Frequently Asked Questions
Port Lympne Hotel & Reserve is an unforgettable wedding venue set in the heart of Port Lympne Reserve, offering couples a wonderful and romantic venue in a truly unique setting.
We get lots of questions about the venue, catering options, accommodation and our gardens. So to give you as much information as possible, we’ve answered some of the most frequently asked questions about our wedding venue…
Can we drop anything off the day before our wedding?
We request that you do come to the venue the day before your wedding to drop off items for your wedding day. Please ensure all items (such as table decorations etc) are clearly labelled with your names and instructions for your wedding coordinator to ensure everything is placed in the correct locations.
What time do we need to remove our belongings at the end of the night?
Due to lack of storage we are unable to keep any items, so everything should be removed by midnight, the night of the wedding unless prearranged with your wedding coordinator.
What time do we need to leave the hotel the next day?
Check out is 11am from the hotel. Any guests who have stayed on site can spend the day in the park if they wish.
Can you provide an easel to hold our table plan?
Yes, we have 3 easels available for you to use at no additional charge.
What time do we have to finish the party?
Included in your package is a midnight finish.
Can we have a long top table?
You can have a long top table for a maximum of 9 guests, a sweetheart table for 2 guests or a round table for a maximum of 10 guests - whichever you prefer.
When do I have to confirm final numbers?
Final information, menu choices and balance are all due 6 weeks prior to your wedding day.
Can you recommend any local suppliers?
Yes, please ask our team for the recommended supplier list.
Can my photographer come to the venue before the wedding to look round?
Yes - photographers are more than welcome to come and visit the venue, please make an appointment prior.
Is there a resident Toastmaster?
A Toastmaster service is included in some of our wedding packages. This service can be added to your bespoke package.
Can we stay at Port Lympne Hotel & Reserve?
We offer a range of short break accommodation including seasonal glamping, cottages, Tiger Lodge, Rhino Lodge, Wolf Lodge, The Bubble, luxury treehouses, camping pods, shepherd’s huts and eight bedrooms within Port Lympne Hotel. Please call our Short Breaks Team on 01303 234112 for more information and to check availability. Please note that accommodation at the hotel is included in our Intimate package.
Can the wedding cake be cut on our behalf?
Our chef is more than happy to cut your wedding cake on your behalf if you would like a section of the cake to take home with you. Please note that wedding cakes are to be delivered to us on the morning of your wedding and arranged on display by the cake provider. Due to lack of storage in our busy kitchens, we cannot store your cake overnight.
Can we have fireworks?
Port Lympne Hotel is set at the heart of Kent’s largest wild animal park, so we cannot allow fireworks or Chinese lanterns. You can have sparklers outside in a safe area.
Is Port Lympne Hotel accessible?
The Port Lympne Mansion Hotel is a grade 2 listed mansion and therefore access is limited. There is a ramp at the front of the hotel and internal doorways offer wide access. The Garden Room Restaurant has accessible W.C facilities and baby changing facilities. The Pergola & Orangery have accessible access with the Orangery offering an accessible W.C and baby changing facilities. Guide Dogs are not permitted on site as this contravenes our Zoo Licence.
What facilities are provided for children?
High chairs are available on request, although it is helpful to know in advance how many high chairs are needed. We recommend that children are supervised at all times as there are water features and ponds within the gardens that are not covered.
Can we bring dogs or animals to the Reserve?
The safety and wellbeing of all animals, including yours, is our absolute priority.
To protect our animals and your own, dogs and visiting pets are not permitted at Port Lympne or Howletts Wild Animal Park, except for registered assistance dogs.
If you are bringing an assistance dog onto site, day visitors must notify us no less than 72 hours before arrival. Overnight guests must let us know when booking.
We ask that you meet with the Duty Animal Manager on arrival and present evidence of your dog’s registration (e.g. ADUK booklet) and vaccination records. One of our friendly experts may also conduct a quick health check of your dog, to make sure they are well enough to enter the park.
Terms & conditions:
- No visiting pets are allowed on site at Howletts Wild Animal Park or Port Lympne Reserve except for registered assistance dogs with an accredited provider.
- Pets are not allowed to be left in cars in our car parks – even with ventilation and access to water.
- Assistance dogs in training are not allowed into the parks.
- We do not have any kennelling facilities on site.
- Any dog visiting the parks must be fit and healthy and must not have shown any signs of ill health, including diarrhoea or vomiting, in the previous 24 hours.
- Any dog visiting the parks must have been a resident in the UK for the last 6 months.
- Any dog visiting the parks must be up to date with their vaccinations (both the mixed distemper/leptospirosis/adenovirus/parvovirus vaccination and the kennel cough vaccination).
- Dogs must always be kept on a short lead and under strict control.
- Dogs must remain calm and quiet and be kept 2 metres away from any animal enclosure boundaries.
- We strive to keep our parks clean and hygienic for our animals and visitors. With that in mind, please try and make sure your dog has a toilet trip before entering the parks. If a dog does defaecate anywhere in the park grounds, it must be cleared immediately by the owner.
- We do not provide dog waste bags on site, so please make sure you bring your own.
- Some of our animals may be spooked when they see a dog. For this reason, assistance dogs are not allowed on the Truck Safari trip, safari experiences, or in any walk-through exhibits. They also cannot attend animal encounters or experiences.
- If you notice that any of our animals are anxious or uneasy after seeing your dog, we ask that you move to another area.
- Assistance dogs are permitted within all our catering areas, bars, and restaurants on site.
- Water can be provided from any of our outlets, but no public water bowls are available, so please bring your own for your dog.
- If you are attending a wedding or an event on site, your assistance dog will be permitted to attend throughout, excluding any animal experience or safari.
- Assistance dogs are welcome within selected Short Break units. To keep our animals safe, assistance dogs are not permitted within any of the animal lodges, tented or inflatable accommodation, or any accommodation that borders the remote African experience.
- Dog bedding is not provided within the Short Break units and guests should bring their own if required.
- Assistance dogs are not permitted to travel on golf buggies.
Please note that the above policies apply to all guests onsite. This includes day guests, short break guests, anyone visiting the restaurants or bars, any of our suppliers, etc.
Thank you. We look forward to welcoming you and your furry assistance friend.
Is there sufficient parking?
Guests who are staying on site are welcome to park in the hotel car park within the Reserve. Please note that cars are parked here at the owner’s risk. Guests who attend the wedding only can park in the day visitor car park and Port Lympne will provide transport from this car park to the Mansion for your guests arrival.
Can our guests arrive by coach?
Yes of course. Please notify us of your plans so we can contact the company directly to arrange logistics.
Does the hotel provide any decorations for the event?
Decorations should be provided by the couple.
Will the hotel set up the decorations for my wedding?
The operations team at Port Lympne will set up your place cards, table plan, guest book or favours. Any additional decorations need to be set up by yourself or your suppliers.
Will the staff keep our table decorations at the end of the night?
Any items from the wedding that you wish to keep must be pre-agreed with your wedding coordinator in advance. We are not responsible for any items left that become lost or damaged
Are candles allowed?
Candles can be used. Please ensure candles are placed in candle holders taller than the candle to prevent wax melting onto table linen.
Can we move furniture or paintings?
We’ve taken a great deal of care to ensure the furniture and decorations are well placed, so it’s highly unlikely that large pieces of furniture, including the piano, paintings, busts and ornaments will be moved.
Are drones allowed at Port Lympne Hotel & Reserve?
Unfortunately we are unable to allow drones at the Reserve due to the noise disturbing the animals.
Are balloons allowed?
Balloons are not allowed anywhere on site, due to the health and safety of our animals.
Do you host more than one wedding a day?
We will only cater for one wedding per day throughout the Reserve.
Is there a choice of tables, chairs and tableware?
We can provide round tables that seat either eight or ten people. We also provide trestle tables to make a top table. We can only provide one type of chair, if you wish to use alternative chairs we can recommend at a supplement fee. If you require a particular style or type of tableware, we can arrange this, however this will incur additional charges.
Can we have a DJ or a band?
Yes, you can hire a DJ or band. We can also recommend a number of reputable DJs or bands. Music levels will be monitored throughout the evening to ensure we keep within the recommended noise standards.
Get in touch
Hopefully that's answered any questions you may have about our wedding venues and packages here at Port Lympne Hotel and Reserve. If not, please get in touch, as we have a dedicated wedding coordination team who will be happy to help! Or if you would like to book a show round, simply fill out our enquiry form and someone will be in touch shortly.Enquire now