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Wedspiration > Inspiration > Sydney’s Best “Intermission” Wedding Venue
Sydney’s Best “Intermission” Wedding Venue
The risk of leaving your guests to occupy themselves for the hours in-between your ceremony and reception is that they’ll be ready for bed by the time your reception rolls around. The antidote? A fabulous intermission wedding venue. And we’ve found just the one.
intermission wedding venue
Words by Karina Lowndes
22 December 2023

The first time we stepped inside Bar Messenger – a charming and intimate space in the heart of Sydney and the location of our recent book launch – we had a light bulb moment. This was exactly the kind of space that would serve as an ideal intermission wedding venue for couples hosting their ceremony and reception in different locations.

So here we are – sharing our advice on weddings across the web for any engaged couples who:

A) Don’t know what an intermission wedding venue is.
B) Are planning on having their wedding ceremony and reception in two separate locations.
C) Want their wedding to be a whole vibe from start to finish.

What is an intermission wedding venue?

Despite a surge in all-in-one wedding venues, plenty of couples still opt to host their ceremony and wedding reception in two different locations. An intermission wedding venue is somewhere for guests to hang out during the hours in-between.

Why organise an intermission venue?

We’ve attended plenty of weddings that have been spread across multiple venues and can say with absolute certainty that the vibe at the reception is almost entirely contingent upon how the hours beforehand are spent.

Having a designated place for your guests to go to straight after the wedding ceremony (as opposed to leaving them to their own devices) has some serious advantages. Some of the main ones include:

Setting the tone: Rather than there being a long lull in the day (and a chance for everyone’s energy levels to plateau), it provides the perfect pitstop for guests to mingle, toast and keep the celebratory vibes alive.

Less awks: It cancels out the inevitable faff of guests trying to make a decision on where to go as a group afterwards. This is especially helpful if your guests aren’t familiar with the area or if nearby venues aren’t able to accommodate a large group of people on the spot.

Cohesive experience: Usually, intermission is when guests go their separate ways until the reception officially starts – either to an ATM (if the couple has organised a wishing well), home for a nap or to a nearby bar. By carefully planning the intermission, couples can create a cohesive and well-thought-out wedding experience without interruption. It also helps tie different elements of the celebration together, making the entire day feel like a well-designed event.

Logistics: Organising an intermission wedding venue that’s either nearby or en-route to the reception venue is ideal for guests logistically. They know ahead of time where they’ll be in the hours following the ceremony and can adjust their plans accordingly.

Personal touch: If you really want to customise every aspect of your wedding, this is an added opportunity to incorporate your chosen colour theme or include anything you love (eg. a particular cocktail, entertainment, live drawings, an ice-breaker activity amongst guests etc.).

What makes Bar Messenger a good intermission wedding venue?

Bar Messenger is a secret hideaway in the heart of Sydney that feels intimate and exclusive – the type of place celebrities would go to escape the Paparazzi (and any crazy fans). A self-proclaimed “underworld of wine” the entire point of this place is to provide its patrons with a unique, unforgettable and wine-fuelled experience.

But aside from its undeniably mystic allure (even the entrance is concealed behind a giant artwork), Bar Messenger lends itself as a particularly attractive and practical intermission wedding venue for a number of reasons, including:

Location. For anyone tying the knot in Sydney, Bar Messenger is centrally located near Circular Quay (a three minute walk according to Google maps). It’s secret entranceway is directly beneath the historic Customs House Sydney.

Air-conditioning. The Australian sun isn’t known for showing human beings much mercy. If your wedding happens to fall on a warm day, a venue with decent air-conditioning for your guests is essential.

Food and drinks. The extensive (and almost exclusively Australian) wine list here is a big reason to come here but what’s equally impressive is the food. Think share plates, salumi and grilled cheese toasties.

Capacity. While this place feels cosy, Bar Messenger is a decent sized space licensed for up to 118 people.

Exclusivity. You can hire the entire place exclusively (again, for up to 118 people) or there is a semi-exclusive dining room for up to 18 guests or 30 guests standing.

Seating. At some point, your guests are going to want to sit down (especially if they’re elderly, physically disabled or pregnant) and thankfully Bar Messenger has plenty of comfortable seating.

Photos. The soft lighting and relaxed vibe here makes it not only a great place for a pre-reception pitstop but a great backdrop for photos, too. Outside there are plenty of great photo locations as well which is ideal for couples who don’t want to miss out on all the fun while they’re off having their photos taken.
intermission wedding venue
intermission wedding venue
intermission wedding venue
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