Guidelines & Policies

Wedding Guidelines & Policies

Guidelines & Policies • Peace on Earth! Our guidelines and policies are pretty simple and down home. This in the sense that you can ask for anything and if it makes sense we are truly glad to oblige. If it doesn’t then we will say no can do and explain why.

There are a number of logical considerations, guidelines, approaches and policies, and these are listed below. They make sense as they are based on experience and help assure a good time is had by all, including other guests, and us, and that’s only fair. Let’s just say it’s unfortunate that common sense and civility have taken a back seat to rules, regulations and contracts, but here we go:

Event Cancellation Insurance
All things planned long in advance can suffer cancelation and rescheduling. This is normal and natural; in large groups a key person scheduled to attend could become ill, or the time frame previously prepared for advanced or retarded. When this happens the cost of cancellation, or rescheduling and re-organization can be significant. We recommend you purchase this type of wedding insurance for your peace of mind and because it is so affordable, many times less than the cost of one extra guest. That way if something serious enough to cancel comes up, you will not have to foot the bill alone. We highly recommend you review the page on Wedding Insurance you find by clicking here.

Event Liability Insurance
The nature of the legislation surrounding business and special event insurance is such that we require you purchase separate event liability insurance the size and premium of which will depend on the size of your wedding. People can trip, fall, hurt themselves or others, especially in a rural setting such as this. You never know when by inviting someone you can become liable for something quite serious. The wedding couple must provide us with proof of liability insurance for the event. The minimum limit of liability coverage will be one million dollars. The policy should cover guests, participants, all food, beverage and service staff and should name us as an additional insured. We must receive the policy no later than sixty days prior to the wedding. We highly recommend you review the page on Wedding Insurance you find by clicking here.

Lodging Reservations, Deposits & Cancellations
Rooms are booked as a group booking at the time of the signature of the wedding plan, and generally 1/3 of the total lodging bill is due at signing, 1/3 is due 45 days before the wedding, and 1/3 is at check-in. The wedding party makes the booking and all deposits and payments, and the guests call in and reserve specific rooms from a pool of rooms reserved. When the wedding guests call in to reserve their specific room from the pool of rooms, their credit card is used to take a one night room deposit. Whatever extra funds would surpass the lodging portion of the lodging bill, when your guests pay for their rooms, will be credited back to your wedding account and/or refunded at check-out. Global Cancelation: If the wedding is called off and you cancel 60 days before the scheduled date, you will receive a refund minus 15% of the lodging bill, if cancelled less than 60 days before the wedding you forfeit the 1/3 lodging deposit, if you cancel less than 45 days before the wedding, you forfeit all deposits and pay the entire lodging bill at cancelation as if the wedding had occurred. The Good News: We then refund you (minus a 15% cancellation charge) when we rebook the rooms for the time frame you had reserved, for the amount of bookings we received for that time for the rooms you had reserved. Room Specific or Partial Cancellation: You are still responsible for the entire group of rooms originally booked as if they were used. Room Count Additions: are billed and fully paid at the time of booking and are non-refundable. Global Cancellations, Specific or Partial Cancelations, and Head Count Additions must be received in writing.

Dining Reservations, Deposits & Cancellations
Dining is booked as a group booking at the time of the signature of the wedding plan, 1/3 of the total dining bill is due at signing of the wedding plan, 1/3 is due 45 days before the wedding, and 1/3 is at check-in. Global Cancelation: If the wedding is called off and you cancel 60 days before the scheduled date, you will receive a refund minus 5% of the dining bill, if cancelled less than 60 days before the wedding you forfeit 10% of the dining bill, if you cancel less than 45 days before the wedding, you forfeit 15% of the dining bill, but are not responsible for the balance. If you cancel less than 14 days before the wedding, you forfeit 30% of the dining bill. Dining Count Reductions or Partial Cancelation: You are still responsible for the entire dining originally booked. Dining Count Additions: are billed and fully paid at the time of booking and are non-refundable. Global Cancellations, Specific or Partial Cancelations, and Head Count Additions must be received in writing.

Catering Reservations, Deposits & Cancellations
Catering is booked as a group booking at the time of the signature of the wedding plan, 1/3 of the total catering bill is due at signing of the wedding plan, 1/3 is due 45 days before the wedding, and 1/3 is at check-in. Global Cancelation: If the wedding is called off and you cancel 60 days before the scheduled date, you will receive a refund minus 5% of the catering bill, if cancelled less than 60 days before the wedding you forfeit 10% of the catering bill, if you cancel less than 45 days before the wedding, you forfeit 15% of the catering bill, but are not responsible for the balance. If you cancel less than 14 days before the wedding, you forfeit 30% of the catering bill. Catering Count Reductions or Partial Cancelation: You are still responsible for the entire dining originally booked. Catering Count Additions: are billed and fully paid at the time of booking and are non-refundable. Global Cancellations, Specific or Partial Cancelations, and Head Count Additions must be received in writing.

Vendor Reservations, Deposits & Cancellations
Vendor reservations and orders are booked at the time of the signature of the wedding plan, 1/2 of the total vendor bill is due at signing, 1/2 is due 45 days before the wedding. Global Cancelation: Vendor specific cancelation policies will apply, please request and verify these are included in your wedding plan for each specific vendor. Vendor Count Reductions or Partial Cancelations: You are still responsible for the entire vendor bill as originally booked. Vendor Count Additions: When possible and available are billed and fully paid at the time of booking and are non-refundable. You are responsible for all vendor supplied equipment. Any damage not specifically caused by us will be billed to your account at the rate provided by the vendor. Global Cancellations, Specific or Partial Cancellations, and Head Count Additions must be received in writing.

Pricing on this website
Please note that all pricing on this website, except for special offer packages as published here, are indicative and informative, and not official proposed prices or quotes, all of which will be precisely stipulated as part of your wedding contract. Many options are mutually required or mutually exclusive. Days, times, seasons, the context and configuration of your wedding and the price and requirements for same can shift up or down considerably, and we can waive, reduce or increase the pricing of elements due to synergies and efficiencies.

Minimum Stay Requirements
There is a two day minimum stay on weekends, this can either be a Thursday & Friday, or a Friday & Saturday, or a Saturday & Sunday.

Check-In
Check-In is at 3:00PM and early check-in is not available for any of the wedding party other than the bride and groom. Pre-Wedding Check-In is always much more involved than regular check-ins. You need to communicate very clearly to your guests, that check-in starts at 3:00PM and no earlier, as will we when they book. Because when we are receiving mid-large groups even more specific preparation is required at the inn, and we will be quite busy and unprepared. When we clearly state this policy in no uncertain terms as we do here and then receive an early check-in invasion (which happens often enough to mention) it is assured to start things off on the wrong foot, frustrate and stress everyone. Each guest that arrives early and expects to checked-in early will be turned away and asked to return. Being less than firm in this regard is encouraging a messy and hectic check-in with plenty of discontents. Imagine throwing a dinner party for a 100 people at your house at 6:00 and about 25 people show up at noon and ask to taste the food, offer suggestions, ask for drinks etc… Each guest showing early despite this policy will be asked to return at 3:00PM. If they try to negotiate we will ask them to leave, if they insist we will use mace, call in the police, possibly a Swat Team and if we are pushed around enough denounce them as terrorists to Homeland Security :-) If nothing else, the previous phrase assures the NSA is indexing our website regularly even if Google isn’t. Hey, folks in the NSA get married too :-)

Check-Out
Check-Out is at 11:00AM, and late check-outs are not available other than to the bride and groom, and then only when possible. Post wedding clean-up is always more involved and intensive than regular check-outs and turnovers.

Children
Children are very welcome at the Inn, and we love children, because among other things they are the future of the planet, and we have plenty of children and grandchildren ourselves. The cottages and cabins are much better suited to lodging children under 10 for numerous reasons. As such children under 10 are not allowed lodging in the main farm house during weddings because this is asking for a lot of trouble and possibly courting disaster. One reason is that the main farmhouse is the place closest to the road on the property and during a wedding people often get distracted; a second reason is that the main farmhouse is the most likely transfer sounds, and to generate stressful situations, and while everyone might say beforehand they would not mind noise and disruption, in 100% likelihood they will; and a third reason is that it is the most fragile and costly to repair. Please make sure to advise guests attending with children under 10 that they will be required to reserve a cottage or cabin. We waive this requirement if you rent the entire farmhouse and all of the dining rooms for the duration based on the assumptions that if you do not mind the noise, can pay for the damage, and will supervise adequately the proximity to the road, we will take your word for it, but we caution you against that approach. Here as in many other policies you need to keep in mind that we have vast experience having weddings at the Inn, are in fact looking after your best interests, and trying to keep you and yours out of potentially serious trouble.

Group Discounts
We do not offer group discounts as groups require much more preparation and are in fact more demanding in every way than regular clients. That is OK, we just need to add more people and as such the bookings become more costly. What we do offer is that some fees and charges might be waived; for example we waive the Wedding Plan and Site Fee if you book the entire Inn and all of the dining rooms for two days, and have other scenarios where specific fees might be waived as part of a global wedding package.

Catering
For numerous sound reasons, based on experience, we provide and manage all of the catering and dining at The Mast Farm Inn using our catering capabilities, servers and equipment, and outside catering companies and services are not authorized. We will be the supplier of all food & beverage items consumed on the premises for the entire duration of the event (with the exception of the wedding cake and hard liquor).

Service & Wait Staff
We provide all service and wait staff at the Mast Farm Inn, no outside service or wait staff is permitted without our written authorization.

Bartenders
Bartending for liquor is a specialty, and there are potentially devastating legal implications for all of us by allowing the service of liquor. If you wish to serve hard liquor you will need to engage the services of a bartender without our assistance. You or your guests will not be allowed to serve as bartender. If a full bar beyond beer and wine is to be offered during the event, copies of the bartender’s alcohol license and current liability insurance policy must be provided 15 days before the event or just before the event. Failing presentation of this certificate before the event we will prohibit service of anything other than soft drinks, beer and wine. You will also be responsible for assuring minors do not gain access to or get served beer wine or liquor.

Alcoholic Beverages
We have a beer and wine license, can and will provide all soft drinks, beer and wine, as well as serve those. We cannot sell other alcoholic beverages but we can serve you alcoholic beverages you provide.

Parking
We are out in the country and have plenty of land, as such a great deal of parking is available at no charge unless you have special valet parking needs, signage requirements or specific needs. That being said, if you have a huge wedding, some parking might be in open fields where rain can sometime become an issue requiring ferrying older and younger participants back and forth in a vehicle. The Mast Farm Inn is not responsible for damages to or loss of any vehicle or article in a vehicle, at the inn, prior to, during, or following any function, by the wedding party or their guests.

Signage
Event signs can be posted no more than 24 hours prior to the event and must be removed no more than 24 hours after the event has concluded. Signs should be in keeping and harmonious with The Mast Farm Inn and Valle Crucis esthetic. Signs may be mounted on sign stakes that are driven into the ground or on stands that can be placed adjacent to the streets, but cannot be attached to trees, other signs, buildings, fences, or walls.

Pets
Unfortunately pets are not allowed and we cannot make exceptions.

Music
We welcome and encourage music, musicians, dancing and a good time. If you have rented the entire Inn all we need be concerned about is the neighbors, if you have only rented a portion of the Inn and grounds you will need to keep the decibels, beginning and ending times to reasonable levels. Reasonable levels being defined by the first guest or neighbor who complains, or barring that by us, if we start to sense they soon will.

Sound & Public Address Systems
We allow sound, and PA systems, and their technicians. Sometimes last minute electrical installations will be required or requested and if possible we will provide those at no charge.

Noise
Noise needs to be kept to reasonable levels; reasonable levels being defined by the first guest or neighbor who complains, or barring that by us, if we start to sense they soon will.

Electrical Installations For Sound & Lighting
If possible we will provide those at no charge. If a more important installation is required this will be billed at the cost of the electrician required for setup and removal.

Moving Furniture & Objects Indoors or Outdoors
Most of the furnishings in the house are period antiques or reproductions and must be treated with care. Consultation and agreement is required before furnishings can be moved. Furniture or object moving, displacement, removal & storage and re-installation is billed at $20 per man hour, and will be included in your wedding plan. If last minutes changes are required and engender extra costs these will be billed at $30 per man hour. Heavy objects with the potential to damage the buildings, grounds and gardens are subject to our written pre-approval.

Grounds, Gardens, Pond, Stream & Animals
In season we have an organic farm garden with vegetables, berries and flowers in production. We also have a horse, many rabbits and about 1/4 of a million bees in nine hives. You and your guests are welcome and encouraged to visit, explore and roam the grounds and gardens. While the grounds and gardens are very natural looking, they are in fact the object of manicured organic landscaping and a lot of care. As such we ask you take the care required, avoid installations which would damage same, and above all not allow children to roam without parental supervision as they may trample our flowers and vegetables, or get electrical shock from the electric fence in the field behind the barn, and have often enough for us to mention it here. Once a vegetable patch has been trampled there is no bringing it back and it is lost for that season. Horses can be quite dangerous or fatal, as can bees. It is crucial you remember and provide for proper supervision as there is also a pond, and a stream on the property. We are a country farm setting with country farm environment, equipment, animals, insects and risks. The staff will make every effort to ensure the gardens and grounds are in bloom and attractive for your event. However, given changing weather conditions and the seasonal nature of flower and plants, the appearance and quality of the gardens and grounds will change daily. The gardens and grounds will be used as is on the day of the event.

Decorations
Decorations in good taste, which do not clash with the Inn, Grounds or With The Valle Crucis Community are quite welcome, providing they do not damage the buildings, facilities or grounds. Decorations need to be designed so they can be fastened and displayed without nails or other items which damage the buildings. Much of the beauty of The Mast Farm Inn is in its simplicity. Beyond flowers, a minimum of decoration is needed. A facilities support staff must approve all decorating plans in advance of the event. Flowers may be delivered to a prearranged location on the day before or on the day of the wedding. No nails, thumbtacks or tape of any kind are to be used anywhere as they may damage surfaces. A facilities support staff must approve any means of hanging decorations.

Candles, Torches, Bonfires & Open Fires
These are allowed and can be used at some sites and locations and not at others. If you wish to uses open flames and fires, you will need to request and specify the type and locations in your wedding agreement. The wedding party will be responsible and liable for all clean-up or damage done as a result of using open flames.

Fireworks
No fireworks are allowed on the property, grounds or fields at any time

Smoking
All the interior spaces are non-smoking. Guests can smoke on their private porches, decks or outdoors.

Allergies
We will attempt to discover, determine and attend to any food or substance allergies by any of your guests. You are however responsible for providing us a complete written list or any allergies or dangerous medical conditions of any of your guests.

Inclement Weather
It must be considered that inclement weather may occur before or on the date of a wedding. In case of inclement weather, the main farm house may or may not may be available, but it is not guaranteed unless you reserve it beforehand. Weatherproof tents are required for all weddings at the Mast Farm Inn with over 24 guests, The maximum number of people allowed in the main Farm House is 36, in the farm rooms can hold three, the cottages and cabins four, the Granary & Raspberry Hill eight. We do not offer, nor can we provide, an alternate location to the one you selected, to be used in case of bad weather, nor can bad weather be the justification for non-payment, or requiring pricing renegotiations and discounts.

Lost or Damaged Items
The Mast Farm Inn is not responsible for loss or damage to your, your vendors’, or your guests’ personal or commercial property. The Mast Farm Inn is not responsible for safekeeping, damages to, or loss of, any item or article, at the inn, prior to, during, or following any function, by the wedding party or their guests. We do not provide a lost and found capability or service.

On The National Register Of Historic Places
One important factor is that the Inn is itself a valuable antique, is filled with valuable antiques, and is on the National Register of Historic Places. The good news is that we have lots of space on the property for “Good Times”. This tends to encourage us to have large groups of merrymakers outdoors, in the facilities and locations appropriate to that, versus having a big party inside. We have found that this approach works both from a high jinx and from a conservation perspective. Repairs are quite costly and best avoided. Tents also give a very festive country fair feel.

Other Inn Guests During Your Wedding
If you do not book the entire Inn there will be other guests either at the Inn, in the dining rooms or on the grounds. While that is normal, wedding guests sometimes overlook that, and think that by having a wedding here, and renting some of the rooms, the entire Inn is reserved for their exclusive use. That will not be the case unless you book all the lodging and dining for the duration. The Inn will operate normally receiving guests, and your party will be required to behave in a manner respectful of the other guests. If you do not intend to book the entire facility for the duration, you will find the most logical options for grouping both from a lodging and dining perspective by clicking here.

Other Breakfast or Dining Guests During Your Wedding
The same goes for the dining rooms. If you do not book all of the dining rooms for your exclusive use there may be other guests in the dining rooms. While that is normal, guests might overlook that, and think that by having a catered dinner or reception here, and renting some of the sites, location and facilities, that the entire Inn, all of the locations, sites and event rooms are reserved for their exclusive use. Because the Mast Farm Inn is so much like a private Farm Residence, a mid-large size group tends to think of the entire place as ” all mine”. Unless you book the all of the dining rooms for the duration, the Inn will operate normally receiving guests, and your party will be required to behave in a manner respectful of the other guests.

Other Events Guests During Your Wedding
While rare, we sometimes have another event at the same time as a wedding, and the same is true here as above.

Damages
Damages will be billed at cost of replacement or repair plus 15%. Extraordinary cleaning costs and/or the cost to repair any damage to the facilities or grounds will be the responsibility of the wedding party.

Availability of the Inn, Estates, Ground, Locations and Sites for Weddings
All weddings taking place at the Inn require a contract no matter how simple, and require the advance notice to, and authorization of our wedding manager. Among many of the sound reasons, there are legal, fire marshal, and insurance prescriptions and constraints involved in operating an Inn vs. simply renting a stand alone cabin or detached home. Each room cottage and cabin has its own legal occupancy limits, and we have a global occupancy limit. The same holds true for locations and sites on the estate. In practical fact, even if the only people in attendance at the wedding and in the room are you, your spouse, an officiant, and photographer and assistant, serving as witnesses, we do not allow it. We are on The National Register of Historic Places, and quite averse to damage to property or furnishings, and as part of Historic Hotels of America and Select Registry we uphold high standards. Other risks include your wedding or group spilling out into the common areas of the Inn, Estate and Grounds and creating what other guests might sense or experience as a disturbance. If you want a 100% self-produced wedding, we recommend you rent a private owner cabin, cottage or home. See the Frequently Asked Questions page by clicking here.

Waiver & Assumption of Risks & Indemnity
You will be required to sign a waiver and assumption of risk form which assures you will defend and hold us harmless, assuming all liability towards and from your guests.

Validity & Duration Of Proposals
All prices are subject to change, yet our prices and rates are guaranteed by the wedding plan we sign. As such we will not book weddings more than one year in advance without stipulating that price increases will reflect any rate changes in our costs, services or those of vendors and suppliers.


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Historic Farmhouse, Cottage & Cabin Lodging, Invigorating Retreats & Workshops, Memorable Elopements, Weddings & Honeymoons
Make Your Own History at The Mast Farm Inn
Historic Farmhouse, Cottage & Cabin Lodging
Invigorating Retreats & Workshops
Memorable Elopements, Weddings & Honeymoons
Award-winning
Historic Hotels of America® boutique hotel, and Select Registry® country inn, specializing in historic lodging, weddings, elopements, honeymoons, retreats and workshops, in Historic Valle Crucis, North Carolina. The Mast Farm Inn is on the National Register of Historic Places, as is the entire historic district of Valle Crucis in which it is located; a world-renowned rural mountain village, in the western North Carolina Blue Ridge Parkway and Blue Ridge National Heritage Area.
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