Mendocino Wedding Venue
10701 Palette Drive
Mendocino, California 95460
For years Hollywood filmmakers have used Mendocino as a backdrop whenever scenes call for a picturesque seaside New England village— it’s easier to travel 500 miles north than 3,000 miles east. But Tinsel Town’s bean counters also come to Mendocino for its other obvious attributes: extraordinary beauty, atmosphere and charm. And if the town looks familiar to millions, its most recognized locale has to be Hill House Inn, site of the fictional Cabot Cove Inn in Murder She Wrote, the popular Angela Lansbury TV series of the 80s and early 90s. Although the program gave this property incredible exposure during its run, Hill House hasn’t rested on its television laurels. Since then, the Inn has established a reputation as one of the best wedding venues on the North Coast.
You see the Inn’s New England lines as you come up its long driveway, which is flanked by low white fences and cypresses. Exuberant flower gardens grow all around its green-shingled, salt box-style buildings. Arcades connect all the wings, giving the Inn a cozy feel. There are three distinctive ceremony sites here. The chapel, very popular, has a formal look with beige walls and oak baseboards and trim. Beaded chandeliers hang from its ceiling of dark wood rafters, and twin stained-glass windows at the front showcase intense red roses with deep green stems and leaves. An oval window near the entrance depicts birds in a church belfry.
The second site is Ocean View Dining Room. The split-level room, with its airy Victorian look, has beige walls with white trim, a coffered ceiling and many windows. The lower area accesses an open-air deck with views of the sea and coastal hills. Looking down from it, you can see the third wedding site, a meadow under three ancient towering cypresses. If you decide to have your reception outdoors, a meadow-side tent can hold up to 300 people.
Hill House’s eye-catching indoor reception and dinner space, the Bar & Lounge, is a two-level affair. The upper level is hunter green with tartan plaid trim, and paneled in rich oak. An alcove with a brick fireplace, and two stained glass windows make the space even more appealing. Three steps down, the lower level is also hunter green, with a white ceiling and green patterned carpet. French doors and floor-to-ceiling windows on three sides offer ocean, meadow and ridge views. With its built-in stage, professional sound system, and permanent dance floor, the Bar & Lounge is a regular venue for local bands. One more thing: the two-tier setup creates a lively social flow.
Staff here can handle soup-to-nuts wedding arrangements: photographers, favors, cake and music. The Inn also makes a hard-to-pass-up offer: for $250 (plus tax & gratuity), you can request the bridal suite, eat at the restaurant, do wine pairings and meet with staff and recommended vendors— in other words, you can experience the Inn without committing. Catering is on site, provided by a culinary team that has a formidable local reputation.
Many wedding parties check in here on a Thursday, marry on Saturday and spend a relaxing Sunday before departing. The reason’s simple: The Inn’s small, warm staff quickly gets a feel for guests, calling them by name and learning their likes and dislikes. Can there be any better place to celebrate than a seaside getaway that feels like home?
CEREMONY CAPACITY: Outdoors, the Meadow can hold up 300 seated guests; indoors, up to 150 guests may be accommodated in the Ocean View Room. More intimate ceremonies (for up to 80 guests) may be held in the Chapel.
EVENT/RECEPTION CAPACITY: The Bar & Lounge holds up to 150 seated or 200 standing guests. When combined with the tented meadow area, up to 300 seated or 450 standing guests can be accommodated. Smaller events in the Ocean View Room may be held for up to 90 seated or 130 standing guests.
MEETING CAPACITY: Meetings may be held in the Ocean View Room for up to 90 guests seated theater-style.
A $1000 deposit is required to reserve your date; the balance is due 45 days prior to the event. Rental fees range $500–2,300 depending on space rented. Meals range $30–125/person. Tax, alcohol, and an 18% service charge are additional.
Special Events, Parties
Kitchen Facilities: n/a
Tables & Chairs: provided
Linens, Silver, etc.: provided
Restrooms: wheelchair accessible
Dance Floor: yes
Bride’s Dressing Area: CBA
Meeting Equipment: CBA, extra charge
Parking: ample on-site
Accommodations: 44 guest rooms
Outdoor Night Lighting: yes
Outdoor Cooking Facilities: CBA
View: ocean, coastline, garden, grounds
Other: event coordination & vendor referrals
Banquet Hall/Events Facility
Smoking: outside only
Music: amplified OK indoors and outdoors, with restrictions
Wheelchair Access: yes
Insurance: certificate required
Other: no rice, confetti or birdseed
Year round, daily, 8am–11pm.