Want an affordable, beautiful Bay Area wedding venue that’s centrally located and still something of a hidden gem? OK – you’ve basically just described the Highlands Country Club!

Nestled in the Oakland Hills and overlooking the entire bay, this is a stunning yet budget-friendly East Bay wedding venue.

So, I was here in 2019 for Ashley and Richard’s wonderful wedding. Looking back on it now it seems even more magical – it was pre-COVID, it was a big wedding and there was even Chick-Fil-A as the late-night snack!

About the Highlands Country Club

This is a 100-person capacity venue that works well for both indoor and outdoor celebrations. Ashley and Richard chose to start the cocktail hour outdoors. There’s a sloping green lawn that surrounds the venue and affords those Bay views.

The couple then had guests filtering into the Fireside Room for the start of the reception.

As well as those VIEWS which I can’t stop raving about, it also has stunning hardwood floors and a neutral color scheme. White walls and ceilings = a very happy photographer.

The amount of light that this room lets in through its large windows is basically a photographer’s dream. Put simply, the more natural light you have streaming in the better your wedding photos will be.

The other major feature of the Fireside room is of course the large rustic stone fireplace the room is named for!

Order of events at Highlands Country Club wedding

Ashley and Richard began their wedding day at a family residence in San Leandro, followed by a traditional Catholic mass at their home church, and a mini photo session in the San Leandro area.

Cocktail hour was well underway by the time we rocked up! After a bit of mingling, we went into family formals which were SO much fun with all the little ones!

After toasts and the beginning of dinner, I whisked the couple away for a short sunset photo session. The wedding took place in June, close to the time of the summer solstice so we were in no rush to begin our photo session just as the light was getting SO pretty.

Ashley and Richard knocked it out of the park for their couples’ session! I was spoiled for choice as to which location to choose – there are SO many within a very short walk of where everyone’s eating and celebrating!

We opted for the small balcony that allowed us to watch the sun set over the Golden Gate Bridge! There’s also a sunny patio in front of the clubhouse that was so beautifully manicured and gave a really refined, elegant feel.

Other locations were within a short walk, and were so varied as you will see as you scroll down! There’s so much greenery with this being a golf course, and lots of mature trees which work so well in wedding photographs.

After table visits and a few games of cornhole and other lawn games, the dancing began! These folks really knew how to throw a party, with an awesome family band playing live music for everyone to enjoy!

Reminiscing on this Highlands Country Club wedding

The family-centered atmosphere of this wedding was so apparent. Nothing like a big, Italian family! This North Beach Italian family had so much joy to share! It was because of the large family – Richard is one of five boys! – that Ashley ended up meeting him.

Ashley had just started working as a teacher at the North Beach school where all the boys had gone.

Fun fact: Richard has an identical twin brother. I had to look at their shoes to tell them apart.

I love that the couple brought in touches of their story to their wedding day. For one thing, honey! The favors were courtesy of the couple’s own BEES – yes these folks are urban beekeepers! Even their proposal story is quite apoidean.

Richard had left a note inside the hive cover one day when they were ‘checking on’ the bees. The note asked Ashley to marry him!

Even the decision to have Chick-Fil-A cater the late-night snack was significant to them as a couple. Ashley’s first job was working at the fast food joint, and it’s had a soft spot in her and Richard’s heart ever since!

Vendors at this wedding

Photography Zoe Larkin Photography

Venue Highlands Country Club

Planning and catering Carrie Dove Catering

Floral designer A2 Imagine Events

Videographer Bay Area Filmworks

About Zoe Larkin Photography

Oh and you can learn more about my services at the links below. Hoping I’ll be back at Highlands Country Club in 2021 and beyond, shooting your lovely wedding!

READ MORE  COVID weddings - How Zoe Larkin Photography deals with unprecedented times

Bay Area wedding photographer – Homepage | Bay Area Wedding photographer – Info, pricing, about & portfolio

Photos from Highlands Country Club wedding, Oakland CA

beautiful wedding details from a wedding at Highlands Country Club Oakland CA - welcome placard and menu exquisite table settings at Highlands Country Club Oakland CA wedding by Zoe Larkin Photography wide shot of the entire venue of Highlands Country Club Oakland CA plus detail of the bar menu guests playing tabletop tennis at Highlands Country Club Oakland CA wedding ping pong table and cornhole game at wedding in the Oakland Hills CA by Bay area wedding photography Zoe Larkin wide shot of bride and groom kissing on golf course at Country Club wedding bride and groom making grand entrance to wedding at Highlands Country Club Oakland CA candid wedding photography by Bay Area wedding photography zoe Larkin photography fireside room wedding reception at Highlands Country Club, Oakland CA drinks and details during cocktail hour at Highlands Country Club, Oakland CA on Hillier Road couple having their first dance at Highlands Country Club, Oakland CA fireside room bride and groom first dance 'dip' photo at Oakland CA bay area wedding venue children dancing at the wedding captured by Zoe Larkin Photography smores at wedding being enjoyed by a happy bride and groom on their wedding day sunset photo session with bride and groom at Highlands Country Club, Oakland CA tender and touching wedding photography of a couple on their wedding day at the Highlands Country Club couples' portrait session in varied locations around the affordable bay area venue, Highlands Country Club in Oakland, East Bay an epic and minimal bride and groom portrait overlooking the Bay on a foggy day in Oakland's Highlands Country Club Chick-fil-A Wedding catering at a very down-to-earth Bay Area wedding couple and guests enjoying chick-fil-a at wedding in the Oakland Hills

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Looking for an affordable Bay Area CA wedding venue? The Highlands Country Club nestled in the Oakland Hills, East Bay & overlooking the Bay has it all! Set among stunning grounds and rolling hills, with a cozy fireside room, large windows & ample outdoor space (capacity of 100!) + a low price tag, this Highlands Country Club wedding couple will show YOU how to party in style amid beautiful, natural + iconic Bay Area surroundings! #bayareawedding #bayareaweddingvenue #weddings | zoelarkin.com
The Highlands Country Club in Oakland CA will warm your heart! Boasting a large, landscaped green outdoor area and a cozy fireside room with stone cladding for the night-time or winter weddings, this is one Country Club that has it all! This Bay Area wedding venue works for both large and small, indoor or outdoor wedding celebrations. Check out these wedding photos from this awesome couple who celebrated their love their way! #bayareawedding #bayareaweddingvenue #weddings | zoelarkin.com

Zoe Larkin

I’m Zoe, a wedding photographer based in San Francisco! My style is candid, capturing authentic moments for my couples all over the Bay Area and Northern California. Creating content is my passion! Follow along the blog and Insta!

Highlands Country Club Oakland CA wedding by Zoe Larkin Photography

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Highlands Country Club Oakland CA wedding photos

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