12 Spectacular Destination Wedding Locales in California (PHOTOS)

Alesandra Dubin | Aug 19, 2015 Love & Sex

catalina island wedding

With its diverse natural and urban landscapes, California makes for a world-class travel destination for visitors from all over the globe. So if you’re planning a destination wedding in the state, get prepared for a flood of “with pleasure” RSVPs!

From scenic coastlines to vineyard settings, and from budget-friendlier B&Bs to all-out luxury resorts, these 12 locations around California make for dazzling places to say “I do.”

CA wedding locales

Images courtesy of Visit Catalina Island and EpicStockMedia/shutterstock

  • Korakia Pensione


    Courtesy of Korakia Pensione

    Palm Springs is filled with photogenic places to get married amid striking desert backdrops. But -- pssst! One stunner still remains under the radar as a super-chic choice for weddings: Korakia Pensione hosts intimate affairs for couples in the know amid candlelit pathways, historic architecture, and desert foliage.

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  • Post Ranch Inn


    Courtesy of Post Ranch Inn

    For how stunning is the Post Ranch Inn in Big Sur, it’s simultaneously understated, too -- the majesty of Mother Nature is the real jaw dropper here. The couple and their wedding guests stay serenely in rooms without TVs or alarm clocks. (Sorry, parents of babies or pets: Neither of those are allowed at this peaceful retreat.)

  • Terranea


    Courtesy of Terranea and Kristen Manick Photography

    The Pacific Ocean stretches seemingly endlessly in front of the sprawling, 102-acre Terranea resort in Rancho Palos Verdes -- making for spectacular photo backdrops. It’s also an ideal wedding destination for a group of golfers or spa lovers, with major indulgences on site for both.

  • Asilomar


    Courtesy of Asilomar

    Along California’s Central Coast, Asilomar Conference Grounds offers ceremonies alfresco in the Grand Cypress Meadow, or right on Asilomar beach with the Pacific Ocean at guests’ feet. For indoor weddings, there’s also a historic chapel with vaulted ceilings set against a forest backdrop.

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  • Catalina


    Courtesy of Visit Catalina Island

    About 20 miles off the coast of L.A., Catalina Island feels like a world totally apart from the hustle and bustle of big-city life. Wedding venues include the eye-popping deco stunner Catalina Casino, or the laid-back beachfront Descanso Beach Club.

  • Hotel del Coronado


    Courtesy of Hotel del Coronado

    Not many California hotels can rival the sheer history of San Diego’s 125-year-old Hotel del Coronado, with its easily recognized red-shingled roof. The National Historic Landmark property offers weddings in a central courtyard with plush gardens and a gazebo, in the stately Crown Room with its wooden ceilings and chandeliers -- or right in the sand on the Pacific Coast.

  • Carneros Inn


    Courtesy of Carneros Inn and Catherine Hall

    Carneros Inn seems plucked out of Pinterest, just right for a Napa Valley wedding that feels both luxurious and rustic. The property has three restaurants, a spa, two pools with hot tubs, and bikes for wedding guests to explore the gorgeous environs. 

  • Asuncion Ridge


    Courtesy of Asuncion Ridge

    For a way more off-the-grid wine country destination wedding, settle into the super-intimate Asuncion Ridge bed and breakfast. Located near the wineries in Paso Robles, the remote 320-acre property houses Pinot Noir vineyards and an inn with the view of the Morro Bay coastline. Buy out the three-bedroom venue and wed like a celebrity -- in total privacy.

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  • Bacara Resort & Spa


    Courtesy of Bacara Resort & Spa

    With 78 oceanfront acres in luxurious Santa Barbara, the Bacara Resort & Spa makes for a majorly enviable destination wedding site. Get married in a garden environment, in a traditional ballroom setting, or right at the oceanfront. The luxury property also offers on-site salon services for a pampered bridal party.

  • Conservatory of Flowers


    Image via David McSpadden/Flickr

    San Francisco is a stunner of a city, with spectacular urban and natural vistas, plus endless cultural opportunities. Host a wedding at the Conservatory of Flowers, with its botanical gardens and greenhouse within Golden Gate Park. Making travel easier, guests get reserved parking (a huge plus for the city!) in the Dahlia Garden amid the city’s official flower.

  • Emerald Bay


    Image via Zhiqin Zhu/Shutterstock

    Lake Tahoe’s Emerald Bay is spectacular year-round -- a snowy wonderland in the winter, and a shimmering sunny landscape in the summer. Get married in a casual reception 300 feet above the multicolored bay and its Fannett Island for a to-die-for set of wedding photos.

  • Calistoga Ranch


    Courtesy of Auberge Resorts

    In a private Napa Valley canyon sprawls the 157-acre Calistoga Ranch, where lodges of various sizes coexist amid the oaks, hills, and rocky stream. The Wine Cave is a luxe indoor spot for weddings, or the Lommel Lawn allows starlit outdoor celebrating.

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