Choosing The Perfect Wedding Venue

I often get asked to recommend venues to couples who are at the stage where they are ready to book a wedding.  It can be tricky and time-consuming finding the perfect venue.  The number of guests that you invite will often dictate what venue you can book as most venues don’t cater for numbers larger than 120 people.  The average number of guests invited to weddings in Melbourne is 100 people.  Keep this in mind as it will determine your budget and the type of venue you can choose.

  • Do your research and look at reviews and recommendations.   You cannot beat word of mouth.
  • Try not to get stuck on a particular date as this will limit your availability.
  • Thursday and Friday weddings are becoming more and more popular and are more kind to the budget.
  • Do you want an indoor or outdoor wedding.  Personally I would book a venue that provides both as this gives you great assurance with Melbourne’s finicky and unpredictable weather.  There are many venues that have incredible gardens along with private chapels and great reception options.
    • Venues that offer several options – inside and out:
      • Lyrebird Falls  – Kalista
      • Tatra Receptions – Mount Dandenong
      • Vue on Halcyon Chirnside Park
      • Coombe Melba Estate Coldstream
      • Zonzo Estate – Zonzo Estate is a restaurant, winery and award-winning wedding destination embraced by the beautiful Yarra Valley.
  • Another beautiful alternative is to have the wedding ceremony in the gardens of Alowyn Gardens – Yarra Vally and then the reception at one of  the many local Yarra Valley winery and  reception centres.  I highly recommend Alowyn Gardens.  They have a wisteria canopy over the outdoor pergola and it is mind-blowing.  It also provides shelter from the heat and or the rain.  Great for an outdoor wedding but not for a reception.
  • Think outside the box:  Sometimes a stand up reception is just as much fun and  gives a great party vibe.

Prahran warehouse Hobba is the perfect space for engagement parties and weddings. With the ability to cater and hold up to 200 pax it’s a remarkable space with lots of character. They specialise in stand up events.

All Smiles  Docklands – is an incredible venue and has fantastic food and cocktails but it is also a stand up event space with amazing views of the city.  All Smiles Melbourne Waterfront at the Docklands is set in a spectacular waterfront location overlooking the majestic Victoria Harbour in Melbourne.  It offers perfect photo ops of the docklands.
  • Something a bit different from the traditional wedding look is the: 
    The RACV Country Club Healsville – Absolutely spectacular outdoor wedding space, modern, and streamline with amazing views of the mountains and great staff.
    The Farm Delaneys Road Warrandyte – Gorgeous, great location, only caters for small 120 and under.  An elegant farmhouse at the top of a hill that looks out to rolling lawns, gardens and vineyards. Red brick walls and antique fixtures define the interior with the building opening out onto a generous timber verandah, a classical fountain and stately bluestone steps
    The Baths Middle Brighton has recently been refurbished and is a gorgeous art deco Melbourne landmark.  The Baths ‘Upstairs’ can be booked as an exclusive events space and can accommodate up to 120 guests seated and 200 guests cocktail style.
  • Other recommendations:
    Yarrawood Estate Melba Hwy Yarra Glen – great for private function,  incredible garden – good for small groups – have a beautiful set up outside underneath huge oak trees.
    Marybrooke Manor Sherbrooke – Incredible for a garden wedding 
    Lindenderry Winery Red Hill – gorgeous if you want the ceremony in a winery
    Werribee Mansion – outstanding 
    The Park Lakeside Drive Albert Park– great alternative for a city wedding.  Great photo opps,  stunning reception venue and nice wedding ceremony location.
    Still Stuck: Try Venue Atlas.  
    A friend of mine runs Venue Atlas –
    A curated guide of Australia’s most unique venues, big and small.


Good luck hunting for venues.  Make sure that the venue resonates with your vision and budget.  Keep looking if you can’t find the one that you want straight away.  Make sure that you are happy with the staff and get everything in writing.


Alowyn Gardens.


Coombe Melba Estate

Immerse-Photography-Prokop313RACV Country Club Healsville

Bill and Lisa and NanLyrebird Falls Chapel Kalista

You May Kiss the Bride – Zonzo Estate Yarra Valley in the Chapel

18216917_10156682382443084_5001861390906798131_oZonzo Estate – gorgeous outdoor summer wedding.

17904463_1838794983108320_6669988456253437656_nMarybrooke Manor petal storm

All Smiles Docklands,  RACV Club Healsville and Alowyn Gardens.

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