Palo Alto Wedding Venue
1305 Middlefield Road
Palo Alto, California 94301
With its white-stucco archways, red-tile roof and vibrant courtyard, the Lucie Stern Center is a gracious example of Spanish-Mediterranean architecture. Designed by Birge Clark and donated by Lucie Stern, an heir of Levi Strauss, it was originally built in 1931 as a community theater. But since then, the center has matured into a welcoming hacienda that offers a variety of options for weddings.
You can rent individual areas or the whole center. For instance, if your wedding is small and informal, consider having it in the mid-sized Community Room, whose windows overlook a Mission-style promenade. The adjacent patio, which is enclosed by the U-shaped building and a vine-covered brick wall, has a two-tiered lawn bordered by an array of colorful flowers. The upper level is an ideal spot for your ceremony or live entertainment. Another choice for an intimate event is the Fireside Room. It features a large fireplace constructed of brick and stucco, and also adjoins the patio.
One of the most popular areas for gathering during a celebration is the Municipal Courtyard, a brick-paved retreat surrounded by flowers of every conceivable color. Enhancing this picturesque setting is the majestic stucco theater, standing tall in the background—it’s evocative of a centuries-old Spanish church.
From the courtyard, guests walk through double glass doors into the Lucie Stern Center Ballroom, a large space complete with beautiful hardwood floors, dark wood wainscoting and two tiled fireplaces. Done in a rustic, early-California style, the room has a cathedral ceiling with exposed wooden beams and six cylindrical chandeliers crafted of black wrought iron. A row of windows overlooks the lush lawn in front of the facility.
From the blooming white roses at the courtyard entry to the open-air promenade and Mission-style rooms, the Lucie Stern Center is a classic Old World setting. And it’s this abundance of old-fashioned elements that makes the center such a charming spot for weddings.
CEREMONY CAPACITY: The center holds 300 seated guests indoors or up to 250 seated guest outdoors.
EVENT/RECEPTION & MEETING CAPACITY: The center holds 200 seated or 300 standing guests indoors or up to 150 seated or 200 standing guest outdoors.
MEETING CAPACITY: The center holds up to 300 guests seated theater-style.
A reservation fee is due within 10 days of obtaining an approved permit. The balance is due in 2 payments; the final payment is payable 4 weeks prior to the event. If a cancellation occurs, 33% of the total fees and charges is nonrefundable. Cancellations within 30 days of an event receive no refund. The exclusive use fee ranges $300–350/hour for Palo Alto residents, $450–500/hour for nonresidents. If you don’t rent the entire facility, individual rooms can be rented on an hourly basis; call for rates. A $25–30/hour fee is charged for a city employee to be on premises during the event.
Special Events, Parties
Kitchen Facilities: fully equipped
Tables & Chairs: most provided or through caterer
Linens, Silver, etc.: BYO or through caterer
Restrooms: wheelchair accessible
Dance Floor: ballroom
Bride’s Dressing Area: no
Meeting Equipment: BYO or CBA
Parking: ample on site
Accommodations: no guest rooms
Telephone: emergency use only
Outdoor Night Lighting: yes
Outdoor Cooking Facilities: through caterer
Cleanup: caterer or renter
View: garden patio
Community Center/Civic Bldg
Alcohol: BYO wine, beer or champagne
Smoking: outside only
Music: amplified OK with restrictions
Wheelchair Access: yes
Insurance: extra liability required
Year-round, daily, 6am–1am.