I cannot even begin to describe the level of AMAZING I got to see at Sinead and Drew’s Martinstown House wedding. It was one of the most fun, exciting and unique weddings I’ve ever photographed – what a day! From a Gatsby-styled gown and a Scottish kilt to the most romantic first look and donkeys hungry for flowers… The day was filled with personal moments, laughter, tears and incredible joy. I’m still excited looking at the photos!
 
Sinead and Drew are one of those couples you always want to be around. They remind you how to enjoy life to its fullest. Sinead is warm, genuine, and supportive, she is the heart and soul of her amazing group of friends. They gathered from all over the world to witness her gorgeous day with Drew. Sinead told me about a mind map she’d created a few years back projecting her perfect man. She imagined a kind person, a good cook and someone who could make her laugh. As you can imagine, after a serendipitous meeting when Drew stole her seat at an event they became inseparable. This is exactly what they brought into their wedding day. Lots of fun, warmth, colour and an electric atmosphere!
bride and groom holding each other at martinstown house vintage wedding

May Wedding at Martinstown House

An alternative wedding venue made the day even more memorable. Sinead and Drew got in touch with Martinstown House and they were blown away. It wans’t only the quaint house and delicious food that swayed them, but the amazing attention and personality the place has. When I visited the venue leading up to the wedding I couldn’t leave. I wanted to explore every little corner! I was photographing every little detail and the thought of stealing their cats definitely crossed my mind more than once! Sinead and Drew also got to “christen” the gorgeous ceremony area in the woods as it was built in time for their unique ceremony. With beautiful poems and songs, hand-tying and even meditation, this was the most unusual and personal ceremony I’ve ever seen. Imagine your dearest friends and family standing around you in the shape of a heart as you share your first kiss! How amazing is that?!
 
It was the most beautiful summer’s day for their Martinstown House wedding. Everything called for a sunny garden party on the lawn! Time flew by with garden games and a pinata. There was a beautiful swing that wasn’t left unoccupied even for a moment, and of course amazing food and a gin bar set up in the sun. A dream to photograph, and a dream to be part of! After a while, Sinead and Drew escaped to the back of the garden for a bit of intimacy. While Sinead was taking a moment to herself Drew called up the local donkeys – totally noble steeds! Just look at their expressions (Drew’s and the donkey’s :D). And yes, donkeys are quite fond of bridal bouquets. In case you’re wondering what to feed them, you know?
bride and groom with donkeys martinstown house country house wedding venue

Location & Layout

With its wonderful countryside charm, Martinstown House is located just an hour away from Dublin, Co. Kildare. As you drive towards it there are fluffy sheep grazing among green pastures and handsome cottages with wisteria climbing the walls. You couldn’t imagine a more idyllic setting for a countryhouse wedding. The house itself has a few comfortable bedrooms (accommodating 12 people) and a gorgeous drawing room. You can use it both for your morning preparations, drinks reception and an intimate wedding dinner.

There are also a few smaller rooms, super quaint and with ideal light for couple photos. Its beauty, however, is outdoors as much as indoors. A vast lawn with a firepit in the middle is ideal for entertaining your guests and enjoying some garden games. The charming walled garden to the side is great for photo opportunities and as a first look location. At the bank there is a woodland area with a roof for an outdoor ceremony. You are able to use it in any weather without worrying about Irish temperamental climate. And then for dinner, of course, you have the option of a large marquee in the garden with a little drawing room-like area to the side. I’ve never seen anything like this before but it looks super cute!

wedding rings on a cat placemat

Do I Need to Hire Decor for My Wedding?

If you’re looking for a luxurious yet personal wedding at Martinstown House the place will really makes you feel like the lord and lady of the manor! I loved the decor and the little touches they had in every room – from animal-themed coasters and antique chests to gilded mirrors and vintage window panes. Edward and his daughter-in-law Jessica give you an incredibly warm welcome. The whole place is wonderfully homely and comfortable, elegant and indulgent without being too posh or opulent. You’ll also be able to decorate the venue with fresh flowers from the garden. Martinstown House is beautiful both by day and by night – there is plenty of natural light and equally plenty of light features for the evening like candles, fairy lights and even lamp shades hanging off the trees in the garden!

bride and groom in vintage campervan country house wedding venue martinstown house

What is the Best Season to Get Married at Martinstown House?

Martinstown House is a mostly a summer venue, with weddings taking place from April to October. The gardens are especially stunning on a fine day, and having your drinks reception on a sunny lawn is a dream. But with Irish weather being quite unpredictable you still don’t have to worry – there are lots of unique spots around the house, both indoors and outdoors. And on a lovely autumn day you can enjoy the amazing colours of leaves!

couple walking through secret walled garden at martinstown house wedding venue kildare ireland

Can I Get Ready at Martinstown House? Accommodation

If you book your wedding at Martinstown House the place is exclusively yours for the day. The Bird Room is beautiful for getting ready, but you can also use the Drawing Room – make up and hair stylists always appreciate extra space! The groom usually stays in the Stone Yard house, which makes it very easy for me to photograph both the bride and groom getting ready. In total there are 10 bedrooms on site, so you can enjoy being together with your family and bridal party. Other guests are welcome to use numerous B&B’s nearby, the Keadeen Hotel in Newbridge or – better yet! – set up camp. Camping at Martinstown House is a very popular option, in full spirit with the rustic and festival wedding theme.

final touches bride getting ready at martinstown house wedding venue

Food at Martinstown House

No wedding is complete without a feast, and a feast you shall have. Marstinstown House prides themselves on their fresh and quality food, and the flavours do not disappoint. From the start of the drinks reception with platters of meat and cheese to a gin bar and gorgeous dinner courses. All the food is homecooked, and the ingredients are all organic and mostly local. Edward, Jessica and Andrew grow a lot of vegetables, herbs and fruit in the Walled Garden and source other food from local farmers. The fresh eggs for breakfast are laid by Martinstown House own hens and you can try homemade jams and preserves. It’s hard to beat the delicious flavours of fresh food, and you couldn’t ask for better! For your wedding dinner you can go with a classic menu of dishes like organic guinea fowl with mushroom and pancetta, or striploin of beef with yorkshire pudding and homemade horseradish sauce. Another popular option is Spit Roast Dinner of Curragh Lamb or Suckling Pig on the spit with a beautiful selection of garden vegetables.

cheese and meat platter wedding reception at martinstown house

Civil Ceremony at Martinstown House

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Civil wedding ceremonies are some of my favourite, as I find them a lot more relaxed than church weddings and there’s no travel time needed. However, finding the perfect civil ceremony location isn’t always easy. Martinstown House is a gem in this regard. The Woodlands area with its rustic wooden pavilion and a ceremony stage is a an absolutely unique spot. The roof makes sure you can hold your ceremony in any weather and not have to worry about plan B. The Woodlands area is connected to the main house via a magical walkway, and the stunning chandelier gives this rustic place a truly luxurious look.

For smaller parties the Drawing Room is another good option if you want to host your ceremony indoors. It seats up to 60 people and can also be used for intimate dinner reception instead of the marquee.

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COMMENTS

Olga, those photos are wonderful, well done! Youve actually managed to captured the feeling of the day, the excitement, the fun, the love. Thank you for your part in helping to create those precious memories!

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Thank you Helen! It was such an amazing day, the photos only do justice to how wonderful Sinead and Drew are 🙂