Castaway

Castaway, is a portland oregon venue with a classic industrial feel, its got a clean design and is easily accessible

Link to Castaway Website

I am going to be talking about this venue entirely from the perspective of a wedding videographer, I can’t say what the experience is like as a bride booking with them, but I have attended a lot of weddings at castaway and seen a lot of setups, and how different people have configured the space and decided to use the space to create their dream wedding.

The feeling

If you’re looking for a venue with an industrial feel, that is in the middle of town, Castaway is a fantastic choice, it is highly configurable, I have seen it used as the single location for the entire wedding day, covering preps all the way through the reception. And I have seen it used as just a reception location, prepped and ready to act as the evening location for dinner and festivities, while the ceremony and preps are done at other locations.

This is one of my older videos, took this quite a long time ago, so don’t take it to heart as a good example of my current style, but this bride decided to use saint johns bridge as her ceremony venue, and  used castaway as the location for the entire reception, and it worked so well! Having a classic outdoor ceremony and then having a really good secure, industrial feeling indoor space was brilliant!

The other great thing about using castaway as your reception location (or more) is even if you want to have your ceremony outside, castaway can serve as an emergency if it rains option, since oregon is so temperamental, it’s always a good idea to have a “if it rains” course of action. Castaway is a perfect contingency plan.

Parking

Parking is decent, there is a lot of street parking, and there can be a little onsite parking, depending on how you decide to configure the space (as the parking can also be used as an outdoor space for your event instead of parking.  On weekends there is a decent sized parking lot down the road you can pay by the hour to park at. On weekdays its usually filled with folks who work in the area.  In short, its good for a city but people will need to do just a little hunting to find some spots to park.

Preps

Castaway has a great prep area for the bride.  I haven’t seen groomsmen get ready at castaway, that usually seems to either happen off site, or it happens at separate times, the bridesmaids and bride get the room for 3 hours, and the groomsmen get the room for 20 minutes.

What is a really common plan is to have the groomsmen get ready at a hotel, frequently the nines, seems like the go to for some reason, and the bridesmaids get prepped at castaway.   It would be great to see them put in another prep room, so the groom and the bride could get ready at castaway, but its about the only thing that the venue is missing is a groomsmen prep room.

Ceremony

Castaway is awesome in that you can have a ceremony there. if you do, they tend to divide the space (which is quite large) into smaller sections and they slip the space a couple times over the day, once to make a ceremony space, and then they flip it to make a reception space. they have the system for doing it down pat, its pretty smooth. it has an industrial feel and its nice to be able to keep the entire wedding in one location, helps make the day less stressful and more streamlined.

Dinner

Castaway has a spacias area that allows even moderetly large gatherings to feel like there is plenty of space. which cannot be said for every venue in oregon, I have felt cramped at many indoor venues during dinner, but only rarely have I felt that way at castaway, only the largest weddings felt cramped at castaway. which I guess might be a piece of advice in and of itself, don’t fill your venue to its capacity if you can avoid it.

The venue has a kitchen, and I believe, they allow outside caterers (might even require them, I don’t know if they have an in house caterer or not) I most typically see buffet style dinners done here.

Party time

At the end of the night, its got a great dance floor, its big, you can get tons of people on the dance floor, and due to its easily configurable nature, if you need more dance floor, its easy to take down a couple tables to make room for a little more dancers. I don’t know what hours your allowed to keep the party going to here, but i have attended at least one event where they kept the dancing rocking until midnight (new years eve)

a small side note, which is a decent perk of this space, often times DJ’s charge for extra setups, and if you can keep everything in the same space you can save a little money if you want the DJ to do both the ceremony (for amplifying the sound of the ceremony) and the reception and the dancing. Most DJ’s at castaway only setup once, and that is that, they run everything from the same booth setup.

In the end

Castaway is a great option if you want an industrial feeling space, with a lot of configurability.  Its got so many ways you can use it, and its perhaps one of the most classic industrial feeling venues in portland.