What you need to know about getting married at this Souther Highlands gem.
First stop – check out some of the weddings I’ve photographed at Bendooley.
Sarah & James
Olivia & Niall
Jess & John
Where to get ready near Bendooley Estate?
Being in an area that’s both beautiful and historic, there’s no shortage of stunning places to get ready. As a photographer, I’m biased towards suggesting places that are going to photograph well, too. Don’t get me wrong, I’m happy for you to get your kit on basically anywhere and I’ll make it look its best, but if you’re looking for something to complete the aesthetic of the day, these are a good place to start.
The newer of Bendooley’s offerings, The Stables is an incredible space filled with gorgeous window light and surrounded by the hills of the highlands. You can have your ceremony facing either the enormous barn doors or with the garden as a backdrop (or indoors if inclement weather drops by) and you’ve got room for up to 200 guests.
The Book Barn
The original Bendooley Estate venue featuring the homestead, the beautiful lawn area for your ceremony, lakeside canapés and the barn reception space for up to 180 guests. You can stay onsite and the food is amongst the best I’ve ever had at a wedding. The grounds are perfect and its one of my favourite places in the highlands to photograph.
Photography at Bendooley Estate
I love photographing at Bendooley Estate and I want to talk you through my approach at the venue.
Starting with the Book Barn side. Most often people get ready off site and apply the finishing touches at the bridal suite in the homestead or the bridal suite in the Book Barn itself. The homestead overlooks the ceremony so you’re able to watch everyone getting seated.
The ceremony is on the lawn in most cases with the lake as a backdrop. Sitting beneath the enormous trees surrounding the ceremony is not only beautiful but generally always means beautiful light.
After the ceremony, guests move down and enjoy canapés by the lake while we get started on family photos. I really try to keep this as quick as possible so you can enjoy some drinks and food with the view.
I usually then grab the wedding party for some photographs around the lake and homestead before getting photographs of just you two around the grounds before the ceremony. I try to keep this to 30 minutes for both then grab you again for 10-15 minutes at sunset.
The reception space is fairly well lit while maintaining a warm and beautiful atmosphere, which means there’s not too much need for using flash, which then means you don’t have random pops of bright light going off all evening.
Onto The Stables; the ceremony location is generally in front of the barn doors which makes a beautiful backdrop. We then have some fields nearby plus a wonder down the grassy path for photographs of yourself and the wedding party.
I use the same timing approach at The Stables and there is stunning afternoon light at sunset with a view through to all the large hills that roll in the background.
As with the Book Barn, the reception space is perfectly lit so there’s little need for flash. The huge window also means plenty of light coming in – especially in the daylight savings months.