Headlands Center for the Arts Est. 1986

Headlands Center For the Arts, Simmonds Road, Sausalito, CA, United States

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Headlands Center for the Arts
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Work. Play. Think. Make gathering magic at this marvelous center for the arts in Marin.
Headlands Center for the Arts is a multi-disciplinary, international arts center located inside uniquely renovated, circa 1907 army barracks just minutes north of San Francisco. Known for its beautiful and historically significant artist-commissioned spaces, Headlands is considered a hidden gem venue within the Bay Area community; commission this space for your next meeting, wedding, workshop or retreat.
The Lowdown
Art Gallery
Historic Building
Anniversary / Engagement Party
Corporate Event
Product Launch
Holiday Party
Retreats: Corporate, Spa, Wellness, Etc.
Social Event
Wedding Ceremony
Wedding Reception
Workshops: Creative, Photo, Etc.

Venue Setting

Headlands Center for the Arts is part of the Golden Gate National Recreation Area, one of the largest urban parks in the world well known for its rich biodiversity, a result of the unique geology and the variety of habitats and microclimates in the region. The park encompasses 59 miles of bay and ocean shoreline and has military fortifications that span centuries of California history, from the Spanish conquistadors to Cold War–era Nike missile sites.
(Prices listed here are estimates only & are subject to change)
Price Range

Does this include catering fees?


Estimated Price Per Head

from $55 to $100

Additional Charges

Venue flat fee starts at $5,500 for a full-day Saturday buyout. Catering, tax, and service charge assessed separately.


Additional Insurance May Be Required Depending On The Event


Celebrations Hosted Here Since
10 PM
Venue Spaces
Indoor & Outdoor Venue Spaces Available
Client Must Use The Catering Provided By The Venue
BYO Permitted – You Can Bring Your Own Alcohol
Indoors Only
Designated Smoking Areas Only
Headlands' artist housing for rental is occasionally available during our winter season. Many couples book the nearby Marin Headlands Hostel.
Eco/Green Events
Inside Scoop

Headlands Center for the Arts is just 15 minutes away from San Francisco, but feels like another world. Off the beaten path (and off the grid) the Marin Headlands is where the land meets the sea, and home to Headlands Center for the Arts - a space providing opportunities for creative exchange to artists and the public for over 30 years. A favored site for adaptive reuse, Headlands rehabilitated and re-imagined historic military buildings have been the site of numerous events combining good food, good people, and a spirit of community and collaboration. Come for a visit and learn about our unique setting, home to artists working onsite alongside deer, wild turkey, coyote, hawks and foxes.

  • Street Parking
  • Wifi
  • Dining Chairs
  • Dining Tables
  • Onsite Restrooms
Venue Features
The Scene:
Headlands Center for the Arts is located on Northern California’s Pacific Coast in the Marin Headlands—2100 windswept acres of hills, cliffs, coves, and beaches just north of San Francisco—in the Golden Gate National Recreation Area. When Headlands Center for the Arts took up residence at historic Fort Barry in 1984, part of our mandate was to rehabilitate and steward the historic structures that would comprise our campus. Event spaces, re-imagined by artists in the 1980s and 90s, are located in one of two four-story former army barracks: voluminous structures with big windows; patina-ed walls; tin ceilings; oak balustrades; maple floors; and yard after yard of history, character, and possibility. Rolling iconic California hills, atmospheric fog, natural wildlife, a salt water lagoon, beaches, dramatic cliffs, a historic lighthouse and weathered military bunkers provide a striking backdrop for photos.
Artist renovated spaces include the Mess Hall, the literal and figurative hearth of Headlands, rehabilitated by renowned artist Ann Hamilton in the early nineties. The space features a wide open kitchen, a wood-fired oven for bread baking, walls covered with botanical drawings on parchment paper, warm hues of yellow and green, Heath tiles, 12 artist designed tables, hard wood floors, and 75 mismatched chairs. For the first dinner at Headlands, each guest brought their own chair. The tradition lives on, and every chair has a story. Most good parties end up in the kitchen and at Headlands it’s not much different. Shared meals in our Ann Hamilton-renovated Mess Hall provide a casual, convivial environment for guests to get to know each other, share stories and exchange ideas. The second floor, the setting for reception, dancing, and ceremonies of all kinds, was renovated by Bay Area sculptor David Ireland in the mid-1980s. Ireland sought to reveal the raw materials of the building, and the original tin ceilings, wooden floors, and dropped lighting with a dimming feature recall a bygone era. The Eastwing features artist-designed benches that can be moved to fit the event, and the white walls and cracked and colored with age. The minimalist aesthetic and focus on raw materials draws attention to the exceptional natural light of the spaces, and blurs the line between the outside setting and the inside. The Rodeo Room, a space notable for it\'s rich ochre and green colored walls, often inspire the color palette of events at Headlands.
Standout Venue Features:
Far out but close in. Moments from a major city, but feels a world away. Magical micro-climates of fog, wind, and sun. A place to unplug and unwind. Nearby youth hostel provides accommodations.
Extra Perks:
Most furniture needed for a special event is included in the venue fee. 75 mis-matched chairs and artist-designed tables in the Mess Hall. A variety of metal military-inspired tables for use. Eastwing ceremony space includes artist designed benches that are modular and portable.
Awards & Notables Headlands houses one of the highest caliber Artist in Residence programs worldwide. Tread the same steps as many MacArthur geniuses and Guggenheim fellows. Additionally, Headlands Mess Hall and widely regarded food program has drawn interest from chef\'s, bakers, and luminaries from across the Bay Area. Weddings at Headlands are regularly featured on Snippet & Ink, Green Wedding Shoes, Style My Pretty and 7x7 Magazine.
Eats & Drinks
Food, Restaurants, Cafes, Bars & Lounges
Food, Restaurants, Cafes:
Northern California is a remarkable region for cooking. The raw goods that are available to us, the sheer abundance of produce and meats, of wines and grains, is without peer. Katie Powers, Headlands' exclusive caterer, purchases almost everything served from regional farmers, direct from their farms and at the casual pageants we call farmers markets, which she scours weekly for new discoveries — as well as depends upon for staple favorites. (And what the Bay Area cannot grow it imports with gusto.) As a chef, Katie understands it’s her job to make food the center of your event — and she does this by making local ingredients the center of the food. Katie firmly believes that a meal, no matter the scale of the occasion, should be intimate. The basis of intimacy is proximity, and what could be more intimate than eating food on the same terrain in which it was cultivated?


Check back again soon!