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So you’ve decided to propose in Austin and you’ve been looking at Mt. Bonnell or Zilker Park but the idea of hiking and/or possible crowds are turning you off. You want somewhere semi-private, peaceful, romantic and outdoors because you love Austin and all the nature. Laguna Gloria looks promising, so here’s what you need to know from an Austin proposal photographer.

What was once a private summer home to Austin’s original families in the 1930s; Laguna Gloria is now under the Austin Museum of Art umbrella and is a super popular venue for weddings because of its central location, views of the water and the unique art sculptures. It’s a beautiful oasis in the middle of the city. This is my favorite wedding venue on the water.

A lot of greenery is available year round and the string lights above as you walk to the Temple of Love make it feel incredibly dreamy. Laguna Gloria is a beautiful, semi-private place to propose with lots of photo opportunity locations.

Here’s how to have the best proposal at Laguna Gloria.

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Laguna Gloria on a spring morning
Some of the sculptures that can be seen at Laguna Gloria

Step 1: Buy a photography permit

Reserve a 1 hour photography session

Link to purchase a sunset hour time slot

(optionally, I can purchase this for you with your preferred date)

Buying the photo session first, in advance, guarantees that we will have the preferred golden hour/sunset (or sunrise) time slot before it sells out. I also recommend choosing a weekday, since they will likely be booked with weddings or other events on the weekends.

If your reservation includes access inside the villa, having your proposal inside is an option, making golden hour not *totally required.* But, for maximum beautiful light, I recommend the 2 hours closest to sunset. That’s ~4:00pm in the winter and ~6-7:30 in the late spring/summer.

INTERMISSION: WHAT TO WEAR?

When you work with me, I always encourage color and texture that go well with your location. Laguna Gloria is mostly greens and tans, so wearing pops of pinks or reds would definitely stand out. Or look like a painting in soft pastels like lavender, blue and cream.

Step 2: Arrival Notes

Once you walk through the gates, you’re on the art museum grounds. Take a minute to enjoy the views and the sculptural art.

Step 3: The Proposal Location

The Temple of Love is a gorgeous and private location. To get there, head into the Laguna Gloria grounds and follow the string lights down the gravel path. Take your time walking down. This is the moment before you propose! Try and hype up this art museum to your partner. I will be “hiding” in plain sight ready to capture the moment.

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It rained ALL DAY and blessedly stopped just in time for Adrian’s surprise proposal with Erinn at the Temple of Love.
Laguna Gloria proposal photographer
Kyle had friends place rose petals around the outside of the gazebo. It’s a bit tricky to get your partner’s exact reaction if you go inside.
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For that reason, I recommend popping the question out from under the gazebo!

After I capture the moment she said “YES!” (or just lots of crying and nodding), we’ll move into a few cute, casual portraits. We’ll use a portion of our time at Laguna Gloria to take a few proposal celebratory photos since there are so many gorgeous locations there. After about 30 minutes I’ll let you enjoy your time at Laguna Gloria or head to your surprise afterparty and enjoy your night! You’ll take proper engagement photos with whomever you hire for your wedding for your save the dates and sign in table at your wedding.

The versatility, privacy and guaranteed indoor locations of Laguna Gloria is honestly ideal for proposal, engagement and wedding photos.

3a: If your plan involves surprising your partner with friends and/or family this is when we can meet them. They should arrive separately, secretly and when we walk back up the path to the entrance they can be waiting there to surprise you!

Optional decor

If you’re struggling with how to make a splash and impress your partner I have a small styling kit for proposals that can be added. It includes LED candles, white faux rose petals and a bottle of champagne or Prosecco. Let me know you’re interested and I will add it to your quote.

Final Notes:

  • If the gate is open, parking is available and limited but free. If the few spots inside the gate are full, there are some street spots down the hill. Rideshare is always an option!
  • Laguna Gloria is an art museum and not a park, if you choose to decorate with rose petals, please consider the clean up that will be required after.
  • Well-behaved dogs on a leash are also allowed, but bring poop bags for accidents. Also, try to tire them out beforehand (if they’re in the excitable puppy stage) or have a friend be your designated dogsitter.
  • Outside props must be approved in advance (if you are bringing any large decorations this is what they mean)
  • Depending on the day, other photo shoots may be happening during our reserved time.

I hope this helps with your Laguna Gloria proposal plans. If you’re planning on making this your Austin proposal location – email me and let’s chat!

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