Where to Elope on Catalina Island, CA

So, you and your partner have decided to take a plunge into the sometimes-obscure world of elopement. It takes a daring, forward-thinking duo to mark the beginning of the rest of their lives together in such a non-traditional way. That being said, it’s only fitting that the experience should be something that is one-of-a-kind and impossible to forget. But places like Paris, France and Yellowstone National Park are examples of some of the many overrated places where matrimonial-like situations occur; however, there is one alternative location that is by all means a hidden gem – Santa Catalina Island.

Situated off the coast of Southern California, Santa Catalina Island, also known as Catalina Island (or even just Catalina), is a rocky, beachy getaway within the bounds of Los Angeles County that is the perfect choice for just about anybody. Marilyn Monroe lived in the island’s only city, Avalon, with her first husband back in the 1940’s, which accentuates the rustically romantic nature of the spot. It has a rich history originated by Pacific-indigenous peoples which is still felt today, thanks to the efforts of the Catalina Island Conservatory.

See, chewing gum magnate William Wrigley Jr. (ring a bell?) is the mastermind behind the development of Catalina’s booming tourism industry and for good reason; before being tamed, the area was mostly used for smuggling, hunting, and gold-digging. More troubling, the land was in constant struggle, with countries like Mexico and the United States fighting for the land against European invaders. Luckily, today, Santa Catalina stands proudly as wonderfully beautiful and the prime location for lovers looking to lock it in.

Four Locations To Elope on Catalina Island:

Wrigley Memorial and Botanical Garden

1400 Avalon Can Rd, Avalon, CA 90704

When you enter, you are surrounded by cactus and tropical dessert plants in every direction you walk in, yet when you go straight back, you are able clim up a stairway that transports you into older world with mosaic tiles and a view unlike any other.

You can view their pricing and permit related info here.

Catalina Casino

1 Casino Way, Avalon, CA 90704

When you first get off your ferry to Catalina, this is the first building you see - or if you've been to the infamous Catalina Wine Mixer, you'll definitely recognize it. It is perfect to have your ceremony, get pictures downtown and on the beach! The casino has plenty of space to hold a large wedding party, or even a large reception after you elope intimately.

You can locate their website here to find out their availability!

Cliffside Elopement

This requires a photographer who knows of this hidden gem.

This is one of the most beautiful outlooks of the entire bay. While this may not fit an entire wedding, it is perfect for just the two of you. This spot is definitely a "first come, first serve" location. You could have your florist set up your arrangement, set up any other little details (we did area rugs), and then do your ceremony. It was intimate, and perfect, and it focused solely on the couple and their love./

Backside of Shark Harbor

Shark Harbor, California 90704

To reach the backside of Catalina Island, you will have to purchase the annual permit - and lord, I am glad we did! This involves a long windy road (which you may get to see some bison!) and some climbing to get to the perfect location here, but it was all worth it in the end. This offers you a private beach and rock formations to climb on and get the coolest of pictures.

So, South Catalina Island, if you haven’t figured it out, is a standout setting for any elopement. The eloping experience is so much more sentimental than a standard, traditional wedding and SCI captures that concept in full. Just take a look at the photos and you won’t be able to deny it!

Looking for other elopements? Check below:

To hire Christina Hernandez Artistry for your elopement, packages (including travel) start at $5000. Submit an inquiry here.

All Photographs were taken by Christina Hernandez Artistry.

Lush Floral Extravagant Brooklyn Elopement | Adam + Adam.

What happens when two Adams fall in love? They run away to The Pink Moon in Brooklyn, NY, to have a lavish elopement. The Pink Moon (insta@/thepinkmoonbk) is a gorgeous venue in the heart of Brooklyn (located at 478 3RD AVENUE) - its brick wall, the greenery, the murals bring a uniqueness to this intimate venue. The owner, renowned florist, Rebecca Shepherd, created this venue after spending a decade in the wedding floral business, to offer a special, intimate place for events, weddings, and collaborations.

Gay Couple Rings and Invitation detail shot

Their Love Story.

They met through the Philadelphia theatre community and over the years, they became friends. But what really pushed it to the next level? We can thank everyone's favorite Prince Charming, Shrek, for that. They both became involved in the production of "Shrek: The Musical" at the Walnut Street Theatre that their friendship blossomed and they even took it a step further. The Pandemic approached and this gave the ultimate test to their relationship. But they prevailed, able to grow further as friends and as individuals. "Having Adam by my side through all matters of uncertainty has been a lifesaver...I wake up every morning, look over and see his face, and I smile.I don't think there's been a day in the past three years that I haven't woke up smiling because of him. I consider myself lucky. Very very lucky." They have such a beautiful, authentic connection that blows others away.

The Details

Eloping does not mean you cannot have a gorgeous celebration for the beginning of your marriage. Elopement means the wedding is focused on the couple versus all the guests/the party. Often when picturing elopements, you envision running away into the mountains (I literally did this), but that is not always the case. Adam + Adam decided to go all out with their closest friends and family at this chic venue. The conundrum is often thinking elopements are just the couple, but often it just has to be some sort of intimate number less than twenty five.

Shoutout to some local vendors:

Dolce and Gelato Catering
Rebecca Shepherd Floral Design
Film Cars NY
Julissa Beauty

The Moments Leading Up

When I showed my husband the photos of this elopement, he said, "those are the two best looking guys". I mean - c'mon, do you see them? They both look incredible. They both went with very natural looks with just some concealer for the lack of sleep they got leading up to this moment.

groom getting makeup done by makeup artist

First Look

gay couple first look wedding


gay couple greet guests at reception

gay couple Brooklyn New York City taxi

gay couple run across Brooklyn New York City street

A Sweet End to the Day

They did get a gelato cart to celebrate with more than just a cake! Not only was it a cute detail of their day but it was absolutely delicious.

Cheers to both Adams on eloping, and thank you so much for letting me document it. It was such a beautiful day to witness.

ice cream wedding vendor