Post # 1
Since getting engaged 5 months ago, I have so been enjoying our engagement, but have now finally started the first planning steps and I am already having the hardest time with one thing (probably the biggest thing)- THE VENUE.
We live in the Bay Area but are willing to travel almost anywhere in Northern California for the right venue. Here’s what I’m hoping to find! My dream is to have the ceremony in a forest setting with the reception either in a barn/indoor building that can be walked to from the ceremony, or have the reception outside in the same forested area, but with some kind of indoor/covered area available. The reason we’d like an indoor area available at the venue is because our wedding will be in October and the weather at that time in CA can be unpredictable.
We are on a tight budget, so hoping to find a great deal on something (max $5,000ish) and need something that allows outside catering.
Other things: Our guest list is about 100, we can be out fairly early so curfew isn’t a big deal to us, and we also don’t care about staying at the venue (we’ll find hotels nearby).
I have had the hardest time finding anything but I know there are hundreds of venues that are underrated and not on the usual venue websites. I’d love any ideas, even if they don’t exactly fit! I am flexible!
Thanks so much!
Post # 2
Hi! I am also in the Bay Area and getting married in October! We ultimately decided to not have the wedding here (Neither of us are from the Bay Area; getting married in Joshua Tree) but I DEFINITELY looked for a good amount of time for venues here, and like you, we set a tight budget cause we didn’t want to spend heaps of money on one night.
I found some shelters in some of the Oakland parks that do weddings, but if I remember, I think they probably do a little better with a slightly smaller guest list than you mentioned though I may be wrong. There are some redwoods in those parks so you could probably do a ceremony in the woods and the reception in the shelters. I didn’t check October availability when I looked at them, but let me see if I can find the links.
also, this isn’t EXACTLY what you mentioned you’re looking for, but my best friend got married at Contento Vineyards in Hopland. It was like a two hour drive north from where I live, and GORGEOUS sweeping views of the mountains. They have a barn like shelter (not totally enclosed) on the property, but you don’t have to worry about the weather as much that far north as you do in the immediate Bay Area! It is a bit more than what you mentioned, I believe she paid around 7k for the venue give or take, BUT that got her the venue Friday through Sunday so we had all weekend to set up and tear down. It was nice not just getting it for the day of the wedding.
I’d also check to see if any of the local parks would do weddings, like up near Muir Woods amongst the redwoods. I’ve seen some redwood wedding photos on WeddingWire and they were beautiful!!
oakland parks shelters: https://www.ebparks.org/activities/corpfamily/default.htm
Post # 3
What do you expect the $5k to cover? What do you envision for your reception in the barn?
Post # 4
This might fit the bill…. although I’m not sure how foresty it is. Check out the Brazillian Room in Berkeley from the East Bay Park District.
Post # 5
Forgot to add, the Brazilian room doesn’t allow unlimited access to outside catering but does have a list of approved caterers.
Post # 6
I live in SF but am originally from Monterey. There are many beautiful outdoor venues in the Monterey/Carmel/Big Sur area. Check out https://www.herecomestheguide.com/northern-california/wedding-venues/region/monterey-and-carmel and go from there 🙂
Post # 7
I got married at the Mountain Terrace in Woodside (near Palo Alto) and it sounds like exactly what you’re looking for. The only issue is they have in house catering and if you want to bring in outside caterers, there is a fee.
Another beautiful location is the las pulgas water temple in Redwood City, but it’s a ceremony only location.
Post # 8
- Wedding: August 2018 - Four Seasons Hotel Los Angeles at Beverly Hills
No idea what their prices are, but an acquaintance of mine got married at the Dana Powers Barn on the Central Coast (San Luis Obispo area). It looked like a stunning venue!