As a wedding photographer living and working in Santa Barbara since 1997 I’m very familiar with the most popular venues in the area. If you are searching for a wedding venue in Santa Barbara, Ca this page will give you an idea of general options. The most iconic thing about Santa Barbara is the scenery. It is simply gorgeous here! The beach and mountain views are stunning, but if you pick the wrong venue you might not get the best Santa Barbara has to offer! There are many wedding venues in Santa Barbara Ca including a number of outdoor parks and beaches that capture the essence and the magic that is Santa Barbara!
It was a lovely afternoon to get married at the gorgeous Santa Barbara courthouse! April and Keith were surrounded by family and friends and got married on the lawn inside the courtyard area. Thank you to all who attended to wish them well, and thank you April and Keith for having me on your special day.
04 Feb 2020
Katy and Jim got married at a gorgeous ceremony in Pasadena Ca surrounded by family and friends. Thank you to Noor venue and coordinators at Wife of the Party for your hard work making it so pretty and making the day go so smoothly!
04 Dec 2019
Helen and Mark’s wedding was a lovely celebration to remember forever! They were married by dear friends at Mark’s work, the Salvation Army church. The reception was at the historic El Paseo restaurant. It was a beautiful fall wedding and I’m so lucky I got to photograph these two love birds and friends! Thank you Helen and Mark, and Congratulations on being married!
If you really want an eyefull, get out there on the beach or the bluffs overlooking the ocean! There are so many parks and beaches with a view in Santa Barbara, nad I’d be happy to talk to you about them, how the light is in each one, and which I’d choose. My favorites have to be Elwood Bluffs and Alice Keck Park!
Santa Barbara Courthouse
The most iconic Santa Barbara outdoor wedding venue is the Santa Barbara Courthouse, my all time favorite location to photograph couples. Nothing says ‘Santa Barbara’ more than this gorgeous building. You can have weddings out in the garden, or indoors in the mural room. Its also one of the most cost effective venues in terms of beauty per dollar! You can do just the ceremony, or recently they added reception service as well!
Waterfront And Ocean View Hotels
There are many indoor venues in Santa Barbara from churches to rental halls to restaurants and hotels. Some are extravagant and with sweeping views and breathtaking sights, while others might make you feel you are in a school auditorium. Above I listed some of the most inexpensive but still gorgeous wedding venue options, here I will cover a few of the most popular high end wedding venues along the waterfront.
The Hilton of Santa Barbara is one of the most iconic venues. Its situated right across from the ocean, and has a gorgeous routunda area that many choose to get married in. It is a very swanky hotel, full service venue, and priced as such. If you have the budget, this is one of the very best places in Santa Barbara to get married!
The Ritz Carlton (formerly the Bacara) is a deluxe resort for those for whom budget is a lesser concern. The hotel caters to high end clientele, and has a spa and several restaurants on site. It is located in Goleta, a bit away from downtown Santa Barbara proper, but if your interested in an all inclusive resort style experience set directly on the beach, you are looking for the Ritz Carlton!
The Belmond El Encanto is another supremely deluxe resort, though more boutique in nature than the Ritz carlton. They cater to the high end crowd, serve wonderful food and their staff is known for their excellent service. This resort is tucked up in the Santa Barbara Riviera so you get the majestic Riveria views of the ocean as well as city views, the harbor and more.
Hyatt Santa Barbara is across from the ocean, and a lovely high end resort. Its not quite as swanky as the above, but priced a bit better. They venue is great and the location is wonderful too! Their indoor reception room is on the 2nd floor with windows that look over to the beach!
Somwehere In Between..
In between the simplicity of your toes in the sand outdoors and the luxury of high end all inclusive resorts are a number of very popular wedding venues. I have been part of weddings at the Riviera Mansion, Ty Warner Sea Center, Natural History Museum, The Maritime Museum, The Santa Barbara Zoo, The Santa Barbara Mission (if you are Catholic), or the Rose Garden if you just want the views, and a long list of Churches including the everpopular Unitarian Society, Our lady of Sorrows has the stained glass catherdral vibes, and the Greek Orthodox has great views at a very competative price!
As a seasoned wedding pro I have photographed weddings at each of these locations, and know all about the best spots, timing, lighting, etc. If you would like to chit chat about planning your wedding, call me anytime! I would love to be your photographer and help guide you through your amazing Santa Barbara Wedding!
Hi I’m Barbara of Santa Barbara, and I’d love to chat with you about your wedding photography vision!
Whether you are just starting out planning, or have your plans nearly all set I’d love to hear all about you and what I can do to help you capture the love and connection of you and your fiancé on your wedding day.
Call or text anytime! 805 637 0752
Eileen and Neil enjoyed an intimate beach ceremony surrounded by family and friends in Santa Barbara Ca.
Santa Barbara is a beautiful backdrop where you can elope! The photographs I’ve taken at elopements in this area are some of my favorite images! To elope in SB is a no brainer – we have the year-round mild weather, so you can elope any calendar date you like! And the variety of gorgeous backdrops to elope in is amazing – from the bluffs overlooking the pacific ocean to the green flower covered parks the options are many! The only problem is where to elope? As your photographer, I would love to have a vote on where you elope! I’m as invested as you are in making amazing images of this romantic and sentimental moment, so here are my suggestions for venues.
My top 3 locations to get married or elope in and around Santa Barbara are below. Since I’m a photographer, let me tell this story visually. Click on the photos below to see more about each location.
The Santa Barbara Courthouse is a beautiful place to elope!
Alice Keck Park always has some flowers in bloom that make for a romantic dreamy backdrop for photos!
The bluffs in Ellwood in Goleta make for a stunning sunset show to usher in your first married moments!
There is always something in bloom in Santa Barbara, but you have to know when and where. The gardens and parks all bloom different flowers different times of year! My worth comes in my creative talent, my excellent service and the finished art, but add to that the knowledge of the best spots to elope in and around town! This is only my top 3 for today, but I’ll add more soon. If you want to pick my brain about the perfect location for your proposed date, feel free to call or email me. I’ve lived in Santa Barbara a few decades and am in tune with the seasons and so many hot – and cool spots in town. And I discover more all the time! I would be honored to share your elopement and be the one to capture the moments so you can enjoy your elopement images happily ever after!
Elope in the beautiful sunken gardens of the Santa Barbara County Courthouse! Enjoy the ethereal 360 views while you exchange vows in front of your whole village, or enjoy a more intimate setting with just you and your fiancé!
For a full wedding ceremony, setting up guests by the fiesta stage ensures a full view of the tower and arch, you’ll be surrounded by gorgeous architecture.
If you choose to elope, there are several spaces you can choose outdoors, and on really cool spot in the courthouse itself! Its just a little nook on the second floor in the office where you get your license, but it has some cool curtains, cielings and other elements to enjoy that many who visit this courthouse never get to see!
If you’re eloping in Santa Barbara, its easy to add a few elements that will make the simple but special day even more so. Here are some suggestions that will help make your photos pop!
Grabbing some sweets and sharing that ‘first piece of cake’ moment not only makes the photos exciting, it adds an element of joy to the day. Some couples like adding a litte more of the grandiose in the form of a simple cake cupcake or donut! For cakes I recommend Anna’s Bakery! For about $30 they’ll give you a delicious whipped cream frosting cake already on the shelf. For donuts, Hook and Press just can’t be beat! And for cupcakes, Crushcakes is a local hit!
If you’ve though ahead you may have contacted a local florist to get a flower crown, boquet and boutonniere. There are many florists I know of that work on short notice, so you can email or call me for a current list of who I’m working with. Short of that, you can buy some poses from any of the 4 local Trader Joe’s and bind them together in an easy peasy bouquet.
If you haven’t thought about a wedding dress, I have some you can borrow! Putting on a white dress just makes the occasion grand and the photos pop!
The one thing I wouldn’t skimp on is the photography! No matter how simple or fancy your details are, I will render you and your partners special love in images you can treasure forever! Like diamonds, these images will become more precious over time! Call me, I’d love to chat about your upcoming elopement and anything I can do to help!
03 Jan 2019
Jenn and Travis’ magical sunset elopement on the Ellwood bluffs near Santa Barbara Ca. It was my honor and pleasure to capture the love and union that was solidified on this wonderful day! Thank you Jenn and Travis for choosing me, I hope you enjoy these photo memories for a lifetime.
Jason and Jenny got married at Alice Keck Park Santa Barbara in an intimate ceremony with family and friends! Congratulations Jason and Jenny!