Anna and Danny were married along the Northern California Sonoma Coast at the end of September. Before Anna and Danny’s official wedding here, they held a Burning Man wedding. Scott and I enjoyed the unique area they chose for their coast wedding, which incorporated several locations. They had their first look at the Sea Ranch Chapel. This beautiful, funky little wildy shaped building is more like a sacred space than any traditional chapel I have seen, with a round floor plan, curvy carved wood, stones, and glass pieces and abalone shells inlaid in to several areas of the building. After they spent some time together for their first look, they had their family and friends, 22 people in total, gather at the chapel, not for the actual ceremony, but to spend time with the couple as Anna and Danny shared meaningful thoughts with each small group in a very personal, intimate space. Anna and Danny spoke with them about how important they are to them, and they gave everyone a little bell for them to ring as Anna walked down the aisle for the ceremony. After the time spent at the chapel, we made a brief stop at a local park that has some Russian totem poles … this area of the coast was occupied by Russians in the early to mid 1800’s, and the park wanted to celebrate this history with the totem poles, placed there in 2014.
After the stop at the park, the ceremony was held at Cooks Beach just before sunset. As the sun was dipping so low in the sky, the sea mist lit up in the most beautiful golden color I have seen in quite some time. The golden light was pretty magical that day. The whole group enjoyed the sunset with some champagne and eventually it was time to move across the street to the St. Orres Hotel for dinner and dancing. The architecture of the hotel also reflects the early 1800 Russian influence with several round topped spires on the main hotel buildings. There are several cabins on the property where all the guests stayed. The St. Orres is known for their cuisine, and I must say, it was excellent. Scott and I actually spent 3 nights total there because we decided to celebrate our anniversary which had been the week before. The basil martinis, abalone, and lobster tails were our favorites! The co-owner and executive chef, Rosemary Campiformio, was so nice and welcoming. All in all, this was one of the most memorable weddings I have ever had the honor to be a part of, thanks Anna and Danny!