BRIDES Northern California: Bay Area Wedding Venues

Janae Shields Photography

The Bay Area has no shortage of gorgeous places to exchange vows — here are some of our favorite places to get married in the area (beyond just San Francisco!).

Nestldown, Los Gatos (Above)

Formerly a fruit farm at the turn of the century, this 180-acre property in the Santa Cruz mountains is mere minutes from Silicon Valley but feels worlds away. Enter the lakeside ceremony amphitheater via a stairway that winds through towering redwoods, then dance the night away in the barn, a stunning glass-and-fir structure. Plus, couples can make use of the venue's many amenities, including a vintage London taxi to transport you and your groom throughout the grounds, a 25 passenger-carrying train for guests to ride during cocktail hour and a tree house (can you imagine the photo ops?!).

__Villa Montalvo, Saratoga __

If you're envisioning a wedding held in a historic mansion, with manicured gardens and a sprawling great lawn, then look no further than this beautiful property located in the stunning foothills above Saratoga. Exchange vows in the Love Temple (one of two ceremony sites on the property), an open-air, white-columned pavilion flanked by antique marble statues, followed by cocktail hour in the Spanish Courtyard. Then, guests can make their way to the Villa's expansive veranda, where friends and family are treated to sprawling garden vistas as they dine and dance al fresco.

Photo: Courtesy of Kohl Mansion

Kohl Mansion, Burlingame

Built in 1914, the Kohl Mansion is a stately, red-brick Tudor set on 40 acres of oak woodlands. Exchange vows on the verdant lawn, then pose for portraits in the formal English rose garden before joining guests for dinner in the Great Hall, with its soaring ceilings, oak-paneled walls, pristine walnut floors.

Photo: Courtesy of Thomas Fogarty Winery

With panoramic views of the bay and Peninsula, Thomas Fogarty is the perfect option for Bay Area couples wanting a winery wedding without having to drive to Napa Valley or Sonoma. Ceremonies usually take place on the property's expansive, landscaped lawn, followed by cocktails and dinner at the Pavilion, a beautiful lodge perched atop oak-dotted hills, the winery's Chardonnay vineyards, and the glimmering bay.

Photo: Courtesy of Ralston White Retreat Center

The hallmark of this hidden gem nestled in the hills of Mill Valley is its charming heart-shaped lawn — just perfect for ceremonies. Make sure your photographer gets an overview shot from the front balcony for a birds-eye view!

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