Looking for a Great Venue in Carlsbad?

The AHLF Discovery Center overlooks the Agua Hedionda Lagoon, a 400-acre estuary and wetland situated in Carlsbad, California. The Discovery Center is a 3,800 square foot building that features both indoor and outdoor facilities that may be rented as a whole or a la carte.

The Discovery Center has hosted a wide variety of events, including lectures, business meetings, anniversaries, birthday parties, gala dinners, book signings, yoga classes, and more.


This intersection in Carlsbad is at the tip of the spear, the very vanguard of technology for clean water, drinking water, emission free energy and environmental stewardship, for not just Carlsbad but for our state and our nation." – Peder Norby, April 7, 2014

An 8.9 kW solar system installed in our parking lot and on the roof above the Rancho Room provides the Discovery Center with 45% of its electric needs!

The gutters and downspout connected to the roof of the Rancho Room collects rain water and spreads it across the patio pavers. Rain water seeps into the soil, sustaining the garden and helping protect the quality of Agua Hedionda lagoon.

The Discovery Center is a no Styrofoam zone and has receptacles for proper recycling sorting.

Gardens and Patios

All rooms in the Discovery Center open to patios and gardens. The patios weave around the building, creating cozy gathering spaces amongst +750 native plants.

The main patio is a favorite setting to Wine, Dine, and Dance! The panoramic ocean and lagoon views make a gorgeous backdrop. The patio consists of approximately 220 square feet (dimensions: 18.5 feet by 12 feet) of open space along the west side of the Discovery Center. Couples enjoy exchanging their vows under the gazebo and then celebrating with their intimate friends.

Special Features: The gardens feature art, murals, informational placards, and more. Have a sharp eye? When you're wandering the gardens, look for all of our amazing Eagle Scout projects!​

Rotunda Room

The Rotunda Room, located in the heart of the Discovery Center, is a magnificent 624 square foot space (dimensions: 26 feet by 24 feet). This airy room features wood beam cathedral ceilings, a candelabra chandelier, and two sets of double doors that open to the back patio and native gardens. The western doorway frames the lagoon at her most spectacular time of day – sunset!

The overall room color scheme consists of white and beige, allowing for both dressed up or dressed down décor. Perfect for any occasion.

Special Features: Touch tank. Fish tanks. Reptile enclosures. Educational Displays. Smart TV. Projector Screen. Tinted Windows. Optional Shade Blinds.

Great Room

The Great Room is a 338 square foot open space (dimensions: 22.5 feet by 15 feet). This room is one of the main classrooms used for the AHLF Kid's Club and education programs. The room features three sets of glass double doors, which open to the back/front patios and parking lot and main building. The Great Room is decorated in white and beige and is carpeted. This room has been used for business meetings, conferences, and seminars!

​Special Features: Projector Screen. Optional Shade Blinds.

Lagoon Fact! Deer grass is one of the materials used by the Luiseño Indians to weave baskets.

AHLF Kitchen

The Discovery Center has a small but fully functional kitchen. Appliances available in the kitchen include a glass-top four-burner stove, oven, microwave, dish washer, refrigerator/freezer, and stainless steel double sink with a U-shaped faucet.

The kitchen features a glass door that opens onto the main patio and has been used as a food preparation and staging area for events.


Discovery Membership: $150
  • Two year membership to the AHLF

  • Waived rental deposit fee

  • 3hr minimum rental requirement waived

  • 25% off your next rental at the DC

  • 50% off additional rental items on your next rental at the Discovery Center (not including cleaning) 

  • No ABC License or Insurance required

Membership Pricing: $500
  • The entire Discovery Center venue

  • 4:00 p.m. rental start time (this includes your set-up) 

  •  $150 per hour to start before 4:00 p.m.

If you wanted your rental to be at 4:00 p.m., and you needed 4 hours prior to set-up:   

  • The entire venue from Noon – Midnight: $150 x 4 = $600 + $500 = $1100

  • The entire venue for the whole day (8:00 a.m. – midnight): $1500.

Non-Member Pricing: $200 an hour
Included in pricing:​

(15) 6ft rectangular tables, (2) 4ft rectangular tables, (50) white folding chairs, (20) grey folding chairs, Roll-away high bar. Market Lights on Back Patio. Smart TV. Sound System (indoors only).


  • Cleaning Team at end of night: $200

  • AHLF Team Member During Rental (pending availability): $50 per hour

  • Rental of our coffee machine, includes cups and creamer etc.: $125

  • Set up tables and chairs (our table and chairs, by an AHLF Team Member): $50

  • (8) Belly Bar Tables: $5 each​

What are folks saying about their experience renting the facilities at AHLF

Just wanted to thank you and your team for making Wednesday night a huge success! I have had such rave reviews on the setting and the fact that the sunset behind Encina. People enjoyed the venue so much. Thank you for all your guidance and commitment to making the evening flawless.

Andrea Coghill

NRG Energy

Thank you AHLF staff for everything. You were great and easy to work with. You helped make our whole party experience a pleasant one. Thanks also for the bottle of wine. You are great!!!

Jose De Anda

Carlsbad Education Foundation

Thank you so much for everything! I never thought that we could have such a magical evening as we had Friday night. We really appreciate the help and guidance throughout our journey with you. Thank you for allowing us this opportunity.

Teanna Evans

Sage Creek High School ASB Advisor

Thank you so much for allowing us to host our party here last night. You did such a wonderful job to get the place ready for us. We had a magnificent time... Thanks for all you do!

Andy Roe

Author at Book Signing Event


Do I get the entire center with the flat rate price?


How long can I stay?

We do not have a required end time, besides before we open the next day. Carlsbad has a noise ordinance of 10pm (if you are playing music outside, band or DJ, you must end then). If you are playing it inside, it is okay to continue after 10pm. It is recommended that you call the Carlsbad Police non-emergency line ahead of time to let them know of your party: (760) 931-2197.

Can I bring in Alcohol?


Can I bring in Catering?

Yes. No Styrofoam

What is the lighting like outdoors?

There is lights that automatically turn on the surrounding building at dusk and market lights strung across the back patio.

Do you have heating and air conditioning?

Inside, yes. We do not have outdoor heat lamps.

Can I bring outside rental items in?

Yes. The drop-off needs to occur at time of rental. Pick-up needs to occur before our opening hours the following day.

Can I bring in decorations and put up items?

Yes. You will be charged the $100 security deposit fee if the decorations do not come down at the end of the night, or if any items destroy the paint on the walls.

Are the animals covered up or moved in the main room?

All the bird habitats and displays are moved into the back offices. The reptile corner is not, besides the one on wheels. We do not have covers. You are welcome to drape over them though.

Do you have linens?


How many tables and chairs do you have?

16) 6ft rectangular tables, (1) 4ft rectangular table. 50 white chairs, 18 grey chairs (all included at no cost). 4 circular belly up bars; $5 each.

What should I bring?

Your own kitchen items (we do not have any serving trays, wine openers, utensils or accessories), your own lighter (to light candles), no Styrofoam (we are a no Styrofoam zone).

How do I reserve?

Join as a Discovery Member (memberships are non refundable). Full payment required within two weeks of the rental. 50% Non-Refundable Fee charged in the months of June and December upon booking. Non-Refundable if cancelled within two weeks.

Does the AHLF Set-Up Chairs & Tables?

We can set up our own tables and chairs at a cost of $50. We do not set-up additional items.

Can I drop items off before my rented time?

No. All items need to be delivered within the window of your rental.

Are we allowed to have fire pits on the back patio?


Can we bring a pinata?


Do you have extension cords for us to use?


Can we use the Kitchen/Fridge/Freezer?

Yes. We clear a shelf in the fridge. The freezer has very limited space. We recommend you bring plenty of coolers. The entire kitchen you may use.

Do you have scissors/tape/sharpies for use?

No please bring all supplies form home.

Do we lock the doors at the end of the night?

Yes, we provide a key and you lock the doors, shut off the lights and shut the gate. We have a cleaning team for $200 that will come in the morning and put all tables/chairs away, take out the trash and clean. Otherwise you do so.

Can we have candles?


Is there WIFI?



Sign up and stay updated on all the upcoming events, announcements, special promotions and more...


The Discovery Center is open:

Monday - Saturday 




  • NAAM-lagoon-foundation-podcast
  • YouTube
  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Instagram


1580 Cannon Road,

Carlsbad, CA 92008

(760) 804-1969


©2020 Agua Hedionda Lagoon Foundation. All rights reserved.

The Agua Hedionda Lagoon Foundation is an exempt organization as described in Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code; EIN 33-0411888.

site design: Design Grotto