Corporate & Nonprofit Events

Escape the frenzied pace and enjoy the inspiration of connecting with nature at The Gardens at Elm Bank and Massachusetts Horticultural Society.

Located just 30 minutes from Downtown Boston, and 20 minutes from Downtown Framingham, The Gardens at Elm Bank is a unique, natural venue. Our location here in Wellesley and Dover, Massachusetts is an ideal setting for your corporate outing, fundraiser, or social reception. With twelve stunning display gardens, several outdoor spaces, and multiple indoor rooms, we offer a wonderful variety for your group of virtually any size. 

The openness of the gardens allows your guests to transform to a new state of mind and is ideal for leaving the hustle and the bustle of the workplace behind. Our property is ideal for retreats, retirement parties or a casual celebration with coworkers, friends and family. 

Our incredible gardens and open vistas of the scenery allow your guests to leave feeling reconnected and energized! We have a wonderful Vendor Collection including preferred caterers, entertainment and audio-visual companies to make your event planning simple and stress-free!  

The Gardens

Access to all of our twelve display gardens is included in all event rentals at The Gardens at Elm Bank. Whether guests are arriving early, want to stroll through the spaces during cocktail hour, or take advantage of our unlimited photo opportunities, we encourage you and your guests to explore and make the most of every minute while on the property. 

The Italianate Garden 

The Italianate Garden is located at the west side of The Gardens at Elm Bank with the remarkable Manor House overlooking its lush garden beds. Designed by the Olmsted Brothers between 1914 and 1928, this is one of just two Italianate gardens open to the public in Massachusetts. This eye-catching space is most often home to cocktail receptions or ceremonies on the property. 

Weezie’s Garden for Children

Recently renovated, Weezie’s whimsical children’s garden is home to countless cocktail receptions. With unique features such as rustic towers and our signature oversized Adirondack chair, this phenomenal space allows guests to mingle and explore as they enjoy hors d’oeuvres and cocktails in this unrivalled space!  

Other Areas at The Gardens at Elm Bank 

Beyond the Italianate and Weezie’s Garden for Children are many other spaces for photographs as well as your guests to roam freely and enjoy. The Bressingham Garden and Trial Garden are often incorporated into events as welcoming spaces for your guests as they arrive at The Gardens at Elm Bank. All of our gardens offer unlimited photo possibilities for groups of any size!  To learn more about our other gardens, please visit the link, here.

Reception Spaces

The Hunnewell Building 

Our largest, indoor reception location is the Hunnewell Building, our historic and stately carriage house. The great hall of the Hunnewell Building boasts nearly 3,000 square feet of event space and is capped with a magnificent vaulted and trussed ceiling. The interior of this building is equipped with heating and air conditioning for optimal comfort at any time of year.  

The building alone can accommodate up to 150 guests for a seated reception with dancing or 200 guests for a seated reception without the dance floor. It can also accommodate cocktail style receptions up to 300. For theater –style or lecture seating, the Hunnewell building can accommodate up to 225 guests. Set classroom style, this space can accommodate up to 100 guests. 

From April 19 through November 11, the rental of the Hunnewell Building also includes our attached three-season tent which comes in great use for inclement weather, presentations, or extra seating. Utilizing the three-season tent, this indoor venue can accommodate a maximum of 250 guests for a seated reception, and 400 for a cocktail reception. 

Below you will find inclusions and benefits of the Hunnewell Building and seasonal three-season tent: 

The Maple Grove 

Centrally located amongst the gardens and surrounded by towering maple trees is our spacious Maple Grove. With nearly 17,000 square feet of grassy lawn, this outdoor area can accommodate tented receptions of virtually any size! This outdoor venue allows for the most customization possible. From the tent itself to flooring, tables, chairs, lighting, and so much more, the possibilities are limitless. 

We work with four incredibly knowledgeable tent companies that offer modern, beautiful rentals. Please note that special coordination is required for all events in the Maple Grove due to high level of detail and wear on the property. To learn more about our tent and rental companies, please visit our Vendor Collection 

The Crockett Garden 

Located between the Maple Grove and the Education Center is the Crockett Garden. This quaint patio space is ideal for groups under 50 guests for a seated reception, or as large as 65 guests for a standing reception. Surrounded with seasonal color, the Crockett Garden has ample shade at most times of day from the beautiful Maple Trees which surround the space. Included in the rental of the Crockett Garden are the items you see below. 

The Cheney Room 

On the first level of the Education Center, the headquarters of Massachusetts Horticultural Society, is the Cheney Room. This space is named after the original resident of Elm Bank in the late 19th century, Benjamin Cheney. This space overlooks the beautiful Trial Garden and Hartley Botanic Victorian Lodge and can comfortably accommodate up to 50 for a seated reception, 75 for lecture-style seating, and 32 for classroom style seating. This space is often rented in conjunction with the Crockett Garden and can be used in the event of inclement weather. Below you will find a list of what is included in the rental of the Cheney Room. 

The Parkman Room 

Also located on the first level of the Education Center is the Parkman Room. This is the larger of the two spaces located in this building. The Parkman Room can comfortably accommodate up to 70 for a seated reception at banquet rounds, 100 for a lecture-style setup, and 50 when set classroom style. The Parkman Room offers vistas of the Education Center Courtyard and the serene greenery of The Gardens at Elm Bank. Below you will find a list of what is included in the rental of the Parkman Room. 

The Putnam Building 

Located on the exterior of the property, the Putnam Building is a standalone building located near the greenhouses of Massachusetts Horticultural Society. This space is best used for workshops, break-out sessions and any events that may involve planting materials. The Putnam Room can comfortably accommodate up to 40 when set classroom style and 80 for a lecture-style setup. Complimentary, private parking is included in the rental and this space overlooks to dense foliage and greenhouses.  

Below you will find a list of what is included in the rental of the Putnam Building. 

Inquiry Form

Contact us today to learn more about our beautiful venue for your upcoming event!

Functions Department
functions@masshort.org
1-617-933-4921

Director of Events
Kayleigh Tosches
ktosches@masshort.org
1-617-933-4921

Functions Department Assistant
Mary Kate Knight
mkknight@masshort.org
1-617-933-4982

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