Help us Find a simple Wedding Ceremony and Reception Location in Southern California!
January 5, 2008 12:44 PM   Subscribe

Help us find the right place for small wedding ceremony / reception in Southern California

We have a budget of about $2500 for a small wedding ceremony and reception. Just trying to find unique places for a ceremony of 10 and then a unique place for a reception of about 25 people were we can eat and dance...any ideas?
posted by matthelm to Grab Bag (14 answers total)
Where in Southern California are you?
posted by miss lynnster at 12:47 PM on January 5, 2008

Response by poster: I am in LA, but super close to Culver City, Marina Del Rey, Venice, Santa Monica Etc...
posted by matthelm at 1:40 PM on January 5, 2008

Man, there are so many different directions you could go. I think you need to get more specific about what kind of atmosphere or place you're looking for. Or interests you have. Or something. I mean, do you want outdoor? Do you want it in a little club? A friend of mine rented out a club in Koreatown and had a tiki-themed wedding.

Plus I think you need to figure out how you want to divide up that $2500. How much for the service, how much do you want to set aside for the place, for flowers, etc. I mean, 'cuz I could advise you on places but IANYWP. (I'm not your wedding planner.) So you will probably get more answers if your question is more specific.
posted by miss lynnster at 3:22 PM on January 5, 2008

If there are only ten people attending the ceremony you could always do what my friend did: Pull up to a pretty section of beach, set up some chairs, get married, pack up the chairs, and head of the reception site, saving some money, while still getting a beautiful locale.
posted by duckierose at 4:51 PM on January 5, 2008

I don't know what your needs are, but my dream LA wedding ceremony would take place at the Mulholland Memorial Fountain at the base of Griffith Park, on Los Feliz Blvd and Riverside Drive. Also plenty of restaurants nearby that could be booked for a small reception.
posted by mirepoix at 4:59 PM on January 5, 2008

Per duckierose's suggestion, Broad Beach is one of the nicer/quieter beaches in Malibu, and as long as you stay along the public easements, the neighbors shouldn't give you any trouble.
posted by mirepoix at 5:03 PM on January 5, 2008

Do not have your wedding at the Mulholland Fountain, leastwise on a weekend, unless you don't mind sharing the fountain's perimeter with 2-4 other wedding parties. Usually with large Mexican families in tow and bridesmaids decked out in poofy dresses that are usually either bright pink or neon blue. Seriously. I lived in Los Feliz for 4 years and it was always a running joke that none of those wedding photos were ever going to have one bride in them.
posted by miss lynnster at 9:28 PM on January 5, 2008

Ok, then. Ya wanna see some magic?

Here's an idea, if you want to do something kind of crazy and unusual but that nobody will forget. For your wedding weekend, rent suites at The Magic Castle Hotel. You will automatically be able to make reservations and get access into The Magic Castle, which is a private club. Talk to the people at the hotel and ask them if there's any way you could arrange a small, casual, private ceremony at the Castle. They're very nice people and will likely have good advice. To get more people into the club, you can send e-mails to the headlining acts (just do a google search) and explain to them that you would love to see their show and you are having a special occasion. People will put you on their guest list without much fuss, I can pretty much guarantee it.

The Magic Castle is a place a lot of Los Angelenos have never gotten into, and it's pretty fun (and of course, more fun the more you drink). Going there is really an all-night experience, not something you do quickly. Start out with dinner and ask for a view. The food is good. There are drinks are more expensive in some bars than others, The Hat & Hare is in the basement and onlys sells premium liquor but has bartenders doing great up-close magic. So definitely go down there, but have a drink in hand already. There are five showrooms and you should go straight from one to wait in line for the next so you get a good seat. ESPECIALLY for the close-up room because it's small and they only let so many people in. While you're waiting, there are magicians strolling around to entertain you and the other patrons are pretty funny too. My favorite room is definitely the Close Up Gallery... hands down. My least favorite is the Palace of Mystery, because I'm not a fan of big illusionist shows. But it's still fun. In between shows and standing in queues, you can just explore every nook and cranny of the mansion. It's fun. Every corner seems to lead somewhere. Even if someone isn't a fan of magic, they'll probably have a memorable experience just hanging out there. It's feels pretty special.
posted by miss lynnster at 9:52 PM on January 5, 2008

And as for dancing, I guess you can dance your way back to your hotel room?
posted by miss lynnster at 9:55 PM on January 5, 2008

Napa, Napa, Napa.

Is that too far? The Harvest Inn in St. Helena... beautiful.
posted by jeffamaphone at 11:15 PM on January 5, 2008

It is pretty. But Napa is about 440 miles from LA. But if you want a wine country wedding, you could drive 85 miles to Temecula. There are some sweet inns and villas there, actually.

I had a few other ideas for indoor locations too, I don't know if they're the kind of thing you're looking for or how they book up though. Cicada, Descanso Gardens, Il Cielo, The Raymond, The Culver Hotel... I could go on. Sorry I keep posting... I'm in tourguide mindframe today.
posted by miss lynnster at 12:01 AM on January 6, 2008

For such a small group, the Tula tea room at the Museum of Jurassic Technology would be perfect for the ceremony, though dancing might be cramped. Perhaps the Museum would be agreeable to having you during off hours for a donation to the institution?
posted by Scram at 11:54 AM on January 6, 2008 [2 favorites]

Response by poster: Thanks for all the good advice! I am looking to have the ceremony outside with a unique view...whether it be the ocean or high atop a beautiful mountain...mostly likely to be end of August to early Sept. As for the reception I like the idea of a restaurant that has a history to it with unique architecture etc. We were thinking of going to the vineyards to do a wedding ceremony and reception and I see that there is a recommendation of that here. Anymore ideas would be very helpful!!!! Thanks again!
posted by matthelm at 1:13 PM on January 6, 2008

Here's another one. Yamashiro has some of the best views in the city.
posted by miss lynnster at 1:49 PM on January 6, 2008

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