Event area for weddings

Event Areas (see separate subtab description of outdoor marquee and marquee spaces)

During 2020 post bushfire closure we expanded our inside event areas to about 240sqm. These are now made up of our 100sqm Cockatoo Room (a multi-purpose celebration/workshop space), 30sqm foyer separating kitchen and lounge from function space, 30sqm of commercial kitchen and about 80sqm of a new Casuarina Lounge space. Coincidentally, this expansion has meant we can comply with the post 24 July 2020 NSW rules to accommodate up to about 240/4 = 60 wedding guests inside....though not all in the one room at the same time. Though we have outside space which is exempt from the 4sqm rule we are limiting our functions capacity, normally 120, to 60 for the time being with social distancing incorporated. Having rented our property it is the responsibility of event principals to ensure their guests comply with Coronavirus laws. Not counted in the above space is an upstairs 30sqm "green room" with adjacent utility room for exclusive rest/escape use by event principals or, say, caterers.

Outside we have large graded lawns with lake views suitable for a range of uses, including for marquees....see more below. and separate tab Our indoor and outdoor event areas are provided as a canvass for event principals to create the event experience they want.  The Event Area is surrounded by an iconic south coast backdrop: lawns, gardens, forest of spotted gums, blackbutts, stringybarks, casuarinas, geebungs and burrawangs. The coastal lagoon, Lake Willinga, is just 125m from the Cockatoo Room.  Check out the Venue Gallery for more images.

Please note that our non-Covid total event maximum is 120#.

In normal conditions up to 85 seated diners will fit into the function room. Using the veranda, seated dining events for up to 115 people can be accommodated. Some 22 folding tables and 125 folding/stackable chairs for use indoors, outdoors or in marquees are stored for you to set up as you wish. You are free to hire from 3rd parties where you consider our provisioning is unsuitable or insufficient. .

Flexible and multi-purpose uses

The plan of the inside Cockatoo Event Area is pasted below. It is capable of being configured for a wide variety of celebration, workshop, corporate or family get-together uses. It is the perfect common area for guest groups who are using all of our cottages for sleeping to socialise within. 

Normal inside event capacity (excluding gardens, lawns, marquees) # of persons

  Theatre (seated) Seated, in the round Cocktail (standing) Dining (seating)
Cockatoo room 85 50 85 85
Foyer/breezeway - - 5 -
Veranda (Adj to function room) 15 - 30 30
Casuarina Lounge - - 30 30
Veranda (Adj to Casuarina) - -2020
Green Room  - -- 6

Maximum* 100 50 120 120

* We have dining crockery/cutlery/champagne/wine and drinking glasses for 120#.


Bawley Bush Retreat is a self catering venue where guest principals are free to engage their own function caterers and other event-supporting services. While Coronovirus constraints apply then both event principals and their engaged contractors will be responsible for social distancing and sanitary compliance. Bawley Bush Retreat does not provide any during-event services....we simply hire the grounds, venues and equipment for guests to design their own event within. Use of the commercial-standard kitchen that adjoins the Cockatoo Room by any insured caterer of guest's choice, or by guests wanting to self-cater is included in our tariffs.  The kitchen is stocked with sufficient serving-ware and glass-ware for meals for up to 120 seated diners. Tablecloths are now included in facility hire but you are free to hire from others or you can bring your own. Caterers usually bring their own cookware to supplement what we provide.  

Please check out the list of recommended Local Providers you can negotiate with directly. Most have delivered services on multiple occasions to guests at our property. 

The kitchen is a registered food premises. It has a domestic and commercial stove with full commercial exhaust canopy, access to two domestic refrigerators, a domestic freezer, a double and single commercial refrigerator, a bar freezer freezer, a domestic and a commercial dishwasher. There is a range of supporting catering equipment but there are gaps caterers typically augment. We expect all areas to be left tidy, equipment returned to where found in clean condition. If the supplied equipment is not left clean and stored away as found a substantial cleaning fee will be deducted from the bond. If the floors, verandas and cupboards are not left reasonably clean we will also charge a cleaning fee.

Floor plan

The floor-plans of the Inside event area follow. This plan still incorporates the now discontinued Cafe Cottage now the "Casuarina Lounge" but a new plan has been commissioned and will be placed here in due course. Please note downstairs bedrooms shown on this plan have been incorporated into a large lounge area the upstairs rooms converted to a principal's Geen Room. Click the downloadable floorplan .pdf below this plan if you want larger or printable detail:-

Floor plan of Cafe Cottage and Cockatoo Room

Function Area Floorplan, printable  - Pdf 297Kb

Function sleeping

We will be able to accommodate 30-35 people on site. This requires some sharing (eg as couples, twins, triples or possibly more). If each single guest requires their own bedroom only, no room sharing, then we can sleep up to 11 people. If you need more accommodation than this, and most weddings do, then you will need to book additional accommodation off-site. There is plenty locally available in holiday cottages and AirBNB. Call us if you have problems.


Our tariffs are disclosed in the tariffs tab but please ask for a formal quote. Note that there should be no addutional charges if our rooms and equipment are left in the same clean condition provided to you. If they are not we will charge an hourly cleaning rate. Note wealso charge for damages and breakages.


Each guest group can configure their event with our stored trestle-tables and stackable chairs as they wish, indoors and outdoors. If you wish to hire equipment additional to or instead of ours you are free to do so. We ask that steps be taken to ensure that our equipment does not get mixed up with hired gear. In the event area there are plenty of guests toilets, a guest laundry, showers, external lighting, carparking.The function roo Cockatoo can be blacked out for presentations , it has a whiteboard, a pull-down projection screen and a data projector for Powerpoint/TV/video/DVD presentations. It has a separate 101cm HD TV. In addition to high quality audio gear with a 12-channel mixer and capacity to play music from guests devices, the room boasts a 4.8m X 2.5m stage that can raised as needed. 


The space is not available for use by celebratory parties of people who are predominantly under the age of 25, for major birthdays under the age of 25 or for any function where alcohol use will not be closely managed by the booking party.


We hold Public and Products Liability insurance which covers our legal liability to third parties resulting from our negligence or alleged negligence in respect of personal injury and/or property damage arising from our business activitiesBawley Bush Retreat is not nsured for and is in no manner liable for injuries people may suffer as a result of participating in any activity or receiving a service organised by guests or by any supplier guests have contracted (eg exercise-induced injury, food related illness, interpersonal claims, psychological injury etc). We are also not liable for workers compensation claims by employees not engaged directly by ourselves.

If guests choose to engage external contractors to deliver services on our property they are welcome to do so, but losses or damages arising from delivery of those services will not be our responsibility. It is therefore essential that guests who wish to avoid the possibility of personal liability ensure that any contractors they engage carry their own public and professional liability and workers compensation insurances and that such insurance will be current at the time of service delivery. 

While we will use every endeavour to satisfy your booking but our liability to guests in the event that we cannot deliver on a booking due to matters and consequences beyond our control such as storm, bushfire etc is limited to the return of any deposit paid. Event insurance may be purchased by booked guests from an insurance broker to cover any risk of event failure borne by guests.

Detailed building specifications

  • Externally the function room has a gable roof and is made of compressed earth bricks. It has hand made blackbutt french doors opening onto the verandah and bifolding feature windows that look over the lake.
  • Covered verandah on eastern side of room is 50 sq m.
  • Internally the room has a mixed Victorian hardwood floor, ironbark round log feature beams, hardwood minor beams and rafters. The ceiling is exposed Zincalume mini-orb. Walls are radiata pine finished with Porters wood wash paints.
  • There are feature stained-glass windows in each gable end depicting our favourite bird, the glossy black cockatoo and its exclusive casuarina habitat.
  • There are side and rear doors. The bifolding rear doors open onto the foyer/ breezeway that separates the kitchen and bar area from the function room.
  • There are 2 ceiling fans and 2 X opening gable windows.
  • Access to 6 toilets including for 1 for people with disabilities. The premises comply with disability access requirements.
  • Wood heater: Nectre 2 with firewood supplied
  • All windows/doors can be blacked out.

Detailed equipment specifications

  • Stackable folding seating for 120 people and  blowmoulded foldup/stackable tables (18# X 1835mm X 760mm and 2# X 1100mm x 760mm). (If not sufficient or suitable for your event you can hire 3rd party equipment).
  • Storage cupboards for foldup/stackable chairs, fold-up tables, partitions table-tennis tables and whiteboard. 
  • Domestic LG micro-hifi tuner/CD player with USB port and own speakers.
  • Professional audio equipment including 12# jack array at rear of stage leading to Soundcraft EFX12 (12-channel) mixing desk at rear of room. Board has connections for personal devices. This is fully plugged in ready for use.
  • Redback A2733B Professional audio player with IPOD/IPAD connections (standard and Lightning), MP3/USB and SD card input already wired to mixer
  • 2 X boom-style microphone stands
  • Microphones: 2x AKG D5, 1 X AKG D880, stands, various leads, jacks and filters. 
  • Cordless microphones, great for speeches.
  • Monitor/fold-back speakers: 2 X Laney CX usually connected in series. These have built in amplifiers and can be used outside for speeches etc when located close enough to power.
  • Yamaha main speakers: 2 X MSR 400 high-quality main speakers permanently connected to mixer. Monitor speakers can be connected to these to enable inside music to be played outside.
  • Guitar holders: At stage X 2
  • Overhead data projector: Viewsonic PJD6241 with composite video, S-video, 15-pin analog RGB or component, 9-pin RS 232 and HDMI (check) inputs. This can be set up to project images on screen and sound through the main Yamaha speakers. 
  • Pull-down overhead projection screen.
  • Separate LG 42LH20D 101cm HDTV HDMI-wired to receive DVD player input.
  • DVD player: HDMI domestic standard LG also plays CDs.
  • Platform 4.8m X 2.5m at front of room flush with floor that can electrically rise to any level up to 350mm above floor level to create stage
  • Mirror ball: 400mm with 3 X dedicated spotlights
  • Dimmable low voltage house lights
  • Spotlight dimmer control adjacent to mixing desk: Jands 4PAK-D
  • Spot lighting: 2 X PR Pro Par PR3040 with barn doors and gels: 2 X Source 4 Junior.
  • Ample power supply with separate audio equipment circuit.
  • Tablecloths available for hire, check tariff section for pricing.

For bookings phone 61 2 6100 4743. To email us an enquiry click here. On-line booking of the Cockatoo Room for functions is not possible.