lens. Plus I’ve now been to some other amazing intimate wedding venues and I thought it was time I shared them with y’all.

Following on from my blog post about why photography is still important for your intimate wedding, I thought it would be a great time to share some of my insider knowledge and list some of my favourite venues for 30 or fewer guests.

The wonderful thing about having less than 30 guests is that you are totally spoilt for choice for chic, stylish, urban venues, whereas the more people you invite, the fewer venues can accommodate you. You’ll get the choice of chic private dining rooms, gourmet restaurants and warehouse type spaces, and can spend less on food and drink, while still enjoying the best.

Obviously now we (hopefully) into post Covid times, 30 feels like a bit of an abitrary number to list, it also maybe feels like a helpful limit. I guess any wedding above this size is mid sized, and you have more spaces to choose from.

London Wedding venues for intimate weddings

So here’s my top 10 15 list. Some of these are beautiful places I’ve worked at before, others are true bucket list spaces.

  1. The Ned

The gloriously Chic Ned, in the heart of The City, has a wealth of spaces, but some of the most beautiful and characterful are their smaller spaces, including the Terraces and The Princes Dome.

2. The Ace Hotel, Shoreditch  One Hundred, Shoreditch

Ok, so the Ace Hotel is no more. It was genuinely one of my favourite wedding venues in London, so I was sad when they closed their doors. However it has now been reborn at One Hundred. The interiors are still unmistakably Ace-y, perhaps even nicer; they still have the rooftop bar and you can still hire it for weddings. So what are you waiting for?

I’m in love with weddings at The Ace – it’s a small intimate space, with a glorious balcony with which to watch the sun go down on the craziness of Shoreditch High Street below, their events space has a great flow and has a max capacity of 40-50, so 30 or less wouldn’t feel lost in the space.

3. The Swan at the Globe

Has a variety of spaces you can hire, including The Bull Room. Restaurant food, a beautiful view over the Thames, the Southbank a short stroll away for photos and a big slice of London History.

4. St John Bread and Wine

Their Spitalfields restaurant can hold a maximum of 64 guests, so again, 30 wouldn’t feel uncomfortably empty. It has a beautiful, austere aesthetic and amazing food.

5. Brunswick House

Sitting in the middle of the Vauxhall gyratory, a pretty unassuming location for an electic, antique filled haven. The Parlour, The Library and the Smoking Room are their small, but perfectly formed intimate private dining rooms, comfortably fitting less than 30 people.

6. Clissold House

Situated in the middle of glorious Clissold Park, Stoke Newington residents will know the iconic Clissold House. It’s made up of a variety of spaces, none of them especially large for a seated dinner, but they can host ceremonies too, or you could hop on over from Stoke Newington Town Hall, which is just a stones throw away.

7. The Drapers Arms

There’s a few pubs and bars with private dining rooms a hop, skip and a jump away from Islington Town Hall. In fact ‘places to have a reception when you’re getting hitched at Islington Town Hall’ could indeed be a blog post of it’s very own – it was certainly the subject of many extensive google sessions when planning my own ITH wedding. Anyway, The Drapers is kind of old school, charming, fuss free and down to earth. You can hire the upstairs dining room, which seats up to 50 (and is pretty full at that point, so 30 would be a joy!) and the world keeps on spinning in the bar below.

8.Petersham Nurseries

A visual feast and an iconic spot. Whilst they have always done bigger hires, they also have a number of smaller private dining spaces for hire. Fancy eating in a Greenhouse, surrounded by plants on gorgeously patina-ed tin topped tables. Now it’s your chance.

Image courtesy of Petersham nurseries

9. Sevendroog Castle.

One of those places you’d almost never know was there unless you’re a local. Sevendroog Castle is a tiny folly hidden away in Oxleas Wood, off Shooters Hill, in deepest darkest South East London. It’s a great venue for a truly intimate wedding – you get the ‘whole’ castle (i.e. three rooms) and the views from the ramparts are pretty spectacular.


10. Carousel restaurant

This unassuming restaurant on a Maryebone side street is the perfect spot for anyone getting married at Marylebone Town Hall. They have a big, warehouse like private space on the top floor with a communal table and, crucially, lots of space. Surprisingly not funfair themed, though check out Brunswick House if that is your vibe.


New venues

11.  The Camberwell Arms – great for South Londoners. Stylish, with amazing food and laid back staff. Their upstairs dining room is big enough for 40 or so, so fewer guests wouldn’t feel lost. In fact 40 odd feels a little bit tight, whereas 30 would give you more room for drinks and mingling.

12. The Zetter, Clerkenwell – This location is perfect for a luxurious small wedding. From the boutique rooms through to dinner and cocktails. The Games Room is licensed for ceremonies, so you can get legally wed here and then you have a choice of room for dinner, or cocktails by the fireplace in the lounge.  

13. Cambridge Cottage, Kew Gardens – thought Kew Gardens was all about extremely extravagant weddings in greenhouses? They also have this relatively intimate wedding venue with it’s own garden space. You can still have photos in the grounds of Kew, and your guests can go off in the Kew Explorer for a guided tour. If you want more proof, check out Hannah & Dan’s wedding there. It’s also relatively affordable if you’d like a weekday wedding.Check out Hannah & Dan’s intimate Cambridge Cottage wedding.

14. Frederick’s Islington – If you’re getting married at Islington Town Hall, this place is a short stroll down Camden Passage. A bit of a local institution, they have the Clarence Room overlooking the garden which is perfect for smaller wedding parties. Apparently they also hold their own wedding license. So you could hold the whole shebang here if you wanted.

15. Your House – I’m actually serious. I had a few couples who struggled to find the right sort of venue during the Pandemic, so they held receptions at home. And they were bloody brilliant. One couple had a private chef come and cook, so it was like hosting a big dinner party. Another had an awesome catering company come and drop all kinds of yummy things as a sort of cold buffet for everyone. If you wanted dancing without upsetting the neighbours, you can hire silent disco headsets. You could even book in a cleaner to come the next morning and take care of everything, and best yet, bed is only a few steps away at the end of the night. 


Images featured are photographed by Ellie Gillard photography unless otherwise specified.

Ellie is a wedding photographer split between London and Norfolk, and absolutely adores capturing small, intimate weddings. 




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