Intimate San Francisco Wedding Weekend | Ava + John

Megan Goetz


October 31, 2023

Ava and John had the most amazing and intimate wedding in San Francisco at the beginning of September! They dedicated the entire weekend to their wedding celebrations as they came all the way from Virginia to say their “I do’s” in San Francisco with all their closest friends and family. They spent their San Francisco wedding weekend exploring the city, getting married at city hall, and celebrating at The Wayfare Tavern. Keep reading to hear all about this unique and intimate wedding weekend in San Francisco!!


Ava  + John’s Intimate San Francisco Wedding Weekend 

San Francisco Pre-Wedding Photoshoot

Okay, this pre-wedding photoshoot was one of my absolute favorite parts of Ava and John’s wedding weekend. They came to San Francisco all the way from Virginia so we never got the chance to take their engagement photos. So, instead of a traditional engagement photoshoot, they did a pre-wedding photoshoot and it was the perfect way to get to know them!! 1000% recommend a pre-wedding photoshoot with your wedding photographer!

Since Ava and John were a little nervous about being in front of the camera, this pre-wedding photoshoot was the perfect way to get them warmed up for their wedding day and for me to get to know them both a little better! For their pre-wedding photoshoot, we headed to one of my absolute favorite locations: Golden Gate Park! 

Golden Gate Park Photoshoot

We opted to take Ava and John’s pre-wedding photos at Golden Gate State Park because there are so many different spots to explore. We started off their session walking through the Redwoods at Hero’s Grove. Hero’s Grove is such an amazing location because you get the epic Redwood trees without having to drive to Redwood National Park, or do any crazy hiking. 

Then we headed over to the Music Concourse which is an open-air plaza where you can stroll around, sit by the fountains, and enjoy the beautiful greenery all around! We took so many photos and I am just completely obsessed! Ava and John truly melted my heart and seeing how much they genuinely love and care for each other made me even more excited to capture their wedding the next day! 

Wanting some more ideas on where to take your San Francisco pre-wedding photoshoot or engagement photos? Click here for 10 OF MY FAVORITE SAN FRANCISCO ENGAGEMENT PHOTOSHOOT LOCATIONS!

Wedding Day: Getting Ready at The Orchard Hotel

Ahh, it’s finally Ava and John’s wedding day! After their pre-wedding shoot, I was beyond excited to capture their San Francisco city hall wedding. But first, I started the day by capturing some photos of both of them getting ready at The Orchard Hotel. This is a super adorable boutique hotel in Union Square perfect for getting ready! 

I have always loved the getting-ready moments on wedding days because you get to see each of their last moments before getting married. They are nervous but more excited than anything and it’s truly so special to be able to capture those emotions! 

Intimate San Francisco City Hall Wedding Ceremony

I will never get tired of San Francisco city hall weddings and elopements. With its grand architecture and timeless elegance, it is the perfect setting for an intimate wedding. 

Ava and John’s micro-wedding with their closest friends and family was so special! They shared their love for each other and were so fully present in the moment together. It was a short and sweet ceremony but still had everyone in their feels! 

san Francisco city hall wedding

Capturing Ava + John’s Wedding Photos at City Hall

After the ceremony, we took tons of photos of Ava and John with their friends and family and then separated from the group for some newlywed photos. 

Ava wore the most elegant short satin wedding dress with a small train that fit in perfectly with the aesthetic of city hall. We roamed around the different areas of the city hall capturing the most romantic photos of the two of them! 

Dinner Reception at The Wayfare Tavern

Ava and John’s wedding celebration continued at The Wayfare Tavern where they rented out a whole area of the restaurant for the dinner. Before going in, I just had to capture some photos of Ava and John outside the restaurant because it had the cutest exterior. 

For the dinner, it was one big table for all the guests to sit at and it was beautifully decorated with some dried flowers. For the rest of the evening, they enjoyed the amazing food, their guests shared countless stories about Ava and John, and celebrated their beautiful love! 

the wayfare tavern wedding dinner reception

Kind Words From Ava + John

“As a couple who planned their San Francisco wedding from our hometown of Richmond, Virginia, Megan made us feel incredibly confident with our decision to select her as our photographer from the first consult. From her professionalism to her knowledge of San Francisco and our venues, to her ability to create a warm environment both virtually (and eventually in-person) was amazing. I was so incredibly happy with how many magical shots we got from our special day and our “city” shoot. Megan was super receptive to direction and trying our ideas while also leveraging her expertise and knowledge of certain locations to guide us as well. I would highly recommend Megan to anyone looking for a photographer!”

San Francisco Elopement Vendors

Florist: Bluma Flower Farm

Dress: Makarian

Hotel: The Orchard Hotel

Dinner: The Wayfare Tavern

Photographer: Megan Goetz Photography

Meet Your San Francisco Wedding Photographer

Hi there, I’m Meg, your San Francisco Elopement Photographer!

I’ve always wanted to be a photographer and to be able to call this my full-time job is an absolute dream come true. Creating captivating, authentic images just sets my soul on fire and I have so much gratitude for this art. I love capturing moments. I’m the girl who takes my film camera everywhere I go because I just want to look back and remember what I was feeling at that moment. I love being able to look at a photo and travel back in time.

Being a photographer has allowed me to find the moments of beauty in everyday life and there is nothing I love more than allowing people to see themselves as a piece of art.

Additional San Francisco Wedding & Elopement Resources




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