Just Said Yes April 2022

Spring/Beach Destination Micro-wedding

AMANDA, on June 19, 2021 at 1:05 PM Posted in California Planning 0 5
I'm trying to plan a California mirco-wedding for March/April 2022 and I currently live in Phoenix. We have like less than 30 people showing up so I don't want to spend a lot of money but I want it to be elegant. I want the dance floor and dj but I don't want nor need a big hall. It's will look like nobody showed up. I've thought of a restaurant reception, but then there wouldn't be any dancing or music.

My "dream wedding" would be somewhere with a beach view where I can make a grand entrance. Our dog is allowed since he is the best man (we are not having a bridal party). The reception be at the same place, it will just make everything easier. We have our taco bar and margaritas, beer and wine. Everyone will sit at one long family style dinner table. We have a dance floor for our first dance and karaoke. Just a relaxing fun evening. Then everyone leaves. I don't want to have a rehearsal dinner or post wedding brunch. It just seems unnecessary and more more money to spend.
I don't want to spend a lot of money on 30 people I barely like. We're not in any financial strain, I just don't want to spend money. I don't want to spend more than 3k, my fiancé says 6k but I even think that is way to much. I rather spend the money on a honeymoon or save that that money for a house.
I don't know how to plan this or where to even look or where I should be looking at. I need some advice or direction.


Latest activity by Kay, on June 29, 2021 at 1:51 AM
  • JM Sunshine
    JM Sunshine ·
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    Try Googling microwedding venues in San Diego? I think it will be hard to stay within $3K budget for a beach ceremony/reception unless you have it at a park. If you really don't want to spend money on people you "barely like" maybe consider eloping?
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  • AJ
    Super October 2022
    AJ ·
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    I agree with previous poster. Weddings are not cheap at all. Maybe you should elope with just you and your fiancé somewhere and then turn it into a honeymoon. 3k is not a lot of money when you think about all that goes into a wedding. My venue itself to rent was 3,500 which was about the cheapest in my area - we are only having like 60 people.

    Even just looking at micro wedding packages they could be 5k and everything in California seems to be double the price depending the area.

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  • W
    Super September 2020
    Willow ·
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    We looked into a rowing club on the bay. ZLAC Club in SD. It was 3k alone for the venue. We also looked into a conference center on the harbor. Marina Village in SD. The rooms varied from maybe 500 to 2000. There's a gazebo in Laguna Beach that overlooks the bay, you could get a permit for a few hundred.

    Venues on the beach are not cheap. The beach itself is public property, and costs about 200 to get a permit to get married on the sand. It's hard to make a grand entrance when you're surrounded by everyone else at the beach. A permit only gives you permission to have the ceremony, it doesn't give you the right to kick the public out. March/April will be the beginning of beach wedding season. It peters off in winter.
    A DJ in southern CA will cost a couple thousand. Coastal CA weddings are not cheap.
    With your budget and guest count, that's $100 per head. That's enough for a very fancy meal, not necessarily in a private room.
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  • MOB So Cal
    January 2019
    MOB So Cal ·
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    I'm a native Californian and was actively involved in helping plan daughter's wedding in So Cal a couple years ago, and I think you have a lot on your wish list (I don't mean that in a bad way, it's just an observation). To get all that you want, you're going to need a pretty specialized venue, and, especially on/near the beach, that's going to be very pricey. Even though you have a relatively small guest list, venues fitting your checklist are likely to be expensive and hard to find -- most venues are going to be priced for a much larger guest list. (For comparison, we spent nearly $3000 on daughter's welcome/rehearsal dinner for about 35 people at a pretty casual brewery/restaurant, located about 15 miles inland from the beach. It was nice and lots of fun, with a buffet meal and open bar, but no dance floor, no DJ, no karaoke, no opportunity for grand entrance, etc.)

    You might have more luck staying within your budget if you consider January or February, on a weekday. Maybe check with hotels located on or across the street from the beach to see if they would do a small event. You might look in Carlsbad, Oceanside, San Clemente, Dana Point, Laguna, Huntington Beach, Long Beach, Ventura, or Carpinteria.

    I agree with others that if your potential guests are "30 people you barely like" you might want to consider eloping, and look for someone specializing in beach elopements; perhaps at a beach resort? Good luck!

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  • Melinda
    Devoted March 2022
    Melinda ·
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    As a bride on the Central Coast of California I must say- I would be dumbfounded and intrigued if you could satisfy your wish list for even $6,000.

    -The beach is relatively cheap here to get married at - they quoted us $350- this is considered a public park and there will be other beach goers there.

    - The cheapest venue we looked at came in at $1500 at a small family owned winery- however with having to rent tables (long farmhouse ones were $110 each plus $3.00 per chair, plus a delivery and set up fee of $150). For 30 people you would be roughly looking at another $570 plus taxes.

    We chose relatively inexpensive catering of tacos/ mexican food. This is $28 per person. That would be $840 plus taxes and gratuity.

    Our DJ is giving us a military discount- at $1300. This does not include karaoke.

    Beer/ Wine/Margaritas are coming to about $20 per person.

    Of course with all this you would need decor and attire,

    Once again, These are the least expensive places for the area... Our wedding has 100 people and we are $20k not including the honeymoon.

    From the phrasing of "people you dont like" I feel like you need to sit down with FH and figure out what your priorities for. I as a guest would be horrified if I found out a wedding I went to included me when the bride didn't even want me there.

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