Weddings at the Westin St. Francis – Ashley and Joe’s wedding in San Francisco Union Square
Getting married at a beautiful setting high above San Francisco’s historical central city plaza? Sounds like a dream.. but at the Westin St. Francis it’s quite possible. The venue overlooks downtown San Francisco with sweeping views all the way out to Oakland, overlooking the bay and Golden Gate Bridge. Truly a one-of-a-kind venue, this stunning retreat is perfect for any nuptials. We’ve shot a bunch here, and we’re happy to explain why we love weddings at the Westin St. Francis.
The view is just one of many reasons to tie the knot here. Weddings at the Westin St. Francis are wholly thought out and planned, which is why they’re consistently rated at one of San Francisco’s top wedding venues. The sales team is ready for any obstacles that may arise, helping you navigate the wedding process. Recently they changed their policy and ask that you hire a wedding vendor off their list, which is a truly great idea. Only letting vendors work that that understand the many spaces helps everything flow smoothly.
We’ve shot a bunch here, but Ashley and Joe’s big day is one of our favorite weddings at the Westin St. Francis. They’re both local to San Francisco and met in Noe Valley, so it seemed pretty natural to get married there. Rather than a wedding in Carmel or Napa, they decided they wanted to share their love of the city with their guests, and were looking at a few downtown venues. They fell in love with this one and didn’t look back.
Being in the heart of San Francisco’s Union Square, the Westin St. Francis offers more than just historical value. Yes, it was completed in 1913 and has survived multiple earthquakes and has had the most famous visitors including the Kennedys, but the Westin St. Francis is an integral part of what makes San Francisco so great. There is a ton to do on the very doorstep of this great hotel. Tour busses pick you up right in front of the hotel and take you to San Francisco’s greatest landmarks: the Golden Gate Bridge, Alamo Square, Fisherman’s Wharf, and more. There are plenty of hotels nearby for your guests to stay, in the rare case that the 1200 room hotel is sold out. Ashley and Joe’s wedding turned out beautifully, we’ve posted some photos below.. have a look.
Many many thanks to the vendors that made this possible!
Ceremony Site: Westin Saint Francis San Francisco, CA
Reception Site: Westin Saint Francis San Francisco, CA
Wedding Designer : Stanlee Gatti
Wedding Dress (and email address): Zuhair Murad from Marina Morrison Boutique in San Francisco email address: email@example.com
Lighting: Gatsby Entertainment
Invitations: Bay Area Graphics and Designer Linda Wanczyk
Wedding Day Stationery: Stanlee Gatti
Cake/Cupcakes: Cake Coquette firstname.lastname@example.org
Cake Instagram: Cakecoquette
Photography: Clane Gessel
Hairpeice: Zuhair Murad Veil and Percy Handmade Hair piece for reception
Bridesmaid Jewelry: Chloe and Isabel
Bridal Shoes: SJP by Sarah Jessica Parker
Hair: Elizabeth Chang Skyla Arts
From the couple –
How and when did the couple meet?
Joseph and Ashley met in 2011, through friends, at a pumpkin patch in Half Moon Bay. However, our families have been connected to Noe Valley in San Francisco for generations. Joseph was born and raised in Noe Valley just a few blocks from Ashley’s great grandfather’s pharmacy on 24th street.
How did the proposal take place?
Every Christmas a local Noe Valley resident decorates the tree on the sidewalk in front of her house with lights. She places a mason jar with tags below it and asks all the people who pass by to write a wish and place it in the jar. She then laminates it and hangs it on the tree with glitter string. She fondly refers to it as the Wishing Tree. The first Christmas together we made a wish. The second year as we walked to the tree Ashley asked Joe what he wished for. He could not remember and Ashley laughed. How could you not remember your wish! This year Joe made sure he wouldn’t forget. So he wrote down “I hope she says yes.” He then went back two times to the tree in the few days after they made their wishes and searched for his wish through hundreds of tags. He found it and cut it down. The next December he proposed by the tree with his old wish, saying his only hope was that his old wish would come true. ABC 7 aired the wishing tree and our story on the local news. The wishing tree was also featured on ABC 7 national news.
What was your fondest wedding moment?
The first reveal. There was so much wonderful emotion and love. Tears of joy and excitement! Even though we had the wonderfully talented Clane Gessel and our videographer Matthieu filing we felt alone in a world of just us.
Who were your favorite wedding vendors?
We were incredibly blessed with the ability to have a very talented team behind our wedding. We so enjoyed Stanlee Gatti. He and his staff are incredible human beings and the nicest individuals we have met. So much love and passion behind their craft. The wedding design was stunning. Clane Gessel, our photographer, was an absolute joy and we are so lucky to call him a friend as well. He is beyond talented. His team that he has built around him were incredible as well. Last, but certainly not least we loved working with Jason Mitchell, from Gatsby Entertainment. Their music was a hit at the wedding! The Green Light Band had everyone dancing all night long.
What advice do you have for future brides?
It may sound cliche but relax. Something is bound to happen that is out of your control but as long as you center yourself and realize that there is so much love around you everything will work out. It also goes by so quick so try to take in every moment you can. This will probably be one of the few events in your life when you have everyone you love in one room. Also work with a team of people who you admire their craft and let them be artists. If you hire them because you love their work they won’t disappoint.
Article by Clane Gessel Photography