How to Plan a Dreamy San Diego Waterfront Wedding

Step One: Choose the Dana

From the perfect fairytale destination wedding, to an intimate ceremony and reception, The Dana is the perfect place to make your dreams come true. Our dynamic San Diego wedding venues include reception dinner spaces, bridal suites for preparing for the big day, and beautiful vistas for your ceremony.

We offer three picturesque waterfront ceremony locations that each have their own theme and style. For the person dreaming of a nautical happily ever after, our Marina Garden offers an idyllic backdrop of sailboats and yachts on the bay, bringing to mind a Kennedy-esque ceremony right out of coastal New England. Our most popular ceremony site (which has been featured in numerous bridal publications), the Sunset Lawn venue has a traditional beachfront wedding style, with palm trees framing the panoramic view of Mission Bay against the flawless skies of San Diego. Finally, our Tropical Courtyard venue is nestled in a secluded garden, filled with diverse foliage and flowers that make it feel like a truly away-from-it-all hidden paradise.


We also offer one ballroom that can accommodate different types of wedding receptions depending on the size of the party. Located adjacent to our waterfront outdoor terrace, our Mission Bay Ballroom features a more traditional setup of round tables adorned with white tablecloths and local floral arrangements, as well as a stage that can accommodate a mid-size band. We can also order specialty linen depending on your needs. For a more intimate celebration, we also provide smaller venues that are perfect for gatherings of your closest of friends and family.

Step Two: Nail Down the Logistics

Once you’ve settled on The Dana, it’s time to ensure we can accommodate your wedding date. If you’re committed to a single day or weekend, our team will try our best to book your date of choice. However, if you’re more flexible, we also offer value dates between February and August that include a choice of two perks, such as a 10% discount on the package, a 50% discount on the ceremony, complimentary lawn games, or a complimentary bridal dressing room with breakfast and mimosas. 

Step Three: Make All the Necessary Arrangements

For any size gathering or ceremony style, our executive culinary team will provide the most exquisite and innovative wedding menu to fit your celebration. Choose from one of our set menus of buffets or full course meals, or work with our head chef to design a custom culinary offering to make sure your special day is picture-perfect. Pick the individual items you’d like, and the chef can even incorporate foods from the bride or groom’s cultural traditions.

The offerings mirror the creative cuisine at our signature Firefly Eatery & Bar, where the menu includes apps like miniature spanakopita, buttermilk blini, and veggie spring rolls; entrées such as chicken Marsala and veggie ravioli; Polynesian or Mexican buffets; and indulgent dessert bars.

For other services, we proudly partner with a number of leading vendors throughout the city. Whether you seek the perfect wedding photographer, a florist to craft displays and centerpieces that complement those of the surrounding gardens, or the perfect band to keep your friends and family dancing all night long — we’ve got an extensive directory of local contacts to make your dream wedding a reality.

Interested in Learning More?

Check out the beautiful images on our wedding Instagram account, or get things started by letting us know more about what you had in mind. If you need additional inspiration, you can view some real weddings that have been enjoyed here at The Dana on Mission Bay on our weddings blog!