Big Sur Wedding Venue
46840 Highway One
Big Sur, California 93920
At this historic lodge, Mother Nature is at your doorstep. Actually, your back-to-nature adventure begins during your drive south from Carmel, 25 glorious miles that wind along a masterpiece of shoreline with blue surf crashing against dramatic rocky cliffs. When Highway 1 veers inland, the scenery shifts to mountains, wildflowers and, of course, the Big Sur River. Here you’ll come to a quaint speck of a town that’s actually the inn’s 160-acre compound, surrounded by redwoods. Besides accommodations and its acclaimed restaurant and dining decks, this self-contained facility also has a gas station, swimming pool, art gallery and gift shop, and an old-fashioned ice cream bus. Their famous General Store even boasts a burrito bar!
The landmark inn and restaurant first opened its doors in 1934, serving up homemade apple pie by a roaring fire. While it’s since expanded its menu and amenities, the inn retains the endearing charm that first made it a local tradition. Building on decades of down-home hospitality, today it hosts gatherings of all kinds, where friends and family come together to revel in the wilderness.
Weddings take over all of the inn’s 20 rooms. Across the road from the main lodge, 14 simple but comfortable cottages—sporting flower baskets on their front porches—are tucked up against the tree-cloaked hillside. The bridal party usually resides in the main lodge next to the restaurant, where 6 riverfront suites have decks overlooking the ceremony lawn down below. When it’s time for her entrance, the bride descends a wooden staircase to a rolling lawn on the bank of the river. A pair of majestic oaks forms a natural altar, and the exchange of vows is accented by the whoosh of rushing water, a breeze rustling the trees and the lilt of birdsong.
A favorite spot for the cocktail hour is a patch of meadow next to the restaurant’s outdoor barbecue kitchen, tucked between the lower deck and the river. Guests take their refreshments from the built-in bar, and then explore the riverbank—in fact, the inn is famous for their willow chairs, which folks place right in the water for an authentic river experience.
Meals are served on the lower redwood deck, where white umbrellas provide shade during the day and heaters keep evenings cozy. The adjoining upper deck, whose wood lattice roof is entwined with twinkle lights, can be used for additional reception seating or cocktails. Dancing or indoor receptions are held inside the restaurant, which is lavished in redwood from furnishings to vaulted skylit ceiling. A gigantic stone hearth in the lounge is a splendid backdrop for photos or intimate winter weddings. The inn is known for its barbecue receptions with all the trimmings, but they also serve delicious seafood and pastas; hearty day-after brunches and sunset rehearsal dinners are another specialty.
The inn’s proximity to parks, beaches and hiking trails provides plenty of off-site recreation. But if you fancy kicking back by the pool or in the river, that’s fine too. From fireside to riverside, the Big Sur River Inn invites you to celebrate your destination wedding weekend, just the way you like it.
CEREMONY CAPACITY: The site holds 100 seated guests indoors and 175 seated outdoors.
EVENT/RECEPTION CAPACITY: The facility can accommodate 100 seated or 150 standing indoors and 100 seated or 200 standing outdoors.
MEETING CAPACITY: The facility holds 100 seated guests.
50% of the total event cost plus the rental fee is required to reserve your date. The rental fee for a ceremony and reception ranges $3,000–6,000 depending on the day and time of the event. A ceremony only is $1,000. Catering packages start at $75/person. Tax, alcohol and a 20% service charge are additional.
Special Events, Parties
Kitchen Facilities: n/a
Tables & Chairs: some provided
Linens, Silver, etc.: some provided
Restrooms: wheelchair accessible
Dance Floor: provided
Bride’s Dressing Area: CBA
Meeting Equipment: some provided, more CBA
Parking: large lot
Accommodations: 20 guest rooms
Outdoor Night Lighting: yes
Outdoor Cooking Facilities: BBQ CBA
View: forest, garden patio, mountains; panorama of Big Sur River
Other: event coordination
Banquet Hall/Events Facility
Alcohol: in-house or BYO with corkage fee
Smoking: designated areas only
Music: amplified OK
Wheelchair Access: yes
Insurance: not required
BYO w/ Corkage Fee
Year-round, daily, anytime.
Alternate Info: Big Sur River Hotel