Rekha and Chris are a pair of travel-loving engineers who live in San Francisco and love the outdoors. They have the spirit of adventure in their veins that has taken them on trips all over the world.
Their upcoming destination wedding is in India this December, and is slated to be one of the biggest adventures of their lives. It’ll be a BIG affair that fuses elements of both cultures.
Speaking of new adventures, they’re new homeowners in San Francisco and super busy with their jobs at top tech firms #bayarealife. Life moves so fast, so what better way to slow down and take a moment to mark this special time in their lives than with an engagement shoot.
I joked with them that they’ll look back in the years to come at the crazy year that 2019 was, and wonder how they did it all. Hopefully these pictures will help them to remember the year they got married AND bought a house.
The two met in college at the University of Pennsylvania and have been together for seven years. After a stint in New York City, they decided to move west to the Bay Area 4 years ago for work opportunities. Since then, both have fully made the transition into Silicon Valley and haven’t looked back!
The couple got engaged in Ireland (how’s that for romantic?) over dinner at their hotel. But this was no ordinary hotel – it used to be a castle! If you’ve ever been to Ireland, you’ll know how common a sight castles really are. They start to seem almost mundane if you spend any time on the road there, but for Chris and Rekha they couldn’t get enough.
A leisurely, castle-seeking road trip through the countryside was exactly what these two were doing, after a friend’s wedding in the UK which is where Rekha grew up. Chris had the waiter slip the engagement ring into a basket which arrived after the appetizers. Rekha mistook this for bread, and after briefly trying to send it back with the waiter, had quite a surprise when he opened it and proposed!
San Francisco’s Marshall Beach was the setting for our shoot. It is a pretty wild and rugged place, with amazing views of the Golden Gate Bridge, and terrain with large, somewhat smooth, dark rocks when the tide is in. (There is apparently a narrow strip of sandy beach if you visit early in the day, but no sign of it during our shoot!)
To access the beach requires a hike of about half a mile down, and 400 feet of elevation change. The descent is steep but very well maintained with actual steps. You’ll want to start at the northern end of the Batteries to Bluffs trail.
It’s closest to the Golden Gate Bridge and a pleasant but not overly strenuous hike (if you’re fit… unlike me!) The parking lot to put into your GPS is Langdon Court Parking which is right at the trailhead.
Rekha and Chris handled the many, MANY steps back up to the parking lot with ease as I tried my best but ultimately was so puffed out I had to call a time out.
The couple was incredibly game, despite my leading them down a somewhat circuitous path to the beach! We chanced upon a separate beach adjacent to Marshall’s Beach where no-one else was hanging out and we captured some beautiful light there.
It has the benefit of being very quiet and not a widely known spot, even among the sunset photography brigade. Marshall’s Beach is also supposedly known as a low-key nudist beach (?) though I’ve never seen any evidence of this.
Its Google write-up calls it, “Small, remote shorefront area with rugged terrain, bird-watching & views of the Golden Gate Bridge.” Spot on!
Wild places like this have my heart, even though I’m not the world’s greatest outdoorswoman. I LOVED introducing ‘San Francisco’s most hidden beach’ to fellow SF locals! My hope is they will introduce this place to their friends in the future, and revisit it with fond memories! Congratulations, Rekha & Chris!
Looking for a Bay Area engagement photographer? I travel all around the Bay Area for engagement shoots and am passionate about bringing love stories to light.
If San Francisco is your jam, I have a guide to my fave engagement locations to help spark ideas. I’ve photographed all over the Bay on beaches, in forests, ice cream parlors, formal gardens, in the middle of the road, in homes, windswept mountains, rivers and valleys. Let’s chat about where your story will take us!