For the cocktail-loving, funky-design seeking couple, Uptown Indigo is your place and Duncan Blount is your man. The downtown Shelby venue considers the unique needs of every couple with their flexibility, customization, charm and risk-taking design. Read on to learn more…
Bustld: What do you think makes your venue unique?
Duncan: Three reasons. First, our bar. A lot of venues overcharge for alcohol, outsource bartenders and don’t take time and consideration for signature cocktails. We have in-house bartenders and have stellar pricing for open bars. Second is our flexible customization. We consider the unique needs of the couple starting with how we book. We do a 25 percent deposit. It’s an easy process with an easy payment process. All that contributes to a relaxed charm. That charm is a part of our brand and small town we are in. Last is our tall rooftop terrace. It’s the tallest between Charlotte and Asheville. You can see sunsets, horizons an mountains; the views are stellar and exclusive. We are very proud of that terrace.
Bustld: How would you describe your ideal couple? What style weddings do you see work best in the space?
Duncan: Couples that love cocktails, design and art, and have a clear vision and cool Pinterest board. We are not the traditional feeling, all-inclusive, choose beef or chicken for your entrée kind of option. We work with a lot of ultra-unique couples with a lot of ideas. We like the big dreamers. Which is why we try not to put ourselves into a box when it comes to style.
Bustld: Why do your clients choose your venue?
Duncan: We catch couples’ attention with design and flexibility, but they book first, because of our service. We are family-owned and aren’t ultra-sales-y. This venue is our reputation, this is our investment, our building. Our service is superior. Nothing will get mixed-up with our full-time service attitude. After our service, comes our style. Once a couple comes in and sees the space, they realize we make a lot of fun risky decisions with our style. We have a lot of cool, funky designs. After service and style comes location. We offer free parking in uptown Shelby, which is absolutely beautiful and breathtaking at night. Market lights line the main street, there’s a beautiful square and a stellar small-town atmosphere. It says Americana dreamy small town, instead of fast paced city vibe. It combines urban design with small town charm. Then, the fact we give access for the whole day, 8 a.m. until midnight is also a win for couples.
Bustld: What’s your favorite moment on wedding day?
Duncan: When the party monster bridesmaids start pouring the mimosas in the morning. It gets everyone hyped for the day.
Bustld: Tell us about your background.
Duncan: I grew up in North Carolina and went to college in Kentucky. I was always hosting random events in college, like free cupcakes in the cafeteria and jazz nights. Originally, I thought I wanted to go to law school but decided that wasn’t for me. I’m a charismatic hype person and want people to have fun, celebrate and remember the moment. I realized my gift is in directing events. After college, I worked in Charlotte for a while, but I saw in a small town I could have more of an impact. My parents bought a space in downtown Shelby. The building was abandoned for 12 years and took sacrifices to rehabilitate but we loved the history of the building and wanted to bring it back to life. Started rehabilitation in early 2016 and it was ready by February 2018 for its first wedding. My parents both work full-time in the medical field so I direct the venue.
Bustld: Why weddings?
Duncan: People craft life-long memories and a wedding day is packed with unforgettable moments. The venue is designed to promote intimate conversations and weddings fit with that philosophy. Our high-end designer kitchen in the space makes people feel at home. When people feel at home it makes people want to talk and feel vulnerable, so they can be themselves.
Bustld: Why do you love working at your venue?
Duncan: The venue is owned by one family and the venue is our reputation. Working here is about building a regionally renowned venue for the future. We do that by treating couples with kindness and flexibility. When you give more, you love more, engage more and people need you. I love to be needed and if I don’t show up there’s going to be a problem. It’s risky in some ways but beautiful in others. When our family and staff come together on wedding day it’s awesome. At the very end everyone gives a huge hug and says this is perfect – you feel like a boss and it’s pretty awesome.
Set up your tour of Uptown Indigo today by contacting Duncan HERE.