Wine country weddings are my fave, especially when said region houses one amazing venue. With sprawling vineyards and golden light, this wedding is one for the books. Because not only did the Groom partake in planning, but he's also a valued member of the Zonzo Estate magic. And with Jonathan Ong behind the lens it's the type of insider beauty you don't want to miss - see it all in The Vault!
From Zonzo Estate... Zonzo Estate in the Yarra Valley wine region, was delighted to host the wedding of their very own, owner Roderick and his bride Cristina on New Year's Eve, Wednesday 31st December 2014.
They decided to marry at Zonzo as this is where they found love four years earlier, it held sentimental value to them both and it made sense to have it at a venue which they had infinite trust for.
After hosting hundreds of weddings himself it was Rod's turn at enjoying the delicious dishes and spectacular views of the rolling hills & vineyard. What makes this wedding extra unique is that in majority it was planned by the groom - what a lucky bride!
The groom Rod was hands on with all aspects of the wedding and was arranging the place settings for the tables the day prior. All glasses were polished until sparkling clean and not a single item out of place. His perfectionism showed. The large candle holders were picked and ordered by the Groom which now are available to hire for future brides & grooms of the venue.
The Zonzo team worked tirelessly on the day of the wedding to ensure everything from styling to food and service was to Zonzo (and Rod's) standard so that the couple could just relax and enjoy every minute amongst their family and close friends.
The look and feel the couple were after was a romantic, relaxed and elegant wedding. Styling was kept mainly to floral design, candles and touches of gold throughout. Crissy wanted the reception room to feel romantic, warm and intimate (even with over 100 guests). It needed a fun element too as it was NYE after all. They organised a Photo Booth, Champagne Tower and Lemonade Stand. The guest signing table had a digital photo frame with slideshow from Rod's elaborate proposal four months earlier (chauffeured vintage Bentley, private chef, countless long stem roses, Cristal champagne then 'she said yes' mapped out in fairy lights - and the 2ct ring!)
The wedding planning duration was four months. Planning began with Rod securing all of the right suppliers to pull off what was the last wedding held at Zonzo Estate for 2014.
Over the many years of weddings held at the venue, Rod was lucky to get to know many trusted suppliers. This made the planning process easy and very little interaction was required, perhaps a couple of emails at most which was perfect for this busy couple. As expected on the wedding day the suppliers were all incredible in their respective fields and went above and beyond with their efforts.
The couple chose a local and beautiful church established in 1887. Full mass Catholic church service held by Father Arsenio. A string quartet was organised to play classical music for guest arrival and for certain points throughout the ceremony procession. The couple light a unity candle during the ceremony. The four flower girls and one page boy handed out service program booklets to arriving guests. The florist organised the flower arrangements throughout which were then donated to the church post ceremony service. The Bride arrived to the church in a 1950 Rolls Royce which then transported the Bride and Groom to the Reception. After their intimate church ceremony the couple and guests headed to Zonzo Estate to begin reception celebrations where the MUMM champagne started flowing to ring in the New Year.
Styling for the two long tables was kept elegant to crisp white table cloths and dark oak original Bentwood chairs. On the tables were white plates with folded linen napkins and Name Card/Menus. Gold touches were brought in from the gold foiling custom RC logo designed by the Stationery supplier and tied in with the hired gold cutlery. The glassware, Zonzo wine glasses, water glasses and vintage style champagne glasses. The fireplace was decorated with flowers and photo frame of Rod's parents and grandparents on their wedding day. The delicious authentic Italian food was served Italian Feast sharing style - all placed in the middle of the table for guests to enjoy as much as they wished. Food and drinks were served in abundance!
On the menu were ten types of stuzzichini (Italian canapés) served on the outdoor terrace with cocktail drink on arrival and Lemonade Stand. This was perfectly suited for a beautiful mild Summer's day. Cocktail drinks served on arrival, Chambord/MUMM champagne with gold sugar rim and Campari/Soda.
Once guests were seated inside this was followed by antipasto platters, wood-fire pizzas and slow cooked lamb and pork, vegetables and salads. For dessert was served multiple flavours from the (baked from scratch!) 5 tier wedding cake which accompanied by a plate of petit-fours consisting of tiramisu, panna cotta and chocolate mousse handmade by Zonzo. Barista style coffee or tea was provided at this time. Drinks served to the table during the evening were Serrat white & red wine, Peroni beer, MUMM champagne and soft drinks. Guests also had the option to have any spirits they wished from the bar.
The first dance song was Ed Sheeran's - Thinking Out Loud. This was chosen for the lyric aspect of "And we found love right where we are". Having met at Zonzo four years earlier (right by the bar area) this was a fitting song. They were serenaded by a male vocalist from the band which coincidentally was a big ES fan and sang the song amazingly! (this was not planned - it was going to be an iPod!) The rest of the music was kept to songs that all guests young and old would know (Michael Jackson etc) and enjoy to listen to and have a dance. The band did a great job keeping the dance floor full during their sets and doing the NYE countdown as the (red love heart) confetti blowers erupted.
Bride and Groom, Maid of Honour Bride's Cousin, Best Man Groom's Brother, Three flower girls Groom's nieces, One flower girl Groom's Goddaughter and Page Boy Groom's nephew. Last but not least their much loved Australian cattle dog - Diesel - posed for the camera dressed in a cute bow tie.
Crissy saw a photo of this dress online. She visited the store to try it on however they only had a larger size which was then resized to fit by the lovely Sarah from Karen Willis Holmes boutique. Sarah had ensured Crissy her dream dress, the service was beyond exceptional. The sequin gown had a New Year's vibe and the simple cut made for the perfect choice. The belt and cathedral veil also from KWH completed the look. The bride discovered this Australian designer (who also stocks in the US) from a previous Zonzo bride who was married years earlier.
Previous Zonzo weddings! Style Me Pretty for the unique weddings they blog and Pinterest has plenty of ideas. Also in general the bride and groom's own personal taste for creating an elegant dinner party.
Floral Design was created by the fabulous and talented (Blooming Brides) Rita and her team who work tirelessly from the morning to arrange and hang the flowers and garlands (hydrangeas, roses) over the tables and hand thread the carnations over the dance floor (even the lovely cake supplier stayed to help thread!).
The Groom and Florist surprised the bride with the floral design for the day (all she knew is that her chosen colours were being used - white & green). The bride was overwhelmed with emotion to see the amount of effort and work that was required to execute such floral beauty.
The Bride's bouquet was a mix of white Peonies and David Austin's. The blue cross on the bouquet signified - something old, something borrowed and something blue. It is from Malta and has belonged to the Groom's mother for 58 years.
In lieu of favours there was a Photo Booth which provided some fun and allowed guests to take home photos from the evening. There were two copies printed each time in the booth that guests could stick one in the guest signing book and take one home. The attendant was interactive with the guests and assisted them wherever needed. Great option for a favour - fun experience and guests still have something to take home as a memento.
After a dream wedding day the happy newlyweds spent the following day relaxing in the Yarra Valley, and then it was straight back to work to take care of the beauitful Zonzo Estate 2015 weddings!