Carmel Valley Wedding Venue
114 West Carmel Valley Road
Carmel Valley, California 93924
Video by Heidi McKay.
Tucked in the sunny hills of Carmel Valley, Gardener Ranch's 24 tranquil acres flourish alongside the banks of the Carmel River. With a rich history of hosting presidents and celebrities, the picturesque property has recently been renovated and reimagined as a welcoming retreat for family reunions, company getaways and—of course!—destination weddings. Reserve for a weekend or longer, and the ranch becomes your own private paradise where you can wed, dine. and stay amid laid-back refinement.
One of the ranch's most clever innovations is Bridal Camp, a spacious bungalow where bridal parties can prep in style. Feminine, functional and fun, Bridal Camp has thought of everything: director chairs facing a wall of mirrors and makeup counters; comfy slipcovered sofas for lounging and girl-talk; a salon with hairstylist and manicure stations; a gym and massage room; and a swanky Groom's Room, too.
Ceremonies unfold with rustic beauty out on Woodlands Lawn, a blanket of soft grass surrounded by towering oaks and sycamores. At one end, graceful willow branches form a natural arch, a lovely spot to say "I do." You can add your own signature touches—whimsical signage, crystals dangling from tree limbs, a flower-decked chuppa—but the site is equally captivating left au naturel.
After the first kiss, the bridal party explores the venue's photogenic grounds, while guests amble over to the nearby Clubhouse Patio for cocktails. Cushioned lounge furniture, market umbrellas and a fire pit are clustered around a sparkling swimming pool, a scene made even more glamorous with the addition of market lights or Chinese lanterns. As dusk turns to evening, everyone adjourns to the Dining Room, a flexible L-shaped space that's at once homey and elegant: A vaulted light-wood ceiling sports a dazzling crystal chandelier, and a fire ablaze in a cozy brick hearth is reflected in gilded mirrors and multipaned windows. There's even a grand piano on hand for dinner serenades.
When it's time to kick things up a notch, move the reception into the skylit Breakfast Room, where black-and-white tiles beneath your feet become a retro-chic dance floor. Inevitably, guests drift back to the pool deck to take in a resplendent country sky.
Five unique lodges spread out among the meadows make overnight stays a genuine treat. Newlyweds usually opt for the secluded River Cottage: Its quaint stylings and private waterfront deck inspire romance. By contrast, the luxurious Main House—a 3-bedroom residence with its own pool and three fireplaces—makes a lively gathering place. Enjoy the ranch's on-site activities, including croquet or bocce ball; or venture forth to tour local wineries, take a horseback ride or hike scenic mountain trails.
For all that there is to do, you're likely to find the Ranch's simple pleasures to be the most endearing … treelined paths that reveal an old-fashioned tree swing … colorful birds on the wing or splashing in a fountain … a serene mountain silhouette that hugs the property like an earthy embrace. This kind of ineffable charm needs to be experienced to be fully appreciated, and your landmark occasion offers the perfect opportunity to do just that.
CEREMONY, EVENT/RECEPTION & Meeting CAPACITY: The facility can accommodate 150 seated or 200 standing guests indoors, and 200 seated or standing outdoors.
Special Events, Parties
Banquet Hall/Events Facility