Venue In Focus: St Bernards Hotel on Making the Most of Easy Weddings

Easy Weddings
Updated on: November 11, 2021

St Bernards Hotel is in a beautiful part of regional Queensland. Their venue manager, Bec, spoke with the Head of Client Experience, Alex, about her experiences with Easy Weddings, the kind of bookings they’re taking now and what advice she gives to couples.

st bernards hotel supplierprofilelive photo b5febbd0 48de 421f baa6 22a5d76c704e

Q: Why did St Bernards Hotel originally join Easy Weddings?

A: I was approached by one of your team and we’re actually a part of the Tamborine Mountain wedding group and I put the word out saying, ‘Hey, guys, have you heard of these people? What’s it like?’ and I got quite a lot of good feedback from it. So I had a chat with the bosses and said, ‘Look, I’ve spoken to a lot of my couples and they have heard of Easy Weddings and a lot of things they’ve been researching have popped up through Easy Weddings so I think we could get some more inquiries through them.’ And yeah, it’s worked wonders for us and just in the last three months we have really utilized it.

Q: So how has Easy Weddings been working for you in terms of the actual numbers over the last three to six months?

A: It’s definitely pulled in a lot more. Since I’ve updated the storefront, we’ve definitely pulled in, I’d say an extra 10% more than what we were previously. So we get a lot more couples actually coming to us through the Easy Weddings, website. But we’re also turning more enquiries into site viewings. So it’s an incredible change from just updating things on the storefront.

Q: What changes did you make? 

A: So we’ve updated a lot of the photos because we’ve done a lot of renovations to our gardens, and stuff like that and to the marquee where we host our receptions. So a lot of the photos that we had were still really nice, but they just didn’t reflect what we have. And so it was important for me to make sure that what you see on the website matches what you see in person. We added videos because people are wanting videos now to get more of a real live feel for it.

Q: What are couples looking for when they inquire with St Bernards?

A: A lot of it is the style that we provide, it’s that very rustic look. And a lot of our couples, that’s what they want. And being an outside ceremony location, they’re wanting the view as well and also a venue that does everything for them. So booking entertainment, the flowers, all the other little bits and pieces that add up and they have to constantly reach out to them. They’re wanting someone to take care of all of it for them, which is something that we can do.

Q: What advice would you give to couples? What should they be looking for from a venue?

A: I’m a strong believer in the saying that people don’t book a venue, they book the people. So it’s meeting the couple and making sure they feel comfortable. Then straightaway, if they already love the venue and what they see in the venue, that’s it, that’s not what’s going to change their mind it’s going to be who they feel comfortable with, and who makes them feel like they’re going to take care of their day.

Q: What are some questions that they should definitely ask the venue manager or venue coordinator?

A: In these times? Definitely what their COVID backup plans are and how many people can be seated. And what they can and can’t do. So like with us, we don’t do outside catering. So we tell all our couples upfront, that’s one of the things that they can’t have. And same with all of the finishing times, starting times, and the ins and outs of running the actual day itself and understanding who’s going to be doing what.

Q: During the site visit, is there anything that you try and do to help make sure that couples know exactly the experience and how the day would go?

A: Yep. So as soon as they come in, we leave the front doors and go through the journey from start to finish and how they would experience it and how their guests would experience it. So from the carpark, walking into the ceremony, down into the gardens, we run them through how the ceremony works, the timeframes they’ve got, what’s standard in their packages, and what’s included, what extras I can help with. And then I sit down with them and do a customised quote so they know straightaway what they’re up for.

Q: What is one thing that couples or suppliers do that is a pet peeve of St Bernards’ stuff.

A: People telling us how to do our job or they’ve been told to do a certain thing in a certain way and they just haven’t read emails or follow the instructions on what they’ve been told and just do their own thing but other than that, we don’t have many issues.

Q: And is there anything that suppliers do that you guys love?

A: It’s offering to help. A lot of suppliers will just say ‘Is it alright if I leave this here and you can set it up?’ and others will say, Hey, I can help out, just let me know what you need.’

Q: And is there any way that you have innovated?

A: We’ve just released our elopement packages, which is exciting. I’m a little bit late to the club on that one. But, yeah, we’ve opened those and we’re going to be doing packages for those midweek weddings that want to happen. Although we’re getting them anyway. We’ve got so many Monday, Wednesday, Thursday bookings. It’s crazy. People just want to get in and get married. Doesn’t matter what day of the week it is.

Tags / Categories

Categories: Marketing Tips, Supplier Stories