Redheaded bride and bearded groom laugh and cuddle on bridge over river Ouse in York

The Hospitium Weddings

Thanks for stopping by our Hospitium Weddings Photography page. Here you can find out a little bit about how we approach taking fun and informal documentary wedding photos at this iconic central York wedding venue.

The Hospitium is one of the most popular wedding venues and wedding photography locations in York. This 14th century building was once a part of St. Mary’s Abbey and was thought to be a place where non-clerical guests stayed when visiting the Abbey. The name “Hospitium” is roughly understood today as “Hospitality” and this York City centre venue definitely has hospitality to spare.

The Hospitium is situated in the Museum Gardens and is overlooked by the ruins of St. Mary’s Abbey, both of which are perfect locations for beautiful Hospitium wedding photography.

Comprising of 2 floors, the bottom level boasts beautiful stone walls (built to withstand regular floods!) and lattice windows. The top floor, which was recently extended in the 1930’s, is an enormous open plan space with exposed beams perfect for wedding breakfasts.

Interior of The hospitium set up for a wedding breakfast
The Hospitium Wedding Photography Confetti kiss outisde
Wedding couple kissing in the Abbey Ruins in Museum Gardens
Wedding couple kiss under confetti during first dance at The Hospitium
Couple singing ang clapping during Hospitium wedding ceremony
Wedding couple laughing ouside of Aqua door in York City Centre

The Hospitium Wedding Photography

We have been photographing weddings at The Hospitium for almost as long as we have been wedding photographers in York. It is one of the most popular spaces for weddings and we just love how central it is to the city. There are so many choices of locations for photography within a short stomp of the venue. Similarly, whether you choose to have a non-religious ceremony at the venue or a religious ceremony at one of York’s many churches and religious facilities, The Hospitium is an easy walk away.

As Hospitium wedding photographers, we love not only the classic ruins but the riverfront location which also makes a great contrasting backdrop for wedding photos. Whilst the Museum Gardens are quite busy during the day, the gates close at 6pm and from there you will have the spacious grounds all to yourself – how exciting!

Your Wedding Photography at The Hospitium

Groom kisses bride on forehead at Hospitium wedding

Couples Photos at The Hospitium

Whilst the obvious answer for couple’s wedding photos at the Hospitium are the ruins and the gardens, we never want to miss a photographic opportunity. We take couples photographs in short bursts throughout the day (rather than one long, epic sesh) so we encourage our couples to consider taking one of these photo-breaks and popping over to the riverfront or perhaps onto Lendal Bridge for some of the great city backdrop.

Similarly, The Hospitium is only a few minutes walk from the Castle walls and about 5 minutes walk from famous streets such as the famed York Shambles. The York Minster always makes a gorgeous backdrop and as York wedding photographers, we know all the best spots to take you to show off the best York has to offer.

So whether you want to stay close to the venue, or fancy a little breather and a walk through town, you will not be short of places to get some amazing Hospitium wedding photography.

Bridal party group photograph with hospitium in the background

Group Photos at The Hospitium

In fairer months (and even in snowy ones if you are brave!) the grounds just around the Hospitium make a fantastic location for group and family wedding photographs. The exterior stairs make it easy to take a big group shot with all your guests and the paved area surrounding the building makes a fantastic location for smaller group photographs.

As Hospitium wedding photographers, one of our favourite locations from bridesmaid / groomsmen / wedding party photos is on the pathway leading to the building. Depending on the weather and the light, you can get a great view of the building behind them. However, we don’t typically suggest this for smaller family photos as your elderly or disabled may find it a little bit of an up-hill trek.

If you have bit too much “English liquid sunshine” (aka rain) on you wedding day – there is no need to worry. The ceremony space indoors can be quickly cleared and used for indoor group photos.

The Hospitium wedding photography bride holding hands with groom whislt walking

Best Wedding Photos at The Hospitium

As we have worked many times as Hospitium wedding photographers, we can help you out with loads of tricks and tips to get the best wedding photos at the Hospitium.

For example, when you are laying out your table plan, we suggest you consider having a top table which is not directly underneath the down-lights as these can cast very unpleasant shadows on your face.

Similarly, we will always try to point out the best spot to stand at the top of the aisle if you are having your ceremony performed at the Hospitium. Standing just one foot forward or back into the correct space will make a huge difference because you will avoid those downlighters which make dark rings around your eyes in every shot!

We suggest you plan your Hospitium wedding photography couples session a bit later in the day if possible. This will allow the gardens to empty out a bit and keep you from being overrun by tourists!

The Hospitium Wedding Photography Portfolio

Below you will find a selection of some of our favourite Hospitium wedding photography which we have taken over the years. If you think our style of fun, upbeat and relaxed wedding photography is just what you are looking for – why not give us a shout?

The Hospitium Venue & Amenities

Registrar performs ceremony in The Hospitium Ceremony Room

The Ceremony Room at the Hospitium

The ceremony room at The Hospitium is a stone walled room ispacked with authentic historic and rustic charm.  With amble windows on three sides, the room stays fairly bright, even on cloudy days. If it rains or snows outside, this room feels particularly atmospheric.

Once your ceremony is over, this room can be converted into a chill out zone or even opened as an extension to the bar/foyer area. On rainy days, we have used this space to take both group photographs as well as some couples photographs and the stone walls always make a beautiful backdrop.

In the evening, the ceremony space converts into the disco-zone. It is a snug space in the evening which is great for energising a party atmosphere. Whether you are having a band or being serenaded by Elvis, this space is perfect for a party.  Important to note though – due to its city centre location, last call is earlier than some venues so make sure to start the party early!

Wide shot of groom giving speech on the first floor at the hospitium

The First Floor at The Hospitium

The first floor of the Hospitium used to have a 2 level roof but after renovations in the 1930’s, it took on the extended space you see today. This characterful room is traditionally used for the wedding breakfast. With showy exposed beams and surrounded by windows on 2 sides, this space feels much bigger than its actual size due to the high ceilings.

On rainy days we have been known to sneak the couple up into this room to make use of some of the window light to take couple’s portraits.

Bride arrives and smiles at children waiting for her at Hospitium wedding

The Grounds of The Hospitium

The grounds of the Hospitium include a pavement pad which surrounds the building including a stone arch gateway. During the summer and fair weather, many of our couples have used this space to contain an outdoor drinks reception for their guests.

We are also able to use this space for group and family photos. If we set up in front of the backdrop of the building on the side just past the stone arch, it is super easy to just call over those guests who are in the next photograph without having to make everyone wait around. Additionally, the close proximity means you never feel separated from the action.

Do note that approaching the building by car is strictly limited due to the venue’s location and no parking is permitted on the grounds. Elderly and disabled guests can be dropped off but cars must be parked offsite.

See More York City Wedding Photography

Bride's mum covers her in confetti at Grays Court Wedding

Grays Court Wedding

This family owned manor house backs up to the York City walls and has the cutest and cosiest spaces for amazing wedding photography

Bride & groom laugh in the sunset at Museum Gardens

A super fun Hospitium wedding

Want to see photographs of  a Hospitium wedding with more fun than you can shake a stick at? Well this blog post has you covered.

Bride and groom nighttime photo in the shambles with reflection

Important Info About The Hospitium

Exterior shot of the hospitium

The Hospitium Address

Museum Gardens,


YO30 7DR


Wide shot of guests dancing at The Hospitium wedding

The Hospitium Parking

Parking on-site is not permitted at The Hospitium however the Marygate Carpark is only about a 3 minute walk away and you may find some on road parking after about 8pm if you are having evening guests. Many couples opt to provide a bus service for their guests to the venue if they are having their ceremony elsewhere so guests are not having to park and re park throughout the day.


York has abundant accommodation. Many of our previous clients have stayed in places within a short walk of the venue such as The Judge’s Lodgings or The Churchill. York has a huge number of B&B’s available as well so you will not be struggling for choices.

Bride and groom laugh and hug in the veremony room at the hospitium

Civil Ceremonies

Civil ceremonies at The Hospitium are conducted by the York Registry Office which is only about 1/8 of a mile away from the venue.

Bride and Groom first dance at The Hospitium

The Hospitium on the Net

The Hospitium’s Facebook Page
The Hospitium’s Instagram Page

How to Find The Hospitium

To approach The Hospitium by car you will want to travel along Bootham until you reach Marygate. Turn in on Marygate and proceed along the road until you are nearing the entrance to the Marygate Carpark. You will follow signs for the Museum Gardens and the closest entrance will be next the St. Olave’s Church. Please remember you cannot directly approach the venue by car.  

Get in Touch!

If you you think that our special brand of fun and relaxed York area documentary wedding photography is what you are looking for – why not drop us an email and have a chat?

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