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Coastal California Wedding Venues {featuring SMCCVB}

Whether you just adore beachy vibes or are planning a destination event, there are several coastal California wedding venues that fit the bill. With oceanfront vistas and seaside haunts, take a peek at this curated collection of locations for your own celebration.

This post was done in partnership with the San Mateo County/Silicon Valley CVB. I personally experienced each location, and all opinions are genuine and my own. 

Coastal California Wedding Venues | Hill City Bride Destination Wedding Blog

With a name that is recognized worldwide, the first of our coastal California wedding venues is The Ritz-Carlton Half Moon Bay.

When I hear the name “Ritz-Carlton“, I immediately think of a location that is upscale, unique and beautiful. Those three words can certainly be used to describe the location at Half Moon Bay. With gorgeous views, flawless rooms, a coastline golf course and (hello!) a luxurious spa, there certainly is more than one fabulous reason to consider having a destination wedding at their resort.

Offering three different outdoor venues for 75 or more, you can enjoy the wide open sea as your backdrop. And, in true Ritz-Carlton style, weddings offer many amenities. One of which includes a golf cart to escort you to beach locations for lovely photographs, such as the ones you’ll see below by Michelle Walker Photography.

Several indoor spaces are available for your reception, rehearsal and other wedding related get-togethers. Of course, there is the convenience of having your guests stay on-site in one of the luxurious rooms as they enjoy the stunning views during your wedding weekend.

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Another of my recommended coastal California wedding venues is Oceano Hotel  & Spa.

I had the privilege of staying at Oceano Hotel & Spa overnight. It was serene to wake up to the harbor view, and the coastal vibe is carried out so well throughout. The property offers a variety of both indoor and outdoor ceremony options, including a spacious ballroom and lush outdoor garden. Brides who choose the Oceano are provided with a bridal dressing room. Best of all, the happy couple gets to enjoy a honeymoon suite for the night.

Looking to provide a treat for your wedding party? The Oceano Coastal Spa has monthly specials and group reservations for their services, which include facials, massages and more. Post-wedding, the Oceano also offers the option of a Farewell Breakfast Buffet for groups of ten or more. What a great way to gather again for delicious sustenance before everyone heads their separate ways.

A big plus is that the Half Moon Bay Lodge is close by. This quaint hotel makes a perfect overflow location for out-of-town guests, and some rooms include a fireplace.

As a personal aside, I absolutely adore this Oceano wedding photographed by Orange Turtle Photography. The flower girl and ring bearer are just too cute!

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Searching for a spot for a rehearsal dinner or intimate wedding? One of the coastal California wedding venues that is ideal for both is Sam’s Chowder House.

When you hear “seaside venue” what comes to mind? You may think of the posh hotels and sprawling resorts I mentioned, but have you ever considered a restaurant? I had a delightful meal (Lobster Roll and Seafood Paella to be exact) on the oceanfront. It’s no doubt that Sam’s has their restaurant menu perfected.

Their location not only allows for fresh seafood but their beach and lawn areas are perfect for an outdoor wedding. Imagine your own driftwood ceremony arch framing the harbor as you say, “I do.” Sam’s also has an assortment of indoor and outdoor reception spaces available. Take a peek at some of the options in the photos below. Oh, and if you’re just craving seafood, Sam’s offers their ChowderMobile to bring the dining to you. Brilliant!

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photos provided by Sam’s Chowder House

Of course, when planning a California destination wedding, you need to make suggestions to your guests for travel. Here are a few of my recommendations near the San Francisco International Airport, which is located in the heart of San Mateo County.

The Westin San Francisco Airport is lovely. I had the pleasure of staying overnight, and it absolutely doesn’t feel like a typical airport hotel. My room had a view of the mountains and was such a relaxing respite to enjoy before I headed back home. I know your wedding guests will feel the same way! Another option is the Westin’s sister hotel, Aloft, which is sleek and colorful.

Near the airport is Kincaid’s, an American dining style restaurant on the water. Dinner was wonderful, and particularly memorable were the Oven Roasted Crab and Artichoke Dip and the Chocolate Indulgence Cake, which I totally didn’t have room for, but I “indulged” just the same.

I ended my stay by waking up refreshed and taking in the hearty breakfast buffet at Grill & Vine, which is located inside of the Westin. What a wonderful end to my trip! If you want to read more about my CA adventures, just click here, and I’m going to leave you with a glimpse of the inside of the Westin San Francisco Airport, which can also host your wedding and related events.

A big thanks also goes out to jetBlue, who provided flawless service from San Francisco to Richmond. I loved soaking in the movies (and sleeping quite a bit!) on the return flight.

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Looking to visit San Mateo County and the Silicon Valley? Be sure to get in touch with the SMCCVB. They have a wonderful staff who is ready to make recommendations and offer any help. Check out their website here, and a big thank you goes out to them for letting me head their way for a memorable and beautiful trip.

  • Kristy Bullard - These weddings are absolutely gorgeous! I think my favorite is Sam’s Chowder House. I love the photo both with the rustic doors and the chandelier 😍

  • hal - I love any coastal wedding – the wedding images you get are so beautiful – you’re truly talented!

  • Emily Fata, www.EmulatingEmily.com - The coast of California has always seemed like such a dreamy wedding destination. I would love to get married somewhere that gorgeous one day! These pictures just confirmed this all the more! <3

  • Jennifer - Yes! It would be hard to choose just one venue. Ha! 🙂

  • Jennifer - Thank you so much! All credit goes to the real photographers, but I did pick lovely images, I think. <3

  • Noelle Lynne - I have a few friends who just got engaged, going to pass this along to them!

  • Megan - These spots all look so gorgeous! How can someone even choose?! What a dream.

  • Rachel - This looks so nice. It reminds me a lot of my cousin’s wedding except it was on the completely opposite coast.

  • Nicola @ Happy Healthy Motivated - All these places are so beautiful! I love the idea of setting a gazebo up at the beach. It must be so romantic to get married like that!

  • Luci - A seaside wedding is something that I need to think of whenever I get married. That is a really beautiful view looking over the beach.

  • Elizabeth O - These locations are all so lovely. I really like the idea of marrying on a beach under a gazebo with the waves in the background!

  • Czjai Reyes-Ocampo - These are all lovely and romantic wedding venues! Love those photos by the seaside! 🙂

  • Geraline Batarra - What a great wedding venue in California. I have to share this with my friend! She is getting married next year in California, and she will love this for sure. 🙂

  • Esme Sy - This post is just proof enough as the only recommendation you’ll ever need to get into a seat in this place. You picked the perfect three words to describe this, everything I see just sums up to a memorable experience, surely everyone wants their special events to be commemorated or celebrated here.

  • Candice - Oh wow that location gives the best of both worlds…a beach and a beautiful indoor venue! That’s a pretty rare find!

  • Heather - Living in California, we have been to many weddings on the beach. however, these venues really take the cake. Such gorgeous locations for such important days.

  • emman damian - I love the set up and the venue! I also love the couple shots near the beach. It’s amazing!

  • Cris - I love everyone of them. Everything is set up wonderfully!

  • AnnMarie John - I love outdoor and beach weddings and I think it’s awesome that you’re featuring some beautiful ones! It’s a good resource for those planning their weddings in California or those simply looking for inspiration.

  • Adriana - Wow! Looks like a gorgeous venue and the ceremony looked amazing. I love how everything is beautifully set up

  • Gladys Parker - I love all these beautiful pictures of places I would love to go! It would be so hard to decide on just one or two. I have mine finally down to two. Sam’s Chowder House or the Oceano Hotel and Spa. Both because of the beautiful beach, ocean.

  • Ice Cream n Sticky Fingers - We got married in a church setting. It was beautiful but I think a beach wedding would have been a great alternative. I just don’t live near the beach.

    My sister got married outside and it was beautiful but hot.

  • Preet - All these places are so beautiful. I really like the idea of setting a gazebo up at the beach, so romantic!

  • Ashley | Honey & Pine Co - omgosh, those locations are gorgeous! I love anything waterfront though, my husband and I got married on the harbor in Florida and it was stunning.

  • Idora - These locations are absolutely lovely! My favorite definitely has to be Sam’s Chowder House, it reminds me so much of New England, all the while keeping a California vibe xoxo

  • Melinda - These places are beautiful! My hubby and I have talked about renewing our vows once we hit 25 years or so, and we both agree it will have to be on a beach! My grandma was married in the glass chapel in Paris Verdes, CA. Do you know it?

  • Jennifer - I don’t know it, but the name makes it sound like such a lovely place. 🙂

  • Aditi - Wow! All of these venues are so perfect for anyone’s special day, if I had to choose one, I’d go with Sam’s Chowder House.

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