If you’re in search of an idyllic setting for your big day (which obviously you are because who isn’t?!) the Mountain Terrace in Woodside, CA is a breathtaking Bay Area venue that’s well worth a look.
What I personally love about this wedding venue is the outdoor space. The spacious meadow with surrounding woods is where you’ll say your ‘I Do’s. The positioning of the towering redwoods is so perfect. They don’t obstruct the space, but allow the perfect backdrop for photos.
These beautiful majestic trees also frame the little sliver of the bay vista which is super unique. This venue has so much going for it besides the natural beauty. Let’s dive into all the Mountain Terrace has to offer!
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About Mountain Terrace, Woodside wedding venue
The Mountain Terrace in Woodside California is one of those picturesque venues you’ll keep coming back to throughout your wedding planning process. Nestled among the redwood forests in Woodside, Mountain Terrace is known for its beautiful and tranquil setting.
I’ve waxed lyrical about that meadow already. But what about the indoor spaces? It has a charming, rustic lodge that offers a cozy space to celebrate your love story with family and close friends.
The indoor area has an antique, solid oak bar and dining room with exposed beams. Oh, and check out the stone-crafted fireplace! It’s a godsend for rainy weddings, too.
Most wedding day events that I’ve shot here actually take place on the pretty deck. There are two levels – the bottom one is used for your meal, and both would be used for larger weddings. I’ve seen first dances and cake-cutting take place on either one of the two levels, depending on your guest count.
Speaking of meals, one point to note is that no outside catering is allowed. That’s right, this amazing venue will take care of the food for you.
I know you may not believe me, but the best wedding meal I’ve ever eaten was at the Mountain Terrace! It was a salmon dish – absolutely sublime. And if you don’t believe me, check out the online reviews on this spot – almost everyone mentions how incredible the food is, especially if you go for a traditional Western menu which is what they do best.
I love that the Mountain Terrace is familiar with faith customs and cultural traditions from all over the world. This goes a long way toward honoring your unique heritage.
In short, this enchanting spot allows you to celebrate your big day in a way that feels true to who you are.
Capacity of Mountain Terrace
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Rental options at The Mountain Terrace
What I like about the rental packages is that you have options! There’s of course a full-day wedding which runs 8 hours, pretty standard.
There’s also a morning ceremony option which features a 5-hour rental time. That’s perfect for those having a grander reception elsewhere later in the day.
Or, as my couple Jocelyn & Abhishek opted for, they had an early morning photography session which flowed into the rest of the event, with lunch rounding things off. I loved this idea because the couple benefitted from beautiful morning light in peace and quiet!
Get in touch with the venue directly to learn more about their current offerings as well as what’s currently included. At the time of writing, the following amenities may be included with your booking:
- Wedding planning services
- Dressing room
- Ceremony arch
- Tables & Chairs
- Linens, silverware and glassware
- Outdoor lighting
- Champagne toast
- Fire pit
- Kitchen facilities
- Lawn games
Points to note about weddings at The Mountain Terrace
- No outside caterers are allowed. You must use the in-house option. The same goes for alcohol. You must order alcohol directly through this venue. If you had your heart set on a particular cuisine type though, it’s not a problem. The in-house caterers are happy to customize a menu just for you.
- Some reviewers comment that there was loud motorcycle noise during the ceremony – to the point where they couldn’t hear the ceremony. In my experience however, this hasn’t been a problem. For one wedding, there was a sizeable group of motorcycle enthusiasts taking up a large chunk of the adjoining parking lot, but noise was not an issue.
- There is no amplified sound allowed outdoors. If you’d like music while you walk down the aisle, your only option is to hire a musician. This adds extra costs, so plan accordingly. For larger weddings or those with softer voices, it’s possible not everyone will be able to hear the ceremony without voice amplification.
- The getting ready area is small and has zero natural light. It’s suitable for one person – it’s a bit of a squeeze when there is even one additional person (plus the photo/video team) in the room! In my opinion, the area is not suitable for *actually* getting ready (hair, makeup), but more for ‘finishing touches’ to be photographed (if you don’t care to have your photography commence off-site at your hotel). It would be rather cramped and too dark if you had a couple of hair & makeup artists on site. And there wouldn’t be room for wedding party too.
- There is accommodation next door that can be rented separately for the night before and after your wedding. It’s called the Terrace Suite. It may be worth booking that area as the Mountain Terrace is fairly off the beaten path, without a lot of other options for accommodation nearby. This would save time and make logistics easier on the big day but represents an extra cost.
What else are people saying about The Mountain Terrace?
The cuisine at Mountain Terrace has received mixed reviews, but generally positive. Some guests have praised the quality of the food, mentioning that it is freshly prepared by the talented chefs on site. They particularly commend the selection of appetizers and entrees that cater to various dietary preferences. Others have mentioned that there could be room for improvement in certain dishes or menu options; however, these comments tend to be exceptions rather than the rule (you can’t please everyone!)
In terms of accessibility, Mountain Terrace is conveniently located just off Highway 84, not too far from both San Francisco and San Jose. However, some visitors have mentioned that parking could be challenging during peak hours or larger events due to limited space. Attendees are encouraged to carpool or use rideshare services when possible to alleviate this issue.
Customer service at Mountain Terrace receives very positive feedback. The staff is frequently described as friendly and attentive both during the planning process and at weddings. A few guests have even noted their exceptional professionalism as they work seamlessly behind the scenes to ensure everything runs smoothly.
Finally, regarding cost and value for money, opinions tend to vary depending on individual perceptions. Many guests acknowledge that while Mountain Terrace may be more expensive than other similar venues in the area, they believe the unmatched ambiance, venue exclusivity, and attentive service justify the price. Of course, others might find the overall cost to be a drawback, considering their budget expectations.
Personally, I find this venue to be a budget-friendly one given the quality and what you’ll receive as part of your booking.
How this couple used their 5-hour morning rental time
Jocelyn & Abhishek had a rather packed day because that’s what worked for them. It’s not for everyone – but these two were extremely efficient without seeming rushed. I’ve noticed that with some couples they can get easily overwhelmed and overstimulated if things are happening around them too quickly – but not these two!
It was possible also because they had a very small guest count of 36 and because these friends & family members were 100% behind the couple and extremely easy to work with. We transitioned seamlessly from one activity to the next without losing people!
They booked 5 hours of photography with me but we ended up needing 5.5. Please note that with our team, 8 hours is the minimum for photography for weekends during wedding season (May to November). This is really the norm when you’re having a regular, full wedding with a traditional timeline.
To book less time than that, you can opt for a weekday year-round, a weekend during the off-peak months, or book within ~6 weeks of your wedding day and we might happen to be available! To find out more, check out the article linked below.
I’ve done other weddings at Mountain Terrace where we had the later part of the day. This was also super magical too! Dining under the stars is always a vibe.
We began wedding day photography at 8:30am with both partners on site. Jocelyn actually ran late, so the getting ready session with her and overall photo-taking time was truncated. Still, we allowed enough time that it wasn’t an issue at all.
They had their first look around 9:15am which flowed into romantics with the most gorgeous light. We had asked family members to be on site and photo-ready before we actually needed them. This enabled us to jump right into all the desired groupings, plus wedding party photos which I completed quickly as always (so long as everyone is present)!
The ceremony began at 10:40am and was a simple civil ceremony, the type you might have at City Hall (around 4 minutes). Straight after was the grand entrance on the deck, immediately followed by the first dance, parent dances and cake-cutting. Accompanying proceedings was the incredible harpist Krista Strader. There was ample space on the lower deck for this, especially as they had such an intimate celebration.
The couple had some special requests for 5 different friend groupings which they wanted to do before/ while sitting down for lunch on the lower deck. I made sure to grab the folks needed and the shots requested. While this took me out of being able to do candid photos, it was a priority for the couple which is totally fine by me!
During lunch they had a couple of speeches (and an incredible song from mom), and the bouquet toss!
The couple then changed outfits to lenghar & jodhpuri and the Indian cultural events kicked off! These took place in the large indoor space, divided into a dining room and a bar/dance area by the large stone fireplace.
The Mangalsutra ceremony is a ritual in Indian weddings, where the groom ties a sacred thread adorned with black beads around the bride’s neck. It symbolizes their eternal bond and commitment to each other. So sweet!
There was dancing and fun with everyone getting down on the dancefloor at like 1pm!
Soon it was the end of the event and they bid farewell to their lovely guests. But we planned to grab romantic photos of the couple now they were in their Indian cultural attire, so they extended the time with me so I could really do that justice.
The day went by in a blur, but they’ll always have these photos to relive this incredible, lively and fun day. I know they had an absolutely amazing time, thanks in large part to having made such a great choice of venue and a solid vendor team!
Photography: Zoe Larkin Photography
Venue: The Mountain Terrace
Bride shoes Betsey Jones
Groom shoes: Stacy Adams
Wedding party: David’s Bridal
Rings: Gleim Jewelers
HMUA: BFab Mobile
Musician: Krista Strader
Cake: Butter &
Videography: Last Light Pictures
Photos from The Mountain Terrace wedding
About Zoe Larkin Photography
Looking for a Bay Area wedding photographer? You can learn more about our services at the links below: