First of all, we love traveling to new states and countries, but there are so many places in California, our home base, that we’ve had our eye on but haven’t had a chance to explore yet.
We’ve had the opportunity to shoot at Nor Cal wedding venues a few times, but there are a ton of cool spots up there we haven’t gotten to yet. Peace Barn, just north of San Francisco, has a really calming and beautiful landscape with giant fields and a backdrop of mountains that is the perfect countryside spot for me. Being in a space that prompts you to take a deep breath and relax can make a world of difference during a packed wedding day, both for the vendors and the couple, so I can’t wait to work here. The meadow at Filoli in Woodside (just a bit south of San Fran) has a similar landscape, with the addition of beautiful European-style giant hedge columns and a mansion, all of which are stunning for photos. Carmel Valley Ranch is also gorgeous with vineyards and mountain views that give it a bit of a Malibu twist.
I’ve also been falling more in love with nature left to its own devices and forest experiences, thanks to our recent trips to Yosemite. Two venues up north have that upscale forest wedding X-factor for me – Meadowood in Napa Valley and the Redwood Canyon Glampsite at Ventana in Big Sur. Meadowood has a big, gorgeous lodge with cozy but still airy rooms, all surrounded by forest, and is a great way to blend comfort and the outdoors. But for the couple who really loves the woods, the Glampsite at Ventana is such a cute way to give your guests a special outdoorsy camping experience and still get the perks of an upscale resort wedding.
Nor Cal has great outdoor wedding venues, but if that’s less important to you and you’re big foodies like us, you can have a micro-wedding at Single Thread Farms in Healdsburg! They can host up to 52 people, plus you and a few other guests can stay at the inn too. Their real selling point is that the food is supposed to be AMAZING – their private event include an 11-course tasting meal (you read that right) so you know they’re serious about food. I would LOVE to shoot there because the space is beautifully designed and it would definitely be the best vendor meal I’ve had!