FAQs

Please see below for some answers to some frequently-asked questions.

All answers are answered by our team here at Stoneridge Estate. If you can’t find what you’re looking for, please feel free to contact us. We welcome any enquiries.

Bookings, Deposits, Contracts & Payments

Venue bookings are confirmed on receipt of a signed copy of the venue contracts and a deposit (100% deposit of the venue hire fees if booking venue hire only, or 50% of the package price if booking a package).

50% of the package price, or 100% of the venue hire fees.

Deposits are non-refundable unless we are able to re-sell the date with a commensurate booking.

Weddings are typically booked 12 – 18 months in advance, and so if a date is booked and then cancelled, we may have already turned away other potential bookings for that date.

Per our venue contracts, deposits are normally non-transferable, as often dates are booked 12 – 18 months in advance and if cancelled or postponed at shorter notice, we are unlikely to take another booking for that date.

However we do try to be as flexible as possible – if you do find due to personal circumstances that you need to change your wedding date, please get in touch with us and we will do our best to find a solution e.g. transferring your wedding to an off-peak or mid-week date.

Payment is due by 7 days prior to your wedding. We will send a final invoice 1 – 2 weeks before your wedding date once your wedding arrangements are finalised. 

Ceremonies

We can seat between 60 – 70 guests in the Chapel on the pew seating, with some additional guests standing at the back. If some pews are removed then we can accommodate up to 110 guests.

Approximately 100 chairs can be set up on the lower level of the Chapel Gardens facing towards the lake, and additional chairs can be set up off to the left or on the upper level of the gardens if required. 

Many couples holding larger wedding ceremonies opt to have around half of their guests seated and the remainder standing.

Ceremony venue bookings allow for up to 2.5 hours exclusive use of the Chapel and gardens for your ceremony and photography. If you do require more time or have vendors who need to start set-up earlier, please let us know.

Ceremony venue hire includes exclusive use of the Chapel and gardens for up to 2.5 hours.

The Chapel comes with pew seating (12 pews), an altar, four white and green silk floral pedestal arrangements and white silk ribbons on the ends of the pews.

If you prefer to hold your ceremony in the gardens, a marble signing table and two wrought-iron chairs are included. Other hire items e.g. seating, archway, carpet aisle etc. are additional.

We have morning, midday and afternoon ceremony booking time slots available. 

On Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays, the afternoon time slots (from 3.00pm onwards) are only available for couples who are also holding their reception at Stoneridge Estate.

In the event of wet weather on the day, the Chapel is available as a back-up venue.

We do also have a shade sail which can be set up over the Chapel Gardens to protect from rain, which is $695 + GST to hire. However this can’t be set up if it’s windy, and we require 24 hours’ notice if it is required.

Yes, ceremony bookings include use of the Chapel or gardens for your rehearsal for up to one hour. Rehearsals are usually scheduled one or two days prior to your wedding. They are subject to availability of the venue, and may occasionally have to be rescheduled if we do receive another wedding booking at your intended rehearsal time.

There is one toilet in the side room of the Chapel.

The Chapel contains an original pump organ, and a mini sound system with aux cable is available to hire ($75 + GST). For outdoor ceremonies, we recommend hiring our full sound system with microphone and aux cable for $275 + GST. We can also help with arranging live music if preferred.

Yes, there is oil heating and some small electric heaters.

Parking & Transport

We have a large car park near the Chapel where guests can park, with space for up to 40 cars. There are also four parking spots in front of the Hayes Room although these are normally reserved for the couple and special guests.

For any guests staying in our accommodation, the Lodge, Cottage and Retreat also have parking.

Yes – we request that we are advised in advance if you are arranging guest coaches so that we can ensure all accessways are fully clear and that the bus company is familiar with the venue.

Our driveway can be tricky to master in a large coach if the driver is not familiar with it, as there are some tight corners, so if they haven’t been here before we recommend that they come out and do a test run first!

Wedding Planning

We would love to! We have our own in-house planner who will be delighted to be part of your wedding journey. You can choose from our range of curated wedding packages or build your own package.

We charge $75 + GST per hour for wedding planning time – this covers everything including meetings, phone calls and emails, booking your wedding services, creating an itinerary for your big day, etc. 

We include 45 minutes’ complimentary wedding planning with a booking of the ceremony venue, and a further 60 minutes when booking the reception venue.

Wedding Packages

Yes, all of our packages can be tailored to suit your requirements – please contact us if you’d like a quote for a customised package.

We do not provide full cost breakdowns for wedding packages but can provide pricing to add or remove any services that you wish.

We work with a set list of vendors that we have selected as we believe they provide the highest level of service.

For certain services, there is some choice available to you – for example you may select your preferred vendor from our list of photographers, celebrants and hair & make-up stylists. You may also advise your preferred wedding car, floral style and cake type from the options provided. Our wedding coordinators will liaise with you to finalise these details.

There is no requirement to book one of our wedding packages and you may finalise your own arrangements with your chosen vendors if preferred.

Helicopters

Helicopters normally take off and land at the helicopter base in Frankton, approximately 10 minutes’ drive from Stoneridge Estate.

We can arrange helicopter landings on the estate, but we are required to apply to the council for a landing permit so there is an additional cost of $500 if the application is successful. 

The helicopter flight itself is also more expensive if you are taking off & landing at Stoneridge compared with the normal take-off and landing at their heli-base.

Our ceremony and reception packages include a EC120B helicopter which has four passenger seats for the couple, photographer and one other person e.g. videographer or a guest. 

Our heli-wedding package includes a Squirrel helicopter which has six passenger seats for the couple, photographer, celebrant/minister, wedding co-ordinator and maximum one other person.

If you would like any further people to accompany you, you can upgrade to a larger helicopter or book additional helicopters

Your wedding co-ordinator will do a weather check with the pilot 2 hours prior to your planned flight time. 

If inclement weather means your flight is unable to go ahead as planned, they may be able to suggest an alternative location that is more sheltered from the weather.

If it is not possible to fly at all, they will provide a full refund for the flight. Your photographer will be able to suggest some alternative photo locations accessible by car.

The most popular landing locations are the Remarkables and Cecil Peak, which are approximately a 6 – 7 minute flight from the heli-base.

Some other popular landing sites are Lake Lochnagar, Lake Erskine, Coromandel Peak and Earnslaw Burn. However these are quite a bit further away so we would not recommend trying to fly to these in between your ceremony and reception – they are best for elopements and heli-weddings.

You can find some further information and photos of these locations in this blog post: XX.

Reception

Our reception venue hire fee includes all of the basics:

  • Tables (rectangular or round)
  • Wooden cross-back chairs
  • Linen tablecloths and napkins (black or white)
  • Glassware
  • Crockery
  • Cutlery
  • A wine barrel (for your cake table) and cake knife
  • Staffing
  • Set-up and clean-up of the venue
  • Integrated sound system with indoor and outdoor speakers
  • Log fire – in season

Normally receptions would start around 4.00pm – 5.00pm and finish at 11.30pm. 

Reception set-up is normally from 10.00am on your wedding day. Sometimes if there is no function the day prior, we may be able to have the venue set up earlier.

We are licensed until 11.30pm, after which time we are not legally permitted to continue operating. We are unable to get extensions to our licensing hours.

Should you wish to continue celebrating, we are happy to assist with organising coach transport for you and your guests into town. There are many bars in Queenstown that are open until 4.00am daily, including some that offer private hire. 

We can seat up to 150 people at round tables, or up to 56 people at long rectangular tables.

For groups of 14 or fewer, we would recommend dining in the Boardroom.

Our recommendation based on your guest numbers would be as follows:

  • 15 – 28 people – one long wide rectangular table beneath the chandelier
  • 28 – 56 (TBC) people – two long rectangular tables or round tables 
  • 56 + people – round tables

If you have over 90 guests, depending on your chosen table layout you may wish to have our staff remove some guest tables after dinner to make more space for dancing.

Our round tables are 1.8m in diameter and can seat 8 – 10 guests.

If you choose one of our table buffet menus, we advise seating no more than 8 people per table to allow space for the dishes to be placed on the centre of the tables.

Most couples choose to have their head table set up in front of the gothic window, where we can seat up to 12 people. 

We can also set up your head table in front of the glass doors along the front of the reception venue if preferred. There is a limit of 8 people here.

Yes, we can set up a sweetheart table for just the two of you if you prefer. We can provide a 1.2m round table or a 1.8m x 0.9m rectangular table.

Normally dancing would take place towards the back-left of the room. If you have a band or DJ, they can set up in the corner there. Please note it is a stone floor, not a wooden dance floor.

If you have 90 or more people attending your reception, we may set up some tables in this part of the room and then remove them after dinner to make more space for dancing.

There is an integrated sound system in the reception venue. You can connect up your own device using the aux cable at the bar if you wish to put your own playlist on. We also have a background music CD we can put on.

Normally they will bring their own sound equipment. Our sound system is not available for them to use.

We include use of our wooden cross-back chairs. We have 100 matching chairs – if you have a larger wedding, we can provide non-matching chairs, or can hire in more matching chairs for an additional cost.

We do not have other chairs available at the venue, but we can help with hiring in other types of chairs if preferred:

  • Chiavari chairs – white, black, gold, limewash or clear
  • Bentwood chairs – walnut

If you do wish to hire in different chairs, there is a charge of $100 + GST for staff time to remove our own chairs from the reception venue, store them and then replace them after your wedding. 

We offer the choice between white or black linen tablecloths and napkins, included in the venue hire fee.

We also have natural linen tablecloths available to hire for $50 + GST each.

If you would like any other colours of tablecloths or napkins, these can be hired in for an additional cost. We can recommend Whistling Reindeer, Pretty Prop Shop and Tble.Linen.Hire.

The reception venue hire fee does not include any table decorations. 

We have a small range of decorations available for hire, including wrought-iron candelabras, glass hurricane lanterns and tealight holders. We can assist with organising fresh floral decor, place name cards, menus, etc. on request for an additional cost.

Some of our wedding packages do include table decorations – please refer to the full inclusions for each individual package for more information.

These are not included in the venue hire but we can help organise them with our printing company for an additional cost and have stationery design options available on request.

You are also welcome to organise your own if you prefer.

We offer black chair covers for $X + GST each, and white chair covers with bows for $X + GST each. Other chair cover colours, sashes and bows can be hired in for an additional cost.

We provide a wine barrel which you can use as a cake table, and use of a silver cake knife.

We have four toilets for the reception venue.

There is a heat pump and oil heaters, along with a log fire which is lit in season.

Children

We offer a two-course children’s menu for $25 + GST per child.

We have three high chairs available free of charge – please let us know if these are required. Additional high chairs can be provided for $30 + GST each.

We do not offer in-house babysitting services, but can recommend Tots on Tour childcare who can provide experienced babysitters along with a range of childcare equipment for hire. 

Food

All menu choices, guest numbers and special dietary requirements must be confirmed by 21 days prior to your wedding. Any changes after this stage may be charged additionally.

Our chef can cater for any guests with special dietary requirements or preferences for no additional cost.

There is space on your wedding runsheet to type in the names and requirements of these guests. Our chef will either adapt your menu choices for them to suit their needs, or will provide a separate ‘chef’s choice’ menu for them if necessary.

Our chef can create custom menus on request e.g. Indian cuisine, vegan menus etc. 

His time for the menu design is charged at our standard wedding planning rate of $75 + GST.

Menu tastings are offered as a five-course Trust the Chef degustation, priced at $345.00 incl. GST per person. This is to give you an idea of our style of cuisine and flavours and quality of produce that we work with.

Canapes are usually served in the reception venue gardens if the weather is nice and your guests are mingling outside, or indoors if the weather is poor. 

Our staff will circulate with platters of canapes to pass out to your guests.

This means the options for that course are served alternately rather than orders being taken from your guests – so if there are two main course options e.g. chicken and beef, the first guest at each table will receive the chicken, the second guest will receive the beef, the third guest will receive the chicken etc. 

We do not allow external catering, with the exception of wedding cakes.

Yes – please get in touch with us for pricing.

Drinks

There is a minimum spend of $25 + GST per person or $400 + GST total – whichever is greater. This is invoiced prior to your wedding as a drinks deposit.

The average spend is between $45 – $50 per person. This would be for an open bar of our house wines, sparkling wine, beers and soft drinks from approximately 4.00pm – 11.30pm. 

Our house wines are between $32 – $37 + GST per bottle, and house beers are $7.50 + GST per bottle.

If you do select more premium wines or include spirits, your spend may be higher. If your guests do not drink much alcohol then it will likely be lower.

Normally post-ceremony drinks are served in the reception venue gardens, or indoors if the weather is bad.

We can offer drinks service in the Chapel Gardens but as we do not have a bar facility here, there is an extra cost if any of the following are required:

  • Table & tablecloth for bar area – $25 + GST
  • Glassware – $1 + GST per glass
  • Half-wine barrel with ice – $20 + GST for barrel, $30 + GST for ice
  • Staffing – $25 + GST per staff member per hour (1 person per 20 guests, minimum 2.5 hours to cover set-up, service and pack-down)
  • Delivery/collection of items to the gardens – $40 + GST
  • Drinks – per our wine list

Our staff offer guests a selection of trayed drinks on arrival and will circulate to top up drinks throughout the canape hour. Guests can also go to the bar to order drinks.

During dinner, we place bottles of wine on the tables for guests to help themselves. Staff will also offer table service to guests who wish to order any other drinks.

After dinner, drinks are served from the bar.

We have a classic beverage package which includes an unlimited selection of our house wines, sparkling wine, beers and soft drinks for a per-head price. Pricing is on the final page of our Wine List.

We have a range of spirits at the bar. If you wish to make these available to your guests, you can include them on your open bar, or can have them available on a cash bar only.

We do not sell spirits by the bottle – only by the measure.

We do not allow BYO as we are a licensed venue and winery. 

The three Stoneridge Estate wines must be available and offered at your wedding as part of your drinks selections.

If there is a particular wine, beer or spirit that you would like that we do not offer on our wine list, we may be able to order this in specially. Please let us know what you have in mind and we can check availability and pricing with our suppliers.

As the beverage would not be one we normally stock, we would need you to pre-purchase a specific quantity. 

If any is not consumed on the night, you are welcome to take it home at the end of the night or come back to collect it the following day. 

General

Sometimes we do host more than one ceremony per day – for example we may have a ceremony in the morning, and then a second ceremony and reception later in the day.

However we will never have more than one wedding taking place on the property at the same time. 

We definitely aren’t trying to trap you into paying any hidden costs! We have tried to be very clear in our contracts and in our packages about exactly what is included, so please take the time to read over these carefully before booking. 

If you have any questions about what we do and don’t include, please let us know and we’ll be happy to provide some further guidance.

Our front-of-house staff wear white shirts, natural-coloured aprons, black dress pants and black shoes.

The council has noise limitations after 8.00pm and if these are exceeded then the venue is liable to be fined. The noise bond is intended to cover such a fine if it is levied. If not exceeded then the bond will be refunded to the couple.

Continued and sustained wolf whistling outdoors, tooting of car horns or shouting and disorderly conduct after warnings to cease such behaviour will constitute grounds for forfeiture of the bond.

The gardens and reception venue are wheelchair accessible, and there is one wheelchair accessible bathroom in the reception venue. Please note the floors and grounds are natural stone so are uneven in places, and the pathway up to the reception venue may be quite steep for wheelchair users.

The Chapel has step-free access and there is space for a wheelchair at the back if the pews are moved forward, or if a couple of the back pews are removed.