Wedding FAQs

Frequently Asked Questions and some useful information about weddings and functions.

How do I book?

To make a booking and secure your date, a $ 1950 venue hire fee is required for reservations on a Friday / Saturday or Sunday  and a $1100 venue hire fee  Monday – Thursday.  Visa or MasterCard is accepted (a 1.5% surcharge is added to all credit card transactions). Alternatively,  you can do  a direct bank account transfer.

What sets Tumbling Waters Retreat apart from other wedding venues?

We are a unique, one stop destination which is perfect for your ceremony, reception, accommodation needs and with magnificent photography locations onsite meaning you don’t need to go anywhere else. You can relax and savour your special day. Our exclusive location provides the WOW factor you want to capture for the most special day of your life. However, should you prefer, there are countless breathtaking photography locations on our doorstep; such as iconic Bald Hill, Quiet Sandy Beaches and the beauty of the Royal National Park.

We have also put a lot of thought into our bespoke, contemporary furnishings with Champagne Gold Tiffany chairs and the ability to cater to a small, intimate wedding and also much larger affairs. We have suitable alternate ceremony locations … plan B in case of dreaded inclement weather, that helps you take the stress out of planning for your special day.

All of our packages include everything you need to have a beautiful wedding day and there are no hidden extras. The new Luxury apartment is perfect should you wish to spend the night with your brides maids and then get ready onsite the next day. ….it even has its own private steam room and swimming pool!

Our on site, luxury accommodation also means that you can truly relish this special time with the option to stay at TWR before or after your wedding and create memories to last a lifetime. We can accommodate 11 couples on site to allow you to enjoy this moment with your nearest and dearest if you so desire. We also operate stunning accommodation option on the Beach in Stanwell Park …… Amanzi Beach Suite which is a few steps onto the Beach. This is a 5 minute drive from the Retreat on the beach at Stanwell Park.

Tumbling Waters Retreat also offers a unique ‘Dining on the Edge’ all inclusive Dining experience which is a great way for you to sample our wonderful cuisine, try our wines and meet the team.

With over 17 years experience as a family owned and operated business, we look forward to helping you make your wedding day everything you have ever dreamed of.

What is included in the packages?


  • An experienced team of professionals that will coordinate your function to ensure your event runs smoothly and is a huge success.
  • Wedding arbor you are welcome to decorate as you wish or leave raw.
  • Signing table and deck overlooking the ocean.
  • Rolling lawns and secluded park-like gardens….perfect location for a wedding ceremony.
  • Exclusive use of the stunning sandstone function room with 360 degree ocean and rain forest views, rich timber floors, ambient lighting.
  • Glass atrium and dance floor with ocean views, also can be used as a plan B option for your ceremony if it rains.
  • Ocean Deck perched on the Edge of the rain forest with stunning ocean view, perfect for the wedding ceremony.
  • Outside  lighting and  fairy lights create a romantic ambiance.
  • Outside terraced area with ocean backdrop with seating and day beds.
  • Cake table, knife and complimentary cake cutting.
  • Retreat’s table decorations , copper candelabras and an abundance of tea light candles. Pot plants with retreats succulents.
  • Large glass cocktail dispensers should you wish to have  your own cocktail mix.
  • Crystal vases suitable for  lollies
  • Bose sound system with outdoor speakers. (You are welcome to bring your own  ipod  and a member of our team will operate our sound system and play your music playlists during the function)
  • Microphone, PA System and lectern.
  • 20 chairs for ceremony.
  • Retreat’s  black or stone table cloths and beautiful champagne Tiffany Chairs  with matching napkins. Looks elegant and stunning all night long….The idea is we bring the outside in…
  • Gift box / wishing well
  • The function center has on-site parking for 35 cars with additional unlimited free parking adjacent the property.
Can I have a photo booth ?

Yes with pleasure, a TWR member will liaise with your supplier on the day where the best position is to put  the  photo booth pending size.

Can I bring my Dog, Horse, Goat ETC

Pets welcome, must advise TWR staff and kept under control.

What table decorations are included ?

Tea light candles TWR decor

Tariff for Teenagers 13-17 years ?

Teenagers are served adult meals and are charged 20% less the on package price.

Can I bring Children to my wedding ?

We provide children’s meals 2-12 years of age at $65 per child.

Children’s Meals – Chicken Schnitzel chips and salad followed by ice cream and sweets. We usually try and feed the kids first, its important they are happy!!

Children attending a wedding must be supervised at all times and by an adult at all times, the site is a dangerous natural waters fall and cliff edge, the tariff also helps finance our insurance to allow supervised children onto the site. It is the parents or legal guardians of the children who are responsible for their safety whilst on site at Tumbling Waters Retreat.

A good idea is to bring along your own baby sitter let the children attend the wedding  ceremony and then after their meal the baby sitter can take the younger kids back home or if  you have booked accommodation onsite back to the suite.  This will allow you and your guests to relax and enjoy the evening and not have to worry about little kids.

What is the cost to provide staff meals e.g Photographers

Provided at at $85 per staff member includes non alcoholic beverages.

Is there a Sunday Surcharge

A 10% Sunday Surcharge applies and is additional to the package price.

Can I have a discount?

Tumbling Waters Retreat is a small, boutique Retreat in a unique location on the edge of an escarpment, surrounded by bush. As such, the Retreat has huge overheads, mainly insurance and council fees.  Please note, however, that at certain times of the week or year, special offers may be available and are listed within the various packages on offer.

When does the package start and end?

The package  starts when guests arrive to the venue and ends when your guests leave.

Guests usually at 4 pm for a 4.30 pm ceremony during Day light saving and 3 pm for a 3.30 pm ceremony outside of Day Light saving.


How many people for a sit down wedding?

We can cater for a maximum of 120 guests for a formal sit down wedding function. We can cater for up to 140 people casual seating buffet style functions.

How many guests for a cocktail wedding?

We can cater for a maximum of 140 adult guests for a cocktail wedding function. Excludes children.

Minimum guests you allow for a wedding

50 adult guests (minimum spend ) Sunday and  Friday however various packages have different minimum number of guests requirements –  this information is contained within the various packages and can change depending on the seasons.

Mid week Monday – Thursday 30 adults.

Saturdays minimum guests are  80 – 100 adults  depending on package selected and season.

Numbers can be reduced subject to negotiation when booking.



Can I BYO Spirits Beer or Wine ?

Included in the package prices is corkage should you wish to BYO Beer, Spirits or Wine.  All beverages must be served by the Tumbling Waters Team. All BYO beverages not consumed during your function will be returned to you after your guests leave the venue. The package price remains the same if you BYO.

If I am having my ceremony onsite when should I tell my guests to arrive?

Guests  arrive 30 minutes before the wedding ceremony and are treated to arrival beverages.  The MC & marriage celebrant along with the TWR supervisor will usher guests to the ceremony site approximately 10 -15 minutes prior to the bride’s arrival.

Is there any cost involved in having some family members attend the ceremony only? 

Ceremony only charge is $20 per person which includes a glass of sparkling wine and roasted nuts after your ceremony. These guests are required to leave 30 minutes after the conclusion of the ceremony.


2.30pm or 3.30pm Security gates open 30 minutes before guests scheduled arrival time.
3pm or 4pm Guests arrive
3.15pm or 4.15pm Guests directed to ceremony location
3.30pm or 4.30pm Ceremony usually runs for 20 minutes
4pm or 5pm Package commences beverages begin being served


What music options do I have?

You can bring an iPod / iPhone or other mobile Music streaming device (a member of the TWR team can operate our sound system for you, your playlist MUST be compiled in desired playing order).

Book a small band or DJ. Recommendations can be found on the main wedding page on our website.

I am supplying my own music for the ceremony and reception, what do I need?

For the ceremony, you require 3-4 songs, one for walking down the aisle, approximately 3 minutes long, and then two or three songs for the signing of the Marriage Certificate.

For the reception, you will require 4-6 hours of music depending on the duration of your wedding. Should you wish to have a bridal waltz you will need to supply this song on a separate playlist titled Bridal Waltz, followed by your dancing music. Please provide the playlists in desired playing order. A member of the TWR team will stop/start our system for you as required but please bare in mind the TWR team are not DJs.  If there is a lot of stopping / starting of your music, it is best to book a DJ.

Who will stop/start the sound system if I bring my own iPod / iPhone / Music streaming device?

A member of our team can operate our sound system for you to walk down the aisle to, and phase the music out as required. If you do provide an iPod / streaming device, please have your ceremony music followed by the music you wish to have played after your ceremony. Please also ensure you have your bridal waltz on a separate playlist followed by your reception music. Please also note, the TWR team are not DJs, if you wish to have multiple stopping / starting or coordination of songs throughout your wedding you will need to hire a DJ.

Can I have a band or DJ and there any noise restrictions?

DJs and bands are welcome, however please be advised that your choice of music must comply with our operational requirements and ambience of the property and not heard by nearby residents. We therefore require all glass doors to the western side of the property to remain closed when loud music is being played and all amplified music to be played indoors. Rest assured that the music will be loud enough for you to dance and party to, however heavy penalties apply should residents complain to Council or Police about unreasonable noise emanating from our property.

How soon after the ceremony drinks & food service start? 

To ensure our high standards of service, beverages are served on arrival with all our wedding package.   Beverage & food service continue after the ceremony, that way your guests are  taken care of whilst your photos are being taken.

When and where does the band / DJ set up?

Bands and DJs need to set up in the atrium prior to your function. Should you wish to book a band or DJ for your wedding you may also need to book the Bath House cabin (the perfect abode for your first night as a married couple!) so as not to disturb other guests staying in the Bath House.

What is the size of the wedding arbor

About 2.7 meters wide  by 2.7 meters high.

The aisle is about 15 meters long.

You are welcome to BYO own decorations or leave the arbor raw.

Are there speakers in the garden for music during the ceremony?

Yes, we have outdoor speakers in the garden and music can be heard on the deck, in the gazebo and on the main lawn area

Can my marriage celebrant use your microphone?

Marriage celebrants should supply and prefer to use their own PA equipment. The TWR microphone is not suitable to be used during a ceremony.

What happens if there is a Fire.

The retreat has  a very good fire defense system and we work closely with RFS, if there is a fire / catastrophic day forecast we will reschedule your wedding to the next available date  suitable to both parties.

What happens if it rains?

In the event of inclement weather, the wedding ceremony would take place in the glass atrium overlooking the ocean, with the bride entering from the lower glass double doors.

Are confetti, silk rose petals or balloons permitted?

No confetti/silk rose petals or balloons please. These have the potential to pollute our beautiful bush, on the edge of the Royal National Park and are not suitable.

Are fireworks permitted?

Again, due to our location surrounded by bush and wildlife, fireworks sparklers  are not permitted.

Where do cars park?

Parking onsite  is limited and your guests may be required to stack park.  We encourage car pooling for large weddings. There is an abundance of parking available adjacent the property

Bendena Gardens at Stonehaven Rd
Stanwell Tops NSW 2508


Do I need a Master of Ceremonies?

A Master of Ceremonies is usually a family friend and they are required to liaise with our event supervisor to ensure a smooth flow of your wedding reception. At the beginning of the reception, our event supervisor will brief your MC with certain times or things we require them to assist with, for example, when guests are required to move to the ceremony site, when guests are to move inside and be seated (sit down wedding only) , to announce speeches, announce the cutting of the cake, conclude the reception and remind guests to leave quietly.

Our team supervisor will direct and liaise with your MC and our chef throughout the function to ensure that the timing of the speeches, formalities and coordination of the service flows with the delivery of the food so that everything is kept on time and your wedding runs smoothly.

Do you provide chairs for the outdoor ceremony?

8 champagne gold Tiffany chairs are provided as part of the venue hire. Tumbling Waters Retreat can supply additional champagne gold Tiffany chairs for the wedding ceremony at a cost of $6.00 per chair.

Can you supply white tablecloths?

Yes, however there is an additional charge of $6 per table cloth. Please note that as part of your wedding package we supply beautiful champagne gold Tiffany Chairs and stone color or black table cloths. The concept of our décor is to bring the outside in and to complement the beautiful surroundings.

How long do I need to have my photos onsite?

Photos generally take about 30-45 minutes if taken onsite directly after the ceremony. Due to the close proximity of the pool and the stunning backdrop, photos are often taken throughout your function. Some couples break tradition and have photos taken prior to their wedding ceremony, this allows for greater time to be spent with family and friends.

Should you wish to have additional time for photography, you may need to extend your package.

Can I go to the beach and have my wedding photos taken?

We prefer you stay on site however if decide to go to the beach for wedding photography please allow a minimum of 45 mins and we recommend you extend your wedding package so that your formalities aren’t rushed and run smoothly.

Are there any areas out of bounds on the property?

Due to our unique location, the property has number of DANGER signs warning people to keep clear of the cliff edge, especially in the ornamental pond and waterfall areas. This is for their own safety and we take the safety of our guests very seriously. If a photographer/guest ignores these signs, they will be asked to leave the site immediately. Please can you make sure your photographer is aware of this important request.

When is the best time to have speeches?

We recommend your MC announces the speeches after the entrée is cleared. For combined speeches greater than 20 minutes, we recommend you have them in 2 separate blocks, this will ensure a continuity of our service throughout the function. A microphone and lectern is provided. If you would like you speeches after the entrée or main they can only start after all plates are cleared.

We strongly recommend you organize who is going to do speeches in advance and discuss with them how long they intend to speak as this may cut into your intended dancing/party time at the end of the night.

Do I need to supply my own name cards and menus for a sit down wedding?

Yes, it is up to you to supply name cards and menus. This will allow you to add your personal touches to compliment your wedding style and theme.

Do you provide a wedding cake?

With both the silver gold  and lunch packages If you select the Belgium Chocolate cake as the only dessert option we can present this as your wedding cake with an oriental Lilly on top. (You are more than welcome to bring your own cake decorations)

When is a good time to cut the cake and where is the cake table located?

A good time to cut the cake is after the main. The granite bench under the mirror provides a safe place for your cake to be kept on display during your function. When cutting the cake the mirror reflects your guests and ocean in the background.

Is there a charge to cut the wedding cake?

No, we do however present your cake on a platter for your guest to enjoy. If the cake is to be plated and individually served an additional tariff applies of $1.50 per person.

Is there a charge to put the wedding cake in boxes?

There is no charge provided the boxes are made up and ready to go. These boxes are then placed next to the wedding cake and your guests have the option to eat the cake during the function or to place the cake in the box and take the cake home with them.

When do I do the Bridal Waltz and how big is the dance floor?

A good time to do the Bridal Waltz is after cutting your cake.

Our dance floor is approximately 10 metres square.

How many tables and chairs are provided with the roaming cocktail package?

The room is set up with ample Tiffany chairs and tables so some guests can be seated whilst others can mingle. For example, for 80 guests we would have approximately 50 chairs inside and 6 square cocktail tables, two lounges, plus outdoor chairs and tables.

Can I bring my own spirit/wine/beer?

You are more than welcome to BYO with all our packages, please note package prices will remain unchanged however all alcoholic beverages must be served by the Tumbling Waters team. BYO beverages that are not consumed will be returned to you to take home after the function.

How many beers should I bring for my wedding?

Please allow at least 1 – 1.5 cases of beer per 10 adults plus a few more cases if they are keen beer consumers and depending on the duration of the package. You will also need to bring a light beer option. Please ensure delivery at least 30 minutes prior to your function for us to place beer on ice & to chill ready for your guests. We recommend that you provide a maximum of 2 varieties of beer.

What wines/beverages are part of your packages?

All our packages include a variety of soft drinks, premium red, white and sparkling wine, orange juice, a selection of tea and freshly brewed coffee.

All of our red, white and sparkling wines come from a blended grape variety that has been carefully selected for our most discerning guests.

They are not available for purchase in the bottle shops so you are more than welcome to come to the Retreat and try them prior your function.

Do you have a Responsible Service of Alcohol policy?

Yes we have a Responsible Service of Alcohol policy as per the law and it is illegal for us to serve intoxicated or under aged guests. If you feel that any of your guests may cause a problem on the night/day it may be wise to mention this in advance. Please rest assured there is plenty of alcohol for everyone but we must ensure the responsible service of alcohol policy so that everyone has a great time and remains safe.

When does the bar close?

Legally, the bar must close 30 minutes prior to the completion of the function. Please note we have a Responsible Service of Alcohol duty.

When are guests seated?

Gold Sit Down Package guests are seated 90 minutes into the package commencing.

Silver Sit Down and Lunch Packages will be seated 30 minutes into the package.

The interval between the different courses is about 60 minutes, but varies depending on the size of the function.

What do the retreat’s decorations consist of?

The retreat’s decorations consist of an abundance of candles in glass and copper candelabras. All packages include chocolate black linen, champagne coloured napkins and Tiffany chairs.

Can I bring my own decorations?

Yes you are more than welcome to BYO own decorations.

What is your operational curfew?

Monday-Saturday is 11pm and Sunday is 9pm except when the Sunday is preceded by a public holiday and in that case, the curfew is 11pm

Can I book a one night stay on a Saturday?

A one night stay on a Saturday night is limited  in the Bath House Cabin only. Should you wish to book a luxury ocean suites we have a minimum 2 night stay on weekends. A 50% deposit is required to secure accommodation bookings. We recommend you book ASAP to avoid disappointment. Bookings can be made online.

Can I stay at the retreat with my bridesmaids the night prior to my wedding?

The Luxury Ocean Suites have been designed for couples however we can accommodate 4 people maximum. Two people would need to share one bed and roll away beds are provided for the other two guests. Please note that more than 2 people in the suite incurs an additional $110 per person tariff.

Can children attend and what is the cost for kids and teenagers?

If children do attend your wedding they need to be supervised by an adult at all times. Children under the age of 12 years can be catered for and a tariff of $65 applies per child. Teenagers 13 – 17 years incur the same tariff as per the package selected, minus 20% of the package price.

What is the tariff to provide meals for service providers?

Musicians, photographers and service providers may be served food & non alcoholic beverages at an additional cost of $85 for 3 courses, however should they wish to take part in the function and be served as one of the guests and consume alcohol then the full tariff will apply. If service providers are seated at the tables with guests for a sit-down, 3 course meal then the full tariff for the package will be charged.

Can I extend the package?

All wedding packages may be extended, the tariff to extend the wedding package per person per hour will apply. You can extend your package on the night of your wedding however we recommend that it is preferable to decide to do so in advance. Please note we have an 11 pm curfew Monday – Saturday and a 9 pm curfew on a Sunday. ( excludes a Sunday prior to a long weekend. )

Do you have rectangular tables?

Our tables are round and seat eight to ten guests. Due to the irregular shape of the room to make the most of the views, it is difficult to have a large number of rectangle tables, however we can do a bridal rectangle bridal table upon request.

How much time should I allow to bid farewell and throw the garter?

Allow at least 15-20 minutes pending guests numbers.

Where do I bid farewell to my guests?

All goodbyes in the atrium and lower deck area and not in car park

How do you make sure our guests leave quietly?

At the conclusion of your function your MC must remind guests to leave quietly as we are in a residential area, no horn hooting etc as heavy penalties apply.

Do you supply a wishing well?

Yes we do supply a wishing well . It is best to organize in advance who will be taking charge of the wedding wishing well / birthday presents gifts etc

What happens in the event of a natural disaster?

We recommend you seek insurance that will cover you for natural disasters, airline disruptions etc when a reception needs to be cancelled postponed or relocated.

Do I need to meet with you prior to my wedding?

It is anticipated (not essential) that you may need about one hour in total onsite to familiarize again with the property along with our style of operation. We can always be contacted by email or phone ( office hours preferable) should you require more on site meetings other than the above additional tariffs may apply.

Can I change the menu?

We have reputation for high quality cuisine to get this right an enormous amount of time and preparation goes into our menus. Sourcing the quality of the raw produce, presentation of the dishes is of high importance. Should you wish to make changes to the menu you will need to make an appointment to meet   our executive Chef Thierry Molimard.

Unless Thierry  is 100% happy to do the changes  we ask you to select from our comprehensive menus on the website…..having said that our executive chef is very accommodating and will do everything possible to assist.

Can I bring my own caterers?

In order for us to continue our good reputation with food outside catering is strictly not allowed.

Can I come to the retreat for a taste test?

Dining on the Edge is  open on a Saturday evening from 6.15 pm, our chef  does a set chefs   menu  similar to our  wedding menus, it is a really nice way to introduce the retreat to your family / friends and  experience  the food, wine, ambience and service at Tumbling Waters Retreat. ……bookings  essential and can be made online www.twr.com.au

What is the best advice you can give us?

The best advice we can give is for you to relax and enjoy, keep it simple, less is best, do not try and over complicate your wedding it often leads to added stress. Sometimes you may have ideas that we may have tried in the past and simply they have not worked, its not that we are not flexible but after 12 years in operation, please trust our expertise. It is in our best interest to make your celebration the wedding of your dreams. ………we count on word of mouth advertising