Help me find a nice location in Melbourne, Australia, for a wedding reception.
August 16, 2010 7:34 PM   Subscribe

I'm getting married in January, and I'm looking for a low key place to hold the reception, in

So, we've got up to 150 people coming, we're working on arranging the catering and so on at the moment. What we'd like is a hall or reception room not too far out of town, with an open outdoor area as we plan to have a spit roast.

This is a low key event, neither of us are into the big fancy wedding thing, we want a nice location where we can have the celebrant do their thing, and hang out with family and friends for an afternoon and evening. It doesn't have to be a fancy building, by which we mean that even a decent size scout hall in a good location would do for the day!

We're arranging our catering, so we aren't looking for the sort of place that has its own catering as part of the deal.

I live in Blackburn, and the idea of a place not more than 45 minutes drive from home is appealing, but I will travel further for a really nice location.

Thanks all!
posted by tomble to Grab Bag (7 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
The Fairfield or Studley Park boathouses on the Yarra could fit the bill. I've gone to a couple of weddings at those locations and they were fun. If I recall correctly, at the very least the Studley Park boathouse had outside catering.
posted by tim_in_oz at 8:23 PM on August 16, 2010

Check out the community halls of Warrandyte (plus Nth W'dyte & Sth W'dyte), Eltham, Diamond Creek, Research, Kangaroo Ground, St Andrews (if it's still standing), Hurstbridge etc. Also Healesville. All nice bushy areas and close enough to Blackburn.
posted by Kerasia at 8:23 PM on August 16, 2010

Town Halls, and civic centres in Melbourne can be surprisingly inexpensive and flexible in regards to outside catering, but need to be booked as far in advance as possible. While I was researching engagement party locations (2 years ago), I came across Box Hill Community Arts Centre, which looks like it may tick some/all your boxes. Bowling clubs were also a welcoming type of venue to look into.
We ended up going more inner-suburbs in the end for our wedding (ceremony at Labassa, Caulfield; reception at Banquet Hall, Malvern Town Hall, self-catered). Neither has a spot for a spit roast, but were beautiful.
posted by metaphorical at 8:27 PM on August 16, 2010

... list of local bowling clubs
posted by metaphorical at 8:48 PM on August 16, 2010

How about Westerfolds park, on the Yarra out at Templestowe? You would need a permit, but not hard to arrange, and you wont get crowded out.
posted by wilful at 11:29 PM on August 16, 2010

A friend had a joint 30th birthday at the Hawthorn bowling club. This shows the clubhouse (in not great photos) and the rates for hire. I liked the hall, being sort of quaint with pictures of the Queen, old pennants, board of past winners. There is a picture of the outside here, under 'St James' (the park in which the bowls club is set). Not a 'showy' location, but pleasant park setting.
posted by AnnaRat at 3:20 AM on August 17, 2010

Thanks all, this gives me a great starting place, and some suggestions I wouldn't have thought of. I'll update when I've worked out what's going on.
posted by tomble at 4:25 PM on August 17, 2010

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