Wedding Ceremonies & Receptions

Located high on a bluff with dramatic ocean views, Birch Aquarium at Scripps is a unique and engaging venue for any wedding ceremony or reception. Birch Aquarium is available for both exclusive after-hours events and for semi-private daytime functions, and is conveniently located near La Jolla Shores, within easy access of major freeways.

  • Wedding Ceremony
  • Reception Ceremony
  • Rehearsal Dinner

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Rental Rates

Birch Aquarium at Scripps is a nonprofit organization and proceeds from the use of the facility are used to support exhibit and education programs.  

Evening Facility Rental Fee Schedule 

Wedding Ceremony and Reception events: starting at $5,500*
Rental time: 6:00 p.m. - 10:00 p.m. Parking included for up to 230 spaces
*Fees are subject to change without notice and other fees apply.

Event Spaces

Beautiful spaces and breathtaking views combine to create a day you’ll never forget! An exclusive rental of Birch Aquarium includes the following spaces:

Full Facility - At more than 30,000 square feet, Birch Aquarium can accommodate up to 1,500 guests with multiple indoor/outdoor setup configurations available. Guests will be able to explore ocean habitats, get hands-on with Scripps Oceanography science, and enjoy some of the best ocean views in San Diego.

The Shelia Marie Davis Galleria - Central and beautiful, Birch Aquarium’s galleria features multi-story windows and stunning ocean views. At 4,200 square feet, this unique indoor space accommodates 400 people for a stand-up reception, 200 for a sit-down dinner, 160 for buffet-style service, and 375 for a theater-style event. This location offers easy access to all of Birch Aquarium’s exhibits.

Preuss Tide Pool Plaza - Featuring the most spectacular views at Birch Aquarium, this 3,750 square foot open-air space includes panoramic ocean views and the aquarium’s tide pool exhibits. Accessible from inside the Galleria, this split-level accessible
space accommodates 500 people for a stand-up reception, 140 for a sit-down dinner, and 175 for a wedding ceremony. The views from Preuss Tide Pool Plaza are especially spectacular during sunset. 

The Director's Deck/Delacour Conference Room - Our spacious conference room is a single room with a whiteboard, 90” TV, internet, and A/V connections for you to utilize during your event. This room can accommodate up to 60 guests depending on the room configuration, and also has access to our Director’s Deck, which provides stunning views of the Pacific Ocean and is a wonderful spot for breaks or lunch. 

Cafe Pavilion - Located at the entrance of Birch Aquarium, this 10,000 square-foot open-air pavillion accommodates 1,000 people for a stand-up reception or 500 seated. It is a spacious area for a variety of events and features dramatic life-sized brass statues of breaching gray whales.

Entrance Courtyard -  This 3,000-square-foot entirely open air space is a great area to extend your party from the indoor Galleria. It accommodates 300 for a reception and 170 for a sit-down dinner.

Robert Smargon Exhibit Courtyard - At 6,000 square feet, this open-air courtyard offers guests panoramic views of La Jolla Shores and immediate access to Shark Shores, which features local Leopard Sharks and rays. Smargon Court accommodates 550 people for a stand-up reception or 300 seated, and is also available for semiprivate rentals during the aquarium’s operating hours.

 **Please note, all available spaces and guest numbers are subject to change based on Covid-19 guidelines. **

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For More Information

We encourage you to tour Birch Aquarium at Scripps with a representative from the Special Events department and explore the many options available to you. Please fill out our Special Event Information Request Form and we will get back to you soon.

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Photo Courtesy of True Photography