Cocktails and caravans: one man's quest to keep your wedding guests entertained

Inspiration: Lovingly restored, Melbourne XX XX has turned a vintage caravan into a truly fun form of entertainment for guets

Inspiration: Lovingly restored, Xavier Schnaff has turned a vintage caravan into a truly fun form of entertainment for guests – and it’s proving a hit between ceremonies and receptions

For many brides and grooms, having a gap of several hours between the wedding ceremony and the reception is simply unavoidable – but that doesn’t mean your guests have to be bored!

While many have an hour to 90-minute break between the two for photos, for others this gap is even longer, especially if you’re holding your wedding ceremony during the day, and then an evening reception, which can lead to a gap of several hours.

In the past, guests would amuse themselves, or to take advantage of the “down time” and have a rest.

Today, many modern brides and grooms want to keep the fun going, and are organising entertaining interludes such as games – popular choices include scavenger hunts, boules, ring toss and giant games of naughts and crosses – or providing photo booths, or even live bands.

Many see this time as an opportunity for their guests to get to know each other a bit better before the official reception starts. And of course, like any good ice-breaker, a cocktail never went astray.

Xavier Schnaff, of the Melburnian Caravan Bar, says couples are realising the importance of keeping the excitement and enthusiasm for the day going.

His unique 1950s caravan bar – launched in January after a meticulous restoration and conversion – has already been booked for many wedding receptions, but he has found growing interest in having the caravan on hand the time between a couple’s ceremony and their reception.

“There is a danger that guests will end up just twiddling their thumbs while the bride and groom are having their photos taken,” Xavier says.

“With a bit of planning, people can still have a lot of fun, even though the bride and groom aren’t there.”

He says couples who book the Melburnian Caravan Bar often work with staff to design their own personalised cocktail – complete with its own cute and cheesy name – to offer to their guests.

“It’s really handy and can be quite cost-effective because we only serve alcohol that they have purchased. And, because we are not selling alcohol, we don’t need a licence.”

“Offering cocktails is a fun thing to do for that time between the wedding and the reception. It really does get the party started,” Xavier says.

Of course, the Melburnian Caravan Bar is just as popular at wedding receptions, with many appreciating the look of the vintage bondwood caravan almost as much as they appreciate the service it provides.

“People love it. The bride and groom always end up using it in their photos and it’s often a real highlight of their very big day.”

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