Charleston Weddings….Make Our Legend Your Own

Ultimate Weekend Southern Breakfast

Enjoy an upscale weekend breakfast buffet for two guests at our Swamp Fox Restaurant with live piano entertainment.

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Trending since 2013- we are seeing more and more of the naked wedding cake.

Still offering multiple cake layer flavors, instead of the icing being on the exterior of the cake it’s between the layers. This type of wedding cake gives a vintage, rustic, and antique look to your wedding décor. It is also one the healthier side because you are using less icing. Plus, we have found that instead of decorating your cake with sugary, fondant flowers – brides are instead decorating their naked cake with natural elements such as flowers and fruit – giving your cake a fresh and delicious look! Although this new cake trend may not appeal to everyone because of its “unfinished” look, you still satisfy having your classic wedding cake with a modern look.

ABCD Naked Cake

Cake Picture Credit: Ashley Brown Cake Design

Choosing the perfect menu for your wedding reception a simple process with our Wedding Sales Manager and Chefs . Being in the south, we find many weddings choosing our station dinner packages to create a more casual atmosphere. We decided to ask our Chefs to choose their favorite stations:


Packwood Management’s Executive Chef, Simon Andrews is one of the creators of the bridal menus and has overseen many wedding receptions at the hotel during his 18 year career with us. His favorite station is, “shrimp & grits of course!”  Born in Ireland, he has adopted the southern ways and loves to create his specialty of shrimp and girts. Chef Simons uses a secret ingredient (Tasso Ham) leaving your mouth watering! This station is one of our most popular because shrimp and grits are a delicacy of the south!

Shrimp and Grits Cropped Web


Francis Marion Hotel Executive Chef, Phil Gaulin has been with the hotel and a part of Chef Simon’s team for over 2 years. He even was the Executive Chef at our sister property (Middlebury Inn, Vermont) before he moved back south 2 years ago with his family. His favorite station is, “most definitely the banana fosters because it’s a mixture of rum & sweetness!!” Fun fact about Chef Phil, he loves bananas! Our banana foster consists of homemade vanilla ice cream smothered in a rum & brown sugar sauce covered in fresh bananas.



Banquet Chef, Daniel James is the youngest member of Chef Simon’s team and brings lots of popular food trends to the team. His favorite station is, “Our fried chicken and waffles because it’s southern and up and coming.” We infuse our homemade syrup with bacon, jalapenos and a hint of thyme. We also offer the more traditional syrup.

Chicken & Waffles


We hope you’re hungry now!

Cop Cakes

Cop Cakes

We have seen a growing trend in Groomsmen Cake’s at weddings here at the Francis Marion Hotel. The tradition of a Groomsmen’s Cake originated in England, dating back into the late 1800s.  Bakers would create a special cake which would identify to the Grooms personality. The baker would infuse the cake with strong chocolates or alcohol to signify that the male is the “stronger sex”.

Chantilly Cakes

Chantilly Cakes

While we don’t see many alcohol infused cakes, we do see cakes which signify the Grooms personality and likes. Many of the cakes involve their favorite football or basketball team, college logo, favorite type of beverage, or is job related. This cake can be served either as dessert at the rehearsal dinner or on a separate cake table at the wedding.

Ashley Brown Cake Design

Ashley Brown Cake Design

1. Historic Ballroom Charm

Rising high over the Historic District at the corner of King and Calhoun Streets, the Francis Marion Hotel stands as a Landmark in the Charleston Skyline and the city’s rich history. Now restored to its 1920’s elegance this grand old lady of Charleston shines again as a symbol of Hospitality to all who visit. Our historic Colonial and Gold Ballrooms with 24-foot ceilings and antique crystal chandeliers add both elegance and grace to any event. The Carolina Ballroom features a balcony overlooking Marion Square Park.



Carolina Ballroom Rounds Straight on uplighting Hi Res


2. Location, Location, Location!

Conveniently located in the heart of downtown’s Historic District, and on the city’s popular Upper King Street, the Francis Marion provides the perfect location for guests to easily access the city’s best restaurants, shops and attractions by foot! Also, across from Marion Square Park, the hotel is the best venue for many of the city’s most popular festivals throughout the year.

FMH Exterior

3.Fantastic Food!

Our own Swamp Fox Restaurant & Bar offers upscale Southern cuisine for breakfast, lunch and dinner and lively piano bar entertainment.

Executive Chef Simon Andrews and Chef de Cuisine Phil Gaulin create regional specialties that emphasize beloved flavors reminiscent of the old south.

Shrimp and Grits Cropped Web

4.Everything that’s included!

– Complimentary Ballroom (Based on meeting a food and beverage minimum before tax and gratuity)

– White Full Length Table Linens and White Linen Napkins

– Centerpiece on each Table to Include a Square Mirror, 4 Votive Candles and a Tall Cylinder Glass with a White Candle

– Dance Floor

– Band Staging

– Complimentary Wedding Cake Cutting and Serving

– Francis Marion Suite for Your Wedding Night

– Discounted Room Rates for your Out of Town Guests

– Complimentary Menu Tasting for Up to 4 Guests


5. Personalized Wedding Advice and On-Site Coordination from Our Wedding Specialist

© Dana Cubbage Weddings 2015

© Dana Cubbage Weddings 2015

At the end of your amazing wedding day, it is popular to do a formal departure, for your guests to “send the married couple off”. Your guests line up on two sides, creating a tunnel for the couple to walk through and with a little creativity, wish the married couple well into the future. Here at the Francis Marion Hotel, our memorable sendoff spills right onto the energetic King Street and Marion Square Park. You can have a limo, horse & carriage, or bike taxi, waiting to whisk the happy couple on a ride through our historic streets of Charleston. From bubbles, rose petals, glow sticks, streamers; we have had some exciting exits at the Francis Marion Hotel.

St-Lukes-Chapel-Wedding-039-Sides-77-78-1920x1312Credit: Richard Bell Photography

© Dana Cubbage Weddings 2015

Credit: Dana Cubbage Photography