There is so much to say about Peterstone Court its really where to begin. Formally a private gentry residence, it is now a country house hotel with plenty of original character. The polished wooden floors of the drawing room, with its leather wing back Chesterfield chairs create an authentic sense of past decadence, in which the Baron of Brecon would still feel right at home. And yet the house has been tastefully modernised, extended and converted. The conservatory restaurant looks like an elegant orangery with its great sense of space and connection with nature's landscape outside. The room set aside for your wedding banquet is a grand function room with the top table elegantly fitted into the enormous square bay window, which provides plenty of light for wedding photography during the speeches and because it was built north facing you never have to worry about burnt out highlights. On a bright day you might need a touch of bounce fill flash but this should never be a problem.
Another wonderful thing about Peterstone Court weddings is that yours will be the only wedding on that day. Furthermore, if you have a reasonable sized wedding party staying in the hotel, very quickly you will end up with exclusive use of the whole hotel and that does create a great sense of wedding day luxury. Having total freedom of the hotel means guests will, without question, find a place where they feel comfortable. And should the worst happen and it rains on your wedding day exclusive use means there is the restaurant for great wedding photographs and the drawing room for more intimate and atmospheric wedding photography. Then of course there is the beautiful stairs and amazing bedrooms. As a wedding photographer Peterstone Court is a real treat.
However there is nothing so great as when the weather is fine, though a few moody clouds hovering over the summit of 'Pen-Y-Fan' does add power and emphasis to any wedding photograph. The raised decking at the rear of Peterstone Court provides a majestic view across the valley leading up to 'Pen-Y-Fan', try shooting a couple shot with a 12mm wide angle from the veranda patio above the decking, wow!. The issue here is the location of the sun, your main light source. From noon onwards you will be shooting into the sun, so you will need some fairly powerful lighting if you want to get the detail right in the shadows and keep the cloud formations which are always stunning. We used a Quadra pack on the wedding photographs in the gallery.
As I have said, outside the views are strikingly beautiful. There is plenty of room for guests on the top veranda area, the multi-level raised decking and around the swimming pool. You can get down to the meadow and river below, however this is quite a steep walk and brides are understandably a bit reluctant to go down in their wedding dresses, though we have taken couples down on one of our Cherish wedding sessions and its worth the walk. Also don't forget the front of the hotel which can easily happen when you have so much in the gardens. The house has a powerful gable frontage. The drive way makes for great walking shots of the couple and if you venture up to the church you can get a lovely walking photograph of the bride, groom, bridesmaids and groomsmen all having great fun.
As we exclusively photograph weddings for the whole of the wedding day from Groom's preparations in the morning to first dance in the evening, we are fortunate to have food included and the food at Peterstone Court is excellent. Every time we have been to Peterstone Court we have had nothing but praise of the variety, quality and presentation of the wedding breakfast. Even though the food is better described as "Cuisine" rather than a "meal" the portions are not indicative of "Cuisine", your guests will not go hungry here.
So is there a downside to Peterstone Court? Well there was, but I think its been resolved now. Previous visits left us nonplused by the attitude and style of those coordinating the wedding day and wedding breakfast. However our last wedding was in April and there had been a radical change in those managing the wedding day. The two younger ladies who coordinated the day were meticulous in their attention to detail, making sure our "Signature Mount" of the couple was properly presented. Their friendliness was a stark contrast to previous visits. Their willingness to assist the couple, guests and ourselves on the wedding day was a breath of fresh air which I hope has totally blown the old cobwebs away. Elise & I would like to stay well done to the two coordinators and all the wedding staff.