The Lancemore Group

Choosing a venue for your wedding happens with your heart – it’s the feel of the place, the sudden uplifting of your soul that tells you ‘this is it’, that will draw you in. The Lancemore Group has four spectacular venues in Victoria – Mansion Hotel & Spa at Werribee Park, Lindenderry at Red Hill , Lindenwarrah at Milawa and Lancemore Hill at Macedon Ranges. Each is unique and  beautiful in its own right – set amongst vineyards, in magnificently tended gardens with nooks and crannies for wedding ceremonies and receptions, at the foot of National Parks and mountain ranges – all of them within easy reach of Melbourne. There is a sense that at each of these venues everyone takes great pride in offering you the very best of each region, with carefully planned and executed menus and wedding planners who love what they do. And there you have the perfect package for your wedding day, no matter which venue you choose!


Where is Mansion Hotel & Spa located?
The Mansion Hotel & Spa is in the heart of Werribee Park, which is roughly half an hour from Melbourne’s CBD.

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Image by Loco Photography

What is its history?
The Mansion has such an endearing history. The property was originally constructed in the early 1870’s by an immigrant farmer to welcome his recently betrothed from Europe. You can actually still sense this sentiment in the property, there is an air of anticipation.

How would you describe the ‘style’ of this venue and the gardens?
Built in a distinctly classical Italianate architectural-style, the details are ornate and can have quite an imposing effect. Today, set against enchanting labyrinths of floral gardens and with modern touches, the history is still etched in the very fabric of the property, creating a soft, romantic energy that translates to a contemporary take on a European classic. Think Marie Antoinette, but in the vein of Sofia Coppola, Old-World with razor-sharp edge.

Please describe the various locations for a ceremony and reception?
We are incredibly fortunate at the Mansion Hotel & Spa to have some of the most sublime gardens in the State. The grounds are managed independently by Parks Victoria, which means there is a trove of landscape extraordinaires ensuring that the gardens are perfectly curated and have continuity in their presentation regardless of the season.

If you are partial to water-scapes, a ceremony overlooking the pond captures the lush surrounds and, if you’re lucky, you might even have some of the local birdlife make an appearance. Otherwise there is no shortage of outdoor options, all of which promise the opportunity to bring the Bride and Groom’s own unique style to the site.

If you would prefer to echo the property’s historical aesthetics in the ceremony, vows can be exchanged in the intimate setting of the library, or on the balcony of the Mansion, which overlooks the grounds.

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Image by She Takes Pictures He Makes Films

What is the style of food offered here?
Our seasonal menus are thoughtfully created to parallel with what is quintessentially the property’s essence. With a decidedly European influence that pays homage to classical fine dining, dishes focus on fresh, local produce in a sophisticated and creative way.

How can a bridal couple best avail themselves of the chef’s skills when planning their menu?
The menu should echo how the couple envisions their wedding style to be. Undoubtedly they will communicate this style to their wedding coordinator, who is expert at marrying what we offer with what they are musing about. So the best advice would ultimately be to have parameters around what you definitely do and don’t want, and then build on this with the coordinator. Our menus are incredibly extensive and are curated with different “wedding stories” in mind. So do take advantage of menu tastings and be vocal about the things that worked and the things that didn’t.

Please describe the chef’s favourite dish of the moment?
This is like asking a parent to name their favourite child; sinful! But, if marooned on a remote island and with only one menu option to choose from, Chef says he would find it difficult to look beyond the Roasted Gisborne duck breast, which features grilled, fleshy peach cheeks, boudin noir & a PX glaze – this would of course have to be washed down with our award winning Lindenderry Pinot Noir.

Is there accommodation available for the wedding party and guests onsite?
Wedding parties can certainly stay onsite overnight and with the recent trend in weddings carrying through till the following morning for a post-party breakfast, we have found more and more bridal couples taking up this option.

Aside from being a breathtaking wedding venue, the Mansion Hotel & Spa is actually one of Victoria’s premier boutique hotels. We have 91 accommodation rooms, all featuring the same intricacies bridal couples fall in love with when booking their weddings with us, plush fabrics, delicate furnishings and iconic views.

What unique features does this venue offer the bridal couple?
With your own dedicated wedding coordinator, couples have the ability to be intuitively understood, so that their dream wedding effortlessly comes to life. Every detail of their day is unique to who they are as a couple and the vision they have of their wedding and marriage to come.

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Image by Ben Swinnerton

How is the ambience of this venue best enhanced for a wedding? Do you have some styling suggestions to offer for this space?
Perhaps the greatest quality of the Mansion is that there really is no limit to what can be created – stylistically you really are only restricted to your imagination (or that of your stylists!).

We’ve had some of the most visually stunning weddings created here and also some of the most innovative. From a hyper-modern space that fused industrial-elements with a soft femininity, to classical, lavish style receptions that celebrate the antiquity of the property. Here ambience is determined not so much by the wedding style, but is rather enhanced by the honesty of the bridal couple and their own, distinctive style.

How can bridal couples bring the delights of such a unique venue and location into their wedding to create a different experience for their guests?
Once again this comes down to the honesty of your wedding vision. There are so many ways to integrate the property’s essence into your day so that your wedding is uniquely your own, but firstly you have to be confident in your direction. For instance, if you visualise your first dance under a star-flecked sky, then we would encourage you to hold your reception in the Pavilion, where we could set up an outdoor dance floor for you and your guests to dance with the moonlit gardens as your backdrop.


Where is Lindenderry situated?
We are in Red Hill, which is at the heartland of Victoria’s Mornington Peninsula – about an hour from Melbourne’s CBD.

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Image by May Photography

Please describe some ceremony locations in the garden?
The property is found at the bottom of one of the most spectacular driveways I’ve ever driven down. It opens lush and leafy, with established vineyards, roses and sculptural trees along the way. As you wind your way down to the entrance, you’re met with an aisle of towering Conifer trees. Typically this corridor acts as the main stage for our ceremonies. With the rolling peaks of Red Hill providing a picture-perfect backdrop, the site captures boundless vines and offers the opportunity for a dramatic entrance.

Moving to the back of the property you will find an enchanting overgrown path that leads toward a lake shrouded with a floral array of hydrangeas, lilies and roses. Here you feel like you’ve stumbled upon your own blossoming oasis and, being somewhat detached from the rest of the property, creates an aura of other-worldliness.

There is also an internal, oriental inspired space at the center of the property affectionately known as the Zen Garden. There is such an intimate, sensory energy in the area, perfect for smaller less formal occasions.

Does the reception have to be held inside, or may a couple opt for tables in the garden?
With a backdrop like this, it’s pretty difficult to imagine wanting to move the reception inside and we love nothing more than a dinner beneath the stars. However, obviously the elements can sometimes have other plans in mind that can make outdoor receptions problematic. This just means we typically recommend a “backup plan” like a marquee.


Image by Immerse Photography

What is the chef’s food philosophy and food style?
Our chef, Michael Greenlaw, is actually globally recognised for his culinary genius! This year he took home the title as “Best Chef in the World” at an international cooking competition. So we are incredibly fortunate to have him at the helm when it comes to designing our wedding menus. Ex-Vue De Monde, Michael’s philosophy plays on the property’s sense of place, fusing European roots with a distinctly regional edge.

Is the chef able to create a unique menu reflecting the bridal couple’s favourite foods, dietary requirements and particular style?
We’re pretty blessed in that although Michael is exceptional at what he does, he is also one of the most humble and inviting chefs going round. Meaning he is always receptive to working with a couple to curate a menu that is reflective of their style, whilst still leveraging his talent.

As Lindenderry is in a vineyard, do you offer food and wine matching?
Absolutely! Our menus are considered with wine front of mind and, dependent upon how important the wine experience is, we have a number of menu options that allow you and your guests to explore our substantial wine offerings.

Is Lindenderry known for its wines too?
It seems that each year our wines continue to come into their own. This year however, we surpassed any expectations even we had. Being awarded with another 5 stars from James Halliday in the 2016 Wine Companion and with five of our wines scoring 95 or above, our wine production is quickly putting us at the forefront of one of Australia’s leading wine regions.

Do you have on-site accommodation?
Yes, we have 40 accommodation rooms available. Lindenderry recently underwent a soft-refurbishment that transformed the rooms into private havens that celebrate the property’s best features, our gardens. Each room has been thoughtfully designed with a distinctive personality dependent on the unique view it captures.

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Image by Nathan Lavingdale Photography

Do you have an onsite wedding planner? How much freedom do couples have with their wedding décor?
Our onsite coordinator at Lindenderry is Dee and she is one in a mega-million! She’s the kind of person you want in your corner when planning a wedding because she will jump through hoops of any shape and size to ensure every second of your wedding is exactly as you envisioned.

Stylistically, the property is merely a canvas onto which couples can articulate their ultimate ambitions. Of course we have standardised décor available, however we are but an oyster, couples bring their own sand to create the pearl!

Do you have wedding packages available?
We have numerous packages available that help in guiding ideas and also assist in managing expectations.

LANCEMORE HILL AT MACEDON RANGES (now known as Lancemore Macedon Ranges)

Where is Lancemore Hill situated?
We are on the outskirts of the historic town of Lancefield, which is roughly an hour’s drive from Melbourne.


Image courtesy of The Lancemore Group

What makes this venue special for weddings?
The expanses of almost untouched land! A private estate on the bluffs of the Macedon Ranges, Lancemore Hill is truly enchanting. Set amongst rolling hills and vineyards, the property captures the magic of our sublime, Australian landscape.

Do you have a wedding planner here to assist with the wedding?
Indeed, the property has an onsite dedicated event coordinator.

Are you able to recommend vendors for the bridal couple to use?
Definitely! One of the great things about operating in such a niche market in a regional area is that the coordinator develops great rapport with their district partners, so will be able to confidently guide couples during the planning process.

Which vendors do a couple need to bring in?
This is at the couple’s own discretion and is contingent upon their vision. Everything is available onsite however, bringing vendors in is typically a choice rather than a necessity.


Image courtesy of The Lancemore Group

How would you describe the food at Lancemore Hill?
As a rustic indulgence. Lancemore Hill has an onsite chef committed to offering hearty, gourmet fare that reflects the region’s bountiful produce.

Are bridal couples able to organize different food options with the chef e.g. a cheese table, an icecream bar, all local produce etc?
Being a private estate means that the entire property is reserved for a couple on their wedding. This gives us flexibility not often seen in larger establishments. Our wedding coordinator works closely with the chef to ensure that the menu captures the essence the bridal couple has articulated as their style.

Please describe some special photograph locations around the property?
Lancemore Hill encompasses over 200 acres of native bushland and offers up some of the most painstakingly beautiful geographical landscapes. There is a delicate antagonism of unkempt nature against perfectly manicured grounds, creating breathtaking nuances that leave an undeniable “Australian” impression. If you can close your eyes and imagine exchanging vows on the bluff of a deep valley, whilst the glittering red-gold sun dips behind you, then Lancemore Hill is the perfect place for your wedding!

How many guests are able to attend a wedding here and to provide accommodation for?
The property can cater up to 120 guests seated or 200 guests cocktail-style and we have 71 onsite accommodation rooms available.


Image courtesy of The Lancemore Group

What activities and attractions do you offer guests on site?
We encourage our guests to step outside and get lost in the wilderness. Let their lungs fill with the fresh, eucalyptus tinged air. Take a hike and explore the valleys and crevasses that imprint the land.

For guests who want to make a weekend of it, what other attractions are there in the area?
It would be entirely un-Australian not to know the eerie tale of Hanging Rock and the vanished schoolgirls. A trip to Hanging Rock, hiking the trails as a group, or having a post-wedding BBQ at the base, would be such a memorable way to end an extended wedding weekend.


Where is Lindenwarrah situated ?
We are in the beautiful little town of Milawa which is in the Victorian High Country – home to the state’s gourmet heartland, the King Valley! If you jump on the Hume Highway (and don’t get distracted by all the gorgeous little country towns along the way), you will find us in about two and a half hours.

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Image by John Mitchell Photography

What is unique about Lindenwarrah, its ambiance and its surrounds?
The light! Milawa sits at the foothills of the Alpine National Park, so every which way you look you are met with towering mountains, trickling rivers and rolling vineyards and from all of this, the light seems to bounce from the landscape like nothing I’ve ever seen before. There is a true enchantment and quietude that inhabits Lindenwarrah and I attribute this to the way the light dances across the property here.

Is there a wedding planner on site?
Absolutely we do! Maria, our onsite event coordinator, is extraordinary too. She has an affinity with the region that is truly inspiring, which gives her an edge on bringing to life a couple’s vision.

Do bridal couples tend to bring vendors in from Melbourne, or are there local vendors you can recommend?
We don’t like to place restrictions around any event, vendors inclusive of this. We have relationships with an array of local vendors however, who can assist in creating events in so many incarnations. So we always have this arsenal at our couple’s disposal and logistically this tends to safeguard any unforeseen hiccups.

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Image by John Mitchell Photography

Which vendors need to be accessed externally?
Typically our couples tend to outsource the majority of the wedding styling. Visually, Lindenwarrah is a dream to style. The backdrop is fresh and subtle, an ideal canvas for allowing creativity to shine.

Please describe some spaces in the garden for a ceremony?
We have a secluded garden at the front of the property that is a shaded by lush, towering hedges and the most enchanting Elm tree. Dotted with reflection ponds and plush grass carpeting the entire area, this is a favoured ceremonial spot for its intimate detachment from the remainder of the property.

Moving toward the back of the property you will be met with an entirely opposing perspective – with views out to Mt Buffalo there is an appealing air here of limitlessness and absolute expanse.

How would you describe style of the interior of Lindenwarrah?
Whilst our restaurant Merlot is sleek and modern, the large floor to ceiling windows bring the outside in, letting that magical Milawa light trickle throughout the room. The contemporary touches of the property are softened by the perspectives that overlook the gardens and capture the mountainous terrains that loom in the background.

An exciting food discovery from the region which could be part of a wedding menu is…
Milawa is famous for its cheese! Incorporating a touch of our local fromage into the menu could be a subtle way to integrate the region into the day.

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Image by John Mitchell Photography

How many guests can be accommodated at the reception and at the hotel, to stay the night?
Restaurant Merlot can host parties of up to 150, whilst we have 40 spacious, delicately styled accommodation rooms, including two Bridal Suites.

What attractions are there for guests in this region?
Lindenwarrah is literally at the doorstep of some of the region’s greatest epicurean experiences! There’s no greater way to discover the region than from the seat of a bike. I love nothing more than wandering over to Brown Brothers (which is directly opposite the property), borrowing a bike and setting out on an expedition for the day. Along the way you will find cascading waterfalls, untouched mountains, carved with deep crevasses and fissures and then, once you have worked up an appetite, you should explore the other bounties of the region, food and wine!

Thank you Amara for sharing the story of your four magnificent venues. To find out more about The Mansion Hotel & Spa, Lindenderry, Lancemore Hill, and Lindenwarrah please visit their website.

Headshot courtesy of Amara Speechley.