California Wedding Venues | Top 20 Venues in the Bay Area

A lot goes into planning a wedding, but often times, the hardest part is securing a venue for your wedding. Something to keep in mind is that if you have your heart set on a venue, is that you need to be open to changing your date if that venue can’t accommodate for you on your chosen date. It may not be a bad idea to consider a Friday/Sunday wedding if your venue is available on that date. Some even encourage you to book those dates by offering discounted pricing!

However, what do you do if you have no idea where to start looking for that perfect venue? Well, you’ve come to the right place. I’ve been based in the Bay Area for a combined total of 10 years, and have had the absolute pleasure of photographing at many venues from San Francisco, to Napa Valley, and the East Bay, each venue able to offer something unique. When I started writing this out, I had no idea just how many venues I’ve fallen in love with over the years. While this may not be all of the venues, in no particular order, here is a list of some of my favorites:

Ballrooms

Palm Event Center
This venue is seated in Pleasanton’s own backyard. With a beautiful palm tree lined driveway, a vineyard that glows in the sunset light, and a grand ballroom for your guests to enjoy, this venue is one you don’t want to miss out on at least touring!

Scottish Rite Center Oakland
Located on the shores of Lake Merritt and just a short trip from Jack London Square and San Francisco, the Scottish Rite Center has the most amazing and historical ballroom Oakland has to offer. For smaller events, there are four other spaces available within these walls.

Golf Clubs

Fairview Sonoma County:
The perfect venue for those looking for something all-inclusive. Florals, catering, ceremony & reception planning, they have you covered!

The Bridges Golf Club Reception Venue:
This is a sister venue to the Palm Event Center and is located in San Ramon, so you know it’s bound to be just as grand! This is another venue worth touring!!

StoneTree Estate
Claiming to be “the smart way to say I do,” this venue is all-inclusive and could be the perfect venue for you. The ceremony typically takes place on the terrace with the coastal range as the backdrop, and a ballroom with vaulted ceilings and floor to ceiling bay windows to look out over the valley. Be sure to scroll to the bottom to see all this beautiful venue has to offer.

Garden Weddings

Garden Valley Ranch:
Garden Valley Ranch offers secret gardens, koi ponds, folly fields, fountains, and pergola walkways which makes for spectacular views no matter where you look. They are also equipped with separate bride & groom suites for getting ready as well as indoor/outdoor reception spaces that are sure to meet every vision for their couples. This venue is truly magical and perfect for those couples who are romantics-at-heart.

Rosewood Events
Rosewood sits on 600 acres of rolling hills featuring gardens and views of the redwood groves that surround the venue. With a plethora of photogenic ceremony sites and portrait locations, this is another venue to put on your list of must-sees!

Churchill Manor:
Although they may be known for their elopements inside the mansion, they are able to accommodate up to 150 guests on their front lawn facing the rose gardens. The Manor also offers planning services, rooms for stay, and reception dinner upgrades. This is the perfect setting for the intimate Napa Valley wedding of anyone’s dreams.

Rustic Venues

Mountain House Estates:
Mountain House estates offers something unique than other venues in the Cloverdale area. There are currently THREE totally different ceremony site options, along with THREE location choices to hold your cocktail hour and reception! Whether it’s a garden setting you’re looking for in your ceremony site, or the rustic appeal of the old oak tree, they will take care of all your needs! Not to mention it’s a photographer’s playground when it comes to the portrait locations!

Olympia Valley Estate
Olympia’s Valley Estate is in Petaluma and is another venue that offers a variety of ceremony spaces. From the Rustic Barn, to Willow Pond which is surrounded by the most beautiful weeping willows, this venue is a must-see!

Cobble Creek Ranch
Formerly known as Diamond Dust Ranch and under new ownership, Cobble Creek is a hidden gem of Ukiah, CA. With a vineyard, Oaktree ceremony site, open fields, and a traditional red barn, this outdoor wedding venue is the perfect choice for those who are looking for that perfect rustic chic wedding!

Triple S Ranch Napa
Once a family vacationing spot, now is a versatile wedding and reception space. Able to accommodate 40 rooms for an overnight stay in the cottages on site, as well as views of the surrounding hills, valleys, gardens, and vineyards. Triple S offers solutions for those with a modern, vintage, and rustic vision for their wedding.

Napa Valley/Vineyard Weddings

River Terrace Inn
Set in the heart of Napa Valley, River Terrace Inn offers ceremony & reception spaces that over look the Napa River and vineyards. Able to accommodate intimate weddings and large-scale weddings alike, this venue is perfect for those wanting a destination wedding in Napa Valley, while being able to explore all that Napa has to offer.

Churchill Manor:
Although they may be known for their elopements inside the mansion, they are able to accommodate up to 150 guests on their front lawn facing the rose gardens. The Manor also offers planning services, rooms for stay, and reception dinner upgrades. This is the perfect setting for the intimate Napa Valley wedding of anyone’s dreams.

Milestone Event Groups:
Milestone Event Groups caters to couples with a variety of tastes. They have venues that offer vineyards, to something modern, and even rustic options. They may not exactly be a venue themselves, but they definitely are a site to check out for venue options!

Sbragia Family Winery (a Milestone Events Group Venue)
I love this venue enough that I felt like it should be separated from Milestone Events group. Located north of Santa Rosa and surrounded by vineyard covered rolling hills and costal mountains, this venue offers a stunning view perfect for celebrating your new season of life. Offering access to the tasting room for cocktail hour and their own private library of wine, this venue definitely one to add to your list.

San Francisco Theological Seminary
While this may not be your typical ceremony or reception space, it offers a gorgeous backdrop of Mt. Tamalpais, Ross Valley, & stone castles, beautiful archways and unique architecture. You can choose to hold your ceremony & reception out on the balcony, or use one of the many chapels on campus.

Redwood Forest

The Trees & Union Hotel Bocce Ballroom
The Trees Guest House is the perfect setting for a ceremony taking place in the infamous redwoods of Occidental. Union Hotel Bocce offers two additional guest hosues where ceremonies can take place, but you won’t want to miss out on their amazing Italian dining for your reception!

Deer Park Villa
For those looking for an enchanting forest for their ceremony & reception, this may be the right venue for you. With historic redwood trees to recite vows and the patio setting for your reception, you may want to check this place out!

Intimate/Elopements

Calistoga Wedding Venues | Indian Springs Resort
If you are planning on only having a small and intimate wedding, this is the perfect place to be. Whether you’re hoping for an indoor or outdoor space, Indian Springs has you covered.

San Francisco City Hall
While we are on the topic of elopements and grand weddings, SF City Hall is amazing and has 4 floors of nooks and crannies to explore. Whether you elope, or reserve the Mayor’s Balcony, or reserve the whole hall, at least you’ll know the setting will be stunning!

I know this list is quite extensive, and that some of these venues can fit into more than one category, but I do hope you’ve found it helpful!
Happy planning!!

~Kristen

December 1, 2019

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