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Sesnon House at Cabrillo College

Aptos Wedding Venue
6500 Soquel Drive
Aptos, California 95003
Contact: Special Events Department
Phone: 831/479-6229

Special Offer or Discount

Why We Like This Place

You know just the kind of place you want for your event: beautiful, dignified and historic, but not a painstakingly preserved “museum” where your guests will be afraid to walk on the fragile Aubusson carpet or put their glass down on the polished Louis XIV rosewood console. You’d like it to look like a mansion, and have a sophisticated feel, yet be spacious enough to allow plenty of room to dance and mingle, but not so huge your guests feel like they’re partying in a warehouse. Of course you want well-landscaped outdoor spaces to take advantage of sunny Santa Cruz weather while having a quiet ceremony or a luncheon under umbrella-shaded tables. And you have to find all these things while staying within your less-than-lavish budget. Sound impossible? Not at Sesnon House!

It was built in 1911 by Mary and William Sesnon, and now occupies a quiet section of the Cabrillo College campus. Originally named “Pino Alto” after a large pine tree on the property, the house combines Moorish, Mission and American elements in a style known as “Californian.” At the entrance, graceful columns frame the leaded-glass and polished-wood double doors opening onto the Foyer. This space has hardwood floors, a sweeping staircase, open-beamed ceiling, and brass-and-glass chandeliers and sconces. Two large rooms open into the Foyer. In the McPherson Room creamy peach walls and white molding make a pleasant contrast to the dark-beamed ceiling and mantelpiece. On either side of the terracotta-tiled fireplace, large windows with leaded-glass arches overlook the pine-fringed lawn surrounding Sesnon House. A raised hardwood stage with a baby grand piano is the perfect spot for toasting the newlyweds. The Piño Alto is similar to the McPherson Room, with French doors, a fireplace, high wainscoting and three glass-and-brass chandeliers.

Beyond the Foyer, the Simpkins Terrace is a charming spot for outdoor functions. Set up tables with umbrellas out here, or use the Terrace in conjunction with one of the indoor spaces. A short path leads from the Terrace across a velvety lawn to a historic Japanese pavilion, installed 70 years ago by the former owner, who had an avid interest in Asian artifacts. Shaded by pines and cedars, this colorful structure is painted in cheerful shades of red, gold and green.

The Sesnon House is also the home of the Cabrillo College Culinary Arts and Hospitality Management Program, which provides students, under faculty supervision, with a hands-on learning experience while offering the community a lovely celebratory setting. The faculty and Sesnon House staff strive to supply the highest standard of service and hospitality, and you can feel good knowing that your special event supports their educational goals and the operation and upkeep of this historic property. In addition, the easy-to-find location (just off Highway 1) and abundant parking add to the facility’s popularity.

So if you’re fretting over a list of party-planning requirements that seem insurmountable, check out Sesnon House. check out Sesnon House. They may not be able to solve all your problems (like how to keep your brother-in-law from eating all the shrimp, or how to stop Aunt Edna from dancing the Macarena), but at least your surroundings will be just what you had envisioned.



  • Max. Seated Indoors: 0
  • Max. Seated Outdoors: 200

Reception/Special Events

  • Max. Seated Indoors: 100
  • Max. Seated Outdoors: 200
  • Max. Standing/Cocktails Indoors: 200
  • Max. Standing/Cocktails Outdoors: 200


  • Max. Seated: 75

CEREMONY CAPACITY: The outdoor area can accommodate 200 seated guests.

EVENT/RECEPTION CAPACITY: The Sesnon House holds a maximum of 100 seated or 200 standing guests indoors. The outdoor area holds 200 seated. Maximum capacity for indoors and outdoors is 200 guests.

MEETING CAPACITY: Several rooms hold 16–75 seated guests.

Cost: Prices, Deposits, Etc.

For weddings, a $500 refundable security/damage deposit plus half of the site use fee ($2,200 for up to 110 guests, $2,500 for 111–200 guests) are payable within 5 working days of making tentative reservations. The use fee balance is due 150 days prior to the event. The use fee covers a 7-hour event. For business-related events and other social special events, use fees will vary depending on the day of week, time frame and guest count; call for more information.

In-house catering is available; luncheons start at $13/person and dinners at $25/person. Tax and gratuities are additional.

Location Uses

Wedding Receptions
Special Events, Parties
Business Functions/Meetings
Rehearsal Dinners


Catering: provided or select from preferred list
Kitchen Facilities: n/a
Tables & Chairs: provided indoors; outdoors through caterer
Linens, Silver, etc.: through caterer
Restrooms: wheelchair accessible
Dance Floor: hardwood floor in foyer
Bride’s Dressing Area: yes
Meeting Equipment: VCR, TV, overhead projector, screen, internet access
Parking: large lots
Accommodations: no guestrooms
Telephone: pay phones or local calls CBA
Outdoor Night Lighting: yes
Outdoor Cooking Facilities: through caterer
Cleanup: caterer
View: lawn and terrace
Other: baby grand piano

Venue Views

Forest/Wooded Area
Garden Patio/Courtyard
Landscaped Grounds

Venue Type

Banquet Hall/Events Facility
College Campus/School
Historic/Landmark Building
Private Estate


Alcohol: BYO beer and wine only, approved server required
Smoking: parking lot only
Music: amplified OK indoors
Wheelchair Access: yes
Insurance: extra liability required
Other: decorations require approval; no rice, confetti, seeds or red petals; no open flames

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Wedding Venues > Northern California Wedding Venues > Santa Cruz Wedding Venues

Alternate Info: Senson