Couples -- some only days away from their weddings -- were left scrambling Monday after learning the Monte Cristo Ballroom, an all-inclusive wedding venue in downtown Everett, Washington, had suddenly closed.
Breanna Wilbur, who is less than two weeks from being married, said she first heard about the closure from a venue photographer, and later received a message from Monte Cristo Ballroom that said it could no longer operate because of a "recent major decline in the owner's health."
Confusion spread as people who said they paid more than $12,000 for all-inclusive wedding packages could not reach anyone at Monte Cristo Ballroom by phone or in person, and the company's website was no longer active Monday.
"I tried calling them and nobody was there to answer," Wilbur said.
"We have three kids like we struggled to pay this off," said Miranda Barnett, who plans to postpone her January wedding. "Over $12,000 and it's just gone."
A note posted at the business does not provide specifics on refunds: "We realize that couples have paid deposits, payments, and even full payment for their weddings. We are in the process of getting information on how this money will be paid back, but rest assured that it is our first priority, and we will have more answers very soon, we have all couples' contact information…"
State records list Anthony Reeves as the Monte Cristo Ballroom owner. KIRO-TV was not able to reach Reeves for comment Monday.
The note posted at Monte Cristo Ballroom said it had booked weddings through 2021 and all were canceled. Planning appointments, dress store appointments and rehearsals are also canceled.
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