Frequently Asked Questions
Private Events and Weddings
What are the room capacities?
River Café can accommodate up to 90 guests for a seated lunch, brunch or dinner event and up to 250 guests for a standing cocktail reception.
What time can my event take place?
Daytime: 10:00am - 3:00pm, Evenings: 5:00pm - 1:00am
Is there a charge to use the space?
There is no charge to use the space provided the minimum food & beverage expenditure is met. All room minimums are based on food and beverages exclusive of taxes and gratuity. If the minimum spend requirement is not met, the difference will appear as a room rental fee on the final bill. The minimum spend requirement changes depending on the date and time of your event.
Please contact the Event Manager for more information.
What services are included?
The following services are complimentary:
- white linen napkins (table cloths are an additional charge)
- service staff
- all existing tables and chairs
- standard table flatware and glassware
- personalized menus at each setting, printed in black & white
- table numbers
- podium & microphone
What other expenses should I consider?
- rentals and incidentals (audio visual equipment, linens, etc.)
- flowers, centerpieces
- cake service and plating ($3 per guest for chef to cut and plate a cake brought in from another vendor)
- vendor meals
How are beverage costs managed?
All alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages are charged based upon consumption per drink plus gratuity and GST. Custom bar offerings can be tailored with our Event Manager.
Can I bring my own wine?
River Café does not extend the Bring Your Own Wine privilege to private events, semi-private events and large party bookings.
When does the bar close?
For evening functions, the bar closes at 12:30 am.
How are menus created for my function?
All menus for private functions are pre-set. The menus are based on our current selections – we go through seasonal and monthly changes. You are able to interchange items between each menu – prices will be adjusted accordingly. Food items are subject to current market prices. River Café is a Canadian artisanal restaurant and menus are unable to be reinvented to any other cuisines.
Are vendor meals available?
Yes, a choice of entrée is avaiable at menu pricing.
Does River Café have a microphone?
Does River Café provide a background music?
Yes, we have a house system which will provide music during your event. We are equipped for iPod connection. There is no sound system on the patio.
Can I bring my own Band / DJ / AV Supplier?
Yes. All entertainment arrangements must be discussed with our Event Manager. The amount of space available for entertainment may be restricted depending on the number of guests and your specific floorplan.
Are there any restrictions / rules about entertainment?
City of Calgary Noise Bylaw requires quiet outdoors after 10 pm. Our close proximity to residences in the Eau Claire area require us to be sensitive to our neighbours. We will close windows and doors to reduce sound traveling outside.
Can space be cleared for a dance floor?
The amount of space available for a dance floor depends on the number of guests and the floorplan for your event.
Is it possible to cover the patio?
The patio is equipped with market umbrellas offering some shelter from sun and rain. The patio is multi-level and irregularly shaped and prohibits tenting. There are also patio heaters which offer warmth to extend cooler evenings.
Can river café make my wedding cake?
Our Pastry Chef is able to prepare tiered wedding cakes in a variety of sizes and styles. The cake flavours we can offer are Chocolate, Vanilla, or Spiced Carrot. Vanilla Buttercream can be done in a variety of styles. Please contact the Event Manager for photos of River Café’s Wedding Cake Line. Floral and ribbon deorations are an extra charge. For more intricate detailing the base price does increase slightly.
Can we bring our own cake and/or cupcakes?
Yes. We have a cutting and/or plating charge of $3.00 per person.
Can River Café arrange for florals / entertainment / decor / photography?
Although we do not arrange the above, we are happy to provide referrals through our preferred suppliers list and make arrangements for delivery.
What else should I consider?
Be sure to consider the following items for your ‘day of’ agenda. Our Event Manager can help with any questions you may have regarding:
- cocktails/canapés – where? How long?
- receiving line
- seating – depending on final guest count and pace of crowd, seating can take from 10-30 minutes
- formal introductions, first toasts, welcome speech
- order taking – at least 15 minutes needed
- speeches – for best flow, we recommend having speeches between courses
What are the key dates to consider?
- formal planning meeting with your event coordinator: 4-6 weeks in advance at River Café
- signed contract due: upon booking
- deposit: within 10 business days of signing contract
- final food and beverage selections: due 2 weeks in advance
- final guest count and floor plan: due 3 business days in advance
How are payments and deposits arranged?
Your contract will outline your individual payment schedule. Your signed contract and an initial deposit of 30% of the minimum spend requirement (payable by cash, certified personal cheque or credit card) is required to secure the date and space.
Do you have a cancellation policy?
Your contract may be terminated with formal written notice within 15 days of signing. For Christmas Season bookings (November 21 - December 23) and Weddings all deposits and payments are non-refundable if notice of cancellation is received less than 60 days prior to the event date. For the rest of the year, deposits and payments are non-refundable if notice of cancellation is received less than 30 days prior to the event date.
Can I plan designated seating?
If you wish to arrange designated seating, please supply your own place cards and seating plan based on the floorplan agreed upon with the Events Manager.
Who is my contact on the day of the event?
The Event Manager will introduce you to the floor manager who will be your onsite contact for the day of the event.
When can i set up my event?
You have access to River Café for setup 90 minutes prior to the event start time.
What is the exact address I should use for my invitations?
River Café, Princes Island Park.
Is parking available?
Underground parking is available at the Eau Claire Market parkade. Parking is a flat rate evenings and weekends.
For more information about avaiability and pricing, please contact our Events Manager at 403-261-7670 or fill out the
and we will contact you to discuss all available options.