Special Events FAQs

Frequently Asked Questions

GENERAL EVENT FAQs

What types of events may be hosted at The Huntington?

The Huntington permits a variety of private events, including dinners, receptions, holiday parties, corporate retreats, conferences, meetings, and more.

Please note that as a collections-based educational and research institution, The Huntington must evaluate event proposals holistically, reviewing the size and scope of an event, calendar availability, and blackout dates, among other considerations. The following events and activities are not permitted on The Huntington property: political or politically affiliated events, proms, pep rallies, school dances, graduation ceremonies, funerals, trade shows, day or night camps, and marathons or competitions.

Please contact the Special Events team for more information.

Who can host an event at The Huntington?

Anyone! However, use of our Premier Garden Spaces has specific membership requirements. Social events hosted by an individual require a Society of Fellows membership at the $2,500 level or above; corporate events require a Corporate Partner membership at the $5,000 level or above. Nonprofit organizations may host events in Premier Garden Spaces, but fundraisers and galas are not permitted in such locations.

What are Premier Garden Spaces?

These require a Society of Fellows or Corporate Partners membership.

Is there a time limit or cutoff time for events at The Huntington?

The Huntington is open to the public Wednesday through Monday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., and closed on Tuesdays. Premier Garden Spaces are generally unavailable for events when The Huntington is open to the public, but they are available to book after-hours between 6 and 10 p.m.

Events booked during public hours are permitted in private banquet spaces. No event may start earlier than 8 a.m., and all events must conclude by 10 p.m.

How much does it cost to rent a space at The Huntington?

Huntington venue fees depend on event type and location. While smaller meeting and private banquet rooms can begin at $1,000, the average price for garden spaces can range from $6,000 to $25,000. Nonprofit rates are available for some venues.

Please note that venue pricing is subject to change and does not apply to weddings.

What is included in your venue fees?
  • Complimentary parking that is available after-hours or on a first-come, first-served basis during public hours.
  • Security staff to ensure the protection of The Huntington and its collections as well as to keep your event space staffed and accessible after public hours.
  • Custodial services to prepare your event space ahead of the event.
  • Event staff to ensure smooth operation of the venue during your event.
  • Access to a nearby restroom.
  • Reasonable access time for load-in and load-out.

Access to galleries, golf cart transportation, select equipment and furniture, and additional setup or strike days may be available at an additional cost.

The following are not included in a Huntington space rental:

  • Catering services, which must be contracted through our on-site caterer, Bon Appetit, via a separate agreement.

  • Third-party rentals, including but not limited to stages, podia, lounge/specialty furniture, lighting, audiovisual equipment, kitchen equipment, heaters, etc.

  • Existing lighting is available in our private banquet spaces but is less commonly available in our Premier Garden Spaces. Sufficient safety lighting will be required for any event booked within our garden spaces.

  • Décor including but not limited to florals, linens, set pieces, and customized signage

  • Check-in, greeters, and event or security staffing

Do I need to purchase admission tickets for my guests if they wish to walk through the gardens?

Accessing spaces outside of your venue may require tickets for your guests. Guests may access gardens and galleries during The Huntington’s normal visitor hours. Please note that gardens and galleries are not open for viewing on Tuesdays or evenings after 5 p.m. except with prior approval. Please consult with the Special Events team to determine ticketing requirements and group rates.

How far in advance can I book my event?

The Huntington is unable to book an event more than one year prior to an event date. We recommend the following timeline for booking an event reservation:

  • At least four weeks prior to the event date for smaller events.
  • At least two to three months prior to the event date for larger, more complex events.
  • A six-month minimum lead time is required for weddings.
What is needed to book an event?

All events require a signed contract, certificate of insurance, and deposit to secure a reservation.

Can my guests arrive when The Huntington is open to the public and stay until the event begins?

For security and safety reasons, we must clear the grounds of guests each day at 5 p.m. As a result, we ask that guests not arrive before the contracted event start time unless preapproved in writing by The Huntington.

Can my guests walk the gardens after-hours?

For security and safety reasons, we are only able to allow access to the contracted space for your event, as most of our gardens and grounds do not have built-in safety lighting.

What are my options in case of inclement weather?

An indoor or tented space may be reserved as a backup space at an additional cost. Please work with the Special Events team to explore the options for your specific event.

Do you host events on holidays?

Unfortunately, we are not available to host events on the major holidays, many of which are blackout date weekends for The Huntington. These include: Christmas Eve/Day, Thanksgiving, New Year’s Eve/Day, President’s Day weekend, Fourth of July, Easter, Mother’s Day weekend, Memorial Day weekend, and Labor Day weekend.

FOOD AND BEVERAGE

Can I bring my own caterer?

Bon Appétit is the exclusive on-site caterer for The Huntington and outside catering is not permitted.

Is china provided?

China, glassware, and silverware can be made available but are charged separately depending on event needs and guest count. Please note that we can only guarantee up to 150 place settings and any needs above this would incur an additional rental charge.

DÉCOR AND EVENT SETUP

What kind of décor can I bring in to my event?

Due to the sensitivity of our grounds and collections, all décor and event activities must be reviewed and approved by The Huntington in advance of your event. The Special Events team will be able to provide further guidance on what décor is permissible on The Huntington’s grounds.

Can I set up a tent or build a structure, stage, or flooring for my event?

As a collections-based institution, The Huntington’s priority is to protect and maintain its collections, which include many event spaces located within the gardens. Any heavy-impact setups or builds, including but not limited to tenting, staging, flooring, and built structures, will be considered on a case-by-case basis depending on location. Staking is not allowed anywhere on the property and all tents must be secured with appropriate weights.

Can I bring in music or live entertainment?

Music and live entertainment are allowed as long as the sound level never exceeds 75 decibels at any time. After 9 p.m. the sound level should not exceed 65 decibels.

Do you have preferred vendors?

Yes, please review our list of preferred vendors. Vendors not on the list must submit insurance and a signed vendor agreement.

AMENITIES AND MISCELLANEOUS

Is Wi-Fi available?

Yes. Wi-Fi is free of charge and may be accessed without a password on network HEHGuest.

Are audiovisual services available?

Available audiovisual equipment and support depends on your event location. Please consult with the Special Events team to determine what is available in your event space and if any fees would apply. Depending on your event needs, additional equipment may need to be rented.

Are there printers on-site?

The printers in our administration offices are intended for staff use only. Please take care to have all necessary documents printed off-site before your event. We recommend the FedEx at 855 E. Colorado Blvd., which is open 24 hours. Events in need of emergency printing will incur a service fee.

Are there smoking sections at The Huntington?

The Huntington is a smoke-free environment.

Do you have recommendations on nearby hotels or accommodations?

There are many hotels in the nearby Pasadena/San Marino area. One of the closest hotels to The Huntington is the Langham Pasadena Hotel at 1401 S. Oak Knoll Ave., Pasadena, CA 91106. Please visit their website for more information.

Can we book events in your Rose Garden Tea Room?

The Rose Garden Tea Room is closed for renovation until early 2023.

Can we add a group tour to our event?

Group tours may be available during public hours. For more information, please visit the Group Tours page.