Natural History Museum of Utah | My Favorite Utah Wedding Venues


Let’s make history with a stunning backdrop for your upcoming wedding!

The Natural History Museum of Utah is one of my favorite places to shoot. The weddings I’ve photographed there are rich in beautiful architecture and views that make every photo magical. Today, I’d love to walk you through some of the best features of the Natural History Museum of Utah to help you make a decision in your search for the perfect wedding venue.


The Natural History Museum of Utah opened in 1969 and has grown through research, acquisition, and contributions to more than 1.6 million objects. In 2011, it moved to its current home, called the Rio Tinto Center, with new exhibits and galleries, as well as programs for engaging guests in its rich history.


Let’s talk about the picturesque location of this spectacular modern marvel. The Natural History Museum of Utah is in Salt Lake City, just up the mountainside from the University of Utah. There are many nearby landmarks and gardens that create a beautiful ambiance for guests, from approaching the venue, looking out at the surrounding landscape from the balconies, and walking around the museum facility.

The museum is just a short drive from downtown Salt Lake City, making it convenient and accessible and giving the happy couple plenty of options to choose from when selecting vendors that service the Salt Lake area.


NHMU offers a variety of banquet rooms, halls, and large spaces, both indoors and outdoors, to accommodate your wedding and reception. You’re sure to find something to suit your needs, whatever your size or budget! I love the variety of these spaces in size, capacity, architecture, scenery, and art displays. The options available make this a perfect choice of event venue to cater to your interests and style.

In addition to offering the full museum to rent for a magical wedding experience (highly recommend!), there are outdoor spaces, like the Land Terrace, which displays beautiful copper windows as a striking backdrop, and the Native Voices Terrace, which is nestled into the foothills of the mountainside for a more intimate setting.

Considered the signature space for weddings and other large events at NHMU, the Canyon and Canyon Terrace allow for a versatile experience as guests can flow through the gallery as well as the outdoor balcony.

NHMU also lists what they call Level 5 Wedding Spaces on their website for anyone looking for additional functionality or versatility with their wedding day. If you’re looking to wow your guests with a unique, yet classic venue, these are a great option as you’ll get both stunning imageries as well as more privacy and intimacy with a smaller group.


I love that the NHMU allows early set-up at 5:00 pm, so your wedding team can come in and make it all perfect before your evening reception or wedding. In addition to providing dedicated event staff, you can expect the following when you reserve a space at the Natural History Museum of Utah:

  • Guest parking (large events may require parking arrangements)
  • High-speed wireless Internet access
  • Setup/teardown of all listed NHMU equipment
  • Riser, podium, and microphone
  • Conference tables (6’) and chairs
  • Cocktail tables (30”)
  • Banquet rounds (60”) and chairs (seat eight guests per table)

Personally, one of my favorite parts about the NHMU is the windows. It’s a photographer’s dream to have so much beautiful natural light. From inside, the window wallscapes create a beautiful open ambiance for the duration of the event, and when viewed from the outside terraces, the sun reflecting off the artistic panels is an impressive backdrop for more photos!

Scroll below to see some photos of the NHMU in action during one of my client’s weddings and be sure to check out their website to learn more about this incredible venue!

A bride and groom holding each other in their arms at the Natural History Museum by Kailee Matsumura Photography. NHMU wedding #KaileeMatsumuraPhotography #KaileeMatsumuraWeddings #NaturalHistoryMuseumofUtah #NHMUwedding #SLCweddings

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Meet kailee


As someone who wears a lot of hats (wife, momma, nurse, and photographer). I know that those once in a lifetime moments can truly fly by. My mission is to capture those beautiful moments so that you can come back to them years down the road and relive them! The best way to do that if to find out who YOU are and what type of moments YOU treasure the most.

Wanna meet me? I love my cute family, the pop of my Made by Mary necklace over my heather grey sweatshirt, and eating ice cream for every occasion - Tillamook Mudslide is my favorite!

And I can't wait to get to know you!

I’m Kailee

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