What Would They Know – Liz De Been of The Pier Geelong

by | Venue Wisdom, What Would They Know?, Wisdom

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

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Situated over the water The Pier Geelong is a well known iconic building in Victoria. What a talking point for your guests, to enjoy the sea breeze while sipping on your pre reception cocktails, to watch the boats sailing by while enjoying their dinner, or to see the sun set over the water. Situated not far from Melbourne, a wedding at The Pier Geelong is close enough to this capital city to be convenient for your interstate and overseas guests to make it the start of an extended stay in Victoria. And with a delectable menu – do you really need to be persuaded?

Please tell us about The Pier and a little of its history.

Cunningham Pier is one of the most iconic structures on Geelong’s magnificent waterfront. Opened in the mid 1850′s, the pier was a vital part of Geelong’s port up until the late 1970′s when rail was used to load and unload cargo.  It sat dormant for many years and was then used for a number of activities before the EMC Group purchased it to add to its business portfolio.  The striking white building at the end of the pier then became The Pier Geelong, offering breathtaking, panoramic views for all who held an event or dined there.

We believe The Pier Geelong is one of Australia’s most unique facilities as each person who attends the venue enjoys their time “floating out over the bay”.  We offer three venues within the one complex, with the event space at the rear of the building, Baveras Brasserie, our gorgeous modern restaurant to the right and City Quarter Bar, our trendy lounge bar on level one at the top of the stairs.

What makes The Pier such a special and iconic venue?

Undoubtedly the Pier Geelong is one of the most stunning and unique buildings on Geelong’s Waterfront.  The experience that it offers its brides is second to none.  The views, the service from our Wedding Planners, the delicious five star menus prepared by our international chefs and qualified staff on the day that take care of all your needs, no matter how small. That’s what makes The Pier Geelong so unique and special.

Please describe some of The Pier’s areas that are suitable for a wedding ceremony and reception?

As far as wedding venues go, you really cannot go past our venue.  So many brides love being married over the water, with postcard worthy views for their photography. We hold both ceremony and receptions at The Pier, with most ceremonies being held in our beautiful floor to ceiling glassed Terrace.  The brides are able to literally join their guests by entering up through the floor within the space, usually offering an enjoyable surprise for all who attend.

As for the reception, we can cater to any size. From an intimate gathering of 80, to a lavish affair for 700, our versatile space can meet any requirement.  If a bride is looking for a memorable wedding that she, her new husband and her family and friends will enjoy immensely and talk about forever, then The Pier Geelong is the place for them.

How would you describe the style of The Pier’s food?

In a word, Amazing.  Our Executive Chefs hail from an international background and their experience is extensive in the industry.  They work very closely with the Wedding Planners to ensure that the bride’s requests are met and even surpassed. 

Does being on the water influence your menu?

Absolutely, would feel a tad strange otherwise I think.  Our chefs stay very seasonal with our menus, ensuring that our produce is as fresh as possible.  We try very hard, where possible, to support the local producers in our region keeping our local economy strong.

Can you give us an example of a current menu?

COLD 

California rolls

Rice paper rolls

Gourmet sandwiches

Chicken and avocado mousse on rye bread

Natural oysters

Smoked salmon tartare

Shredded pork belly with Asian dressing

Pumpkin, caramelised onion & goats cheese tart

WARM

Salt and pepper calamari

BBQ chicken skewer

Spicy beef skewer

Prawn and chive wonton

Mini paella

Pork and sage sausage roll

Spinach and goat’s cheese tart

Mushroom and tomato tart

MINI MEALS

  • Fish and chips
  • Mini burgers
  • Lamb and apricot tagine with coriander
  • Fried rice with ham (can be made vegetarian)
  • Stir fried hokkien noodles with chicken (can be made vegetarian)
  • Salt and pepper calamari with chips
  • Shepherd’s pie
  • Chicken goujon with chips 

ENTREES

Cold

  • Thai beef salad on cos lettuce with crisp pita bread
  • Smoked chicken with avocado
  • Coconut prawns, tomato, bean shoots and mizuna salad
  • Smoked salmon bruschetta with Spanish onion and capers
  • Roasted Mediterranean vegetable stack with goats cheese, rocket and pesto dressing

Hot

  • Spinach and ricotta ravioli with Napoli and parmesan
  • Pumpkin and goats cheese arranging with sour cream and rocket
  • Veal and caramelised onion tortellini, pesto cream and parmesan
  • Twice cooked pork belly with braised red cabbage
  • Potato, leek and bacon soup
  • Roasted cherry tomato, caramelised onion and goat’s cheese tart

MAIN COURSE

  • Eye fillet, fondant potato, baby spinach with green peppercorn sauce
  • Angus porterhouse, garlic mash, broccolini and shiraz reduction
  • Spice dusted lamb rump, chickpea tile, eggplant stew and Moroccan mint yoghurt
  • Baked lamb rump, butter mash, broccolini, marinated flat mushroom and shiraz reduction
  • Dukkah crusted chicken, charred corn polenta, roasted vegetable salad and tzatziki
  • Baked chicken breast, gratin potato, broccolini and caponata sauce
  • Twice cooked duck leg, gratin potato, baby spinach and thyme reduction
  • Salmon, green pea mash, grilled tomato and lemon butter sauce
  • Oven baked blue eye, pilaf rice, green beans and green curry sauce

Vegetarian options:

  • Vegetable lasagne with mixed garden salad
  • Vegetable curry with rice and pappadums
  • Vegetable risotto

DESSERT

  • Sticky date pudding with butterscotch sauce and vanilla ice cream
  • Steamed chocolate pudding, espresso anglaise and double cream
  • Coconut pannacotta, mango coulis and minted sugar
  • Fresh fruit pavlova with passionfruit coulis
  • Lemon meringue tart with toasted almond praline cream
  • Belgian chocolate mousse cake with raspberry coulis
  • Cheese plate with nuts, dried fruits and crackers

For out of town guests, who don’t know the area well, is there plenty of accommodation in the area?

Geelong has quality accommodation available right on the waterfront with The Sheraton Hotel and The Vue Apartments.  There are also upper CBD options with The Mercure Hotel and other smaller boutique establishments.  Our Wedding Planners can assist any “out of town guests” with finding quality accommodation while visiting.

What are the services you provide to bridal couples? 

At The Pier we do have dedicated Wedding Planners who assist with all the details associated with the ceremony (if held at The Pier) and reception.  They can also provide preferred suppliers for all other elements of planning and execution of an amazing wedding here in Geelong.

What services/vendors can they bring in?

We are more than happy to accommodate a bride if she has a particular service or preferred supplier that she would like to utilise for her wedding.  Our aim is to ensure that the bride, groom, family and friends all have an amazing day, we will do what is required to make this happen.

The views are beautiful. Do you have some styling suggestions for the ceremony and reception, that will further enhance the rooms? 

There are so many options and ways you could theme our different room options.  We personally find that the almost 360 degree views of Geelong’s Bay to be the best theme, however to enhance this we do have our own set of theming props which can be utilised on the day.  We also find that brides quite often use a theming company, for which we can offer a list of preferred suppliers that have provided many of our brides with beautiful room settings on their special day.

Can we have our hen’s parties and post wedding breakfasts for guests at The Pier?

We can most certainly accommodate all hen’s parties at our gorgeous lounge bar City Quarter, that resides on level one of our majestic building.  They offer quite a few packages to enjoy a “High Tea” out over the Seas, you can find these on their website at http://thecityquarter.com.au/functions.

The post wedding breakfast or even the pre-wedding bridal dinner can both be held at our stunning restaurant Baveras Brasserie, where all guests will enjoy the most delicious menu while still taking in our amazing view.  You could say they’ll be literally “floating on water”, because that is exactly how you feel if you manage to secure one of our window tables.

Do you offer wedding specials at certain times of the year?

We do offer discounted rates over the Winter period.  It’s always best for brides to simply give us a call to talk through their options and we can certainly discuss with them any specials at this time.

Do you have some suggestions for things to see and do around Geelong, if the bride and groom decide to make a weekend of their celebrations?

Geelong has come a long way over the past ten years and many intra and interstate visitors would be very surprised at just how much there is to do in our large regional town.  The best place for brides and grooms to visit if they are considering having their big day with us in Geelong would be to visit http://www.visitgeelongbellarine.com.au, they’ll be able to fill a weekend visit easily with the host of places to go and see.  They may even need to extend their visit to a week!

What do you love about Geelong?

Everything….that it’s still a regional town at heart and hasn’t been completely consumed by sky scrapers and busy, bustling people.  That despite this it still offers amazing restaurants, cafes and night life, fabulous shopping both CBD and in our boutique suburbs, plus a safe and secure place for our families to grow and live.  Not to mention our super CATS, who continue to stay strong in the AFL (couldn’t leave them out, Geelong lives and breathes its football).

Thank you Liz for telling us all about this stunning venue The Pier Geelong. To find out more visit the website.

Images courtesy of The Pier Geelong

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