Simple easy service by one of Canberra's most experienced celebrants. Your best alternative to a Registry Office wedding - all for $600.

16 September 2010

Magnolias and soft pink prunus blossoms

Posted this in Michele the Celebrant by mistake, then thought you may enjoy seeing the loveliness of the Heart Garden in mid-Spring. My new garden blog is Come to My Heart Garden. You're so welcome to visit.

Greetings from Canberra on a sunny Spring day

September in my part of the world is very literally 'change of seasons'. All in one day we can have gentle rain, then sunshine and stillness, then a wild wind from the west, coming off the last patches of snow on the Brindabella mountains. 

Magnolia 'Star Wars'

This is the spectacular magnolia 'Star Wars'. She doesn't have many flowers. Her focus is grandeur. 
Magnolia soulangeana 'Star Wars'

Magnolia 'Alexandrina' with prunus 'Elvins in foreground.
Other magnolias are flowering now. This one is magnolia soulangeana 'Alexandrina.' She has masses of flowers and looks wonderful beside the prunus 'elvins', just coming into bloom.
Prunus 'elvins'

'Elvins' has masses of sword-shaped branches, totally packed with bloom. The blossoms come out pale pink then turn to richer, stronger pink as they age. Nice metaphor I think for all of us to become more colourful as life goes on (and more rich).

And now - back to weddings. 

If you would like to contact me about your wedding by email, please click here or fill in the contact form. You're most welcome to phone me for a chat on 02 6161 0718 any day between 9am and 9pm.
Your comments and questions are welcome too.
Magnolia 'Star Wars', glorius against a grey September sky

10 September 2010

The Canberra Hyatt Hotel – best for elegance and ambience

Hello, and welcome
     I’ve been giving my first e-book its final polish. There are many distractions at home. Who mentioned garden?! I work well when I go to a quiet place and my long-time fave is the lounge of the Hyatt Hotel, just down the avenue from Parliament House.
     I went there yesterday after a happy wedding for a small loving family, held amongst the early spring blossoms in Nara Park. The wedding was timed perfectly for the sunshine before the rain.
     Thinking of the Hyatt reminds me of a memorable day in July.
     Rex and Joan live in Adelaide, and Joan (from England) had never been to Canberra. They decided to marry here as part of a long holiday, covering many thousand kilometres.
Newlyweds Joan and Rex
     Joan and Rex first emailed me with their wedding plan in early April and we did the preliminaries by mail and several emails. This is a simple, easy process for any couples out of Canberra who want to marry here, including couples overseas.
     Joan especially wanted a heritage feel to their stay. I thought of the Hyatt immediately.
     Canberra turned on the most superb winter weather for their week-long visit. You know those glorious still sunny days when the air is crisp and clear?
     For the wedding, Rex and Joan looked at places I’d suggested near the Hyatt which had heritage value including Magna Carta Place  (free venue - photo in slideshow in sidebar). July 22 was too cold to have the wedding ceremony outdoors however. Lanyon had also been considered as a heritage venue, along with Calthorpes’ House in Red Hill.
     When they decided to have their wedding at the Hyatt itself, Emily Cobb, the Events Executive, gave us all the help we needed in a warm and friendly, yet very professional way.
     Rex and Joan had also asked me to furnish witnesses, recommend a florist (the Pink Parasol in Kingston is very good florist near the Hyatt) and find a photographer. My friend Angela was delighted to fill two of these roles.         
     Earlier in her career, Ange was a top wedding photographer in the Hunter Valley. Now as an NLP Practitioner, she runs weekend workshops helping women create positive change in their lives. Ange kindly brought her friend Fiona as witness number two.
     Ange was very generous with her time and expertise. I look forward to meeting up with her again soon to see the photos she took. I’ll post some in this blog.
The Hyatt makes me feel more elegant myself!
   We held the ceremony in a large, but still intimate lounge, near the Hyatt lobby. The sunlight streamed in. We even had a small fire going in the open fireplace.
     Rex and Joan, as a gesture of thanks to their celebrant and witnesses, invited us all to Axis for lunch at the National Museum, right on Lake Burley Griffin. Again the winter sunlight streamed in.
     The whole occasion was just pure pleasure and the newlyweds were well pleased with their most memorable event. Like so many visitors to our fair city, they were surprised and charmed by their national capital and all the places of interest to enjoy, especially if for people looking for history and heritage.
     I’ve had many many weddings at the Hyatt over the years. There are so many venues within this great venue.
My friends Nadia and Mark married in the Lavender Courtyard
     There are the two main courtyards. Probably the one most used is the Lavender, but I’ve also officiated at weddings in the Rose Courtyard, including when the white Iceberg roses were in full bloom in late spring. (The soft pink crabapple blossoms in mid-October can also make a picturesque backdrop.)

Ben and Ali share their vows
on the steps in Palm Court
     There’s an enormous staircase near the Banquet Entrance at the back of the Hyatt and the bride can make the most stunning entrance. The whole area is rather cathedralesque and very grand. Perfect for a large wedding of 100 or more.
     There’s also a staircase coming into Palm Court, which is a sunny jazzy (yet still v classy) inside area, just right for a middle-sized wedding. The staircase here is steep and the entrance of the bride can be truly spectacular. The wedding party can stand on the lower steps for the ceremony, slightly above the guests. As a celebrant, I really like this setup. Everyone gets a good view and the sound travels well.
     Or the wedding can be in the small enclosed garden courtyard outside the Palm Court’s huge French doors  – The Ambassador’s Courtyard. I’ve been celebrant at many weddings there. It’s private. The garden is well-kept and out of the wind, and the acoustics are good.
     As a Canberra wedding venue, for elegance and ambience, the Canberra Hyatt Heritage Hotel easily tops my list. 
     (Just between you and me, I just love the way the heritage-outfitted doorman opens the front door for me at the Hyatt. Makes me feel as lady-like as my stylish great grandmother in her silk and pearls. Though Mother died when I was six, my vivid memories of her still bring me pleasure.)
     If you’d like to email me about your wedding plans, please click here, or phone me any day between 9am and 9pm. I would be delighted to be your celebrant. I also welcome your questions and comments about this blog. 
     Till next time