Finding THE Venue Part III

After visiting a handful of venues, I decided I was over it. Everything started to look the same to me. Windows, check. Dancefloor, check. Generally overpriced catering, check. Oh, I felt the woes of living in Northern California, in the Bay Area no less.

I had figured out that any venue in the Silicon Valley (even after the bust) was way out of my price range, simply because there are still folks who can afford an arm and a leg. San Francisco proper was out of the question because we don't live on that side, and again I'm not willing to give up my first born for my wedding. The Peninsula (Palo Alto or San Mateo) would be a last resort, but still not ideal since guests would have to cross a bridge. Oakland was a possibility, but still a distance from the church. The pricing was in a good range, but I think the distance outweighed that factor. Finally, the East Bay and Tri-Valley area seemed like the most logical choice. And since these locations aren't in the the super high traffic areas like the city or uber expensive like one of the clubs in the South Bay, the pricing is a little more budget friendly.

Having decided that although Livermore (way out there) had lovely vineyards, unless we were having both the ceremony and reception in the same location, this wouldn't make sense. It would be a 40-50 minute drive just to get out there post-ceremony. And with the price of gas, this wasn't a good option. I liked Dublin Ranch Golf Club, but it too, was a little too far for my taste. Sunol Valley was our first initial choice, but after consideration of double bookings without question, it no longer sat well with me. Also, by the time we were ready to make a decision, both of our possible dates were booked. Finally, the last contender is nicely situated just on the other side of the hills from the church, with all the style that I had wanted.

Castlewood Country Club ascended to our top choice. You don't have to be a member to use the facility, although the rental price is higher without membership or sponsoring member. That price point was acceptable to us since their catering prices were comparable and the space was just so beautiful. There is no dollar minimum, but a guest minimum, which I thought would work out to our advantage since we would have at least the minimum number of guests. I fell in love with the space.

At first, I thought that it was too fancy for us. I thought the words "country club" would make people think that we were rich. But as a good friend of mine said, "Welcome to team 'I am getting married in a country club even though I would never have thought so in a million years.'" It just happens that it all worked out nicely. Some photos for better description...

Front entrance

Club lobby


Terrace - great for cocktail hour on a warm summer evening

Main ballroom

It has a very "hacienda" feel to it and was once owned by the Hearst Family. Yes, the HEARST's. The chairs aren't ugly, so I don't feel that money would have to be spent on chair covers. The space is big enough to accommodate our party, up to 375, were we to know that many people. I'm so excited that we have a venue! That means that I can really start working on the paper products and stationery! Yay!

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