Restaurants are common venues for rehearsal dinners or engagement parties, but they're also appealing as a wedding venue for many couples: the atmosphere is often cozy and intimate; they're already decorated, so the need to bring in additional decor is reduced; you may already be familiar with (and love) the cuisine; and it can sometimes be a more affordable option than a traditional hotel/ballroom or a blank canvas type of space.
Here are a few South Florida restaurants, sorted from north to south, where you can rent a private room or buy out the space - they're also all members of our venue guide.
Café Boulud at the Brazilian Court Hotel is a dream foodie venue for groups of 20 to 160 guests. There are several flexible spaces (including indoors and out), the architecture and decor are stunning, and the cuisine is even better.
China Grill at the Hilton Fort Lauderdale Marina location can seat up to 250 guests (with a buyout) and has a mix of indoor and outdoor/patio spaces. The decor is modern and visually stunning, and the waterfront views are an added bonus.
Nikki Beach, a hotspot that's located directly on the sand in South Beach, can handle from 25 to 1000(!) of your nearest and dearest. The chic, sizzling-hot nightlife vibe would make for a unique and memorable event.
Red Fish Grill has a beautiful waterfront location in Coral Gables, and can seat up to 140 guests for evening events.
None of these fitting your needs? See our post on intimate venues for small weddings in South Florida - many of the venues we highlighted are restaurants and would be great for a guest list under 80. Also, check out Open Table - it's a great resource for finding restaurants with private rooms.