Belinda philleo is an orange county wedding photographer who creates vibrant and authentic imagery of couples and their loved ones. Belinda photographs weddings and engagement sessions throughout southern california.
If you’re looking for a wedding venue that’s both non-traditional and eco-friendly, look no further – The Smogshoppe in Culver City’s art and design district is exactly that! Keep reading to learn more about this truly unique event venue!
History of the SmogShoppe
Back in the 1980s, no one would have ever guessed that this would one day be a place for celebrations, and you certainly wouldn’t have thought of it as being “green.” Back then, SmogShoppe was a literal smog shop where people took their cars!
Years later, the space was transformed and reopened in 2008 as a stunning event venue with gorgeous vertical gardens (totaling over 2000 square feet of foliage), a bridal suite, and adorable vintage decor. Since its rebirth, SmogShoppe has become a favorite of couples and wedding professionals alike.
Ceremony and Reception Spaces
SmogShoppe boasts 6500 square feet of space between its indoor “Grand Hall” and the outdoor courtyard. Something I love about this space is the flexibility and versatility offered by 18-foot glass roll-up doors between the spaces. You can open or close the doors to separate or combine the indoor and outdoor areas. This is great if you’re wanting to block off the reception area during the ceremony, but then open it up again for a smooth transition from cocktail hour into dinner.
All told, SmogShoppe can host somewhere between 150 to 250 guests, depending on the style of your event.
The Grand Hall has incredible 15-foot ceilings that make the space feel open and spacious. One end also features a large screen that’s great if you want to share a slideshow during your event.
What Makes SmogShoppe “Green”?
When SmogShoppe was reimagined, it was designed in such a way that its owners aimed to exceed as many requirements as possible for its LEED Platinum Certification. Even its demo and reconstruction was thoughtful and utilized salvaged and locally sourced materials for both the structure and some of the furniture inside! Much of the decor and furnishings were also obtained from flea markets and second-hand sources.
Additionally, the building was fitted with solar panels that generate more than 100% of the necessary annual electricity. According to their website, SmogShoppe uses less energy than the average two-bedroom home! That’s pretty cool!
The vertical gardens were specifically designed to be drought tolerant and reduce excessive use of water, which is fantastic in California!
Last, SmogShoppe is big on recycling and working with planners who share their passion for reducing waste!
Costs and Considerations
Depending on your guest count and event date, SmogShoppe can cost somewhere between $7500 and 15,000. While the rental does include the usage of the space, its amenities, kitchen, and furniture setup, you’ll want to keep in mind that hiring a valet is mandatory, and it’s not included in the rental fees. I recommend contacting their events team for more information!
Other Key Features of this Venue
SmogShoppe is conveniently located near the 10 freeway, LAX, Santa Monica, Beverly Hills, Hollywood, and Downtown LA – which makes it a great space to host if you’re inviting guests from out of town who might want to explore some of Los Angeles’ most iconic sights while there here!
Upstairs, there’s a private dressing room that they call “Crow’s Nest” because it gives you a birds-eye view of the whole venue. It’s a great space to use as a bridal suite for getting ready or to take a few minutes away from the crowd on the big day.
The venue does allow you to choose your own vendors and it also offers a list of preferred vendors that you can select from.
So what do you think? Is SmogShoppe the venue for you?
If so, your photography should be as unique as your wedding day! My team here at Photography by Belinda Philleo loves helping couples create a photography plan that’s designed around what’s most important to our couples. Contact us today to request more information about our availability and a personal quote.