When Katie and Dan first told me about their vision for their intimate San Francisco City Hall wedding, I was immediately intrigued. The ceremony itself would be at San Francisco City Hall–which they had all to themselves on a Saturday afternoon (a treat for any photographer in the Bay Area). The rest of the day basically just wanted to take a small group of their closest friends and family on a little tour of San Francisco and do a few portraits along the way. Guests would enjoy libations on the trolley, and they’d finish up with a dinner reception at Trou Normand.
They opted not to cover any getting ready but they did want to have an intimate first look prior to the ceremony.
Working our way down to the ceremony, we bumped into a couple of guests wandering around and exploring City Hall.As guests arrived and gathered, Dan quietly reviewed his vows. Guests then got seated and the short and sweet ceremony was underway.It’s so rare to have a view like this for a City Hall wedding, since most of the ones I photograph include a more intimate city hall civil ceremony while open to the public. It was pretty cool to have the freedom to move around more and explore other vantage points during Katie & Dan’s wedding.Though rain came and went throughout the day, Katie and Dan embraced it, providing everyone with white umbrellas. For themselves they grabbed some nice clear ones. Stylish and functional.The first stop was the SoMa StrEat Food Park for lunch. The newlyweds provided a $20 voucher for each of their guests to use at a restaurant of their choice. After lunch, everyone boarded the trolley and we were on our way to the next stop. Danny Coyle’s–the location of their first date. Here they’d share a champagne toast and have a quick drink.The trolley ride itself was an adventure. They served beers with custom labels as well as wine provided by Dan’s father who runs a winery in the Santa Cruz mountains.I was informed in advanced that their guests would be lively and there would be no shortage of celebration throughout the day. This proved to be accurate: their friends and family laughed merrily in the rain, danced and sang along to the music blasting through the car, and kept themselves entertained by their own company.We made a detour up to the Golden Gate Bridge Overlook for portraits. As if by destiny, the rain stopped, the clouds parted, providing some of the most epic scenery I’ve seen in the Bay Area. And one final stop before the reception was going up to the top of Hotel Vitale for a gorgeous view of the Embarcadero.Meanwhile on the trolley, Dan’s dad provided a tasting for the crew and we set off for Trou Normand.The newlyweds and their entourage enjoyed a cocktail hour where they had signature cocktails, appetizers, and good company before sitting down to dinner.And before parting, we went outside for just a couple more portraits.