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newly wed couple being romantic in front of whitsundays coastal view with a header text "Booking Your Whitsundays Destination Wedding Planner"

Booking Your Whitsundays Destination Wedding Planner

By | Blog

Having a destination wedding has become increasingly popular among Australians and couples the world over.  With help from the right destination wedding planner, you can enjoy crafting the perfect wedding day without having to travel there in advance, and without feeling out of control and stressed; you get access to trusted local vendors and they’ll provide you with advice and recommendations that fit with your budget and vision.

With Covid-19 restrictions Whitsunday wedding venues have suffered this year, losing out on national and international couples who wish to get married away from home. If you’re a Queensland bride-to-be however, you can consider yourself lucky as the stunning Whitsundays are just a short plane ride away.  Tying the knot at a Whitsunday wedding venue looks like the best option for Queensland couples looking to trade their local venue options for a dream destination wedding venue in the coming year.

However stunning an Airlie Beach wedding may be, couples often feel like they have less control on wedding planning when the venue is away from home and are therefore somewhat put off, despite the numerous attractive qualities.

Through hiring a professional expert destination wedding planner you can put your stresses and concerns aside, the simple trick is finding the right planner for you! 

Top Tips on How to Find a Great Destination Wedding Planner:

whitsunday wedding venue with twinkling string lights at Villa Botanica - Destination Wedding Planner at Queensland

Jennifer Treloar Photography

– If you’ve got a venue in mind ask them what planners they work with. Judge those planners on how they communicated with clients and vendors, their organisation and management skills, and their overall professionalism.

– Use social media sites to do your own research, see what other couples have done and check out who was the planner behind that big day. 

– Look for testimonials from real wedding guests and couples, read what couples have said about their planners. You’ll want to feel confident that you are dealing with a planner you can trust.

Set up a call with your prospective planner about what the vision is for your wedding. Many can put together an attractive wedding but you need a problem-solver who knows how to mediate.

For excellent wedding planning support and an overall flawlessly planned destination wedding, make sure you ask your prospective destination wedding planner these 12 essential questions:

1. Are you specialised in destination weddings?

Make sure to find a planner or coordinator that actually specialises in destination weddings. Nobody wants to have to make decisions on vendors and seating arrangements blindly over the phone, miles away from the location. You need a trusted expert on hand to take care of it all for you. Ask them about the destination weddings they have planned so far and how they overcame any challenges they faced.

If a specialised planner isn’t in your budget, look for a resort with a strong on-site coordinator. This solution is more cost-effective compared to paying for a planner separately. This type of planner will also have valuable experience with that specific venue so they can guide you in creating a flawless day.

2. Are you a local planner?

Destination weddings attract all kinds of vendors and wedding service providers, but not all of these people are very knowledgeable about the resort, local catering and other wedding services, etc. Hire a planner who knows the location very well so they can recommend you the best local vendors, activities, and venues. Without insider information certain points may be overlooked, casting a shadow on your big day.

3. What packages would be best for me to consider?

Too shy to ask about prices? You don’t have to. Instead of asking how much you need to pay for the services of a wedding planning Qld professional, ask them about their packages and what they cover. You will avoid feeling awkward and you will be getting more useful information at the same time. Often you will find that package deals coordinated by a planner will be more cost-effective and fitting to your budget. Make use of your planners links and local knowledge – they will likely source the best deal for your budget. This brings us onto…

4. What discounts can I receive through you?

If you are not sure where to start or how much you should be paying for various wedding services, be sure to ask your planner directly. Friends who have just got married may not be completely honest with you and wedding websites can lie or have hidden costs too. If you want to make sure you are not working with unrealistic numbers in your head, or you’re avoiding a wedding day over-splurge, ask about the discounts that the wedding planner can give you access to.

5. Do you receive a commission?

Hiring a wedding planner means you will be gaining valuable access to insights from a wedding industry professional, allowing you to collaborate with the best vendors for your wedding day. Many clients wonder if they have to use the vendors recommended by wedding planners. It is important that your planner provides you with options when it comes to selecting vendors.  Working with recommended vendors is more efficient because you don’t need to spend time searching for other vendors on your own.

6. What has been your favourite wedding moment so far?

Wondering if you and this wedding planner are a match when it comes to organising your day at your destination wedding venue? Ask them about their fondest memories since becoming a planner, it will help you establish who they are and learn what exactly it is they love about what they do. Get to know your prospective destination wedding planner before you commit, it’s likely you will figure out whether they are a good fit for you or not early on in the research stage.

7. How many clients do you take per year and per month?

A number that is too small suggests the wedding planner does not really focus on wedding planning as their main profession. A number too large shows that he or she may be trying to juggle too many weddings just to earn more and not paying enough attention to each event. You need someone who is experienced and not overloading themselves, so they can devote sufficient time and experience to your big day.

8. Can you help me stay on a budget?

This question does not mean that you are looking for a cheap destination wedding planner; you are simply being a sensible couple. You need someone who is money-savvy and can tell you when and where to increase your budget and also where it is possible to lower costs without compromising on the success and quality of the event. While it may be tempting to buy luxury services on occasion of your wedding, the best thing is to keep in mind other expenses you may have after tying the knot, such as paying for a new home or vehicle, you don’t want to start your marriage with extra, unnecessary stress.

9. How do we keep in touch with you?

Knowing the availability of your destination wedding planner is crucial when you are organising a destination wedding such as an Airlie beach wedding. You will want to be in constant communication with your wedding planner in the months leading up to the big day, so you want to know how and when you can reach them. Ask them if they prefer to be called, emailed, or texted, or a combination of the above. Thankfully technology allows for virtual tours and more hands-on, face-to-face input without having to actually physically be there.

10. What happens in case of emergency?

As with most things, when it comes to planning you need to hope for the best and prepare for the worst. Your chosen wedding planner should have a well thought out backup plan in case anything goes wrong – like sending another trusted wedding planner with access to their work and data in case of sickness or personal emergency.

All these questions are aimed at securing a wedding planner that you feel you can trust, especially when you can’t go to and from the venue as you please. A planner that knows what you want, communicates effectively and knows all the best vendors to ensure your day is perfect.

Villa Botanica provides their own wedding planning services and will assign you a dedicated wedding planner from day one. Our experienced destination wedding planner will take you through what to expect and will present the entire planning process; we’ve crafted countless unforgettable and unique weddings already.

The first step towards making your wedding dream come true is contacting our expert destination wedding planner. Contact us online and ask any questions you might have about your destination wedding today.

banner image of a person holding a food on a table filled with foods and champagne with a title of "Picking The Best Wedding Catering For Your Whitsunday Wedding Venue"

Picking the Best Wedding Catering for Your Whitsunday Wedding Venue

By | Blog

Catering is one of the most difficult parts of wedding planning; if anything goes wrong, the success of your event can be compromised. Wedding catering cost is to be considered as well. Unlike certain other expenses which stay the same regardless of how many guests you have, the cost of food increases with each extra person that comes to your wedding.  And there is also the situation when you have guests who RSVP but don not show up, leaving you with extra food that you have already paid for, or fussy eaters and dietary requirement to consider.

When choosing your wedding venue, you need to take into account catering at the same time, as the two vendors need to be located as close to each other as possible and preferably to have worked together before. Let’s dig into your wedding catering so you are not taken by surprise when it comes to deciding on wedding reception caterers. 

Catering Options

aquava boutique wedding catering for Villa Botanica Whitsunday Wedding Venue

Luke Middle Miss Photography

Catering plays a central role at any event, it can set a tone – casual dining to the elegance of fine dining. Eating together enables us to connect to each other, share stories, catch up and spend some quality time in general. Even throughout the pandemic food still meets this function of bringing people together. However, do be aware that current restrictions exist on the various types of dining options permitted at wedding and events. 

Luckily there numerous options that wedding catering services can provide. Having a garden wedding Queensland will enable you to get more creative and choose between multiple wedding food catering ideas:

Food truck wedding catering

Years ago, food trucks used to be reserved for fast food and had nothing festive about them; however, in the last years the culture of street food has risen as a totally legitimate and elegant option. Now you can be served the most exquisite dishes from food trucks and these vehicles are featured in a variety of informal outdoor events and celebrations. When food is served from a food truck, it is easier to follow social distancing regulations. Each dish is individually prepared and plated for each guest and you can call up individual tables one at a time to prevent guests from mingling. This option is most suitable if you are planning a garden wedding Queensland.

Individually-boxed meals

At these unusual times the most unusual catering options have been adapted to fit events such as weddings and other social functions. Wedding catering packages now include, among other options, individually boxed meals, that can contain anything from the simplest dishes to artisan-crafted meals. 

Traditional Wedding Catering

Of course, there is always the option of serving and enjoying food the traditional way. The sit-down, three-course reception dinner is a crowd pleaser that has stood the test of time. It doesn’t have to be boring as you can prepare the most amazing combinations and bring together the most unexpected and exotic flavours. 

Consider the Location with Regards the Menu

happy couple sitting on a beach sands with wedding catering foods provided at their whitsunday wedding venue

Summer Rain Photography

Using local produce for your wedding catering services will enable you to provide the best and most authentic quality food. It pays to know what ingredients are available especially when you are getting married at a destination wedding venue and are not really familiar with the gastronomy of the area.

For instance, coastal venues lend themselves to fresh seafood.  North Queensland offers a selection of quality meats, and fresh vegetables and fruit are available most of the year regardless of the geographical area in which you are getting married. Tropical North Queensland is extremely generous in terms of fresh produce and this area is known for some of the best wedding food catering services in Australia. 

Relying on local produce for your wedding catering does not only provide your guests with fresh, quality food but it also means you are supporting the local economy.


wedding champagne

Little Hurricane Photography

Citrus and herbal cocktails are among the most popular drink options at Australian weddings as they can be prepared anywhere at reasonable costs. Wherever you choose to get married, think about local distilleries and wineries in the area and incorporate local, quality produce for your wedding bar. Australian vineyards cover more than 170,000 hectares in different regions in New South Wales, South Australia, Western Australia, Tasmania, Victoria, and Queensland. As the 7th biggest wine producing country in the world, there are lots of local options to choose from, being home to more than 2,000 wineries, many of them small family-run businesses who would love the opportunity to supply your big day.


planning and budgeting for wedding catering at Villa Botanica Whitsunday Wedding Venue

Luke Middle Miss Photography

You don’t have to empty your bank account to provide an excellent dining experience for your wedding guests. There are many ways to save on your wedding catering cost no matter where you get married, at home or at a Whitsunday wedding venue. Some of the tips to keep your budgeting in control are:

  • Avoid getting married when the demand is high – caterers charge more during the wedding season (September to May);
  • The style of the reception matters – make sure everything flows ;
  • Elaborate and ornate preferences carry a higher price tag – a premier menu which includes expensive entrees and extravagant canapes will require you to get some extra dollars out of your pocket;
  • Reduce waste – why pay for food that people don’t eat? Base your catering selection on popular food options, do your research and opt for what your guests like and don’t be afraid to ask them about their preferences;
  • Book catering early – this will enable you to avoid rush fees when the service is not booked earlier than several months before the event.

Pleasing Fussy Eaters

Villa Botanica offer premium catering services for planning marriage

Nadine Kemp Photography

Make sure to include staple items you know the fussy eaters will like, especially if you have children and teenagers attending your wedding. 

Also remember securing food options for wedding guests with special dietary needs. Some of your friends may be vegan while other people may be allergic to some ingredients or suffer from other food intolerances. Luckily there are many catering options available for wedding receptions nowadays and vendors can adapt to special dietary requirements that are suitable for all categories, such as pregnant, religious beliefs, dairy-free, low-carb, diabetic, paleo, and many others. Simply ask about special dietary requirements your guests may have so you can plan your wedding reception menu. Depending on your caterer, you may have to pay a little more on your catering than budgeted, but at least you won’t have people turning up and not being able to eat the food.

What if you didn’t have to think about every aspect of your wedding catering cost and have a professional handling it for you?

Remove the stress of catering with Villa Botanica and Aquava Catering – all Villa Botanica catering is provided by Aquava, the boutique catering that provides a fusion of culinary delights for a variety of occasions from dinner parties and boutique weddings to private island events.

Some of their delicious catering includes:

  • Sugar cured Salmon with avocado and baby herbs
  • Fresh melon and Parma ham with basil and vintage balsamic
  • Porcini mushroom and parmesan arancini
  • Baby beetroot, labna, dukkah and micro herb salad
  • Coffin Bay Oyster with finger lime caviar

Aquava offers sit-down meals, canapes, picnics, cocktail receptions and has collaborated with Villa Botanica for hundreds of weddings. The most popular option is having cocktails and canapes on the sea-deck, followed by a sit-down meal on the veranda. 

Get in contact with Villa Botanica today to start planning your perfect wedding. Villa Botanica will be with you every step of the way; from catering to photographers we are here to help you. Get in contact with the team at Villa Botanica today via the website.

wedding reception games for wedding guests at Villa Botanica Whitsunday Wedding Venue

Wedding Reception Games Your Guests Will Love

By | Blog

Planning your wedding? Your focus is probably on the venue and other arrangements like catering, entertainment, photography, flowers, and so on. Have you considered livening things up by filling the gaps with games for your guests? Keep those guests entertained in the ‘down time’ with fun games and activities to get your guests away from their phones. Including at least one wedding reception games at your celebration can really make the big day a lot more interesting and entertaining both for you and your guests.

Fun wedding reception games are good because they help guests mingle and socialise, they enable people to break the ice, and are ideal for creating an atmosphere that is fun and friendly. There are plenty of fun ideas for wedding you can choose from. 

Check out our list of 13 wedding reception games perfect for livening up any wedding and get those guests socialising: 

13 wedding reception games for your wedding at Villa Botanica Whitsunday Wedding Venue

Luke Middle Miss Photography

1. Get Creative with Lego

Everybody loves Lego, and there are even sets for adults. This game idea works best when you also have children attending your wedding. Invite your guests to build their own unique Lego centrepiece and assign a judge who will announce the winner at the end of the night.

2. Jenga (Giant or Regular)

A classic one, the block-stacking game Jenga is perfect for outdoor wedding receptions and only needs a flat area like a tabletop. Jenga also comes in giant-size, perfect for grassy areas. Want to stand out?  If you like DIY wedding ideas, you can ask a hardware store to cut some lumber into 54 block-size pieces that you can paint and customise however you like.

3. Badminton

Badminton can be a professional sport as well as a fun game. We all have played it at least once but we usually ignore this simple activity than enables us to have fun and exercise at the same time. Why sit idle at a wedding when you could exercise your agility, improve your fitness, and put your reflexes to test? Badminton also has the advantage of being easy to set up, as the equipment is quite affordable. For playing at night, lace twinkling lights into the net and the wedding reception games for guest will go long into the night.

4. ‘I Dare You’

Do you sense a couple of bored guests sitting at the table? Challenge them with dares such as busting a new move on the dance floor, taking a selfie with a funny face, or kissing the person on their side.

5. Bride and Groom Trivia

It’s your day, so don’t be afraid to be the centre of attention. Create a list of trivia questions about you and your future spouse and ask for guests to answer. The DJ or a wedding guest can read the answers. Offer a prize to the person at each table with the most correct answers.

6. The Wedding Shoe Game

The wedding shoe game is probably the most popular wedding reception game. The bride and the groom are seated in chairs back to back. The groom holds one shoe of their own and one of the bride’s, and the bride vice versa. Someone reads the questions out loud for everyone to hear, and the couple raises the shoe of the person who is best represented by the answer to the question. Examples of questions are: 

  • Who made the first move? 
  • Who is a better dancer?
  • Who has the better shower singing voice?
  • Who is more likely to fall asleep during a movie?
  • Who has more clothing?

7. Hopscotch

This fun game is easy to create and will enable kids and why not, adults, to burn off some energy. You can draw it with chalk if the party is outdoors or you can use paper tape or paint that is easy to remove for an indoor reception.

8. Connect Four

Use an oversized version of this classic game to attract both kids and adults. The rules of this game are very easy: try to build a row of four checkers while preventing your opponent from doing the same. Not only do you need to create your row of four, but you also need to block the opponent’s moves!

9. High Striker

This old-fashioned carnival game will never lose its appeal. Guests can’t help it but wait their turn to wield the mallet and prove they are the strongest.

10. Word Search

Use a chalkboard to set up a word search game. Write the individual letters in permanent paint and provide chalk for circling words. To make the game more interesting, include personal trivia about the bride and the groom so the guests find out new things about you.

11. Board Games

Not everybody likes to dance and some guests may prefer an activity that is quieter. Provide your introverted guests options like Chess, Scrabble, Monopoly, Checkers, Clue, or the Settlers of Catan and they will have lots of fun at your wedding instead of feeling uncomfortable and exhausted.

12. Picture Hunt

Send your guests a scavenger hunt challenge consisting of a list of 20 wedding moments they need to photograph. Such moments can be the bride and groom kissing, somebody proposing a toast, or group selfies. Offer a prize to the person submitting the largest number of photos and enjoy more pictures with the most important moments of your wedding.

13. Musical Chairs

Would you like to see your guests scrambling for chairs? This hilarious wedding reception game consists of progressively removing chairs and asking people to sit down when the music stops. The person without a chair is disqualified and the winner is the one who manages to keep a chair until the end of the game. Just make sure you don’t play musical chairs after a drinking game!

Don’t Forget to Provide a Designated Kids Table

wedding reception table for kids

Brooke Miles Wedding Photography

If your wedding is going to be family/kid-friendly then it is a good idea to offer some fun options for them. Otherwise they will get bored which tends to lead to mischief, which can then disrupt the entire event. Plan ahead by creating a kid’s table or designated area where they can do fun activities such as colouring in, playing with Lego, playing giant tic-tac-toe, or even breaking a piñata (you might want to opt for low sugar lollies on this one!). 

If you’re planning an adults-only wedding, research local child minding services for your guests to make use of.  Speak to your venue about your plans for the big day, they can offer up entertainment ideas, find local vendors and recommend quality services to make your life easier. 

Villa Botanica is a Whitsunday wedding venue perfect for a wedding day your guests won’t forget. Expert planners and a stunning destination wedding location, Villa Botanica is a beautiful outdoor venue consisting of 5 acres of lush, landscaped garden, along with its own private stretch of beach. 

Villa Botanica is the perfect Queensland wedding venue for you to enjoy exclusively for the entire day, as we only schedule one wedding at a time. You can bring all your friends and family together to celebrate, make memories and enjoy quality time. Just tell us what your wedding dreams, goals and ideas are and we can help you make them reality.

5 Ways To Plan The Perfect LGBTQ Wedding for a Same Sex Wedding Ceremony

5 Ways to Plan the Perfect Same Sex Wedding

By | Blog

Planning a same sex wedding can often be more difficult and tricky to navigate. They are still a relatively new occurrence therefore decision-making and planning can require greater effort and research. However, there is a huge advantage of same-sex ceremonies: you can incorporate a lot more creative flair and easily say goodbye to boring traditions and ditch the dated, old-fashioned wedding conventions. Redesign those traditional roles that society has grown and evolved away from, and celebrate societal advancement in a big way with a fabulously stand-out wedding. In this article we’ll discover how to plan an unforgettable same sex marriage ceremony and reception, and what are the main aspects you should keep in mind when tying the knot as a LGBTQ couple:

How To Plan The Perfect LGBTQ Wedding

1. Think about traditional roles, do you want to adapt to them or ditch them?

Villa Botanica Gardens traditional wedding for Rachel and Tash lgbtq wedding ceremony

Timeless Images by Vanessa

There are many questions that pop out when people are invited to a same sex wedding ceremony, such as “Who will walk down the aisle first?” or “Will there be a best man?” One thing is for sure – not all traditions can be incorporated into this type of wedding, which, if we are honest, isn’t necessarily a bad thing.  On the other hand, you can still incorporate some of the elements of heterosexual weddings to structure your day as long as you adapt them to feel right for you.

Before structuring and planning your wedding, you need to be informed on how same sex marriage is perceived in Australia and related legislation. Same sex marriage has been legal in Australia since 9 December 2017 and legislation allows this type of marriage under the Marriage Amendment Act 2017. This means that you should not have any problem getting legally married, but when it comes to the religious ceremony, things can be more complicated. Many religious organisations in Australia do not perform same-sex marriages in their places of worship, but you can have a celebrant-led marriage, a service offered by many exquisite wedding venues such as Villa Botanica.

2. Announce your big day in a special way

Luke Middle Miss Photography

Same sex wedding ceremonies are still a novelty for a lot of people, so the way you share the news with them can have a major impact on their attitude. Let them know that this wedding will be something different than what they are used to, that you will forego some of the most common wedding traditions, and that you are happy to have at your wedding guests supporting your right to marry.  

The first step of your same sex wedding planning should be inviting the right guests to your wedding in the most practical manner. We recommend ditching the traditional invites and using a wedding website instead as this will allow you to inform guests on what to expect from the upcoming event. Having a wedding website whether you are a heterosexual or a LGBTQ couple comes with benefits such as:

– It helps with the overwhelming process of planning a wedding;

– It allows you to send out your save-the-dates and invitations digitally, while also tracking your RSVP’s online to confirm your guest numbers;

– It gives you access to important information from your guests such as dietary requirements;

– Wedding websites set the tone for the day and give guests some insight into your relationship;

– They allow you to communicate last-minute changes to your guests without having to contact each person individually;

– Can be cheaper than sending traditional paper invites especially when you have a large number of guests.

3. Make it a destination wedding

Villa Botanica Destination Wedding for a Same Sex Wedding

Studio Impressions

Same-sex marriage has been a long time coming so you’re going to want to make it a proper celebration. If your dream is to tie the knot at a destination wedding venue then do it! Actually, a destination wedding at a holiday locale such as a Whitsunday wedding venue can often be easier and cheaper to plan than a traditional wedding at a local venue. At the same time, you will have a truly unique wedding and enjoy the breathtaking beauty of Australia’s best scenery, such as that of an Airlie beach wedding.

There are countless destination wedding venues that support marriage equality, venues such as Villa Botanica, Whitsunday’s most luxurious and gorgeous wedding boutique. The Airlie Beach venue has planned and coordinated hundreds of weddings as well as same-sex commitment ceremonies, long before marriage equality became law and we know how to create your personalised and perfect same sex wedding ceremony. Securing a suitable destination wedding venue with expert planners will also solve the issue of finding a good celebrant, as the best venues can advise on local celebrants who are highly recommended.

4. Carefully pick your guest list

same sex wedding at Villa Botanica marble ballroom wedding venue

Nadine Kemp

In spite of the adoption of same sex marriage legality in Australia and other states worldwide, you may still deal with homophobia. Even if you take care to invite only those friends and relatives that support your right to marry, you may still have a bumpy road. In some cases, parents may not want to attend the wedding as some same sex couples are estranged from families with traditional views. 

Nothing ruins a wedding day more than unwelcome drama from family and friends, remember this is your day and nothing should get in the way of this momentous and happy occasion. To create a day to cherish forever make sure you are surrounded by those who truly love and support you as a couple.

5. Be yourself!

lgbtq wedding ceremony

Timeless Images by Vanessa

This is a piece of advice we offer to all couples, regardless of their sexual orientation. Make your wedding yours and don’t let other people opinions dictate your big day. Think about who you are as a couple, what you value and how can you communicate that through your wedding day. This will reflect into various aspects of your same sex wedding planning, such as the religious ceremony, buying wedding rings, planning bachelor and bachelorette parties, de-gendering the wedding party, choosing your wedding attire, and choosing LGBTQ-friendly vendors. Most important than all, keep in mind this is your wedding, where you celebrate the love you share with your partner. Focus on spending the day with friends and family who support you and put your personalities into the choices for décor, games, and fashion. Think of the planning process as an amazing journey and choose an experienced wedding planning expert who knows how to help you craft the perfect wedding to reflect you and your partner as a couple.

Villa Botanica is LGBTQ-friendly and experienced with planning same sex marriages. We provide a non-denominational wedding pavilion, access to local vendors, and full support from in-house wedding planners who are detail-focused and ready to make your dreams a reality. If you are ready to make it official and plan the wedding of your dreams with your soul mate, the team at Villa Botanica are 100% committed to taking the stress out of your big day and designing a day you will cherish forever.

The best weddings always start the same way – with a conversation. Your wedding is a personal reflection of you as a couple; no two weddings are the same! Contact us now and let’s start planning your perfect wedding!

2021 Wedding Trends You Need To Know - Villa Botanica

2021 Wedding Trends You Need to Know

By | Blog

2021 is set to be THE year for weddings. 

After a difficult 2020 dominated by the coronavirus outbreak and the consequential lockdowns, Australian couples are looking forward to the New Year. Many have postponed their wedding day date until 2021 in the hope that event and travel restrictions are fully eased and there is more freedom

We cannot know what the future holds, but regardless of what will happen in the following months, 2021 wedding trends will definitely be quite different from what we had before Covid-19. Keep on reading to find out what your 2021 wedding could look like and what to include in your wedding planning checklist:

Complying with Covid-Safe Regulations

Covid-safe continues but restrictions in Australia (especially QLD) are starting to relax. The last changes to these guidelines were made in November 2020, affecting a variety of social gatherings, such as outdoor events, events at indoor venues, weddings, funerals, and other social gatherings.

Your wedding planning depends largely on the regulations affecting businesses involved such as wedding venues and vendors; business restrictions during the pandemic allows vendors to reopen and operate in a way that does not compromise the health of customers/clients and staff.

Some of the rules currently in place include:

  • Each person should have an available space of 2 metres for indoor activities;
  • A maximum of 200 people can attend wedding ceremonies and funerals;
  • Dancing is allowed in outdoor spaces as long as the 1 person per 2 square metre rule is respected;
  • Outdoor events can have 1,500 attendees under a COVID Safe event checklist;
  • Customers must stay 1.5 metres apart at all times, except if they are in the same group;
  • Businesses are required to collect and store information from customers, employees and contractors who visit your business. This information can help authorities trace Covid-19 infections;
  • Businesses need to ensure there is appropriate distance between staff and customers, and between individual customers or groups (1.5 metres).

2021 Wedding Trends Every Bride Needs To Know

No Buffet Catering

2021 wedding trend - no buffet catering at Villa Botanica

Luke Middle Miss Photography

Buffet catering used to be the go-to option low-cost for serving dinner at larger weddings. Self-serve buffets are currently prohibited in 2020, and it is likely that they will continue to be avoided next year as well. The problem is this option involves sharing utensils and eating from uncovered dishes of food, so safer alternatives are preferred now, such as sit-down plated dinners or food trucks. 

A Simplified Approach to Weddings

simple wedding as one of 2021 wedding trend at Villa Botanica

Kayla Temple Photography

Over-the-top weddings have slowly lost their popularity in the last decade. This trend may have been influenced by the last global economic crisis from 2008, and at the same time people have started to put more emphasis on sustainability and reducing waste. Many couples dislike the idea of draining their bank accounts or even accumulating debt just to have a picture-perfect wedding. They now prefer simpler weddings without regretting the fabulous receptions that used to be the norm in the 2000s. 

A part of this trend is opting for DIY wedding invitations, flowers, and décor – partly to fill up the time spent at home, partly to save money for honeymoon travel, other wedding services, or down payments for a home or a car.

No Receiving Line

no receiving line at Villa Botanica as 2021 wedding trend

Summer Rain Photography

The receiving line is an old custom intended to greet guests. Its purpose was to enable the bride and the groom to speak to each guest and thank them for coming. When you have a large wedding and your guests arrive at different times, this custom can totally drain your energy and consume a lot of time. Luckily, the Covid-19 crisis has given the final blow to the receiving line due to social distancing rules.


elopement at Villa Botanica Whitsunday Wedding Venue at Queensland

Keegan Cronin Photography

Many couples in 2020 decided to go ahead with their weddings in a smaller, simpler and more intimate fashion. Faced with the restrictions on travel, venues and vendors, many engaged couples decided to forego the wait and get married with just a couple of attendees. Australia tourism called for Australian to ‘Holiday Here This Year’ and with that we saw more couples travelling within in their own state to holiday destinations to say ‘I Do’ away from home. Confidence is growing but with restrictions going up and down and uncertainty still looming it is likely the trend of ‘eloping’ will continue into 2021.

Colour Palette Trends

a group of laughing people composed of a bride and groom along with groomsmen and bridesmaids - Color Palette Trends 2021 Wedding Trends

Keegan Cronin Photography

The Covid outbreak should not be allowed to overshadow your wedding plans, taking away from the fun of ticking off your wedding planning checklist. Plan your wedding as you would have in 2019, looking at trends, colours and activities but simply adapt to meet regulations.

Fresh colour palettes are on trend for 2021 and more couples will incorporate brighter palettes into their wedding décor, inspired by nature. Whites and creams are no longer recommended by wedding planners and it is easy to understand why: after a long period of isolation and restrictions, people want to have fun in bright, vibrant decors that incorporate all sorts of colours. Daring wedding colour trends will be one of the signs that people want to enjoy post-Covid life to the fullest.

The shift in colour palettes is also visible in the falling demand for green and white floral décor; couples now opting for more rich tones, often inspired by autumnal colours. Coloured suits will also be a trend in 2021 and we will see more colourful tuxedos in tasteful tones like burgundy and forest green.

Wedding Gown Trends

a bride wearing a white wedding gown dress behind an open wooden door

Nadine Kemp Photography

Weddings are synonymous with hope and trust, and this is even more important after such an unusual and difficult year. Despite the uncertainty, every future bride has the right to dream about her wedding dress. Some wedding dress designers have announced that they will skip the Spring 2021 release and will only present a new collection in October 2021. Under these circumstances, the most popular wedding dress trends include backless dresses, micro-weddings adding popularity to mini-dress style dresses, square necks and shoulder-capes. Boho styles will continue to ever be a popular option, with a boho-lux vibe considered to be both effortlessly beautiful and timeless.

Jewellery Trend

close-up image of a silver ring worn by a bride resting her hands to her groom

Love & Other Photography

The vibrant wedding colour trends of 2021 are evolving the standard for wedding jewellery. Couples are now opting for yellow-gold bands and settings and cool-toned metals like white gold and platinum are losing their popularity.

Destination Wedding

destination wedding at Queensland Villa Botanica Wedding Venue perfect location for the perfect kiss

Timeless Images by Vanessa

A destination wedding venue is preferable goin into 2021,with couples spending so much time at home, who doesn’t relish the thought of getting away? This option is more attractive for guests, can be more affordable than typical weddings, and provides advantages such as reduced Covid restrictions in other states and a change of scenery from your usual environment. If you live in Queensland, you won’t even have to travel out of state for a luxurious, tropical escape. You can choose a luxury Whitsunday wedding venue like Villa Botanica, which offers unforgettable destination weddings.

Virtual Wedding

wedding ceremony having a virtual wedding at Villa Botanica Ceremony Pavilion

All The Love In The World Photography

One always needs to be prepared for the worst. After a disruptive 2020, you are probably over the word “virtual”, but a virtual wedding but this route offers the perfect solution to sharing your wedding with guests overseas. Some couples put more emphasis on starting their married life together and place less value on organising an extravagant wedding. As a result, we have even seen brides and grooms getting married during lockdown and broadcasting their wedding to guests so they don’t have to wait until they tie the knot.

Although 2021 is still going to have aspects of uncertainty, it should not be the deciding factor when planning your wedding. Plan with confidence, adapt where necessary and most of all – have fun!

What should be on your 2021 wedding checklist? The first aspect is choosing a suitable wedding venue, regardless of how 2021 wedding trends will evolve. Consider a Whitsunday wedding venue like Villa Botanica to simplify your planning and be less affected by Covid-19 restrictions. Contact us online today and one of our knowledgeable client services staff will be in contact with you within 24 hours – even on weekends!

wedding couple close together having a spring wedding at Villa Botanica

Spring Wedding Inspiration: Pandemic Edition

By | Blog

After a 2020 full of unexpected and disrupting events, things are starting to calm but we aren’t in the clear yet. The evolution of the Covid-19 pandemic is unpredictable and many restrictions are likely to remain in place in 2021 and most likely (unfortunately) beyond. Meanwhile, many Australian couples have decided to stick with their spring wedding plans even if this means they have to make some changes in order to get married as they originally planned.

Luckily there are outdoor spring wedding venues that lend themselves well to social distancing requirements. With wedding planning in Qld it has been easier to adapt as the state was relatively unscathed by the pandemic in comparison to other states. There are a wide variety of options and wedding ideas for spring that will make your wedding day unforgettable. You can still have your dream wedding, but before proceeding to plan it, be sure to conduct some thorough research on the latest regulations and restrictions, in order to adapt and avoid nasty surprises later…

Updated Regulations for Weddings and Venues

Wedding planning can still go ahead but consider the following aspects before putting your plan into practice:

  • Guests can enter the venue only with a pre-booking and after providing their contact information;
  • Ensure four square metres of space for each patron;
  • Gatherings must not exceed 100 persons in a defined area;
  • Remove waiting area seating, clearly mark on floor physical distancing requirements;
  • Create floor markings that provide minimum guide distances between customers queuing for service and using physical barriers where possible;
  • Frequently clean and disinfect delivery vehicles;
  • Groups should be separated by a minimum of 1.5 metres; members of the same household are not required to physically distance;
  • Non-disposable crockery/cutlery/glassware permitted when cleared after each course and washed.

For the entire and updated set of Covid-safe weddings check the Weddings Industry COVID Safe Plan for Weddings in For-Hire Venues from the Australian Government.

Why Queensland is a Great Option for Weddings During the Pandemic

Even if times are more difficult than usual, people still want to have fun and couples about to get married want to have the beautiful wedding they have been dreaming of. If you live in Queensland, one of the best options for a spring wedding is getting married at one of the gorgeous Whitsunday wedding venues that are located right within your state. By choosing a destination wedding venue you will have a memorable day and a mini-holiday will compensate for some of the ideas you had to give up because of the pandemic. Naturally beautiful locations like the Whitsundays are perfect for organising an outdoor spring wedding – safer for you and your guests compared to indoor events. Besides, who wants to be stuck inside when there is so much stunning scenery and gorgeous weather along the Queensland coastline?

Furthermore, Queensland coastal locations ensure safe and easy travel within the state – fewer chances of having issues with transportation or having your flight cancelled. The Whitsundays, for instance, are perfect for Queenslanders wanting to change up a rural locale for a sunny, laid-back coastal location.

Already thinking about a theme, such as nautical, traditional, modern, or rustic? Or maybe even a luxury wedding? The Whitsundays are a great fit for all of these themes because the breathtaking scenery alone embellishes any type of event and compliments your thoughtfully selected outdoor wedding decorations beautifully.  

So, if you are already researching wedding ideas for spring and choosing your spring wedding colours, keep on reading to discover some decorative and catering ideas that comply with Covid regulations, while still giving a wow-factor.

Consider a Virtual Wedding

wedding couple having a spring wedding at Villa Botanica while pouring sand into a single container

Nicola Lemmon Photos

If restrictions are very harsh where you live and you can only have a limited number of guests, a virtual wedding, partially or totally, may be the solution to avoid cancelling the event altogether. You can invite some or all of the guests to attend your wedding via a livestream service; the best wedding planning Qld professionals have already tuned their skillset to assist their clients with virtual wedding planning.

Get Creative with Your Wedding

beautiful bride on a beach swing of Villa Botanica Venue Spring Wedding

Timeless Images by Vanessa

One approach to the  Covid-19 situation in the events and weddings industries has to embrace it and laugh at it. Various venues have opted for a more humorous and creative take on the safety signage, encouraging guests to comply with regulations, such as “You’ve washed your hands… right?” or “Stay away from the cousin you hate – 1.5 metres away.” As humans we are known for our incredible adaptability to new situations; for instance one couple who did not want to let Covid-19 cancel their celebration had a drive-in movie themed wedding instead where the ceremony was up on a big screen, followed by a showing of the couple’s favourite film – that’s a wedding nobody will forget!

Have a Really Intimate Wedding

intimate spring wedding with families and friends at Villa Botanica Cactarium

Kayla Temple Photography

Whether you organise a small wedding in your backyard or travel with the closest friends and family to a destination wedding venue, an event of small size is easier to organise and more suitable for the period we are going through right now. 

Be Careful with Seating Arrangements

dancing couple in the center of Villa Botanica Spring Wedding Reception


No matter how many guests you have and even if you have your ceremony and reception outdoors, you need to practice social distancing. Help your guests maintain their personal space by making strategic seating arrangements – place chairs into a pleasant but distanced formation. You can still cluster seats when they are reserved for people living in the same household.

Host a Virtual Bachelorette Party

bride to be hosting a toast for bachelorette party before having Spring Wedding

Little Hurricane Photography

The bachelorette party is about having fun and being close to your best friends. Unfortunately, many of us have friends and family abroad who will not be able to attend the pre-wedding parties and the event itself. Although It is not the same as an in-person night out with your best girlfriends, a virtual party on Zoom can enable you to get together online and have fun, without skipping the wine, the dancing, and the laughing. 

Hire a Wedding Planner

bride dressing up for spring wedding

Nadine Kemp Photography

Having someone to help you navigate through dozens of Whitsunday wedding venues and wedding ideas for spring is a good idea no matter when you get married; now with the Covid-19 crisis having support from someone who knows the wedding industry very well and also has the skills and knowledge to organise a Covid-safe wedding is even more important. You should preferably opt for a destination wedding venue that provides a dedicated in-house wedding planner – such as Villa Botanica.

Keep Calm!

No matter what the future holds, don’t worry too much about those things you can’t control. Simply be prepared to adjust to any situation that may arise. After all, getting married is not just about venues, guest-lists and dresses; focus on what really matters and that is you and your other half starting your life together as husband and wife.

If you are looking for the perfect outdoor wedding venue for a spring wedding, or any other season, look no further. Enquire now with the most exquisite and boutique wedding venue in the Whitsundays –  Villa Botanica. Check our website to see what other couples are saying and to view the 3D venue explorer. Don’t hesitate to enquire online for further information, our wedding planning team are more than happy to help you on the way to your big day.

newly wedded kissing in the center of Villa Botanica arch wedding venue with a header text "Five Theme Ideas for Your Queensland Garden Wedding Reception"

Five Theme Ideas for Your Queensland Garden Wedding Reception

By | Blog

So you’ve decided to opt for a Queensland garden wedding? A lot of garden wedding and destination wedding online searches lead to the Villa Botanica website, an exquisite wedding venue in the Whitsunday region where jungle meets ocean. Once you’ve selected a venue, we recommend considering setting a theme for your special day, such as ‘rustic’ or ‘nautical’. So, why should you pick a theme for your wedding day, such as a ‘modern’ garden wedding? 

Choosing a wedding theme can transform your traditional nuptials from ordinary to extraordinary, adding focus to your planning. Use your personal preferences on wedding style to determine the best theme that fits your personality and include elements and highlights from that theme throughout the ceremony and reception.

Deciding upon a wedding theme will also make your wedding planning Qld much simpler, because you have a basic style to stick to for each aspect of planning. Once you have decided upon a theme for your Queensland garden wedding, you can write your wedding checklist with less effort and more focus on the vital elements you wish to incorporate into your wedding.  A set theme means no mismatching the dress with the decor or the flowers with the table-settings. Your garden wedding reception will flow and your guests will all be admiring your good taste!

Five Magical Themes for A Garden Wedding Reception

We’ve selected 5 of our favourite theme ideas to help your wedding flow and stand out. We’ve even gone ahead and included tips and tricks, table décor, venue features, colour schemes, dress, etc. You will find that Whitsunday wedding venues can adapt to a variety of garden wedding reception themes with just a few minor changes of décor:

1. Modern

newly wedded couple kissing under the roof of the Villa Botanica ceremony pavilion

Luke Middle Miss Photography

Looking to impress your guests without spending a fortune on decor? A modern wedding should be heavily curated and use sharp lines and geometric shapes in order to achieve a sophisticated feel. It is not a dull choice at all – you have the possibility to choose between multiple subthemes, such as formal contemporary, minimalist, art deco, postmodern industrial, preppy, or pop art. Here are a few landmarks ideas from the modern wedding theme:

Decor: Choose design from the 1920s and beyond. A cool structural backdrop can provide an instant modern look to your wedding. For a garden wedding, consider props and mobile structures – arbours for example, are increasingly popular in modern weddings.

Venue features: Exquisite wedding boutiques can easily adapt to modern wedding themes, but the most extravagant couples use museums or galleries as a backdrop for the ceremony.

Colour schemes: Any colours from the white and grey of the postmodern industrial theme to the vivid colours promoted by the feminine maximalist style.

Dress: Your wedding dress can either be in a simple, classical style, or be inspired by various historical periods, such as 80s nostalgia, jumpsuits in the 70s style, or minimalist 90s designs.

2. Nautical

newly wedded couple enjoyed Magical moments are made on the Villa Botanica Sea Deck - Garden Wedding Reception


The nautical theme is suitable for venues that mix garden with coastal i.e. Villa Botanica Whitsundays is the perfect setting for a nautical style wedding. So many of us are keen on water-based activities and coastal regions and islands have a lot to offer in terms of natural beauty. Opting for a coastal destination wedding venue is one of the most popular choices among Australian couples. A nautical wedding should boast sailing vibes or island feels and use creative elements such as miniature messages-in-a-bottle and yacht style.

Decor: Opt for maritime decor elements such as pieces of rope tied in a sailor’s knot, anchors, helms, oyster shell place cards, lighthouses, boats, etc.

Venue features: You can opt for a nautical theme in any venue through décor but choosing a coastal venue will really add to your wedding wow-factor. Villa Botanica, for instance, has 5 acres of beautiful gardens and provides stunning views of the turquoise Coral Sea through the venue’s sea deck. You can even take your first steps as a married couple on Villa Botanica’s secluded stretch of private beach and admire a spectacular sunset display of tropical pinks and purples reflected upon the Whitsunday waters.

Colour schemes: A combination of blue, grey, green, gold and white will give that wonderful maritime touch to your wedding and provide an instant seaside feel.

Dress: Sheer materials and a flowing dress style will enable you to keep things light and breezy, as well as setting up shoe drop-off zone where you offer flip-flops that can be worn on the beach.

3. Whimsical

garden wedding reception with a whimsical wedding theme of stunning structure of Villa Botanica Cactarium

Kayla Temple Photography

Many couples are bored of the tiresome traditional wedding styles, so they decide to pour their hobbies and passions into their event, embracing your inner child and letting personality shine through. 

Decor: A garden wedding can easily be adapted to a whimsical wedding theme because the outdoors provides a perfect canvas for quirky props, bold colour additions and non-traditional items. A whimsical wedding theme is about having fun, being playful with decorations

Venue features: This quirky variety of wedding theme can be organised anywhere, let your imagination run wild with what you bring to the existing venue. An outdoor destination wedding venue like Villa Botanica is particularly suitable because it’s a spacious venue with fantastic and supportive staff to make your imagination a reality. Villa Botanica even boasts its own funky cactarium, not to mention stunning architecture already brimming with personality. 

Colour schemes: Vibrant colour palettes are typical for a whimsical wedding, stepping away from pastels and neutral tones and embracing loud colours! With whimsical themes the idea is to opt for colours that enliven your event.

Dress: Skip the traditional white and wear any colour or style you like. The more your personality shines through the better!

4. Rustic

Villa Botanica garden wedding reception with rustic wedding theme

Keegan Cronin Photography

A popular choice for a Queensland garden wedding, the rustic wedding theme is full of natural, simplistic beauty. 

Decor: Make sure to incorporate natural elements like wood, wild flowers, fruits, etc. The rustic wedding decor will lower your and should make the event feel relaxed, natural, and romantic.

Venue features: Typical venues for rustic weddings are gardens, barns, farms, ranches, and mountain lodges. Venues which are rustic in design from architecture to landscaping think bare wood features and handmade elements. Vila Botanica boasts a rugged and natural design which lends itself perfectly to a rustic theme. A rustic wedding at Villa will reduce your garden wedding cost as the venue itself provides plenty of effortlessly romantic décor.

Colour scheme: The colour palette can be extremely diverse, as long as the colours are natural. Think of matt colour varieties, floral and grassy colours.

Dress: Off-white and lace with floral designs are the perfect ingredients for your rustic style wedding dress.

5. Traditional

newly wedded couple first dance as husband and wife in Villa Botanica exquisite marble ballroom

Nadine Kemp Photography

Traditional weddings will never go out of fashion; they will forever be a theme option for any destination wedding checklist Australia. This type of wedding theme transcends all trends, a theme of timeless beauty.

Decor: The decor should keep a classic vibe and make use of generous amounts of flowers, minimal draping, streamlined design, calligraphy detail, and classic wedding cars.

Venue features: Many various venues lend themselves to traditional weddings, for example, the marble ballroom at Villa Botanica provides a beautifully classic and traditional feel.

Colour scheme: The soft colour scheme associated with traditional weddings includes white, blush, and cream. 

Dress: A classic white dress, one which oozes sophistication and elegance, along with a classic bouquet and veil.

The Perfect Venue for Every Wedding Theme

Have you got a wedding theme in mind but haven’t yet found your dream location? Bring your wedding planning dreams to life at Villa Botanica – an elegant and breathtaking venue known for fabulous Queensland garden wedding receptions. Read up on our beautiful real weddings and discover why our Villa brides and grooms love us so much. Speak with our team of dedicated and experienced wedding planners and experience this boutique venue for yourself.

newlywed couple staring at each other under a white veil with a header text "A Very Luxury Wedding Insider Advice for Elegant Wedding Receptions"

A Very Luxury Wedding: Insider Advice for Elegant Receptions

By | Blog

A wedding is an unforgettable event, a day which we will cherish for a lifetime. We want the big day to be special, exactly the way we have imagined it, making dream a reality without compromising on the dress, the flowers, or any other aspect. Yet as much as you’d like to have a luxury wedding with all the bells and whistles, it is important to control costs and stick within a predetermined budget. Many newlyweds need money for a new car or to pay for a house, or money savings with your wedding can be used for your honeymoon or to fulfil one of your other dreams. How can you save money when there are so many luxury wedding packages and ideas drawing your attention? In this post we will be giving insider advice from wedding planning Qld experts, enabling you to throw your nuptials in great style without emptying your pockets completely:

What Makes a Luxury Wedding?

Before planning for a luxury wedding, consider exactly what it is that makes a wedding feel luxurious. Think about those staple “lux” pieces instead of throwing money at every aspect of your big day.

Guest Experience Matters 

luxury wedding guest having a picnic in front of Villa Botanica's Whitsunday Venue Beach

Luke Middle Miss Photography

Just spending money does not guarantee luxury. Of course, a luxury wedding will have a series of elements that will come with extra costs, such as lighting, live music, or a dress change, but what you need to focus on is attention to details and personal touches. The day should be like a journey, and your guests should have a feeling of anticipation and ask themselves “what’s next?”

Well-Planned Menu

luxury wedding guests with the bride and groom doing cheers

Nadine Kemp Photography

The menu should be exquisite, inspired, and paired properly with appropriate drinks. This is why your wedding planning Qld consultant should have deep knowledge of food, wine, and florals. Nowadays food is the new fashion and the aesthetics are everything. For a generation who is used to photographing their food, the wedding menu is one of the central and most-anticipated points of the event.

Effective Communication with Your Wedding Planner

luxury wedding bride sitting on the bed while holding a wooden box

Luke Middle Miss Photography

An exclusive wedding starts with the first call or email you send to your wedding planner, and he or she should be able to make you feel like you are the most important couple in the world. The right person should provide you with ample time to explain your vision, and be available to have unlimited emails, meetings, and phone calls with you.

Making a Statement

newlywed couple kissing with Villa Botanica's Garden Luxury Wedding

All The Love In The World

Couples interested in a luxury wedding opt for vendors that have some sort of acclaim, are celebrities themselves, and have a tried and true reputation for providing outstanding services. The wedding is not just the celebration of getting married, but a moment of self-expression and an extension of the couple’s personality.

What to Look For In a Venue

luxury wedding top view of Villa Botanica's Whitsunday Venue

All The Love In The World

Luxurious wedding feel can be made or broken by the venue choice. And the right choice of venue, such as a destination wedding venue, can help you save money you would otherwise spend on décor for an average venue. The natural setting of many destination weddings requires very little decor or dressing up.

Our advice is to look for a venue that provides a luxurious feel naturally, before any decorations are added.  Whitsunday wedding venues are frequently considered luxury simply because of their location, and yet their price is within the same range as that of more basic or city-based wedding venues.

How to go Luxury on a Budget

Once you have chosen the right unique wedding venue that will ensure a natural feel of luxury, such as Villa Botanica, it’s time to start researching ideas on how to have your dream destination wedding without breaking the bank. Here are some good starting points that will deliver luxury without excessive cost:

Have a Cocktail Reception

cocktail champagne for Villa Botanica's Luxury Wedding

Keegan Cronin Photography

Forget the help-yourself attitude and food waste of a wedding buffet. Instead opt for a cocktail reception with a beautiful display where butlers in tuxedos pass trays – it looks more high-end at costs that are roughly the same. Opt for a caterer that provides attentive staff alongside exquisite cocktails and canapes.

Dress Code

bride and groom having a luxury wedding with the bridesmaids wearing red and groomsman wearing black tuxedo

Luke Middle Miss Photography

Your guests are a big part of your wedding, and by specifying a formal dress code such as black tie on the wedding invitation you can be sure to keep everything looking smart.  Guests attending your wedding will play their own role in creating a luxury wedding feel; all you have to do is set the standard.

Rent Your Dress

elegant bridesmaids helping a bride with her dress

Luke Middle Miss Photography

A luxury bride will wear something expensive and from a reputable designer, which can significantly increase your wedding expenses. So why pay to own your $10,000 dress when you could rent it at a fraction of the cost, and look just as fabulous?

Small and Glamorous Cakes

marble-like wedding cake at Villa Botanica

Nadine Kemp Photography

Luxury is not about boasting, but about showing who you are. So huge, extravagant cakes don’t show luxury, but rather shout “Look at me!” A smaller but more elegantly and classically designed cake will exude under-stated luxury, without being overtly showy.

Incorporate Live Music

newlywed couple ballroom dancing with Villa Botanica's elegant wedding musicians

Luke Middle Miss Photography

Live music is a must on your wedding checklist, as live musicians create an amazing ambience for the first part of the reception. A soloist is often the perfect way to start the evening – for example, Spanish guitar or a solo vocalist. As the night kicks in, you will want to up the tempo, consider hiring a lively DJ that will get everyone dancing.

Be Creative with Your Tables

elegant wedding table

Jentre Loar Photography

Some tips for making those boring tables look worthy of your dream destination wedding are using glamorous fabric, going a little longer than floor length with the linens, creating your own table runners, folding napkins in a fancy manner, using napkin rings, creating chic centrepieces which costs less than pricey flowers, and varying the height and size of the centrepieces.

Incorporate Calligraphy

wedding invitation

All The Love In The World

Embrace in a little DIY and try your hand at some creative writing styles. Internet tutorials are perfect for helping you to create your own unique, refined invitations, escort cards, signs, and table numbers. You will obtain a classy and custom-made look at almost negligible costs!

Discuss Requirements with Your Photographer

newlywed couple dancing inside a romantic and elegant marble floor ballroom

Timeless Images by Vanessa

A luxury wedding photo album will focus on the beauty of the venue, the elements of detail within the décor, and the couple themselves. Your wedding photos should capture the richness and expressiveness of the wedding as a whole. Talk to your photographer and explain to him or her that you want to capture the five-star aesthetic of the wedding – these amendments will have a huge impact on how you remember the most important day in your life.

Carefully Selected Bridesmaids Colours

bride centered with bridesmaids wearing blue wedding dresses and holding bouquet of roses

Blush and cream are the most common choices for bridesmaids’ dresses, but royal blue is also among the top choices of brides looking to have an elegant wedding with a five-star appeal. Bridesmaids’ dresses in various colours can cost around the same, but by choosing the right palette they make your entire wedding look more expensive.

Regardless of your budget, organising a wedding is not a simple affair – especially when you want a luxury look and feel but without the designer price tag.  Matters can become even more complicated and you are short of time and lack the creativity and knowledge to make it all go to plan.  Villa Botanica stands out from other Whitsunday wedding venues not only because it has the most gorgeous background that will instantly turn your wedding into a luxury one, but the Villa team will assist you with organising your wedding in the most dedicated and professional manner possible. Villa is naturally elegant so you don’t have to work too much on the décor and provides those five-star services that give a sense of opulence to your wedding. Their experienced and creative planners will help you every step of the way.

Making the first contact is the first step to planning your luxury wedding. We’re here to answer any questions you might have – enquire today for more information on how to achieve your dream destination wedding.

couple kissing in front of fireworks with a header text "Virtual Wedding Activities You Can Do For Loved Ones Who Cant Travel"

Virtual Wedding Activities You Can Do For Loved Ones Who Can’t Travel

By | Blog

The idea of getting married in a virtual wedding ceremony has all ways seemed impersonal. But things have changed dramatically due to the Covid-19 restrictions. Many couples have had to postpone their weddings this year and some are considering postponing for a second time – as the near future is still uncertain when it comes to travelling. 

While some couples are willing to wait as long as it takes to have a “real” wedding – where you can still dance and throw the bouquet. There are people who do not want to wait to tie the knot and are exploring alternative solutions such as an online wedding

The concept of an online wedding has seen a fluctuation of innovative virtual wedding ideas that are allowing brides and groom to create an intimate experience virtually. 

But how does a virtual wedding actually work?

newly wedded couple dancing under Villa Botanica bridal canopy - Virtual Wedding

Luke Middle Miss Photography

The whole online wedding thing is very simple: there are just a few people at the ceremony (the couple, the officiant, and a couple of witnesses) and the ceremony is streamed online using apps such as Zoom. Originally created for meeting and family gatherings, Zoom is now being used for online teaching, medical assistance, and even weddings!

Sounds crazy, but it’s already happening.

And in the future, we are very likely to see more wedding ceremonies being transmitted via online streaming services, with a growing advancement with technology. Even when the Covid-19 crisis is over, there will still be good reasons to share your wedding online with guests, such as family located overseas who can’t come due to financial reasons, guests affected by travel restrictions or family members who are too sick to travel. 

How is it possible?

Apps and technology for virtual events and video calls has improved massively this year –even if things were already going in this direction, the pandemic forced tech developments in 2020 to meet the demand for virtual gatherings. Getting married online was possible before this but the tools needed to successfully organise a virtual wedding were not as reliable and fine-tuned for online social gatherings as they are today.

Benefits of having an online wedding

  • You can get married in 2020 or any time you want

As said before, some couples simply see marriage and living together as more important than having a big wedding where all their relatives are invited.

  • Easy and quick to organise

A typical wedding takes at least half a year to organise, while more complex receptions are planned even a year in advance. Why spend lots of time planning for a wedding that may have to be cancelled again when you could get help from a virtual wedding planner and see your dream come true sooner

  • Cheaper

There are multiple costs that are cut off when you organise a virtual wedding: catering, music band, venue, extensive decor, transportation. This type of wedding can be organised at a fraction of the cost of a traditional wedding.

  • Anyone can attend

As long as they have an Internet connection, friends and family living in the most distant places in the world can be there for you on the big day.

  • Easier to handle

Introverts and people with social anxiety may find more pleasure and contentment in a virtual wedding ceremony.

  • Can be organised on any day of the week

A virtual wedding in 2020 can give you access to your favourite wedding venue within a couple months instead of waiting years for it to be available. This is because you can get married online on any day of the week, be it Monday or Thursday; your guests will most likely be available to attend a shorter ceremony that does not involve travelling or staying up all night.

What can you actually do during a virtual wedding?

newly wedded couple having their first dance as husband and wife at Villa Botanica that Online Wedding Services

Luke Middle Miss Photography

Future brides who have seen their wedding plans shattered by 2020 have switched online searches for Whitsunday wedding venues to virtual wedding ideas and are becoming more comfortable with the idea that a wedding with 200 guests is impossible at this particular moment. Organising an online wedding does not necessarily mean you have to get married in your living room or backyard, though. You can still hold the ceremony and the party anywhere, including a destination wedding venue, and invite everyone to join you online. Here are some things you can do on the big day:

  • Travel 

A virtual wedding does not exclude a destination wedding venue. You can still get married at an exclusive wedding venue such as Villa Botanica and enjoy breath-taking scenery with your guests watching you online. Anyone invited can still enjoy the views by completing a virtual venue tour.

  • Live stream wedding

This is the most important part of your virtual wedding and it can’t go wrong. You need the services of a specialised wedding planning Qld professional. A virtual wedding planner will help you organise a reliable streaming service and then secure vendors who can digitally document the streaming platform – that you can always treasure. 

Aside from preparing yourself for the online ceremony, you also need to prepare your guests and explain to them how the platform works, inform them whether they need to create an account in advance, and show them how to enable audio and visual. Tell people what to expect so you don’t have them messaging questions about why they can’t hear anything or missing the most important moments because they are not familiar with the platform.

Extra tip: don’t be afraid to mute your guests during the ceremony as background noise can pop up, such as a dog barking, a kid throwing a tantrum, or a device calling in the middle of your vows.

  • Dress up

Getting married is a once in a lifetime event for most of us and you shouldn’t skip the traditional formal dress and the elegant groom suit. You may not be as meticulous as you’d be with a traditional wedding but ensuring you feel beautiful for your virtual wedding is a must.

  • Throw a virtual after party

The reception can also take place online. You can involve your guests in your virtual wedding by inviting them make a toast or speech through the microphone. Showing your guests your first dance or cutting cake with them. 

  • Enjoy your honeymoon

One of the advantages of hosting an online wedding ceremony at a destination wedding venue is that you can start your honeymoon immediately after – an experience you would be more tempted to skip after a tiring wedding day spent socialising with dozens of guests.

If you don’t dare to make the move and get married online, you should know that Villa Botanica actually has dealt with a couple of virtual weddings recently: 


Beautiful Villa Botanica couple Charlotte and Dylan - September 2020 Virtual Wedding Live Stream

Nadine Kemp Photography

Mr. and Mrs. Watt are a beautiful couple affected by the Covid-19 crisis.

Sadly, Charlotte’s family from the UK were unable to attend the celebrations but woke in the early hours of the morning to tune in and watch via live stream… and they were still drinking champagne throughout the reception. 

Two things are for sure: restrictions caused by the Corona virus are not ready yet and couples still want to get married. Why wait when you could research the most amazing virtual wedding ideas and still get married this year? Contact our wedding planning Qld service today for advice on how to get married at Villa Botanica and have your guests joining you online!

newly wedded couple dancing at the center of Villa Botanica Outdoor Wedding Venue

Why You Should Consider Outdoor Wedding Venues During The Covid-19 Pandemic

By | Blog

The Covid-19 outbreak has hit both engaged couples and the wedding industry very, very hard. Venues have been closed for months upon months, many vendors have gone out of business, and couples have postponed or rescheduled their weddings for a later date. In some parts of Australia there are certain lockdown restrictions in place and wedding ceremonies are only allowing 5 participants, with the reception totally out of question. Being stuck at home has been the least of problems to engaged couples, as many have cancelled their weddings or have had no other choice than to simply settle for a smaller, outdoor wedding which complies with Covid-19 regulations. 

The unprecedented circumstances that we are currently experiencing with the Covid-19 pandemic have caused a lot of stress and wedding disruption. Even if you still get married in 2020, you need to make some significant alterations to your wedding plans and standard practices, such as only offering sit-down catering service, seating people with their household only, avoiding singing and wind instruments, dancing only with your partner and parents, keeping contact information of guests and vendors, etc.

Vendors have also been affected by the Covid-19 outbreak, with the average business suffering a 50% loss in 2020, as only 60,000 weddings are expected to take place this year compared to the usual 120,000. The only good news for the wedding industry so far, though, is its unique quality of being recession-resistant. Experts expect couples who have postponed their wedding to tie the knot later in 2021 or 2022, when the wedding industry is likely to experience a huge boom that will bring vendors back on track.

Current legislation in Qld

If you choose to stick with your original wedding plans and still get married in 2020, you will need to be aware of the latest rules and requirements in Queensland or within the Australian state you plan to get married in. Whether you hold your reception indoors or prefer an outdoor wedding reception, you need to stay informed about the latest developments and discuss them with your wedding planner Queensland as well:

  • Gatherings must not exceed 100 persons in a defined area (both indoor and outdoor areas);
  • Four square meters of space per patron is required;
  • Businesses have the right to refuse service to patrons displaying symptoms such as fever and coughing;
  • Social distancing requirements need to be clearly marked on the floor;
  • Separate doors for entry and exit are recommended where possible;
  • Joining tables or swapping of assigned seating at tables is not permitted;
  • Hand sanitisers freely throughout wedding venues and frequent environmental cleaning and disinfection are required;
  • Businesses should consider whether to accept externally provided decoration such as outside wedding decorations;
  • No bar service and no waiting at the bar are permitted;
  • Dancing is only allowed for the wedded couple and their parents;
  • Frequently touched surfaces (such as handrails, scanners, plant controls, machinery and doors) should be cleaned regularly using appropriate detergent solutions and also disinfected on a regular basis.

For the complete set of regulations read the Wedding Industry COVID Safe Plan from the Australian Government.

Outdoor weddings & venues – an excellent choice during the Covid outbreak

Villa Botanica Outdoor wedding venue During Covid-19 Pandemic

Wilde Visual Photography

The Outdoor wedding has been a recurring trend in the last years and it has become even more popular in 2020, as outside events are easier to organise and have a reduced risk of Covid-19 spread (the virus spreads more easily in closed, poorly-ventilated environments).  Whether you are considering an outdoor destination wedding venue because of the pandemic or because that is simply what you prefer, there are many reasons why couples choose places like Whitsunday wedding venues and get married by the ocean or with other picturesque natural settings:

Endless options

outdoor wedding party strolling with the newly wedded couple and guests at Villa Botanica

Wilde Visual Photography

Many indoor venues are in serious high demand and end up fully booked even a couple of years in advance, but with outdoor weddings you can get married in countless of other places, such as a field, your backyard garden, on a mountain top, in a park, and of course by the beautiful ocean etc.

No need for outside wedding decorations

surrounded by nature’s pristine beauty, Villa Botanica is the most intimate and romantic outdoor Wedding Venue in the heart of Airlie Beach, Whitsundays

Luke Middle Miss Photography

Natural landscapes and the great outdoors can be used to your decorating advantage – who needs decorations when they have stunning mountain vistas or beach side waves? Fewer decors means saving money, creating less waste, and simplifying your wedding planning, while still getting that wow-effect.

Fewer concerns when you opt for Whitsunday wedding venues

groom backhug bride in the middle of outdoor wedding venue with accents of overflowing greenery and glass candle to compliment Villa Botanica's backdrop

Summer Rain Photography

An outdoor wedding can be difficult to organise from scratch because not only you will need to provide all the facilities usually ensured by a venue, but you may also deal with added concerns such as weather, creepy crawlies, wind, temperature extremes, sound issues, etc. Selecting the right destination wedding venue will make your wedding planning easier because a specialised wedding boutique or exclusive venue will take care of all these matters. No need to worry about sorting your own plan B in case of bad weather or worry about the sound quality – all you need to do is relax and enjoy the most important day of your life! Even if the weather is beautiful the majority of the year in the Whitsundays, venues such as Villa Botanica always have a rain plan option available that is just as attractive and romantic as the original plan.

No overcrowded spaces

Villa Botanica outdoor wedding reception Created a sense of fullness and abundance with a low centrepiece by layering varied glassware, candles and tea lights

Jentre Loar Photography

Most outdoor wedding venues are more spacious and breathable than indoor options. This means more space to work with when creating your reception area, more room for guests to relax, and being able to cope with social distancing regulations without severely limiting the number of guests.

Alternative seating options

outdoor wedding reception


Have you ever seen people awkwardly placed at a wedding because a table has 10 seats and you need to fill them all for aesthetic reasons? This will no longer be an issue with outdoor weddings, as you have a multitude of options for outdoor seating, such as benches, lawn chairs, blankets on hay bales, log seats, etc. These creative seating options of outdoor weddings will also make it easier for you to seat together people from the same household or social group without having different numbers of guests allocated to tables of the same size.

Create cherished memories

Outdoor Wedding Venue - The happiest of moments at Villa Botanica


But maybe one of the best reasons to have an outdoor wedding reception is that you will create cherished memories for you and your guests. Your wedding will be remembered for a long time and you will have the perfect story to share with your children and grandchildren. So instead of talking of 2020 as the year when you could not get married because of the Covid-19 pandemic, this year could be where you adapted and ended up having the most unforgettable wedding of your dreams, when you started a beautiful life together with your significant other.

As an Australian couple, an outdoor wedding in Queensland can be the best option both in Covid times and at any time actually. Guests will never forget your outdoor wedding reception and you can choose between dozens of Whitsunday wedding venues that provide professional wedding planning services with minimal need for outside wedding decorations. Villa Botanica can be that perfect destination wedding venue for you due to the excellent services, meticulous wedding planners, breathtaking ocean views, Balinese-inspired unique architecture, and perfect privacy due to the spacious 5-acre estate being available just for you for the day. Visit our website to discover why Villa Botanica Whitsundays Wedding Venue is your dream wedding venue! 

newly wedded couple under Villa Botanica – The Bridal Arch with the text "Why We Love a Summer Outdoor Wedding(And So Should You)"

Why we Love a Summer Outdoor Wedding! (And So Should You!)

By | Blog

Summer weddings are the favourite of many Australian couples and the same goes for brides and grooms all over the world. A summer outdoor wedding is seen as the perfect choice for the big day, with only about 5% of Australian weddings taking place in the colder months of June and July. You too, if asked, would probably prefer a summer outdoor wedding, without even properly thinking about it, but why is that?

  • Daylight Saving

The days are longer during summer and you have additional hours to enjoy the sunshine- translating into more hours of fun at your outdoor wedding. The warmth of the day will carry into the night and enable you and your guests to keep the party going. Those long, warm summer nights definitely add to the romance factor.

  • Summer Fashion

Layering up clothes, thinking of faux fur bridal accessories, shawls or cover-ups isn’t necessary with summer weddings. Think backless dresses, sheer and elegant materials, jewels that shimmer beautifully in the sun – a summer.

  • Being Able to use Seasonal Flowers

There are more seasonal and affordable flowers available in the summer and you will have a greater choice means that it is very likely that you will ultimately get what you want.

  • Better Honeymoon Options

If you hold your ceremony and reception at a destination wedding venue during summer, you can start your honeymoon the moment your wedding day is over. There is no need to travel or postpone the honeymoon to a later date as summer months give you more options, especially if you are honeymooning locally. Lose the travel dramas and experience a tropical Airlie Beach honeymoon.

  • Better Wedding Photos

The added light during the summer months can be a critical factor in the final aspect of your wedding photos. Natural light and warm temperatures give a special glow to your pictures and make them truly memorable.

  • Being More Creative with your Reception

Warm weather allows for more fun and more room for activities. Summer wedding tips can be used to add all kind of exciting elements to your wedding, from frozen summer treats to lawn games.

Tips for Planning a Summer Outdoor Wedding

Choose Coastal Location to Avoid Excessive Heat

couple with an intimate and romantic reception with breathtaking ocean views - summer outdoor wedding

Summer Rain Photography

Everyone including your wedding planner Queensland will tell you that summer sun can be quite harsh in Australia and we would recommend that you get married somewhere on the coast or have an Airlie beach wedding. Whitsunday wedding venues are magical owing to the perfect weather you will be enjoying in the archipelago. The Whitsundays benefit from beautiful warm weather all year round, with temperatures averaging around 29-30°C in the summer, while water stays at a moderate and comfortable 25°C. The islands are a suitable wedding destination during winter too, as average temperatures stay at 22-23°C at this time of the year. 

Look for a Unique Wedding Venue

bride wearing a wedding dress in a unique wedding venue of Villa Botanica - Summer Outdoor Wedding

Summer Rain Photography

Your choice of venue will have a major impact on your outdoor wedding and its planning. Aside from the location and the decor provided by your destination wedding venue, there are other factors that make all the difference between venues, such as having an in-house wedding planner Queensland or not, providing quality local vendors, top catering, whether they offer accommodation services or not, etc.

Make Sure Everyone Can Hear

Villa Botanica - Australia’s most exquisite summer outdoor wedding venue

Wilde Visual Photography

One of the minor issues of a summer outdoor wedding is sound. Wind, background noise, and the fact that these days social distancing needs to be kept because of the Covid-19 outbreak, they can all make it difficult for your guests to hear at an outdoor wedding, so make sure you have a reliable and good quality audio system for saying your “I do’s” out loud and entertaining guests with music.

Ensure a Bridal Canopy

elegant and gorgeous florals perfect for summer outdoor wedding ceremony at the hand caved wedding pavilion - Villa Botanica

Brooke Miles Photography

Most Whitsunday wedding venues already provide a bridal canopy, which serves as a marvellous frame to the ceremony and can be adjusted to match the design of your wedding. At Villa Botanica in the Whitsundays for instance you can have your ceremony in an exquisite hand carved timber wedding pavilion; the access to which is through a beautiful palm lined, mosaic tiled walkway.

Preparing a plan B

impressive marble ballroom is available to all guests - Villa Botanica Summer Indoor Wedding

Timeless Images by Vanessa

Just in case your dream Airlie beach wedding is threatened by bad weather, but having an alternate plan that you love just as much is always a good idea. At Villa Botanica the impressive marble ballroom is available to all guests, whether you need to move your event indoors or you want the perfect setting for your first dance as a married couple.

Use Creative Lighting Options

romantic reception and fairy lights of Villa Botanica Sea Deck - Summer Outdoor Wedding Venue

Timeless Images by Vanessa

One of the best summer wedding tips is using creative lighting techniques outdoors to create a magical, fairy-tale feel. Tea lights, fairy lights and lanterns make romantic and beautiful lighting ideas. For some more summer outdoor wedding inspiration, visit the Villa Botanica Instagram for beautifully lit outdoor receptions with stunning views overlooking the sea and enchanting lighting at night.

Take Advantage of the Built-in Decor

ocean and sundown hues giving the summer outdoor wedding feels - Villa Botanica

Brooke Miles Photography

One of the great things about summer wedding planning is having less hassle with the decor. Less tends to be more. The warm weather allows Australian couples to take advantage of gorgeous natural backdrops, such as the ocean views and lush tropical gardens.

Consider a Laid-back Summer Outdoor Wedding

wedding party having a fabulous time during their photo shoot amongst Villa Botanica towering trees and lush tropical gardens - Summer Outdoor Wedding

Keegan Cronin Photography

Your guests will really appreciate a relaxed, naturally flowing wedding, like that of a destination wedding venue. Summer wedding tips include styling ideas such as throw pillows, countless floral arrangements lawn games, wood swings, etc.

Pros and Cons of Summer Months 

There is no perfect time of the year to get married, as weather is not the only factor to consider. Public holidays can also have an impact on your summer wedding planning, and summer months remain represent the best period to get married for Aussie couples, in spite of a few minor issues.


  • Weather is at its best during summer months especially if you get married at one of the Whitsunday wedding venues where he weather is cooler compared to the inland.
  • School holidays falling during summer makes it possible to invite children at your wedding and more guests will attend because they will be able to take their children with them.
  • Since spring has the most weddings among all seasons, having a summer outdoor wedding can make your planning easier and give you easier access to your favourite vendors and Whitsunday wedding venues.


  • Summer months are advertised as the best months for travelling to Australia, so if you choose a destination wedding venue at this time of the year you may be dealing with crowded beaches with lots of international and local tourists rambling around.

Why Villa Botanica the Perfect Summer Outdoor Wedding Venue Regardless of the Month

As an exclusive and charming venue on the Whitsundays coastline, Villa Botanica experiences stunning weather year-round, along with the cooling sea breeze. No matter when your summer outdoor wedding date is, you will benefit from:

  • Amazing landscaped tropical gardens complemented by antique, Balinese-inspired architecture;
  • Gorgeous backdrops provided by majestic mountains and turquoise sea;
  • Access to the legendary Cactarium at Villa Botanica;
  • In-house professional wedding planning;
  • Luxurious wedding-night accommodation;
  • Taking your first steps as a married couple on a secluded stretch of beach;
  • Exclusively having the venue for the whole day to ensure privacy and intimacy among your closest family and friends;
  • 5-star catering provided by Aquava Boutique Catering;
  • Being able to experience the magic of Villa Botanica online, by navigating the 3D explore space available on the venue’s website.

Starting to plan your dream summer outdoor wedding? Contact us now and find out what Villa Botanica has to offer. We already feature many of the summer wedding tips you loved – all you need to do is tell us what your dream wedding entails and we will take care of the rest!

advantages of having a small intimate wedding

Advantages of Having a Small Intimate Wedding

By | Blog

Small & intimate weddings with close friends and family are frequently the preferred wedding planning option of many couples. Some brides and grooms prefer an intimate wedding reception due to budget constraints, while others simply want to keep it simple and avoid the stress associated with large weddings, along with those typical guest list dramas. 

2020 has brought one extra reason for couples to look for small wedding ideas, though; the Covid-19 outbreak has come with multiple rules and restrictions regarding social gatherings. A traditional large wedding with the usual dancing and mingling is no longer possible at least for this wedding season if not for 2021 as well. Some of the Covid-19 implications for the wedding industry that make a small intimate wedding the definite better option include – no shared plates or family-style catering , a maximum of ten people can be seated at a table, guests should be seated with household or family where possible, and the list goes on. Having an intimate wedding you are likely to have only those there who are in usual contact with each other, therefore reducing risk of spreading to distant relatives or lesser-known guests.

Covid-19-related restrictions can further affect your wedding planning Qld as this crisis has completely changed the nature of function venues and caterers around Australia. A wedding industry Covid safe plan has been developed by the Australian Government to prevent confusion among service providers in the wedding industry; the guide is also useful for couples planning to get married this season as they will know what to expect and what regulations to follow. For example, dancing is only allowed for the wedded couple and their parents, sharing props such as photography booths is not permitted Wedding planners are able to adapt and adjust to make this unprecedented year still work for your wedding. 

What is a small wedding?

groom with the guests waiting for bride walk down the aisle in Villa Botanica - Whitsunday Wedding Venue

Luke Middle Miss Photography

Small weddings is… actually small. We know that many couples say they are planning a small intimate wedding just to go there on the big day and discover there are more than 100 guests in attendance – that is actually a medium-size wedding. A micro wedding reception typically includes 50 people or under, a medium wedding has anywhere between 50 and 150 guests, and there can also be what you’d call a tiny wedding, with as little as 10 guests.  Your ideal wedding size depends on your budget and on the size of your immediate family. If your closest relatives exceed 50 people, a tiny wedding can be impossible to organise for you, without stirring up family politics and displeasing relatives. However, with the current average family size, a small wedding is doable without having to trim your guest list excessively.

Why choose a small intimate wedding?

small wedding of newlywed couple first dance as husband and wife on a marble ballroom of Villa Botanica - Whitsunday Wedding Venue Queensland

Nadine Kemp Photography

Aside from being obliged to comply with Covid-19 restrictions, there are plenty of other good reasons to look for small wedding ideas and put them into practice locally or at a destination wedding venue of your choice:

  • Spending less money on your dream destination wedding reception is a major advantage of having a reduced guest list. If you are on a small budget, this is one of the most efficient ways to save; if you still want to splurge, you will have more money for other options offered by your wedding planning Qld services;
  • It is easier to organise, as there will be fewer decisions to make, more time to spend on pleasant pre-wedding activities like wedding dress shopping, and generally much less drama;
  • When you opt for a smaller event, you can create an intimate atmosphere where you can really have conversations with your loved ones and you will be able to enjoy every moment;
  • A smaller guest list gives you access to a larger number of wedding venues, including the beautiful and exclusive Whitsunday wedding venue, Villa Botanica;
  • You will be able to spend more quality time with each wedding guest – you will have fewer tables to visit and more time to spend with the friends and family that you really care about catching up with;
  • If you don’t like being in the centre of attention, or hate big audiences, you will be pleased to have fewer eyes on you at your wedding;
  • You will have more money for your honeymoon or other important post-wedding expenses;
  • DIY wedding projects will be easier and less expensive to complete;
  • You can diversify your drinks selection – at a small intimate wedding it is more common to see couples opting for a full bar packed with craft cocktail options, beer, wine, and a selection of champagnes minus the astronomical price tag;
  • You can focus on what you value the most, while big weddings can be expensive and feel impersonal;
  • Also means you will find it easier to pull off a destination wedding, because the smaller the guest list, the less coordination of travel you need to attain;
  • You are less likely to have to postpone your wedding due to the Covid-19 outbreak if additional restrictions are imposed again.

What to expect from a wedding venue when having an intimate wedding.

sweet newly wedded couple with the guests in the uniquely beautiful cactarium - Small Wedding Venue of Villa Botanica

Kayla Temple Photography

Now that you have decided for a micro wedding, it’s time to start planning and choose the venue. This is one of the most important steps as it will really set the tone for the entire event and influences other parts of your wedding planning Qld, such as vendors, transportation, accommodation, etc.

When organising a small intimate wedding, you will need to keep in mind the following things when looking for a venue: choosing the main aspects that matter the most to you and selecting your venue based on that; opting for an outdoor wedding if you want to make your wedding not feel too small or become a tiny wedding; choosing a location where guests can stay onsite for the weekend; and looking for that exclusive venue that will provide you with fabulous catering. For organising a small and intimate wedding away from home, Villa Botanica is the luxury venue that has it all; from outstanding quality of service to plenty of outdoor space to comply with any social distancing regulations.

Why Villa Botanica is so great for an intimate wedding

magical moment captured of newly wedded on black rock that is exclusive to Villa Botanica Great for Small Wedding

Luke Middle Miss Photography

Villa Botanica is your top Whitsunday wedding venue where you can celebrate the most important day in your life without having to deal with the usual difficulties of wedding planning, to which the challenges of Covid-19 restrictions are now added. In case you needed a few more reasons as to why Villa Botanica is the perfect small intimate wedding venue:

  • Villa Botanica is surrounded by the exquisite natural Whitsundays environment and is rated as one of the most romantic outdoors locations to marry in Queensland;
  • Your guests will have plenty of room to move around and explore as Villa Botanica and its 5-acre surface is only yours to enjoy for the day;
  • We provide luxurious wedding-night accommodation;
  • Our in-house wedding planning Qld services are meticulous, reliable, and highly creative at the same time;
  • We serve 5-star food and drinks in a tropical garden setting;
  • We offer all-inclusive weddings so you don’t need to worry about a thing;
  • You are not hiring a traditional wedding venue, but you are getting your own private paradise.

Are you interested in our micro wedding solutions and the advantages that a boutique Whitsunday destination wedding venue like Villa Botanica can provide in the midst of the Covid-19 crisis? Contact us now on our website and find out how we can make your tropical wedding dream come true!

bride with her Father walking down the aisle with header text "Tips & Tricks to Plan Your Outdoor Wedding Reception"

Tips & Tricks to Plan Your Outdoor Wedding Reception

By | Blog

Every couple wants their wedding day to be memorable and is looking for ways to plan a wedding that is different from everything they’ve seen before. Opting for an outdoor wedding reception could be that brilliant idea that will make the day you tie the knot one of a kind.

2020 Is The Best Year To Plan an Outdoor Wedding

table layout of an outdoor wedding reception

Keegan Cronin Photography

Reasons to consider outdoor wedding ideas are numerous: flexibility to choose any wedding theme, increased space, feeling more comfortable, saving costs, and benefiting from the positive effects of spending time outdoors. Moreover, currently there is one extra advantage of an outdoor wedding ceremony and reception – being able to comply with social distancing regulations required during the Covid-19 pandemic, without compromising on the number of guests.

 An upcoming summer outdoor wedding will still have to observe some strict regulations but many couples will find that venturing outdoors is better than having a highly restricted indoor wedding or postponing their wedding to an unknown date.

What regulations you will need to follow

There are multiple changes and updates from the Australian Government for each state, and all these rules and regulations can change at any time because of the uncertainty of the 2020 Covid pandemic. When planning your big day and looking for suitable wedding locations, you need to consider the following aspects:

  • Canapé service is not permitted in all states and you will have to serve each guest separately. You cannot have shared plates or family-style catering even for your outside wedding reception and you may be allowed only sit-down service.
  • The maximum number of people allowed at a table is generally ten, but regulations can differ from state to state.
  • Recommendations are to seat guests with people from their household or family if possible.
  • Table styling may differ during the Covid-19 outbreak, with some venues not permitting cutlery and glassware on tables in order to minimise risk – ask your destination wedding venue before making styling decisions.
  • Singing, group singing, and wind instruments can spread the virus when a performer is infected, so if you want to include these options with your ceremony, the performers will need to be placed at least 3 metres away from your guests.
  • Dancing is still possible in some states, but you will need to look for places such as Whitsunday wedding venues that have a dance floor with enough space. Unfortunately, rituals or traditions such as throwing the bouquet need to be modified or eliminated.
  • You need to provide the names and contact numbers of all of your guests and vendors.
wedding guests enjoying airlie beach wedding

Timeless Images By Vanessa

If you are considering an Airlie Beach wedding, you need to follow Queensland Covid-19 regulations, such as:

  • A maximum of 100 guests can attend a wedding from the 3rd of July 2020;
  • Social distancing is mandatory and guests who are unwell should not attend;
  • You need to store securely the contact details of people attending your wedding for 56 days in case you need to provide such information to public health officers;
  • The couple getting married is allowed to dance with each other and/or their parents;
  • You can only have a sit-down reception with individual plates served.

Please note these rules and regulations are subject to change at any time with the uncertainty of COVID-19.

Tips, tricks & ideas for planning an outdoor wedding reception

wedding bride preparing gown and planning outdoor wedding reception

Luke Middle Miss Photography

Couples getting married in 2020 and the next year may have to cope with some extra difficulties in their wedding planning, but venues are adaptable and the current situation should not spoil the fun of preparing for one of the most important events in your life. We think you should still look forward to the big day and keep on focusing on outdoor wedding reception ideas like you would have normally done:

Find the right outdoor wedding reception venue

Many Australian couples are lately opting for Airlie beach wedding ideas since there are literally dozens of venues you can choose from if you decide to get married in the Whitsundays. One of the best options is Villa Botanica, the most beautiful and luxurious Whitsunday wedding venues, with breathtaking ocean views and top service.

Keep in touch with guests through a wedding website

Online communication methods are preferred not only due to social distancing requirements but also because they are very convenient. Choose a wedding website service that will allow you to communicate wedding details to all your guests without wasting time on emails and chat messages.

Keep guests comfortable

An outdoor wedding reception comes with multiple advantages but also with some possible issues such as uncomfortable weather and upsetting insects. If you opt for a summer outdoor wedding, consider providing parasols, hand fans, chilled water, and insect repellents – these minor details can make all the difference for your guests!

Use a microphone for the ceremony

An outdoor wedding ceremony has different acoustics compared to an indoor traditional one, plus that you also need to maintain a certain distance from your guests – using a simple but reliable sound system is a must.

Check sound ordinances

Whether you choose a destination wedding venue or opt for more local wedding locations, throwing a party outdoors can disturb neighbours. Some venues have strict sound ordinances and you will need to plan your day based on the latest hour you are allowed to make loud noise – usually 11 p.m.

Weather can be unpredictable

Even if you have an Airlie beach wedding and chances of good weather are extremely high, you still need to have a plan B in mind. Make sure you love your alternate plan so you can remain positive in case unpredicted weather affects your original plan. Very important – find out if you are allowed to set up your rental items on wet ground or under threat of rain.

Adapt your fashion choices

Getting married in a tropical climate and having an outside wedding reception means you will have to consider your fashion and beauty choices carefully because factors like wind, humidity, and heat may affect your attire, hairstyle, and products. Fortunately nowadays there are plenty of solutions even if dancing can make you sweat or the ocean breeze is a bit too powerful. Extra tip: while travelling to your destination wedding venue by plane never check your wedding dress and take it with you in the cabin even if you have to fold it.

Use your creativity

Outdoor wedding receptions are preferred because they allow for more creativity, requires less decor, allow you to be more spontaneous, and the amount of outdoor wedding ideas are endless. The logistics are very important, but so are the creative elements – make use of the natural environment to create an event that stands out from the crowd. Suggestions such as amazing lighting techniques, incorporating lawn games, releasing butterflies or doves, or even including your pets in your wedding are just a snippet of ideas for outdoor wedding receptions. A quick internet search will reveal countless outdoor wedding ideas – you just need to choose your favourite ones and check with your venue if your ideas are compatible with the setting and facilities provided.

Outdoor Wedding Reception with a panorama view of Whitsunday Islands

Summer Rain Photography

The perfect outdoors ceremony and reception can be created for you at the beautifully boutique Villa Botanica, Whitsundays. Villa Botanica situated by the Coral Sea is a unique and exclusive location for the perfect outdoor wedding reception and ceremony. Reasons to invest in the wedding of your dreams by booking an Airlie beach wedding at Villa Botanica include:

  • Being surrounded by the gorgeous natural Whitsundays environment;
  • Getting married in a tropical garden setting perfectly complemented by antique, Balinese-inspired architecture;
  • Five-star food and drinks;
  • In-house, meticulous professional wedding planning and boutique wedding-night accommodation;
  • Complimentary transport to deliver your guests safely to local accommodation;
  • Expansive 30m long veranda with views overlooking the sea;
  • Having the 5 acres of the estate just for you to enjoy for the day as Villa Botanica hosts only one event at a time;
  • All-inclusive wedding packages available, so you don’t need to worry about a thing!
  • Exclusive discounts at recommended Airlie Beach accommodation providers for your guests.

If you want to achieve the perfect outdoor wedding ceremony and outdoor wedding reception contact Villa Botanica today and let us start designing the perfect wedding for you! 

beautiful couple dancing in a romantic night sky wedding venue of Villa Botanica - The Perfect Dream Destination Wedding Venue in Whitsunday Islands

The Perfect Dream Destination Wedding Venue in Whitsunday Islands

By | Blog

Marriage trends are constantly evolving, but one concept that is here to stay is the dream destination wedding. Most people associate destination weddings with tropical beachside ceremonies, such as a Whitsunday beach wedding, or getting married in a remote, European location that is full of culture. Truth is a destination wedding doesn’t have to be thousands of mile away from home or overly expensive, and this option for tying the knot is more common today than it has ever been before. 

A destination wedding is a ceremony and reception hosted outside the couple’s hometowns and it requires travel for most guests and people involved. Many Australian couples have chosen this option over the traditional ceremony, but only a small percentage actually ventures as far as travelling abroad to get married. Many couples prefer to opt for a Queensland-based, Whitsunday island wedding due to benefits such as:

Offering a personalised, memorable experience for your guests

There is a common saying that all weddings are the same, but we disagree. A destination wedding planner will show you that getting married away from home can make your day unforgettable both for you and your guests. Instead of spending your day at a traditional venue that everybody is very familiar with, picture yourself in a tropical, luxurious, holiday atmosphere with happy friends and family having the best time of your life. perfect dream destination wedding ceremony with guests - Villa Botanica: Unique Wedding Venues Australia

Having a casual, relaxed wedding

Heavy brocade wedding gowns and stiff tuxedoes have been wedding fashion for decades, but couples are increasingly looking for something else. A Whitsunday beach wedding can be the perfect opportunity to opt for lace and linen, kick of the heels and heavy shoes, just go  barefoot and dig your toes into the sand.

Starting your honeymoon immediately after the wedding

Many couples give up on or postpone their honeymoon because they lack the energy, time or money after the wedding. On the other hand, when you are already away from home for your wedding, nothing can stop you from spending at least a couple of days more at your destination wedding resort and really enjoy and extend that milestone moment of your life. Whitsunday island accommodation is extremely diverse and can suit all budgets and preferences; you definitely deserve spending your first days as a married couple in a beautiful spot, relaxing and making great memories.

Saving money

Did you know that a Whitsunday island wedding venue that hosts the ceremony and the reception can actually save you money? Getting multiple services from the same provider is more cost-effective and many destination wedding venues have at least one destination wedding planner. He or she can organise your nuptials from A to Z, saving you the stress of sourcing local vendors.

That elopement feel

If you want to experience some of the thrill that newlyweds had when starting their marriage away from home, a destination wedding is one of the closest experiences to old days elopement. 

So if you are taking the plunge and opting for a destination wedding experience the next step is deciding where your dream destination wedding will take place. Here are the most popular options for destination weddings:


An option if you are looking at having a smaller wedding as general costs of hosting an international wedding tend to be higher so you’ll want to cut back on the guest list and other expenses. On the downside not all friends and relatives will be able or willing to travel internationally due to budget restraints and other obligations. Another issue with getting married abroad is bureaucracy – if you want to get legally married outside the country you will need to abide by the nation’s wedding requirements and provide all necessary documents. For instance, some Caribbean Islands require residency prior to the ceremony and proof of citizenship.


Although less adventurous, this option is chosen by many couples considering a wedding away from home, as ships already have elements of a wedding in full supply and the ship’s captain can be deputised to perform weddings on sea.

Australian Destination Wedding Resort

By far the most common for Australian couples, this solution is a fortunate mix between exoticism and convenience. Travelling to a desirable location within Australia means no international travel issues. A Whitsunday beach wedding will provide you with all the advantages of getting married away from home but without the headaches of actually leaving the country. Whitsunday island wedding options are extremely diverse, with one of the most exquisite venues being Villa Botanica. 

How can a destination wedding planner at Villa Botanica help you craft your dream destination wedding?

Here are the main reasons why Villa Botanica is the place to get married at the Whitsundays:

Incredible views

The Whitsunday island wedding is the dream of many Australian couples due to the wonderful weather, access to the best beaches in Australia with sand as white as the bride’s dress, spending the day at a luxurious waterfront property, all with tranquil mountains in the background.

Enjoying a private love nest

Did you know that Villa Botanica was not built as a wedding venue? Its owners have developed the estate for years to match their exquisite tastes and love of nature. The owners Ralph and Janet Hogan thoughtfully decided to share their love nest with other couples from Australia and abroad by transforming their home into the exclusive, boutique wedding venue it is today. Villa Botanica has the natural feel of an exquisite retreat as opposed to a commercial wedding venue, and at the same time, the dedicated team takes care of everything to ensure your dream destination wedding becomes a reality.

Hosting one wedding at a time

Villa Botanica only hosts one wedding a day and the entire 5-acre estate is yours to enjoy for the day.

Landscaped gardens and super architecture

You will be amazed by the diversity of flora, which will allow you to enjoy a mix of garden and coastal wedding themes, with the cactarium being one of the main attractions for nature lovers. The natural setting is perfectly complemented by the Balinese-inspired architecture, accented by the beautifully hand-carved details.

Perfect dancing floor

The marble ballroom is prepared to host your first dance as a married couple and also as a plan B in case the weather is bad (a rare occurrence for a Whitsunday beach wedding).

Different packages to choose from

Villa Botanica provides a variety of packages to choose from. A chat with our friendly staff will reveal the most suitable options based on your preferences and budget – even if you are not sure about where to start with planning, we will advise and gently guide you on your journey until your dream destination wedding slowly reveals itself. 

A team that will go above and beyond to give you your dream destination wedding

“Amazing venue and incredible wedding planners! You just can’t go wrong at Villa.”

“Never in my wildest dreams could I imagine such a perfect wedding; not only that so many of our guests said it was the best wedding they have ever been to as well! Thank you again, we truly are indebted to you.”

“Cannot thank the staff enough for their hospitality, support and beautiful comments on the day.”

These are just a few reviews from happy couples who have planned their Whitsunday island wedding at Villa Botanica; you too can have that experience that will stay with you forever as our team of dedicated wedding planners will go above and beyond to craft your dream destination wedding. Getting in touch is the first step to planning your dream wedding. Contact us today with any questions you might have about a Whitsunday beach wedding at Villa Botanica! 

a garden wedding queensland ceremony in a pavilion filled with guests located in Whitsunday Islands Wedding Venue -Villa Botanica

Memorable Ideas & Tips for Your Garden Wedding Queensland

By | Blog

A garden wedding is a wedding ceremony/reception taking place in a garden – they are generally preferred by couples who like being outdoors and want a more relaxed feel for their wedding. Garden wedding Queensland inquiries have multiplied in the last months as holding an event outdoors makes it easier to comply with recent social distancing requirements. 

Planning for a garden wedding reception does not mean you will have to get married in your backyard, of course, as there are many wedding ceremony venues offering this type of service all over Australia. 

If you like the idea of planning a garden wedding Queensland for your big day, here are some ideas on how to start your garden wedding planning Qld:

Villa Botanica Garden Wedding Queensland Venue

Luke Middle Miss Photography

Consider your venue setting

The backdrop of your wedding ceremony will be the canvas on which you plan everything else. From floral arrangements and gardens to coastal views and rustic buildings there are endless options for outdoor garden weddings. 

Pick a welcome sign

Most wedding ceremony venues will already have at least one type of welcome sign available and you should be able to personalise it with your names or a funny message like “pick a seat, not a side, as we’re all family once the knot is tied”. A garden wedding is the perfect excuse to add some creative flair with your welcome sign – floral and shabby chic are both styles to think about.

Add creative flair to your garden area

Make your garden wedding reception stand out from the crowd by using beautiful styling and decorations, such as flower bars, lights hanging from tree branches, flowers in vintage bottles, or wine barrels bursting with fresh flowers. Garden weddings suit rustic details and a simplistic approach to décor and styling.

newly wedded couple enjoying Villa Botanica - Garden Wedding Queensland Venue in front coastal views

Summer Rain Photography

Relax your approach to wedding food

Traditional and more formal catering options are still popular, but many couples are now opting for a more relaxed approach on wedding food, such as food trucks, gelato stations, wine and cheese stations, gourmet barbecues, and cocktail stations. A catering company that offers a food selection to compliment your venue is ideal. For example, with a coastal venue garden wedding venue consider fresh local produce, seafood, beautiful edible flowers and tasty minis for your guests.

How will the garden look at the time of your wedding?

Consider the seasons and the weather, and how they will affect your chosen venue. Wedding planning qld makes this a bit easier though, as the weather is nice all year round and many couples opt for a Whitsunday wedding venue when planning a winter wedding. At this time of the year, the heat of the tropical summer is gone and popular tourist spots are less crowded. Queensland also offers tropical flora that thrive in the heat, unusual plants such as cacti make for a great décor option.

newly wedded couple enjoying a garden wedding queensland while cutting cake - Villa Botanica Venue

Keegan Cronin Photography

Garden Wedding Styling

Garden wedding styling can range from boho chic, to a simple, pure and classic white wedding. Lace and vintage dress styles compliment garden wedding venues. Pure white gives a classic and traditional feel to any venue, the contrast between greenery and white detail makes for great wedding photos.

Choose an all-in-one ceremony and reception venue

Venue changes can be quite an inconvenience and cause disturbances such as downtime between ceremony and reception, having to provide instructions to guests on how to move from one location to another, having to arrange transportation, etc. A venue offering everything from ceremony to reception areas is highly recommended because it will allow you to save on time, stress and money. All-in-one garden wedding venues also create an atmosphere of calm as you and your guests organically move from one are to the next as the day progresses. 

Make sure you have a plan B you are happy with.

The Whitsundays are known for excellent weather throughout the entire year, but Mother Nature can be very unpredictable in Australia. When the weather is not really suited for a garden wedding, your destination wedding venue should provide the option of moving everything inside as your Plan B. Make sure you are also happy with your plan B if plan A doesn’t quite work out.

Consider off-peak times for your wedding date

Wedding vendors operate both during high and off-peak times throughout the year, so if you are working to a strict budget, you can look for wedding ceremony venues that are available during the off-peak season – winter weddings are very popular in Australia and it is even possible to have a garden wedding Queensland during what is technically the coldest time of the year, as the Queensland weather will still be enjoyable enough to celebrate outdoors.

If you are looking for a destination wedding venue that is the perfect setting for a garden wedding look no further than Villa Botanica. This stunning Whitsunday wedding venue is located right on the edge of the Coral Sea, a Balinese inspired estate has countless features that make it an ideal garden wedding qld venue. This unique and exclusive venue has a timber, hand-carved pavilion to host your wedding ceremony, features an impressive ballroom for your first dance or to retreat to in case of bad weather (don’t forget that plan B), and provides an idyllic background for a garden wedding Queensland due to its Cactarium and lush landscaped gardens spread throughout the incredible 5 acres of the estate. 

The story of how Villa Botanica was founded is a truly romantic one. Owner Ralph Hogan and his wife Janet left their ad agency Oddfellows in Sydney to build their dream family home here in 1996:

Villa Botanica owner Ralph Hogan with wife Janet Hogan and their children“It was about 18 years ago when we fell in love with this small, ramshackle coastal strip of Airlie Beach, sandwiched between brilliant aquamarine water on one side and deep green mountains on the other. We found this land by tinny as there was no road access, and when we stepped ashore we knew this is where we wanted to live.”

The estate gradually developed until its owners had the idea of sharing it with other couples by turning it into an unforgettable boutique wedding venue. Villa Botanica offers:

  • Exotic landscaping including Madagascan triangle palms line on the driveway, cactus gardens, and a cactarium featuring rare species grown over the past 50 years by local lady Anne Camilleri;
  • An in-house wedding planning Qld expert that will keep in touch permanently with you throughout the wedding planning process and create a custom reception according to your requirements;
  • A unique mixture between turquoise Coral Sea views and Balinese inspired antique backdrops that complement the lush palm forest and the majestic mountains;
  • A beautiful palm lines and mosaic tiled walkway serving as the perfect backdrop to make your entrance before taking your vows;
  • The sea deck offering a spectacular display of tropical pinks and purples reflected across the Whitsunday Bay;
  • Complete privacy – Villa Botanica was not built with commercial wedding planning in mind; actually it is a private, exclusive retreat that hosts only one event a day, with the entire estate being yours to have your perfect garden wedding Queensland there and enjoy it to the maximum!

Is Villa Botanica on your short list for garden wedding Queensland? Don’t hesitate to contact us today on our website or by phone at 0749483025! We have planned hundreds of weddings and we are here to help. At Villa Botanica we put our heart and soul into every wedding, and together we can make your garden wedding reception one of a kind!

a newly wedded couple in the middle of shoreline rocks with a banner text of destination weddings australia - whitsunday wedding at Villa Botanica

Destination Weddings Australia: Picking the Right Venue for Your Whitsunday Wedding

By | Blog

So you’ve decided to book your dream destination wedding in beautiful Australia, you’ve even narrowed the region down to the fabulous Whitsundays, but you don’t know which Whitsunday weddings venue to choose. Picking the right venue can make or break your big day so it is essential that you weigh up your needs and wants in order to pick the perfect venue to suit you and your guests.

There are varying reasons why a particular venue might stand out for you but you need to be sure you’ve covered all you bases; this guide will help you on your journey to securing your dream destination wedding venue.

Location is Everything: Why Choose Destination Weddings in Australia?

Australian destination weddings offer a diverse range of options to suit any couple – from a coastal paradise to a hinterland escape. 

There is something truly magical about Australia, from its people and culture to its unique wildlife and unforgettable views. There are many other reasons why couples opt for destination weddings:

Unforgettable Wedding Experience

Having a dream destination wedding allows you to provide not only yourself, but all your friends and family with an event that they won’t forget in a hurry.  A Whitsundays wedding offers you and your guests stunning views, the freshest food, warm hospitality and beautiful weather that can be enjoyed all year round.

Everyone is in holiday mode:

Instead of taking one day off for your wedding your guests can turn the celebration into a full on holiday. Destination weddings Australia usually require some amount of travel, encouraging people to take time off work and simply enjoy the holiday. Happy guests make for a wedding day that is more than memorable.

Hang out with Guests:

Now that everyone is relaxed and enjoying their break from day to day life you can actually spend some time with your wedding guests. A wedding day for most is just one day, making it near impossible for couples to spend the quality time they want to with their guests. Wedding celebrations that last a few days mean that you’re not cramming all those social encounters into one day.

Marriage and Honeymoon Together:

A key advantage of choosing the perfect destination wedding location is that you don’t have to organize travel to a honeymoon destination – you are already there! The Whitsunday’s is one of the best honeymoon destinations in Australia, offering a host of different activities and experiences, partnered with many romantic accommodation options.  

What to consider when picking the venue for Your Whitsunday Destination Wedding Australia?

The budget:

The budget is the first thing to consider when picking your venue. Consider all venues of your choice and select the ones that fall under your budget. Destination wedding planners offer various packages to suit an array of budgets. Packages are inclusive of all your needs and allow for a stress free wedding experience.

Venue Location:

Location, location, location: A venue should be an embodiment of the local area – beautiful views, extensive lush gardens, great local accommodation options. You need to consider every aspect so that your day can run as smoothly as possible. Considering a location means thinking about not only what you want but also what will work for your whole wedding party. Is the venue easily accessible for your guests, do you need to arrange transport? 

Weather Conditions:

Weather conditions can really put a dampener on your big day, excuse the pun. It is important to consider the seasonal weather for your destination wedding. Your chosen venue should offer you wet-weather options. Luckily the Whitsundays offer an average temperature of 27.4 °C meaning that a winter wedding is definitely an option and your guests can leave their sweaters at home.

Personality matters:

A venue should reflect both you and your partner, who you are as people. Do you love sun, sand and sea? Then choosing a coastal venue will add to the wedding, as it is symbolic of your personalities. Destination weddings show off the location but they also provide a blank canvas open to customization and creativity.  

Marriage Logistics:

Think about the whole marriage events logistically and compare them with real things available in different venues. Select the one meeting with all of your demands.

Destination Wedding Planner:

Nowadays the beautiful thing about destination weddings is that each venue will provide you with an expert planner who can ensure your every need is met. Having a competent and meticulous wedding planner will lower your stress levels and turn your dreams into reality. Wedding planners will source local vendors, offer tried and tested advice, coordinate every aspect from start to finish and handle an emergencies if they arise.

What makes the Whitsundays a dream destination wedding spot:

The Whitsunday Islands Wedding Venue entice couples year-round, owing to their prevailing beauty and the generally romantic setting. The most attractive and captivating places of Whitsunday include the following:

  • Heart Reef 
  • Daydream Island
  • Whitehaven Beach
  • Airlie Beach
  • Hamilton Island
  • Hayman Island
  • The Great Barrier Reef itself
  • Long Island

The Whitsunday Islands are located in the heart of the Great Barrier Reef. Enjoy this natural wonder with your nearest and dearest through a range of activities such as –diving, snorkeling, and sailing the stretch filled with corals. For those who don’t want to get wet – take a seaplane or scenic helicopter flight to experience the stunning reef from above. Views that can’t be missed include the mesmerizing Heart-shaped heart reef and the white sands of Whitehaven Beach. Back on the mainland, Airlie Beach is the gateway to the Whitsunday Islands this beautiful locale offers boating experiences, wildlife encounters and a vast array of dining options. Airlie Beach boasts many accommodation and venue options for every type of wedding, such as Villa Botanica that looks out over the Coral Sea.

What can Villa Botanica offer you?

A Stunning Location:

From tropical gardens to marble dance floors, Villa Botanica’s broad selection of beautiful on-site locations means that you will have an unforgettable experience and stunning photos to last a lifetime. Villa Botanica was cited by Vogue Bridal as one of the top wedding venues to follow on Instagram. The grand 5-acre estate is exclusively yours for the entire day; the estate’s ceremony pavilion is a breath-taking, hand-carved teak feature under which to say ‘I Do’, the Sea Deck provides a wonderful reception area with views of the Coral Sea and the unforgettable Cactarium makes a brilliant backdrop for wedding photos unlike any others. 

Comprehensive Wedding Planning:

The highly experienced and motivated team at Villa Botanica is dedicated to ensuring your day goes as smoothly as possible. Their quality destination wedding planners will be with you from day one, as they guide you through your wedding planning journey. They can hook you up with the best vendors, offer expert advice and on the big day they’ll be there to make sure it all goes to plan.

The specialty of Villa Botanica venues:

Countless couples have opted for Villa Botanica as their destination wedding venue of choice as it is truly an unforgettable location set among the Whitsunday coast. The comprehensive service, captivating views, enchanting tropical gardens and Balinese styling makes it a one or a kind destination wedding venue.

Villa Botanica has been recognized by the prestigious Australian Bridal Industry Awards, has previously been voted Best Ceremony Venue and Best Reception Centre in Queensland. If you are curious to know more about this remarkable boutique destination wedding venue, enquire online on the Villa Botanica website and a consultant will be in touch. Our team would love to assist you in planning and creating your perfect Whitsunday destination wedding.

newly wedded couple staring lovingly at each other in front of garden airlie beach wedding - Villa Botanica

Airlie Beach Wedding: Helpful Tips for Brides and Grooms

By | Blog

Are you planning an Airlie Beach wedding? Weddings on the beach have become increasingly popular in the past few years and are even more sought-after starting with 2020 due to restrictions caused by the Covid-19 pandemic. There are lots of Whitsunday wedding packages allowing you to celebrate your nuptials outdoors and following social distancing recommendations, without compromising on the number of guests. However, the challenges of destination wedding planning remain in the same. This is why our wedding planning experts have gathered the most valuable beach theme wedding tips to ensure the perfect wedding day for you and your other half:

11 Helpful Tips To Enjoy Your Airlie Beach Wedding

Avoid procrastination

Delaying decisions regarding your Airlie Beach wedding is one of the most harmful mistakes. When you make decisions early in your planning process you get the best vendors and you can stick within your budget without giving up on your dreams. You will also have more time to relax in the weeks preceding the wedding and not feel overworked on your wedding day.

Set your budget

Avoid spending anything before setting a realistic budget. More than that, you need to consider every detail in your destination wedding planning as the little extras like gifts or dress alterations can add up and throw you seriously out of budget before you even realise it.

Choose the venue carefully

The type of venue you choose will influence almost every aspect of your wedding, such as the number of guests, the date, choosing between various Whitsunday wedding packages, and transportation. Airlie Beach features a large number of wedding venues that you will need to contact well in advance, because some of them are already fully booked for 2021, with 2022 filling up fast!

Choosing the right time of the year

Living in Australia and planning for wedding reception Airlie Beach is an excellent situation to be in because this destination will allow you to get married at any time of the year, including winter. Prices can be lower in wintertime and this period is also suitable for those who prefer to avoid crowds and are neither too keen on the tropical summer heat. 

Save money on decor by opting for weddings on the beach

One of the best things about having an Airlie Beach wedding is requiring less decoration for the event. Airlie Beach is one of the most beautiful spots in Australia and is known for its access to the Great Barrier Reef, secluded beaches, tropical forests, and mangroves. Wedding venues generally make use of the natural beauty of the Whitsunday Islands and opt for simplistic décor to compliment the environment, which will also make your wedding easier to plan.

Consider the kids policy in time

There are generally three options regarding your wedding’s ‘kids policy’; having an adults only wedding, welcoming kids with open arms, and hiring a child care service to provide day care at the reception space or in a nearby hotel room. No matter what you decide on, make sure you apply the same kids rules to all families and not exclude anyone, so as to avoid conflict.

Invest in a professional photographer

Your wedding only lasts one day, but the memories last a lifetime. Photography and videography consideration are often taken lightly, but the skills and flair of the person behind the camera actually play a vital role in the quality of your wedding photos. Ask candidates to show you their past work before closing the deal and you will thank yourself every time you look at your wedding album.

Do not check your dress

A piece of valuable destination wedding advice is to always carry your dress on board the plane, even it means you will have to fold it. At a popular wedding destination such as Airlie Beach you will always find someone who can press and steam it.

Adapt your wedding to current restrictions

Covid-related restrictions will prevent your guests from closely interacting with each other; for instance you cannot have dance floors. Industries which have been badly affected by the ban on social dancing have already crafted some solutions to keep things going, such as splitting participants at an event into small groups and preventing groups from interacting with each other. Current advice from Australian government includes:

  • Having solo singers instead of group singing, which is higher risk; and avoiding wind instruments;
  • Choosing a venue that has a dancefloor area with enough space between guests or having guests dance near their assigned table. Rituals such as throwing the bouquet will have to be avoided or modified.

Have realistic expectations

Before hiring a planner and expecting them to make it all perfect, take some time to do some research about what you are hoping to accomplish with your wedding. It’s easy to list off a host of wants and wishes for your destination wedding but make sure that those plans are reachable within your time frame or budget, so as to avoid disappointment. Leave your relative’s opinions aside and discuss your values with your partner to decide what the most important expectations of the big day are. Some couples may be extremely adamant about the decor, and this is the reason why they are interested in beach theme wedding ideas; others care a lot about the quality of food and will only opt for local, organic food; while other couples just care about having fun and creating a vibrant party atmosphere.

Don’t forget about the most important thing

The number one point is not to forget the fact that you are marrying the love of your life. Beach theme wedding planning can be difficult, especially when you live far away from the destination, and you can get too caught up with it and miss the most important thing: you and your loved one are getting married and it’s supposed to be the happiest day of your lives! So, each time you get too passionate about your destination wedding planning and your opinions conflict, re-focus on you as a couple and don’t let planning become too stressful.

Let Villa Botanica and their wonderfully experienced wedding planners take away the stress from your destination wedding planning. Your wedding reception Airlie Beach will meet and even exceed your expectations at the beautiful Villa Botanica. A fabulous venue known for its tropical gardens, breathtaking views, a palm-lined mosaic-tiled walkway, a cactarium, a hand-carved timber pavilion, its veranda overlooking the ocean, and the marble ballroom ready to host your lavish wedding reception. With more than ample room, you can spend your entire wedding day outdoors without having to worry about social distancing, and you will enjoy one of those unique weddings on the beach that everyone remembers forever.

Why Villa Botanica?

Villa Botanica is one of the top boutique wedding venue choices among couples planning an Airlie Beach wedding for the following reasons:

  • In-house professional wedding planning provided – destination wedding planning has never been easier. You will be assigned a dedicated wedding planner from the beginning and you will discuss details regularly so your wedding planning is completely stress-free for you and your partner;
  • Access to trusted local vendors – Villa Botanica will recommend you its trusted vendors they have been collaborating with for a long time so everything comes out smoothly and according to the plan;
  • Having your own private paradise – 5 acres of breathtaking Airlie Beach landscaped terrain is yours to enjoy exclusively for the day;
  • Incredible scenery – everyone who has visited Villa Botanica comments that pictures don’t do justice to this mesmerising venue. A combination of pristine nature and Balinese-inspired architecture, along with hand-carved details gives and views that seem out of this world.

So, the final tip for brides and grooms planning an Airlie Beach wedding is choosing the right venue, such as Villa Botanica. They provide multiple Whitsunday wedding packages to choose from and will discuss your requirements in the most effective and straightforward manner so we are able to craft the perfect wedding for you and your future spouse. Contact us today for a quick chat and we’ll show you how Villa Botanica is the dream wedding venue you’ve been looking for!

banner image of a newly-wedded couple dancing in the middle of garden wedding venue of Villa Botanica waterfront Queensland wedding venue

Important Points To Remember When Choosing a Queensland Wedding Venue

By | Blog

Choosing your venue is one of the most important wedding planning steps and the way your event will look like depends largely on the type of venue you opt for. If you’re planning a wedding and considering a Queensland wedding venue there are a few options open to you. Some couples are looking for luxury wedding venues Queensland, while others prefer a simple, easy-going beach wedding Queensland. Whitsundays venues offer the beach and luxury all in one. No matter what your expectations for the big day are, there is a long list of venues you can choose from, each offering something different in terms of services and benefits.

7 Important Things To Consider When Choosing a Queensland Wedding Venue

Villa Botanica garden queensland wedding venue with a cake in front of happy newly-wedded couple

Keegan Cronin Photography

In order to easily navigate through Queensland wedding packages and make the best choice, you will need to establish a few details from the beginning:

1. Guest numbers

Before you make a shortlist of Whitsundays venues, work out your rough guest numbers to make sure the venue can accommodate your reception. You will need to pick a Queensland wedding venue that is the right size for your festivities. Getting a venue that is too small for the group you are inviting will present a big issue, guests need to be comfortable and not cramped and currently Government required social distancing is still in effect so that must always be kept in mind. Your venue should provide ample space so your guests are comfortable, safe and can properly enjoy themselves.

2. Your price range

Have an approximate idea of how much you can afford to spend on your wedding and check if the venue you are considering fits that budget. Although there are countless Whitsundays wedding venues to choose from, some very appealing, the reality is that not every venue will fit within your budget. Determine precisely what you can afford in order to avoid frustrations and the disappointment of falling in love with a wedding venue you cannot afford.

Consider checking venues that provide various Queensland wedding packages, such as Villa Botanica. The luxurious Balinese-inspired style venue offers various wedding packages that make it a great option among luxury wedding venues Queensland.

Villa Botanica’s professional wedding planners are meticulous and they pride themselves on their ability to work with their clients to ensure their dream wedding goes perfectly to plan. Throughout the planning stages and on the big day Villa Botanica want you to feel nothing but relaxed and reassured, knowing that your special day is in the hands of their trusted experts

3. Date you would like to get married, is there any availability?

Depending on how popular they are, some luxury wedding venues Queensland are booked years in advance, especially around holidays or for special days such as Valentine’s Day. Couples often need to make a choice and decide what is most important to them: a particular wedding venue or a certain date. Many wedding planners Queensland recommend choosing dates that aren’t in high demand as this will allow you to get married at your preferred wedding venue and possibly to save money since some venues offer discounts if you get married during the week or at a less attractive time of the year. If you plan for a destination wedding, your guests will need to take time off work or arrange house sitters or childminders, so make sure to give them your ‘save the date’ plenty of time in advance so they can plan their schedule accordingly.

4. Are you having your reception and ceremony at the same venue?

There’s no doubt about it, a more simplistic wedding is likely to run smoothly. When you have to coordinate a long list of details, it is easier to get into trouble and make a mistake. Having your ceremony and your reception at different locations makes matters a little more complicated, adding to the stress and fatigue of the day, and comes with some extra logistics effort. With a single venue you only have to decorate once, no ferrying your guests between multiple locations and ultimately you get to spend more quality time simply enjoying your day. The ideal option is to get married at a versatile and luxurious venue where you can have both your ceremony and your reception, one that offers an array of beautiful locations within the one venue. 

At Villa Botanica you can hold your ceremony in the exquisite hand carved timber wedding pavilion, which is accessible through a beautiful palm lined and mosaic tiled walkway. The entire 5-acre estate is yours for the day to enjoy and explore. There are no overlap risks and no roaming guests from other parties. With its secluded stretch of beach, the cactarium, the sea-deck which overlooks the coral sea, and the marble ballroom awaiting you to take the floor for your first dance.

5. What do they include in their packages? 

When checking out packages on offer, don’t judge it by its price alone – ask what it is the package provides first. Don’t assume that everything you see in the picture is included. Most venues provide chairs and tables but may charge extra costs for cutlery, glasses, table decorations, and linen. Luxury wedding venues Queensland, such as Villa Botanica, offer attentive wedding planners you can be sure that everything gets covered, ensuring your package is right for you.

6. Is there a wedding planner provided?

Good wedding planners Queensland are vital for the success of your event. Planning your wedding without assistance is an option only when you want a small intimate wedding close to your home or when you have lots of free time available and the existing skills and know-how. Luxury wedding venues Queensland often include a wedding planner within their services because planning your wedding without help is neither practical nor cost-effective, and certainly not stress-free. Why put so much pressure on yourself throughout the process, when you could entrust your wedding planning to professional? He or she can tailor your event to the needs and wants of you and your future spouse, and take care of every single detail.

7. Is the accommodation close by for guests or does the venue offer a transport service for the guests?

It is preferable to choose a Queensland wedding venue that will ensure transportation of your guests from their accommodation to the ceremony and reception place. If they don’t ensure that, give a local bus company a call and ask if they can transport guests.

Couples getting married at Villa Botanica on the Whitsunday Islands do not have to worry about transporting guests. The venue provides complimentary transport for guests if they stay at one of Villa Botanica’s 7 preferred accommodation providers, you’ll also receive a 10% discount off the lowest online rate offered by your chosen accommodation provider

We really believe that you should enjoy your every second of your wedding – even the planning. Once you choose Villa Botanica as your Queensland wedding venue we supply your very own, dedicated, in-house wedding planner to set your plans in motion. The experts at Villa Botanica will ensure the perfect beach wedding Queensland without the usual associated wedding stresses, so you can rest assured in the knowledge that we are looking after you. Villa Botanica distinguishes itself from other Whitsundays venues due to its gorgeous setting, Coral Sea background, dedicated wedding planners, exclusive hosting of one event per day, and offering outstanding services at the highest standards. Contact us today via our website for a free, no-obligation quote for your wedding ceremony and reception!