We found it - the perfect venue. But I admit that it's a little bittersweet. Don't get the wrong idea. I LOVE the venue - the venue is perfect.... It's just that... I liked looking! It was fun. It was an adventure. It required forethought and planning and I love planning....
So, where is our perfect place and what makes it so perfect?
The Monarch Cove Inn.
in Capitola (Santa Cruz) California.
The criteria: by the water, private, intimate, inexpensive (less than $1,000 for the rental & bring your own caterer/alcohol) and ideally with lodging (at least nearby) for friends and family who don't live close by.
....OK, so we got everything but the less than $1,000 rental part. In fact the rental alone (no food, etc.) is my entire budget (which has since been adjusted from $5,000 to $15,000 after I did the calculations, post venue find). So why did we stop looking? We certainly had plenty of time to find something else. But what made this place so special? In a word; family. And when you read my story, you'll understand that our perfect place is priceless....
As I was marveling at the beauty: the 90 degree view of the Bay, the trees, and the flowers... The functionality: the deck, the bar, the lodging for 14, the privacy (2.5 acre B&B on a quiet residential street), the location (1/2 hour from home), the fact that we can bring our own caterer and alcohol... While I was thinking how perfect the venue was for all of the above reasons, my dear husband to be was looking over the bluff at the beach down below, and looking and thinking and looking and thinking.... I went over to him to find out what he was thinking. And when he told me, I cried, and I shivered, and I smiled.... He told me... that just down below where the beach met the Bay.... is where he spread his mother's ashes, just over a year ago. Once I composed myself, I told my dear husband to be that I was ready to write a check right then and there. So we went to lunch and talked about it and then we went back and we booked it! IT'S PERFECT! in every way!