I have a tendency to change my mind, oftentimes way too quickly for my own good…so picking a venue was a BIG deal. Growing up in southern California a beach wedding always sounded perfect. But then I remembered I don’t like going to the beach…or sand. Both of which make a beach wedding kind of difficult. So after reading dozens of bridal magazines I decided a rustic outdoor wedding was the perfect selection. But then it just came to narrowing it down from there.
Julian, CA is one of the closest “mountain” towns to San Diego, with only about an hour drive. There were a few inns that hosted weddings but they all seemed to be too expensive for what they had to offer. I’m not opposed to splurging on a venue, however there’s a difference between splurging and going overboard for no reason. Seeing as my MOH was in the process of booking her venue, a beachside estate where she can choose her own vendors, I set out on a quest to find a mountain side estate for myself. A few google searches later I thought I’d found it. The Upper Meadow Lodge was perfect! It had a gourmet kitchen an could sleep the entire bridal party and it was only about 30 min further than Julian. I quickly called the owner who informed me they DID do weddings (YAY) but could only accommodate 75 people (heartbreak). With an Incomplete guest list at 80 I knew it would never work. I quickly thanked her and was prepared to start over when she said that even though she couldn’t accommodate my party, the neighboring property COULD!
It is important to note, that during my intense location search MOH S was ALSO in the midst of reserving the location we had found for her (about 6 months before she became engaged of course). Her dream venue was amazing, and in many ways led me to my dream venue. I had always planned on getting married in November, if I knew one thing about searching for a venue, it was either have a general date/month picked out, or just go with the flow and don’t care. I was the former of those two and knew right away November would be perfect. MOH, felt the same way about September.
The day before I stumbled onto my venue soulmate, MOH had called to ask me what date in November I had been thinking. It turns out, the day she wanted in September had been reserved and another couple had until the end of the week to pay their deposit. The next available date was November 10th, the day I had coveted as my favorite. Many would have seen this as a crisis, or a scene from Bride Wars…But she had been engaged first, and I hadn’t even found THE venue yet. I told her to take the 10th if she needed to, and it would all work out.
The next day I found it: my venue soulmate. Bailey’s Palomar Resort was PERFECT. It had everything I could ever have dreamed of. I called as soon as I had a free second to do so, and spoke with one of the owners, Brad, who told me I was in luck: they had one weekend in the fall still available. (In Panic) I crossed my fingers and asked which one: And of course it was the one MOH S wanted. I couldn’t believe it. After breathing a half sigh of relief I made an appointment to visit that weekend so we could seal the deal. But before I could do that, I had to call S and see what the chances were of her getting her 1st choice. Much to my surprise, she told me to take it! November would work better for them budget wise and it made it easy to just swap dates!
I tried and tried to get Mr. B to pay the deposit without having seen it, but being the practical person he is, said we had to visit first. After 5 minutes of seeing the beautiful property he agreed that it was THE venue and agreed we could put down the deposit. That’s our venue adventure began and ended within one week!
The view from the porch at the Bailey House
Was there anything you had trouble with at first until the stars aligned and it all began to make sense?