When gold rush pioneer Henry Ellis carved out an estate for himself in 1890, he picked a prime setting: a sheltered canyon tucked between two tree-covered ridges. Here he set up house in a three-story mansion constructed of thick sandstone from nearby Niles Canyon, and went about enjoying life in the country. Today his lovely homestead, now surrounded by vineyards, has become a prime setting for hosting weddings, receptions and private parties.
Garden-style ceremonies are held outdoors alongside the historic mansion, in a garden brimming with native flora and including an expansive lawn and arbor. Stage your photos here, and you’ll have some striking options for a backdrop—the century-old stone house, vibrant displays of azaleas and camellias and sprawling vineyards. But if you’d like to search for more photographic possibilities, go right ahead—there are plenty of photo opportunities at Elliston.
A short walkway takes you from the garden to the Terrace Room, a secluded 2,000-square-foot banquet room set into the hillside. Its vaulted ceiling and glass walls add to the feeling of spaciousness, while the surrounding deck gives guests a chance to dine al fresco at umbrella-shaded tables. A Victorian gazebo next to the deck is large enough for a bridal table or a quartet of musicians to serenade party-goers. The entire site is sheltered by oak, eucalyptus and olive trees, creating an ideal venue for you and your guests to celebrate.
Whether you’re a bride planning your wedding or a wine aficionado, Elliston Vineyards is a destination worth seeking. Centrally located, with access from several East Bay freeways, you’re close to civilization but you’d never know it—the quiet country atmosphere will give you the delicious feeling of being a million miles away.