Chris + Frances (Monterey Wedding Photography) @ Portola Hotel & Spa

The neatest thing I can think about Chris and Frances is how they met. Their priest told the wonderful story during the ceremony, but the gist of it is this: they grew up as neighbors, but never really met or interacted. They’re both really involved with their church and community, and they didn’t truly meet until they were both donating their time as Hurricane Katrina aid workers on the other side of our country. Random, serendipitous, meant-to-be – all of the above I believe. I don’t think it took long for them to realize this, either. They live in Scotts Valley, so we held Chris and Frances’ engagement session at nearby Henry Cowell State Park. My first impression of the couple was that they share a deep connection bound by common values and priorities. Every time I met them and those who care about them (like at the awesome pre-wedding beach bonfire in Carmel) only solidified my initial impression.

They got married at their alma mater Santa Catalina School – an historic private school originally founded by Dominican Sisters in the ’50s. The property is a photographer’s dream as its got old mission-style architecture intermingled with gardens and fountains – lots of fun texture, murals and earthy tones to work with. The reception was held at nearby Portola Hotel where we experienced some moving speeches and lots of fun dancing.

Here’s a slideshow of my favorite photos covering the day, feel free to browse all of Frances and Chris’ wedding photos at


Cupcakes: Mrs. Delish’s
Ceremony Venue: Santa Catalina School
Reception Venue: Portola Hotel & Spa
Dress: Nordstroms
Bridesmaid’s dresses: Anne Taylor
Flowers: Flowers Limited in Carmel, CA

Getting married at the Portola Hotel and Spa?
Bay Area Wedding Photographer Chris Schmauch wants to shoot your wedding! (831) 216-6210

If you haven’t already, feel free to review our portfolio site, browse past weddings, check our romantic {and FREE*} engagement sessions, follow our business on Facebook (like us while you’re at it!), or read our awesome Yelp reviews.

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