Venue Rentals - New Bedford Whaling Museum

Distinctive, Unforgettable Events

Depart from traditional venues and give your guests an experience they’ll never forget at the New Bedford Whaling Museum.

Nestled among 18th and 19th century homes and cobblestone streets, with unparalleled harbor views, the Museum is a distinctive venue for intimate gatherings, weddings, rehearsal dinners, corporate events, conferences, and large celebrations.

Inquire and Get Started

For more information on planning your next special event, please submit an Inquiry Form or contact our Special Events team at 508-997-0046 x. 133.

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The cost to rent the New Bedford Whaling Museum varies depending on the space utilized and day of event. Click here for a chart of all available spaces, capacity requirements, and hourly rates. Please note: a minimum of three hours is required for any rental contract and a minimum of five hours is required for wedding rentals.

A perfect match

Seamens’ Bethel ceremony + Whaling Museum reception

Hold your wedding ceremony in the historic Seamen’s Bethel, made famous in Moby-Dick, just across the cobblestone street from the Museum. To book the Seamen’s Bethel email or call (508) 992-3295

Corporate Events

Host your next conference, meeting, or corporate event at the Whaling Museum!

The Whaling Museum is the perfect location for an offsite event, offering many unique spaces for conferences, meetings, and retreats; retirement parties and dinners; cocktail and holiday parties; and more!

Become a Corporate Member and Save 10%

The Corporate Membership program is an annual membership program designed to provide business with marketing opportunities, in addition to access to the Whaling Museum’s collections, exhibitions and VIP networking events.

Our Corporate Members use their benefits to entertain clients, reward employees and connect with the community in which they do business.  Corporate membership begins at just $200 with a special rate of $100 for small businesses (under 25 employees). For more information on Business memberships click here.

Photo & Video

Browse photos by renowned photographers featuring New Bedford Whaling Museum couples!

Explore Our Grounds and Spaces

The Harbor View Gallery

This beautiful new gallery provides breathtaking views of the waterfront and features a spacious deck overlooking New Bedford Harbor.

A private terrace and floor-to-ceiling windows make panoramic harbor views part of your unforgettable event. Harbor View gallery is ideal for wedding receptions, rehearsal dinners, corporate events, and cocktail parties.


  • Waterfront Views
  • The opportunity to host your cocktail hour in the Bourne Building
  • Use of the Harbor View Terrace
  • On-site coordinator
  • Air-conditioned
  • Conveniently located restroom facilities
  • Built-in projector and screen


The Harbor View Gallery can accommodate:
180 with plated dinner and a DJ/dance floor
150 seated, plated dinner, band and dance floor
300 standing with cocktail tables


Cook Memorial Theater

A perfect location for your upcoming movie screening, lecture, musical performance, conference, or corporate gathering.

The Cook Memorial Theater has been recently renovated to include a new hardwood stage, audio and visual upgrades,  and direct access to the Jacobs Family Gallery. It is a perfect room for movie screenings, lectures, musical performances, conferences, or corporate gathering. The maximum capacity of the theater is 237 seats.

This space also features a projector screen and projector as well as a speaker system for all of your audio and visual needs. The projector is also setup to play DVDs as well as Blue Ray DVDs.


  • Projector capabilities
  • Theater style seating
  • Various lighting options
  • Air-conditioning


The Cook Memorial Theater can accommodate seating for up to 237 guests.

The San Francisco Room and Davis Observation Deck

This is a great space for business meetings, social gatherings, or memorial services.

This small meeting and exhibit space is equipped with Wi-Fi, overhead projector, retractable screen and features access to Davis Observation Deck and its sparkling views of New Bedford Harbor.


  • Amazing views of New Bedford Harbor
  • Makes for an intimate setting
  • Use of the Davis Observation Deck
  • Projector capabilities
  • On-site coordinator
  • Air-conditioned


The San Francisco Room can seat up to 25 guests (Conference table seats 10) or 30 standing guests.

The Plaza

Our open courtyard,  nestled at the top of Johnny Cake Hill, offers views of the historic Seaman’s Bethel and the Double Bank building.

Our open courtyard offers views of the historic Seaman’s Bethel and the Mariners’ Home. It is nestled along cobblestone streets, offering a classic and historic New England feel. The courtyard can be tented as well. This open courtyard is perfect for ceremonies or your cocktail hour.


  • Open-air experience
  • On-site coordinator


The Plaza can accommodate 150 guests seated, 200 guests cocktail style.

Bourne Building, Home to the Lagoda

This exquisite building, completed in 1916, was specifically designed to house the ½ scale model of the Lagoda whale ship.

Travel back to the days of whaling, inspired by Lagoda – the world’s largest ship model. This memorable maritime setting is perfect for cocktail-style receptions.


  • Unique picture opportunities featuring the ship model
  • Opportunity for guests to browse other museum exhibits during cocktails
  • On-site coordinator
  • Air-conditioned


The Bourne Building can accommodate guest counts up to 300 guests standing or 160 seated guests.