In many ways, San Diego, California is the perfect location for couples wanting an outdoor wedding, as it offers an enchanting mix of idyllic weather, tropical foliage, pristine beaches, and awe-inspiring sunsets. It also has seemingly endless outdoor wedding venues that take advantage of this abundance of natural wonder. To ensure your search for the ideal location is as simple as possible, we’ve researched the 9 most amazing outdoor wedding venues in San Diego and narrowed it down to a variety of chic resorts, iconic hotels, stylishly-rustic venues, and courtyards surrounded by flowers that are sure to please any tastes.
1. Cuvier Club
A stunning seaside venue in La Jolla, Cuvier Club is the place to say your I Dos if you light up at the thought of pledging your love on a bluff with dramatic ocean views or a beach that seems to glow at sunset. Or, maybe holding your wedding ceremony in the European Courtyard, which is coated in flowers, is more your speed.
After your tear-inducing nuptials, guests can head into the reception venue, a large ballroom that can act as a blank canvas for any ambiance you’re hoping to create. Plus, the food is sure to be superb, as the catering company that manages this venue provides innovative dishes and intricate catering details that are custom-tailored to fit your vision.
Typical Cost: Venue fee ranges from $500 – $4,400 depending on the day
Bonus: This San Diego wedding venue has the biggest bougainvillea garden in the city.
One of the chicest event spaces to have a beach wedding in Southern California, L’Auberge Del Mar is a stunning resort perched on the California coast and equipped with a team dedicated to making your wedding dream come to life.
The three primary ceremony sites include Seagrove Park, a grassy lawn looking out onto the sea, the stylish Pacific Terrace, and the Sunset Terrace that seems to float above the ocean and provides extraordinary sunset views. Additionally, the venue provides three wedding packages offering a range of food, drink, and décor.
Typical Cost: Ceremony and location fees range from $2,500 – $4,500; packages range from $179 – $279 per person
Bonus: As this venue is also a resort, couples and guests can relish in the plush comforts of the Mediterranean-style guestrooms, and the seemingly endless spa treatments, between wedding events.
A hidden gem in Escondido, this wedding and reception space is optimal for couples wanting a rustic, handcrafted wedding day that mixes the splendor of mother nature with the innovation of creative vendors. Ethereal Open Air Resort is truly one-of-a-kind. It’s set on 40 acres of edible gardens and surrounded by old-growth orchards and 100 acres of organic herb and vegetable farms.
Regardless of the boho-chic vibe you’re going for, this venue has you covered with seven ceremony sites including the Orchard Barn, Passion Vine Greenhouse, Brick and Timber Chapel, Starry Night Meadow, Ethereal Garden Pergola, and Open-Air Pavilion.
Typical Cost: $15,000 – $50,000
Bonus: The venue’s award-winning chef will help you create a menu by pairing two gourmet entrées, two accompaniments, and your choice of a flavorful variety of leafy, green salads. Plus, all dishes are served with a variety of fresh-baked artisan bread and specialty butter.
The aptly-named Paradise Point Resort & Spa provides classic San Diego vibes with soaring palm trees, tropical foliage, and the iconic blue skies of Southern California. Set on 44 acres of an island adjacent to Mission Bay, this venue offers an impressive array of outdoor ceremony spaces, from lush gardens and sparkling lagoons to bayfront lawns and powder-soft beaches.
While there are various indoor spaces to choose from for the reception, the most popular is the Mission Bay Ballroom which easily impresses with vaulted-wooden ceilings, rustic pillars, and a subtle, tropical color scheme. Additionally, a neighboring garden patio offers views of a firelit lagoon.
Typical Cost: Roughly $36,000 for 300 guests
Bonus: The venue is just minutes from downtown San Diego, so it’s easy to access the city’s nightlife for the after-party.
An iconic San Diego hotel, The Dana on Mission Bay provides all the luxuries of a resort along with the amenities that top wedding venues provide. It’s a one-stop-shop for a spectacular destination wedding—or, a wedding staycation if you’re a San Diegan.
Popular ceremony locations include the 1,500-square-foot Tropical Courtyard that’s encircled by tropical foliage, the Marina Garden that provides stellar views of the blue water and charming sailboats, and the Sunset Lawn that has the San Diego Bay as its backdrop. Couples usually hold receptions either in the modern Mission Bay Ballroom, which features 18-foot-high glass walls overlooking the water, or in the verdant Marina Garden.
Typical Cost: $15,000 for 250 guests
Bonus: The venue provides numerous indoor and outdoor settings for the rehearsal dinner.
The ultimate beachfront wedding location in San Diego County, Loews Coronado Bay Resort features sweeping views of the Pacific Ocean and a lovely mix of elegance and laidback vibes. For ceremonies and receptions, couples favor the pristine sands bordering the resort, the 5,500-square-foot Bay Terrace that has multiple levels and looks out onto San Diego Bay, the 6,200-square-foot Marina Terrace, and the more intimate Sunset Terrace and Bliss Garden, Grow Garden, and Nectar Garden.
For post-ceremony cocktails, the Marina Terrace is a prime location especially because it allows you to make your grand entrance on a gondola! If you want an indoor reception, you can choose between the Commodore Ballroom, which includes a glass-walled foyer with views of the San Diego Bay, and the chic Constellation Ballroom which features crystal chandeliers that look like branch coral.
Typical Cost: Site fees range from $1,500 – $4,000; wedding packages range from $140 – $200 per person
Bonus: As the venue sits on 15 acres adjacent to Silver Strand State Beach, couples will have a variety of dynamic backdrops for photos on their big day.
Envision your special day unfolding at a Mediterranean resort dazzling with expanses of groomed lawns, a golden beach, and ballrooms that make you feel like you’ve been transported to a palace. Enter: the Sheraton Carlsbad Resort & Spa event center. For couples wanting the sound of the waves and views of the mesmerizing California sky (without a side of sand), the Ocean Blue Lawn and Pacific Lawn (both offering bluff settings) are the most coveted outdoor spaces for ceremonies and receptions.
But if you want a quintessential beach wedding, you can still feel the soft sand beneath your feet as you walk down an aisle covered in rose petals, thanks to the beach beside the resort. Additionally, indoor receptions can be held in one of the two ballrooms that offer columned terraces, high ceilings, modern chandeliers, large dance floors, and state-of-the-art AV systems.
Typical Cost: Starts at $86 per person
Bonus: The onsite restaurant Twenty/20 is a popular spot for rehearsal dinners.
A wedding in this beloved San Diego city park begins with an outdoor ceremony in the Casa Del Rey Moro Gardens which were designed in 1935 to emulate the Moorish gardens of Ronda, Spain. These gardens include fountains, a reflecting pool, a wishing well, and landscaped foliage. After the ceremony, you’ll move to one of the three event spaces in The Prado at Balboa Park, located in the adjacent House of Hospitality.
As for the largest space, look no further than the sprawling 5,500-square-foot Grand Ballroom which features chandeliers, 27-foot-high, hand-stenciled ceilings, and a theatrical stage. Before heading into the ballroom, guests can enjoy cocktails in the Fountain Courtyard which features a garden landscape. Additionally, on the second floor of The Prado, couples have access to a charming Spanish-style room that opens to two terraces and accommodates parties of up to 80 people.
Typical Cost: $1,700 plus $350 – $550 for each additional hour, depending on the selected space
Capacity: 80 – 320 depending on the selected space
Bonus: The park’s central location in the city makes it easy to access from many of San Diego’s most popular accommodations.
The ultimate rooftop venue in San Diego, Diamond View Tower is located on the top floor of Diamond View East Village and provides breathtaking, panoramic views of the San Diego skyline, the San Diego Bay, Coronado, and Petco Park.
This chic, 4,500-square-foot space has a large terrace with a 14-foot-long fireplace and an indoor area with floor-to-ceiling windows and contemporary lounge furniture. It also has a full kitchen to accommodate the caterers on its approved list. This is the venue for you if you’re wanting sleek and simple nuptials that highlight the beauty of San Diego.
Typical Cost: Rental fee ranges from $5,000 – $6,500 for a reception and includes five hours of event time, excluding setup and clean-up time; setup fee for a ceremony is $800 with reception rental
Bonus: The venue has valet service and underground parking, ensuring ample convenience for guests.
Bailey Gaddis is a travel writer and author of Feng Shui Mommy: Creating Balance and Harmony for Blissful Pregnancy, Childbirth, and Motherhood. In addition, she works as a childbirth preparation educator and birth doula who supports mothers-to-be and new mothers. She is also a regular contributor to media outlets including Disney’s Babble, Working Mother, Pregnancy & Newborn, Huffington Post, Cosmopolitan, Redbook, and Woman’s Day. In addition to her childbirth-prep work, she volunteers for families in need of postpartum support. She lives in Ojai, California.