The Brazilian Room is one of the most popular wedding venues in the Bay Area, and with good reason!
The main draw of this cozy and versatile East Bay event space is its proximity to nature. Tilden Park, with its pine, oak and eucalyptus trees, is your ceremony backdrop.
This venue also excels with its spacious indoor area, which is perfect for shifting over to for your reception.
The Brazilian Room is a unique local treasure, with loads of natural light, pretty outside space and a secluded location that’s still within easy reach.
I’ve had the pleasure of photographing a handful of weddings at this East Bay gem. I’m a preferred vendor for the Brazilian Room. In this article, I will share with you everything I know about how to make this beautiful venue work for you!
Capacity of the Brazilian Room for weddings
The Brazilian Room can host up to 150 guests for the typical wedding with the ceremony outdoors and reception indoors.
However, though that number is possible, it is a tight squeeze, plus you’ll have to give up your dancefloor! 80 – 100 guests is a much more comfortable number.
|Areas||Max guest count|
|Seated guests, without dance floor||150|
|Seated guests, with dance floor||120|
Size of Brazilian Room spaces
The indoor area (the Brazilian Room itself) measures 32′ x 54’.
The flagstone patio is 40’ X 42’ plus an extension of 12’x18’.
Features of the Brazilian Room for weddings
- Old-English style decor and feel
- Floor-to-ceiling glass doors and windows, making an appealing light-filled space
- Sloping lawns and expansive views
- Wooden beams and vaulted ceiling
- Stone gas fireplace centerpiece
- Rich hardwood paneling throughout
Rental prices for Brazilian Room weddings
The rental price in 2023 ranges from $672 for Monday, Wednesday and Thursday morning rentals, up to $5,538 for a full day on Saturdays. There are different price points based on the day of the week and whether morning, evening or full-day.
These prices are for out-of-county rates. Discounted rates are available for Alameda & Contra Costa County residents.
What’s included in your booking?
- Full industrial kitchen with 12-burner stove/double ovens
- Garbage disposal
- 100-cup coffee maker
- Commercial refrigerator
- Ice machine
- Barbecue grill
- 150 fruitwood folding chairs with ivory seat pad
- Tables: 6’ rectangular (24), 8’ rectangular (2), 60” round (16), 48” round (1), 36” round (5), 4’ square (1)
- Heat and air conditioning
- Audio Visual System including 2 microphones
- Projector screen
- 4 grey patio umbrellas
- Hardwood dancefloor
- Yamaha upright piano
- Dimmable ceiling lights
- Small dressing room
Note: Some items are only available for indoor use.
Other places to combine with the Brazilian Room
There is the charming botanic garden within Tilden Park which is recommended for photos. It’s only a few minutes walk down the hill or a quick drive away. This requires a paid permit in advance. Below are some shots from that garden (permits are around $408 at the current time).
If the budget won’t stretch or you can’t find the time to fit in a shoot there, don’t worry. There are plenty of beautiful spots on-site at the Brazilian Room!
Other points to note
The best time for a wedding there in my opinion is when the blossoms are blooming! The time for this is March to April, though do check with the staff as this may change year on year for example if there are gusty winds. This wedding below was from March 27. It rained later in the day!
I personally do recommend investing in some kind of ceremony arch or focal point behind you. Many online reviews and past brides comment that with such breathtaking scenery, why both with extraneous decoration? But the arch is so much more!
It frames you and provides a beautiful backdrop behind you. In my opinion, shots with the wedding arch behind the couple end up being my favorites, most times.
What makes for great photos is having different depths – a foreground (you), midground (your decorated arch) and then the actual background (distant trees). You can see below how this gives such an elevated, classic and personalized feel.
Some things to be aware of
I try to be as unbiased as I can in my blog posts. Being a preferred photographer of the Brazilian Room, I of course love weddings there.
However, I want to present a balanced picture so you can make an informed decision. Some of these are based on my own experience, and others from online review sites.
- The bathrooms are not quite up to par. There’s no way around it.
- The dressing area is small and windowless. For getting ready photos, I suggest going outside on the path. There’s only one getting-ready room.
- It gets very hot there in the summertime and there is little shade outdoors.
- Only beer, wine and champagne may be served on site. Hard liquor is a no-no!
- Only Approved Caterers are allowed to be used for events, some of which are priced higher than many Yelpers had anticipated.
- There are only 34 spaces in the on-site parking lot (with other spots available nearby). Most couples get their guests bussed in. The parking is public, so can’t be reserved exclusively for your event. Uber drivers may get lost or cancel.
- The drive to/ from the venue is very dark and windy, being that it’s a secluded destination. There are NO lights in the parking lot, so warn your guests to be careful with walking/ driving after dark.
- Being a Parks and Rec-run space for the benefit of the local community, there are restrictions regarding decorations, glitter, candles, confetti etc. Luckily, this is not a venue that needs a lot of extra frills.
- I’ve heard reports that the AV equipment (if you use the venue’s own) is a little temperamental, even if tested during the rehearsal. Speaking of the rehearsal, you’ll need to wait until closer to your wedding date to confirm the rehearsal date.
- You need to book far in advance. There’s a specific booking window. Booking opens at the beginning of January for the following year. Meaning popular summer dates could book out a year and a half in advance.
So that’s all the downsides I can think of, and in the grand scheme of things, it isn’t a lot!
The Brazilian Room wins out for amazing value for money, supporting the local community, and overall being such a gorgeous, unique and nature-led space.
Photos from Brazilian Room weddings
About Zoe Larkin Photography
Looking for a Bay Area wedding photographer? You can learn more about my services at the links below:
Hoping I’ll be back at Brazilian Room soon, shooting your lovely wedding!