6 Auckland Venues That Allow External Catering
By Maria Yeonhee Ji

19 November 2018

From the perspectives of your guests, the reception food will always be one of the most anticipated (and hopefully memorable) perks of attending a wedding.

This means that finding a vendor that can create sublime menu options at price points that work with your food budget, who can also be flexible in adapting to your guests’ dietary needs is a must. If you have a particularly skilful catering company in mind and want them to work their magic on your big day, you’ll then have to find a venue that is happy for them to do so - many in-demand wedding venues won’t permit external or DIY catering. To speed up the search for a suitably spectacular site, here are six Auckland venues that will happily accommodate for your catering visions.

1/ Hus Ant Farm

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Image sourced from Hus Art Farm 

For those seeking an idyllic country setting that permits external catering, there is no other venue quite like HU’s Farm. A mere 30 minutes from Auckland city, HU’s Farm embodies an ethos of artistic endeavour, with majestic and very expansive grounds and amenities including a large gallery that will facilitate reception goals of all scales. There is also accommodation on site so that should you or your vendors wish to come in the day before to set up and wake up onsite ready to go on the big day, then you have the option to do so.


2/ Highwic 

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Image sourced from Highwic

Take your tea party (or whatever combination of delectable consumables you and your caterer have concocted) to Highwic, a stunning Gothic mansion nestled away on a rise in New Market. With a number of beautiful, airy rooms (including a ballroom) and lush outdoor lawns that can accommodate up to 200 guests, you have numerous indoor and outdoor options for picking the perfect reception site.


3/ Hurakia Lodge

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Image sourced from Hurakia Lodge

Though Hurakia Lodge does have a catering service offering pre-meal canapes followed by a delicious buffet or bowl & fork style meal, they are also flexible should you wish to bring your own vendor(s) to Rakino Island. Whichever option you go for, your guests are sure to savour their meals and drinks as they enjoy the exclusive panoramic views of the shimmering Hauraki Gulf in total privacy.


4/ Kumeu Valley Estate

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Image by Chasewild

Kumeu Valley Estate is another in-demand wedding venue that offers you freedom when it comes to organising the catering. With total commitment to making sure your wedding reflects your individual tastes as a couple, they can create a formal set menu, cocktail party, or buffet to suit your needs, or alternatively accommodate your external vendors and DIY desires so that you serve a dining experience to remember. A classic estate boasting a traditional bell tower, indoor wet weather options featuring high vaulted timber ceilings and a grand wooden fireplace, not to mention three acres of gardens, lawns, and native bush… it’s a photogenic venue that is as versatile as it is charming.


5/ Thievery Studio

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Image sourced from Thievery Studio

Thievery Studio offers an urban space with a rustic feel due to the huge windows through which natural lighting illuminates the polished wooden floors all throughout the day. It’s an intimate venue overlooking Karangahape Road with a modern atmosphere, that can easily be transformed into a dreamy reception venue. Grazing and dessert tables, or walk & fork menus would be ideal catering options that help maximise your guests’ mingling and merriment in this fun studio.


6/ Leigh Central

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Image sourced from Leigh Central Function & Events Centre

For couples that have a specific vision of what they want their wedding to look like and the drive and ambition to take things into their own hands, Leigh Central Function & Events Centre is the ideal reception venue. As a site that operates on a ‘bare hall hire’ concept, it’s not just the catering that you can bring in or DIY (though their full-size commercial kitchen and three bars will make it easy for your vendor to prepare everything onsite and help you avoid costly delivery fees). You’ll have maximum flexibility to have your wedding reception the way you want it - whether this is in the Seaview room that can accommodate 150 guests, the Courtyard Lounge for a smaller, more intimate group, or any one of the many outdoor spaces.