The Newest Doltone Wedding Reception Venue is going ‘Green’

News media release about Doltone’s newest waterfront wedding reception/event centre at Darling Island Wharf which is set to launch in October 2009:

Doltone House is pioneering a green approach to building construction, design, materials and operation in Sydney.

Situated on the stunning Sydney waterfront, Doltone House’s newest venue Darling Island Wharf has been crafted by green-minded industry experts to become part of the first six-star green-star rated building, workplace6, in New South Wales. Workplace6 is only the second building in Australia to obtain this coveted certification, and this six-star green-star rating represents the world’s best practices in sustainability.

Darling Island Wharf incorporates a fresh food and wine emporium complete with open kitchen, a buzzing café, intimate meeting rooms and an 800 seated capacity event space – an inspirational and unique project from the team at Doltone House. Paul Signorelli, Managing Director of Doltone House, was inspired by the environmental initiatives of Workplace6. “Our plans for the internal fit out were specifically created to complement those of the building. By adopting and expanding on the green philosophies of the building itself, Doltone House aims to lead the way into the future by providing the greenest venue in Sydney.”

Workplace 6 reduces greenhouse emissions by 70% compared to a normal office building. In harmony with this, the interior of Darling Island Wharf is clad in a variety of ‘environmentally honest’ and durable materials: recycled, green-minded, low-toxin emitting and built to last. Eco-ply flooring and stone are the obvious green materials used throughout the site –yet even the carpet in the event centre has green credentials. The event centre bar is made from a durable marble with a high quality finish, while a counter crafted from recycled Ironwood from Queensland is the focal point of the bluestone-clad cafe downstairs.

On a structural level, Workplace 6 is Australia’s first building to use concrete manufactured from recycled products. The high performance insulation used throughout the building is green-certified as manufactured without the use of ozone-depleting gases. Details such as custom-fitted carbon dioxide sensors and variable speed fans are employed in Darling Island Wharf to reduce the toxin emission and air pollution normally associated with buildings of this scale. As a result, fresh air supply is increased by up to 50% making it a healthier, safer space for the public.

Energy reduction is a significant factor in being green, and Doltone House have tackled this issue head on. In the kitchen, gas combi ovens that run on natural gas, have been installed while fridges and freezers will be insulated with thick panels to reduce energy consumption. Perhaps the most iconic innovation is the ‘watercool’ system, which captures heat rejected from Sydney harbour and transforms it into usable energy for the building’s water-cooling system. Environmental initiatives also extend to the site’s every day operation, including re-using blackwater for parkland irrigation and a tri-generation energy system – where heat, power and chilled water for air conditioning are produced by one single unit. While ‘greening’ a site of this scale adds an extra 15% to construction and fit-out cost, embracing the green approach at this level signifies Doltone House’s serious commitment to environmental and social responsibility.

Have a look at the artists impressions.


For event inquiries you can contact Julie van der Weegen (Doltone House Venue Sales Manager)

Phone 02 8571 0622

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Ceremony Location & Reception Venue in Blue Mountains

Last Friday I was photographing a wedding in the Blue Mountains.  The location for both the wedding ceremony and reception was at the historic house and estate ‘Yester Grange’.

Situated at the end of Yester Road Wentworth Falls, the estate is nestled on 10 acres and backs onto world heritage National Park wilderness. 

Yester Grange’s website boasts one of the finest views you will find anywhere in the world.  Let me tell you that I agree with this claim but it is a view you just have to see for yourself.  The wedding ceremony was held on the lawn so the National Park wilderness was the stunning back drop.  Afterwards guests strolled towards the historic house for a three course sit down reception.

The wedding couple shared with me that Yester Grange is a secret little gem and I have to admit that it was my first time photographing there.  I found the staff friendly, the bushlands and grounds stunning and the house quaint and charming.

If you are looking to get out of Sydney for your wedding, check out Yester Grange as a possibility.




Yester Grange Wedding Reception  Stunning View For Wedding Ceremony in Blue Mountains

Blue Mountains Reception Venues

Yester Grange Wedding Reception Venue



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Wedding Reception Seating Planning

Yesterday I received an email from Charmaine, who asks “I was just wondering would you know of any seat planning and organising the reception materials you can download or something like that”?

Great topic idea Charmaine, for the first post of 2009!

With this I decided to do a little research of my own.  I found some great posts, already written on planning wedding reception seating.


Wedding Blog 

Brilliant Wedding Pages  


Looking on the company Smart Draw’s website, I found what looked to be a free download of their seating planning software.  It may just be a free trial and it looks as if it would be suited for large event management requirements.  Thought however for larger weddings it may be helpful.

Some different wedding reception seating arrangement ideas I have personally come across:


  • Bride & groom have a table to themselves while the bridal party sit on the guest tables.
  • Bride & groom move onto different tables throughout the night.  This would mean the bridal couple would share their entre, main meal and desert with different people.
  • Placing the photographer at the bridal table (this actually happened to me on one wedding.  I have to admit it was a lovely gesture but I felt that I shouldn’t have been on the table).
  • Bride & groom with the bridal party and their partners all on one table.
  • Bride & groom with their parents on the bridal table with the bridal party sitting with their partners on the guest tables.
  • Everyone sitting on the one very long table i.e. bride, groom and all guests together. (King Edward of England style)
  • No actual seating plans.  When guests walked into the reception they selected where they wanted to sit.
  • Picnic style.  Everyone sat on pillows, blankets etc.  The room was beautifully decorated with a bohemian theme.




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Taronga Centre Reception Venue

The Taronga Zoo Reception Centre is another one of my favourite wedding reception venues.


I like it because:


1)       Amazing view of the City of Sydney, Harbour Bridge, Opera House and Centre Point Tower!

2)       Couples have the option of not only hosting their reception at the venue but also their ceremony.  There are different options for where the ceremony can be held.  One option is under cover (a good option if concerned about the weather).

3)       Bridal party photographs throughout the zoo, is a possibility.

4)       Other great locations near the zoo for photography.  See example photographs

5)       The food and service has always been exceptional.


My only note on this venue is that they appear to have a regular change over of wedding coordinators (approx every 18 months).  However this is probably the average amount of time wedding coordinators will stay at a particular job.  Read my post on ‘wedding coordinators’ for more information about this subject. Also I must say I have never heard anything bad about this venue, wedding co-ordinators, service or staff, only very happy reports.


Enjoy the photographs taken from the Taronga Centre.



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Finding A Good Wedding Reception Venue

On Friday, I travelled north along the Northern Beaches Peninsular to photograph a wedding at Whale Beach.  The reception was at Moby’s Beach House, which is one of my favourite wedding venues.  Yes the venue has an amazing view of Whale Beach and yes the food is exceptional but the service is what I love the most about Moby’s.


After each wedding, many bride and grooms will often share details with me about their wedding.  What they loved, the highlights and even anything about their wedding that they were disappointed in.


On the drive home from photographing Friday’s wedding, I started thinking about how I have never heard any bad reports about Moby’s – only flourishing and glowing testimonies.


To be honest, I am not surprised.  The reason is I have long since believed that a way to tell how a wedding couple will be treated by the venue’s staff and mangers can be gadged by how the ‘hired hands’ are treated.  By ‘hired hands’ I mean the photographers, videographers, musicians and DJ etc. 


Moby’s staff, owners and managers have always treated me as the photographer with courtesy and respect therefore I am not surprised that they would be even more supportive and caring of their wedding couples and guests.


The best tip I can offer any couple in deciding which wedding reception venue to book is to ask the ‘hired hands’ on their experiences of the possible venues.  You may be surprised on what information you will find out.


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Reception Venue – Waters Edge Sydney

I thought a photographic exposé on different wedding reception venues might be a helpful idea.


Included in the post, would be images of recent actual weddings at these reception venues.


Then readers could feel free to add any comments or experiences they have had at these venues (good or bad) to help other wedding couples at the stage of looking to book their wedding reception venue.


First wedding reception photographic exposé is Sydney’s Waters Edge Restaurant in Walsh Bay.


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