I’ve been photographing weddings in the west end of Glasgow for a few years now, and have put this guide together to share some cool and quirky unique west end wedding venues you may want to consider for your wedding day. I’ve also shared insights into the best spots for wedding day group photos, along with some photo tips to help you have an unforgettable day.
In a prominent position at the top of Byres Road, the former Kelvinside Parish Church is both a stunning and versatile space for a wedding. The building is full of beautiful original features and ornate stonework, creating a beautiful setting. I’ve photographed several weddings there now both micro weddings in the private dining room and gallery and larger weddings in the auditorium. What it lacks in outdoor space it more than makes up for with amazing interior space and is perfect for a big celebration.
Where to have group photos? For micro weddings, there’s enough space to use on the Great Western Road side of Òran Mór. For larger auditorium weddings, I’d recommend booking the Botanic gardens. Details on how to book the Botanic gardens, along with cost can be found on the Glasgow City Council website.
Photo Tip: For auditorium weddings, it’s best to do the group photo of everyone right at the end of the wedding ceremony, as the main space is usually unavailable during the drinks reception as the venue need to prepare the space for the wedding breakfast.
Capacity: From 15-32 in the private dining room to 100-275 in the auditorium
Another church conversion wedding venue in the west end, Cottiers was formerly Dowanhill Parish Church and is now a theatre and bar space. It’s a fantastic location for a wedding, with beautiful stained glass windows and has the bonus of garden space at the front which is perfect for even large wedding groups. I’ve photographed over 500 weddings so far, all over the UK, and Cottiers has hands down the best lighting. It’s the ideal space if you and you’re friends wanna throw some shapes on the dance floor, and the space is ideal for a ceilidh.
Where to have group photos? There’s plenty of space at the front of the venue for all of your wedding party group photos. It’s south facing, so in very bright sunlight there’s the risk of guests squinting. The courtyard faces west though, and there’s room here for smaller group photos.
Photo Tip: If you have a really bright sunny wedding day, using the front space later in the day when the light has dropped will make for less squinting and better photos.
Capacity: Up to 130 in the daytime, up to 200 for evening reception.
The Bothy is an intimate cosy restaurant space with a private dining room (the Scullery) perfect for micro weddings of 14-24 people. The space feels like a homely dining room, with ambient lighting and greenery complimenting a large fireplace and exposed stonework. It’s a really beautiful space and if you’re having a micro wedding, this hidden gem is definitely worth checking out.
Where to have group photos? I’d highly recommend booking the Bothy garden for an hour during your drinks reception so you can make the most of this space. There’s plenty of room here for all of your group photo combinations, including a photo of everyone.
Photo Tip: For your wedding day portraits, it’s worth venturing further up Ruthven Lane to Victoria Crescent Lane for some pretty leafy sports, as well as over to Ashton Lane ideally later in the day for fairy lights and west end vibes.
Capacity: 14-24 in ‘the Scullery’ private dining room
A green and leafy quirky cocktail bar on Ashton Lane, The Gardener doesn’t advertise being available for weddings, but does have a cool private dining space available for hire called the plant room, and I’ve photographed a wedding there (with 15 people). It’s a great location for an intimate micro wedding if you’re looking for a cool venue that has a more modern and contemporary feel.
Where to have group photos? The front entrance is perfect, and partially under cover, so you’ll be protected from the elements if it’s raining.
Photo Tip: Ashton Lane is great for couple portraits, but not very green. If you’d like some green and leafy vibes, head to Victoria Crescent Lane (north of Ruthven Lane) for plenty of great portrait spots.
Originally Lansdowne parish church, Websters is located just east of Kelvinbridge subway station on Great Western Road. Weddings at Websters take place in the Playhouse (upstairs) and the snug bar (to the right of the entrance).
Where to have group photos? There’s not a lot of space at the front of the Websters, but there is space at the side of the venue for group photos. Size would be dependent on available street space on the day. There’s some green areas just around the corner in Lansdowne Crescent.
Photo Tip: The front of the venue can be really lovely for couple portraits, but if you are looking to have more greenery, head to Lansdowne Crescent for alternative portrait options.
One Devonshire Gardens is a boutique hotel that takes up a whole victorian terrace of beautiful blonde sandstone buildings. Exquisitely decorated, stylishly furnished, and the perfect wedding venue for classy and stylish weddings. The wedding team there are all lovely and a joy to work with. One Devonshire manages to be both luxurious and relaxed and chilled out at the same time. Weddings are usually in house 5, so it will feel like you have the house to yourself, with private bar area and a courtyard to the rear. It’s one of my favourite west end venues. Oh, and the food is sublime. Even if you’re not getting married here, it’s a great location for wedding morning prep, or to stay on your wedding night. There’s always plenty of parking in surrounding streets.
Where to have group photos? The stairs outside house 5 are ideal for up to 40 guests. When I’m photographing weddings at One Devonshire I try to park in the space opposite the stairs so that I can then move my car out the way and pop my ladders in the parking space instead.
Photo Tip: There’s plenty of cute couple portrait spots around the venue, but I’d recommend venturing a couple of blocks east to Great Western Terrace, a listed building designed to be the ‘grandest terrace in Glasgow’ by Alexander ‘Greek’ Thomson.
An industrial-esque space with warm exposed brickwork and soft lighting next to a pretty canalside walkway. The wedding ceremony I photographed here took place in The Outhouse, a small and cosy space that’s a blank canvas. Looks lovely dressed with florals and fairy lights as shown in the photo below.
Where to have group photos? There’s space in the garden area at the back for smaller groups and for the group photo of everyone, either guests could be on the stairs, or the photographer could be on the stairs with everyone in the yard area.
Photo Tip: Make use of the canalside walkway for couple portraits. It’s really pretty!
Hey! I’m Karen! I’m a wedding photographer based in Glasgow’s west end. I specialise in natural, unobtrusive coverage of relaxed and informal weddings. I team this documentary coverage with as many group photos as you’d like with your friends and family, and a few creative portraits that will make the most of the light and the details of your chosen wedding venue. Every package includes a planning meeting and venue visit so that I can personalise your coverage to be the best fit for you and your unique wedding day.
If you have any questions about any of these wedding venues, or you’d like to check my availability for your wedding, feel free to get in touch.