About the Mansion
Caterers / Vendors
Birmingham’s premier wedding and event address.
The historic Donnelly House, an example of Neo-classical architecture, was built in 1905 as the residence of James W. Donnelly. This magnificent Georgian-colonial mansion features over 12,000 square feet of living space and spectacular white marble floors.
The home was listed on the Alabama Register of Landmarks and Heritage on May 20, 1975. It is also a contributing property to the Highland Avenue Historic District, a historic district on the National Register of Historic Places.
Reserving the Donnelly House for your event.
A $750 (refundable) security/reservation deposit is required to reserve your date. The deposit is in addition to the rental fee. The deposit is fully refundable provided there is no damage to the facility. The deposit is non-refundable due to cancellation. Deposit can be transferred to another date. Deposit is returned within 30 days of your event.
Friday or Saturday event: $3500
Sunday through Thursday: $3000
These items/services are included in the rate:
• 4-hours of event time.
• 2-hours of pre-ceremony time. (Up to 4-hours of pre-ceremony time if it doesn’t conflict with an earlier scheduled event.) Pre-ceremony time is for wedding party and vendors only.
• Private bride and bridesmaids’ suites with private bath.
• Private groom’s suite with flat screen TV, DVD, and X-Box.
• Both bride’s and groom’s suites are equipped with mini-fridge.
• Private pre-ceremony area for family with dining setup.
• Tables and chairs (advance page for inventory).
• Cake tables, toasting flutes, and cake knives.
• All setup and cleanup.
Gazebo Garden Ceremony
There is a $300 setup fee for a ceremony in the gazebo garden. This includes up to 175 white wood padded chairs, all setup and cleanup. There is a per-chair rental fee for additional chairs over 175. The Gazebo Garden contains numerous power outlets, gazebo lighting and fan, and landscape lighting.
Gazebo Garden Ceremony Only
Any day: $1500
These items/services are included in the rate:
• 1-hour of ceremony time, 2-hours of pre-ceremony time.
• Bride's and groom's suites.
• Access to restrooms for guests.
• All cleanup and setup.
House rental rate for rehearsal dinners is $1500. If rehearsal dinner is booked along with wedding/reception, the rental rate is $600. This includes 3.5 hour reception time, tables, chairs, white linens, cleanup and setup. (60 guests or less.)
Donnelly House handles all bar services. We allow clients to bring their own alcohol — there is a corkage fee of $5 per person (ages 21 and over) to do so. The client will provide the Donnelly House with whatever they want to serve at least one day prior to event. This includes: Beer, wine, liquor, mixers, fruit, soft drinks, etc. Kegs can only be used outdoors and must come with cooler and tap. Donnelly House provides bartenders at $125 per 4-hour event. Number of bartenders depends on party size. The corkage fee covers all bar setups, bar linens, bar equipment, ice, plastic drink ware, and napkins. Glassware can be provided at $1 per person, if desired. The caterer can also obtain glassware. All bars are shut down 15 minutes prior to the ending time of an event. After event, all remaining beverages are packaged and returned to client.
Security is required for all outdoor events and any event serving alcohol. Security is $30 per hour, per officer. Events over 175 guests will require 2 officers. Donnelly House schedules all security.
The venue is equipped with inside and outside audio systems for the client to use at no charge. Audio systems contain iPod/iPhone docks.
Donnelly House allows bands and DJ’s. All outdoor entertainment has to end by 9:50 p.m., no exceptions. Noise levels are monitored and adjusted accordingly. The Donnelly House is respectful to its neighbors and neighborhood concerning noise volume. All bands and DJ’s are required to contact the Donnelly House prior to the event to make sure we are on the same page concerning loading, unloading, and noise volumes.
Events over 50 guests are required to have valet parking. We suggest that all events have valet parking due to the limited number of space available. Apex Valet is the contracted valet service for the Donnelly House. Apex is licensed and insured and has provided the Donnelly House with excellent service. The valet rates are based on the number of guest attending the event. Below is the rate schedule:
# of Guests
# of Valets on Site
Valet fees are based on a 4-hour event. Valets will arrive 1 hour prior to start time of an event. Additional valet fees are required for events over 4 hours.
The Donnelly House has a wide array of table linens for rental. Rates are determined by size, shape, and linen material chosen.
The Donnelly House has a selection of cake stands for rent. The rental is $25 per stand.
Table and Chair Inventory
Tables and chairs are included in the house rental. Below is the inventory list that is available for client to use:
• Ten 5-ft. round tables
• Four 4-ft. round tables
• Twelve rectangle tables (30 x 72 inches)
• Ten highboy tables
• 50 gold Chivari chairs
• 150 white padded chairs
Only caterers listed on our “In-house Caterers” list are allowed to provide food services here at the Donnelly House. Click on a name to visit a site and get more information:
There are occasions where we allow caterers outside our list to cater here at the Donnelly House. If you choose to use an outside caterer, we charge a 20% caterer's fee based on your outside caterer's invoice. Any outside caterer must be approved by the Donnelly House and have proper license and insurance.
The Donnelly House strongly encourages utilization of the following professionals for your upcoming event. Superior in their fields, these industry experts have been hand-selected to complement and enhance your occasion.
You may use any vendor not on this list. However, outside vendors have to be pre-approved by The Donnelly House prior to any event.
Preferred Vendors (cont.)
Preferred Vendors (cont.)
Click on any gallery below to see more of the Donnelly House.
“Brad and I would like to thank you and your staff for a job well done. Could not have asked for a better group to work with. Guests were amazed with the house. The service, food, valet, etc. were outstanding.”
— Linda C., November 2011
“I just want to tell you thank you. It was wonderful for everyone involved. My friends are still talking about the Donnelly House and how much fun they had. Your “McDonald’s Happy Meal” idea was a big hit with the kids. I will definitely use your facility in the future, hopefully for a baby shower.”
— Anna P., September 2012
“Thank you so much for making Cammie’s wedding wonderful. All our friends have commented on how beautiful and clean the house was. Your southern hospitality so impressed the groom’s family. Working with you and your staff was so easy. Please tell your wife thank you helping Cammie the morning of; we don’t know what we would have done without her. Your venue is great, your staff was excellent, and the experience was wonderful for my family and guests. Again, thank you so, so much.”
— Laura T., August 2012
“Roll Tide. The big screen TV in the groom’s room was great to watch the Alabama game before the wedding. I am just glad it ended before the ceremony started; I may have been a little late for the ceremony. Pennie and I just want to thank you and Karen for being great business owners and great people. You hear and read of the horror stories couples have with their wedding site, reception, etc. We honestly have nothing negative to say with the entire experience. There were no surprises and your service and professionalism were more than we could have wished. It was nice getting to know the both of you before the wedding. You have a great place and hope that others can experience what we did at the Donnelly House.”
— James and Pennie C., October 2012
“Our wedding ceremony and reception were exactly what I had envisioned. The outside was manicured and the inside was elegant. Thank you for picking up the champagne that my father forgot. You and your staff made it so easy for us. You where right: all I had to do was to show up and say, “I DO,” eat, party, and ride away. Again, thank you for making our wedding day a great experience.”
— Karen E., March 2012
“What an evening. Just want to tell you and Karen one thing, “WOW.” You and your staff are a machine. Everything was perfect. I know it was warm, but y’all were prepared for the heat. Thank you for suggesting the patio fans and for keeping the inside so cold. I know my father would like to move in. If there is anything I can ever do for you or your family, please do not hesitate to call me. You have an excellent venue and y’all are great people to work with. It meant so much to me that you made my parents feel special the entire evening. Stay in touch.
— Julie S., July 2012
“We could not have asked for a better experience. You and your staff made the day go so smooth. The rain plan worked better than I could have imagined. Who would have thought that moving everything inside at the last minute would have been so nice. Please thank your staff. I know they worked extremely hard to make everything happen. Please thank Karen for taking care of our grandparents. It meant the world to my mother and I.
— Jen C., September 2012
“Your venue was perfect. The out of town guests were amazed at how big and nice the house was. Thank you for arranging the hotels and transportation for our wedding party, too. Your beer cooler and Xbox in the groom’s room were big hits with my groomsmen. The outside bar service was killer. Please tell your guys they were great.”
— Marty L., November 2012
“Thank you for all of your help. Twenty days before our planned wedding day, we get a call from our original venue canceling our date due to problems with the site. We were scrambling at this time thinking we were going to have to cancel the wedding. A friend of mine told me to call the Donnelly House because she had gone to a wedding there a few weeks before. Not being form Birmingham, I did not know about your venue. I called you and you had my date available. I came by the next day to look at the house. After we left that day, my mother and I said there was a reason for the original venue to close, because the Donnelly House was suppose to have my wedding. Hands down, the Donnelly House is the best wedding venue in town. You and your staff make it stress free and simple. You could not have had a more stressed-out bride. I felt so relieved after you and your wife told me that everything was going to be OK and for me not to worry about anything. You did take care of everything. You made the worst news the best day of my life.”
— Ashlee T., December 2012
“Thank you for everything regarding the rehearsal dinner. I can’t say enough nice things about your venue and staff. You and Karen were so kind to our guests and us. Thanks again so much. We all had a great time.”
— Daphne K., Oct. 2013
“You and your staff did a great job with our son’s wedding and reception. You have a great venue and excellent staff. You guys truly understand the meaning of customer service. Again, thanks for the great job you do. ”
— Dan K., Oct. 2013
“Thank you and your staff for helping us have a beautiful day. Your hospitality was off the chart. You made the process so smooth. We appreciate everything you did for us.”
— Vin & Norm, April 2013
“Thanks again for everything that you did for our wedding. Your staff was great. Your house was beautiful.”
— Callie P., May 2013
“From the moment we walked into the Donnelly House, we knew that it was the place for us. Aside from the astounding beauty of the mansion, your warmth and compassion won us over. We are so grateful that we spent the best day of our lives there. We were so blessed to work with the sweetest people throughout our wedding planning. You guys made planning fun and so much less stressful. We love the house and we love you all. Thank you, thank you, thank you, for making our wedding day feel as though we were getting married at a friend's home (a very nice home). It meant the world to us.”
— Anna & Matt, March 2013
“I only write “thank you” notes when I truly feel thankful. This is one of those moments. Our wedding was as close to perfection as you can get, besides my sister-in-law’s dance moves. You and your staff we outstanding. I noticed two of you guys helping my grandfather up the stairs of the house because he wanted to see the second floor. They didn’t have to help him and my grandfather did not ask them to help him. They just did. I can’t say enough on how kind you and your wife are. We never felt uncomfortable asking you guys anything. What I am trying to say is, you made us feel like we had known you all for years, like friends. Much success, you deserve it.”
— Joey T., August 2013
We'd love to hear from you.
For venue availability, information, or to schedule an appointment to view the Donnelly House, please call or e-mail Carl Schoettlin.
2838 Highland Ave. South
Birmingham, AL 35205
The Historic Donnelly House is located in Birmingham, Alabama.