I'm so glad you are here to check out some recent work. I'm a Colorado wedding photographer that shoots all around the country. The blog is filled with full wedding and portrait sessions, and includes weddings planning tips and inspiration.
I'm so glad you are here to check out some recent work! The blog is filled with full sessions, and includes weddings and portraits from all over!
Shelly is Colorado Mountain Wedding Photographer that shoots all around the country!
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March 4, 2021
Colorado is known for many things, but most obviously, its mountains and surreal scenery. So many engaged couples from all over the country pack up their bags and fly to Colorado to get hitched. But for those that are not as familiar with the states venue options, I’ve pulled together my Top 10 favorite Colorado mountain wedding venues with epic views and scenery!
This list covers venues all over the state. From the Rockies to the San Juans, from larger weddings to smaller ones, and from pricey all inclusive wedding venues, to ‘bring it in yourself’ vendor list venues; this is Ultimate guide for Colorado mountain wedding venues. In no particular order, take a look!
(Also, don’t forget to check out my Ultimate Guide of Best Small Colorado Wedding Venues for Intimate and Micro Weddings!)
Found down a dirt road, which takes about 45mins to tackle from Vail, lays the most sought after wedding venue with a view in the Colorado mountains! Piney River Ranch
Piney River is located about a 45 minute drive north of the fun ski town of Vail, Colorado in the White River National Forest. It is so unique, as it is a privately owned ranch, and only accessible during the summer and early fall months! (The road is closed during the rest of the year). On site are 9 lodging options! They have 6 cabins (which can sleep a total of 40 people between them) and three glamping tents (which sleep 12 people total between them). While PRR is capable of hosting larger wedding events, they also allow smaller events, and even offer “ceremony-only” options.
Along with the views, there is a lake on site! Canoe and kayak rentals are available at the main lodge. There are many beautiful trails to hike surrounding the lake, and the aspens turn a vibrant orange in the fall time. Also on site is a restaurant, which caters all of the events at Piney River Ranch.
While the venue can hold up to 200 guests, smaller events can be held for “ceremony-only” options Monday-Thursdays!
Dogs ARE allowed. A heads up that the road to Piney is ROUGH. It is a dirt road that can take anywhere from 35-60 minutes to get down. A vehicle that can take the bumps and rockiness of this road is best. All events must conclude by 10pm. Couples must hire a wedding coordinator. String lights are not allowed due to power restrictions. No sparklers or fireworks allowed. Bands ARE allowed. Catering and Beverage service must be provided by PRR. There is no in-house sound system.
For a ceremony only options (Mon-Thurs only), the event rental is $4,500. If you’d like to also have your reception on site, Saturdays are $13,000, Friday and Sundays are $9,600, and Monday-Thursdays are $7,800. Food and beverage costs are not included in these prices, and PRR uses it’s in-house catering. Cabin pricing is also not included.
Check out a elopement I photographed at Piney River Ranch!
The Boulders at Black Canyon Inn is an insanely stunning wedding venue that boasts views of Rocky Mountain National Park from its ceremony deck. This venue is ideal for out-of-towners that want to be “wow”ed by the absolute beauty of Colorado. Guests get to stay in the adorable mountain town of Estes Park, where they can stroll the downtown area and even spot some local wildlife such as the massive herds of elk that roam through town! Estes Park is also the town where the main entrance to Rocky Mountain National Park sits, so getting into some epic hiking locations will only take a few minutes.
When you enter the venue, you will first walk into the top floor and be amazed right away by the ceremony deck view. Just outside the balcony you will have vast views of green canyons and beautiful boulders of the Rocky Mountains. Guests will then be ushered downstairs to the cocktail patio, with a similar stunning view but with relaxing fire pits and even a waterfall!
This venue is relatively new, as it opened in 2020 right before the pandemic. The fact that it survived it’s first year during the pandemic and is now one of the most popular wedding venues in Estes Park really says something about its beauty!
The Boulders at Black Canyon Inn can host up to 200 guests.
The best part of hosting a wedding at the Boulders is that Black Canyon Inn is a great lodging option for all of your guests! They have hotel room options, as well as suites! Other lodging options in the Estes Park area would be the historic Stanley Hotel, River Song Inn, or other cute cabins, lodges, and airbnbs!
Please contact the event staff at the Boulders for detailed pricing.
If you’d like to see a real wedding example that I’ve photographed at The Boulders at Black Canyon Inn, then check it out here!
To contact the Boulders, reach out here! www.blackcanyoninn.com/weddings/the-boulders/
Ten Mile Station is a wedding venue on the actual ski slopes of Breckenridge mountain! It is owned by the ski resort, and it is open seasonly in the summer and early fall months. To access the venue, you must drive up a dirt road for about a mile and a half. It is very secluded, with views of the Rocky Mountains in the distance!
Having a beautiful wedding venue being so close to town is a great advantage. Most weddings with stunning views will be a bit harder to get to for guests. Breckenridge is a fun town that out of town guests will find easy to get to (there are shuttles from the airport) with lots to do!
Up to 200 people! The inside of the venue is spacious enough for a larger seated reception, with tall ceilings and plenty of room for mingling.
Breckenridge is filled with multiple lodging options. Airbnbs are a popular choice, but hotels like The Lodge at Breckenridge is a top choice! It will have views of the Breckenridge ski mountain, so you could probably see your wedding venue from your hotel room!
This venue is only open seasonally, from June-mid October, as it is located down a dirt road. During the winter months, it is an active ski lodge for Breckenridge mountain!
An event at Ten Mile Station will run you anywhere from $24,000-40,000. This DOES include the food and beverage minimum though, which usually averages to around $160 per person.
If you’d like to see a real wedding example that I’ve photographed at Ten Mile Station, then click here!
Dunton Hot Springs is the ultimate small wedding venue in Colorado, as it is an all-exclusive lodging option for wedding guests. Located about an hour drive southeast of Telluride, this picturesque venue as it all. Instead of a conference wedding venue, this is a more luxury option, where guests can stay on the property all wedding weekend with you in beautiful mountain cabins.
While staying for the weekend nestled in the San Juans of Colorado, guests have plenty of options of activities to do! There is horseback riding, fishing, hiking, or a spa day in the hot springs! The 5-star treatment you and your guests will receive will be so memorable. They will be catered to all weekend, with included 3 meals a day planned by you and your personal chef!
Think Ralph Lauren meets the wild west in the Rocky Mountains. Steaming hot water from the springs and wildlife right in your backyard. It is the ultimate glamping wedding venue! Invite your guests for the time of their lives.
The “town buyout” can lodge up to 44 guests. During summer months, the lodging can be extended to 60 guests with the addition of the Dunton River Camp option.
The beauty and appeal about this wedding venue, is that it IS your lodging! The entire venue can house up to 44 guests, and reaching up to 60 in the summer months if also booking the Dunton River Camp. If you have a few more guests you’d like to invite, there are a few rental homes nearby that the Dunton Hot Springs crew can help you find. It’s location in Southwest Colorado makes it a bit trickier to get to, but the drive is worth it.
Summer and Fall seasons have a 3 night minimum, while Winter and Spring seasons have a 2-night minimum. If you plan on having 20 or more guests, a “town buy-out” is also required. (But wouldn’t you want that anyway!?).
Summer and Fall events (peak season) require a 3 night minimum. May 22- Oct 31 will be priced at $31,000 per night, while June 1- Oct 15 can be priced a bit higher with the addition of the Dunton River Camp lodging (putting you up to 60 guests) at $43,000 per night. While this seems steep, remember that this INCLUDES food and beverage, and it is common to ask your guests to “contribute” to their lodging cost.
North Star Gatherings is a stunning mountain wedding venue located in Clear Creek County, just a short drive from Idaho Springs, Colorado. It is pretty equidistant from Golden and Evergreen as well. The venue is very eco-friendly, and is 100% solar powered! (WOW!) They are prepared for all weather conditions as well, and allow a tent to be pitched outside if need be. Tables and chairs are included, but all other vendors and rentals will be booked separately. There is a getting ready loft and a getting ready dome on site for couples. The venue has a ceremony space on its outdoor wooden deck, which has beautiful views of mountain scenery as its backdrop. Guests are then ushered inside into the large barn which has an all white interior with cathedral ceilings. The venue is a favorite amongst local vendors!
North Star Gatherings can accommodate up to 170 guests both on the outdoor deck and then inside for a seated dinner.
Guests like to stay in some of the local mountain towns nearby like Evergreen and Golden. The venue recommends Comfort Inn in Evergreen, the Origin Red Rocks Hotel, Wyhndham Microtel, and Ameristar. There are also great AirBnb and VRBO options nearby as well!
No alcohol while getting ready on site. Must use catering and beverage services from exclusive list. They require day-of coordinator and event insurance.
NSG peak season pricing can vary between $8,500-10K. This will depend on day of the week.
South of Vail and heading south to Leadville, Colorado, you will find the beauty of the Camp Hale wedding venue. This gem is unique in that is has it all; it is secluded, nestled within the Rocky Mountains, and has an ISLAND where you can have your wedding ceremony!
Lush and green, this venue is a spectacular Colorado mountain wedding venue. Located in the Pando Valley, you will see all sorts of stereotypical Colorado life here, including Aspen trees, Pine trees, bears, and deer! They also have a rustic 6,000 lodge and wood cabins on site, which is great for guest lodging. Camp Hale, as well as other adventure tour groups in the area, have lots of fun activities available such as ATVing, archery, and much more!
The highlight of Camp Hale though has to be the waterfront ceremony “island”. Guests can walk over a bridge where they will find their seats that over look a man made lake and the Rocky Mountains. From there the couple will walk down the aisle to say I do! After that, they can eat, drink, and dance the night away in the tented reception area back by the main lodge.
The reception tent (most commonely used) has a sitting capacity of 250. The lodge has a sitting capacity of 60 guests.
Camp Hale is nestled between two well known Colorado mountain towns; Vail and Leadville. Both are unique is style and interests. While the Camp Hale Lodge does offer some accommodations for guests, some people will still be looking for lodging in a bigger town. Vail is known for its skiing and summer hiking. With more luxury shops and restaurants nearby, check out the Vail Marriott Mountain Resort or the Sebastian Vail . If choosing to stay in Leadville, know for its adventure sports like mountain biking, I’d check out the historic Delaware Hotel. But there are MANY airbnbs to check out in the mountains as well!
There is a $9,000 food and beverage minimum with their partnered catering team. (Flatware, linens, and chinaware are included in that cost). All alcohol must be provided by Camp Hale. If selecting an outside food caterer, there is a $3,500 additional fee. A wedding planner is also required to host a wedding at Camp Hale. But here is a great bonus, dogs are allowed! As well as sparklers!!
Depending on day of the week, the site fees to rent out Camp Hale can vary between $10,500-17,000. This does not include your gratuity and tax fees though! This is for a 5 hour event rental, but includes a two night complimentary stay at the Lodge.
What is so special about this venue, other than its photo-worthy ceremony locations, is that there are actually three venues within the property. Couples can choose between these three spots for different parts of the day. Whether they have their ceremony in the meadow (which is most common), or cocktail hour on the Chuckwagon Grounds, and reception at the Main Lodge, it is all beautiful! And being so close to Aspen, you get to explore one of Colorado’s most note-worthy mountain towns.
The ceremony meadow is also available for tented receptions. Sometimes you will see some horses grazing the pasture in the distance. The Chuckwagon Grounds are great for rehearsal dinners and cocktail hour. It is reminiscent of a ho-down pavilion perfect for BBQs and bonfires. Lawn games and horseshoe pits are fun activities at this location! Then there is the Main Lodge, with tall vaulted ceilings that give a cabin lodge look. This spot is perfect to end the night with dancing and a built in stage for a live band! Feel free to bring in your own caterer for your reception!
T Lazy Z Ranch can seat up to 220 guests in the Main Lodge and outside in the meadow.
St Moritz Lodge in Aspen is a great choice for a nearby getaway (approximately 15mins from the venue), as well as Hotel Jerome. If Aspen isn’t your style (what?), then you could also look at some cute spots in Snowmass (Stonebridge Inn or Viceroy are great options) or Carbondale, which are a bit further down the road. I love the cute airbnbs you can find outside of Carbondale!!
Caterers must provide linens and tableware/silverware. With limited power the meadow, DJs and musicians must provide extension cords. Bar service must be purchased through the venue. Shuttle or transportation must be provided to guests by the couple, as parking is limited at the venue.
To rent out T Lazy Z ranch will cost around $6,500-9,500 depending on the day of the week and what venue pairing you choose. A tented reception in the Meadow will run about $15,000, which does not include the set up fees.
Julie Wiig firstname.lastname@example.org
Nestled upon a riverfront in the Colorado mountains just 35mins west of Denver rests Blackstone Rivers Ranch wedding venue!
Blackstone Rivers Ranch (BRR), located just outside of Idaho Springs, is capable of hosting up to 200 people, but is also a perfect spot for smaller, intimate micro weddings. A cabin and lodging is on property of the venue, but needs to be booked separately. If booking your wedding more than 6 months out, you can guarantee to reserve the cabin for your guests. If less than 6 months, it is not guaranteed to be available to rent.
The beauty of this venue is the biggest selling point! With a beautiful reception tent and benched ceremony lawn in the woods, guests are allowed on the property and can walk down to the riverbed for the duration of your wedding! It is also a 5 minute drive from downtown Idaho Springs, where you can find cute coffee shops and restaurants. In the other direction, you are a short drive from Echo Lake! It may be the best location for out of town guests visiting Colorado! Not too hard to get to, and still close to Denver.
BRR is also a registered “concert venue”! So bring in that band! Music can be played until 10:45pm!
Up to 200, but they have special packages for intimate and micro weddings!
Pets are not allowed unless designated and labeled service animals. Wedding Coordinators are not provided but required. Catering vendors must be chosen from provided list by BRR. NO outside alcohol allowed. No fireworks or sparklers. Glassware is provided, but you will need to rent silverware and dishes, as well as linens.
Larger weddings are only allowed seasonally (May 1st – Oct 31st) but smaller elopements and micro weddings can be booked year round! For an ‘elopement’ package (10 guests), Fridays ($4,700), Saturdays ($5,000), and Sundays ($4,500) are only available Nov-April. Year round dates are available for Mon-Thurs ($4,100). If you choose to have more guests attend, it is $175 a head, up to 60 guests. Beverage package pricing can vary between $17-55 per person.
Cheryl Anne. https://www.blackstoneriversranch.com/
Located about an hour and a half from down town Denver, just north of Winter Park, Coloardo, is the beautiful Devil’s Thumb Ranch. This wedding venue is the perfect mountain getaway with sprawling mountains in the distance and lodging for your guests.
While staying the weekend, guests can partake in fun activities such as mountain biking, hiking, horseback riding, zip lining, and fly fishing! While enjoying the luxury lodge accommodations and exquisite local cuisine, guests will also be dropping their jaws from the beauty of your wedding ceremony. It is the the epitome of Colorado picturesque.
The ceremony usually takes place out in the meadow, with grazing horses behind you underneath the Rocky Mountains in the distance. The ceremony platform is decorated with a triangular wooden arch that is instagram worthy.
After the ceremony, guests will be ushered into the lodge reception area. This is the main meeting spot for guests who are staying the weekend, complete with a large firepit! And….there’s a SPA.
Along with the meadow ceremony site, other venue spaces available on site are the Broad Axe Barn, the Axel’s Pavilion, Grotto Suraboza (perfect for rehearsal dinners or after parties), High Lonesome Barn and Loft, the Wine Cellar, Timber House, and the Yager House.
Resort lodging can accommodate up to 250 guests! (What!?) Buyout options are available upon request. You get exclusive access to the property for the whole weekend. Yes, please!
The best part about Devil’s Thumb Ranch is that it IS the lodging for your guests! This is why it is the perfect Colorado mountain wedding venue for out-of-towners! With the high price tag, you must keep in mind that it is a whole-weekend celebration and that guests can pay you their share of lodging expenses.
Late May through mid-October pricing starts at $100,000 for a weekend of events, with minimum lodging requirement of our 35-room High Lonesome Lodge for a minimum of two nights. (Don’t worry, it is totally acceptable to ask your wedding guests to pay for their share of lodging). October through late May starts at $65,000 for a weekend of events, with minimum lodging requirement of our 35-room High Lonesome Lodge for a minimum of two nights.
A 22 minute drive south of Telluride (and down a 5 mile dirt road) is the Observatory at Alta Lakes. Upon a small waterfront shore beneath the San Juan mountains is a perfect spot for a small and intimate wedding ceremony.
This small Colorado mountain wedding venue is perfect for couples who want an epic view, lodging for guests, and the quietness of the mountains. The road to get to the Observatory is most accessible in the summer months (June-early October) and would need to be accessed by a snowmobile for the rest of the year! (Only weddings of up to 12 guests are allowed in the off season).
The glamour of this venue is probably the setting. Pine trees surrounding a crystal blue lake, underneath the snow capped mountains of the San Juans. The lodge is also something out of a fairytale. Rustic cabin wood frames on the outside, yet modern industrial/rustic on the inside. Guests get the Observatory for the whole weekend when they book their wedding here, and get to enjoy the luxuries of the lake such as paddle boards and canoes.
Technically, the venue allows up to 45 guests for weddings. BUT- it can only sleep up to 12. So, there are different pricing and packages for under 12 and over 12 guests. Also, the ‘off season’ (Mid-October to mid- June) is only allowed a capacity of 12 or under. The reasoning for this is the condition of the roads, and the need to rent a snowmobile to access the venue. (How Colorado of them….)
The part about booking a wedding at the Observatory at Alta Lakes would be that for small weddings, the venue can lodge up to 12 people. Anything over that, guests will need to find their own lodging. The venue is a 22 minute drive from Telluride, so lodging options there would be best! I’d suggest choosing one of the many adorable airbnbs in the area, or checking out the Victorian Inn or the Hotel Telluride.
Winter months do require snowmobile access.(This can be rented from the Observatory if you wish). The venue also does not provide tables/chairs/linens/etc. These will need to be provided and brought in. This also includes other vendors such as caterers and florists. The Observatory also requires to have port a potties onsite for guests, as well as requiring the number of cars/vehicles in the driveway be limited to six or fewer. (A shuttle service is highly recommended!).
For the months of mid-June to early October, the pricing would be $5,500 for 12-24 guests, and $8,500 for 25-45 guests. There is also a $300 cleaning fee. This would include a three night stay at Alta Lakes. For the other months of the year, a 2-night stay (required) for up to 12 guests would be $3,000 plus the cleaning fee as well. Dogs are allowed for another additional fee of $50.
If you’re still looking for more Colorado wedding venue ideas, then check out my ultimate list below!;
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