The Ian Potter Queen’s Hall – Grandeur & Grace
The Library’s newest (and oldest) wedding destination. The Ian Potter Queen’s Hall was a part of the original construction of the Library, opening back in 1859. Since it had seen many uses as a reading room, closing in 2003. Now, restored with immaculate detail to its original underlying paint-scheme, this grand two-tier reading room opened once again in December 2019 to the awe of guests and the public alike.
The room has to be seen in order to fully absorb the grandeur of one of Melbourne’s, and indeed Australia’s, oldest buildings. The Ionic columns that run the length of the room are rarely seen, the skylights high above fill the room with light during the day and the night sky in the evening.
Catered by a full commercial kitchen, the space is built to host elegant weddings amongst the Australian literature collection, with windows overlooking the Swanston Street entrance.
Isabella Fraser Room – Intimate Sophistication
High ceilings, natural light and blank canvas charm in a New York style space. The Isabella Fraser Room, opened in 2018 and named after the Library’s first female librarian, is the choice for couples looking for understated elegance and simplicity.
Designed specifically with events in mind the space contains in-built audiovisual equipment, central bathrooms, ceiling installation rigging and an adjacent service kitchen. Entry via La Trobe Street through its large timber doors allows for brilliant room reveals that inspire excitement. Suited greatly to both long tables and round, this room is the epitome of versatility, able to be dressed up or kept clean and simple. It’s totally up to you.
Unbeknownst to most Melburnians, the State Library holds some of the city’s most historic and stunning event spaces. After the completion of the $88.1 million Vision 2020 redevelopments, the Library now offers couples a range of venues within its famous walls to fall in love with.
Cowen Gallery – Classic Charm
Dine amongst eclectic artworks from the Library’s Pictures Collection in this original gallery space. The Cowen Gallery is a centre point in the Library, a long room that interconnects the library’s many spaces through the Russel Street entrance.
Once host to the National Gallery of Victoria the gallery has undergone many changes in its life yet still exudes significant historic charm. Perfect for long tables to line the room, with its high ceilings above and dark original floorboards underfoot.
Perfectly situated for pre-dinner drinks in one of its surrounding spaces including the Redmond Barry Reading Room or La Trobe Reading Room.
La Trobe Reading Room – Old World Elegance
An architectural marvel of the early 20th century. The La Trobe Reading Room may well be the reason that the State Library Victoria is the busiest public library in Australia. This immense space is surrounded by a panopticon of tiered levels high above, rising to form the famed dome – the largest of its kind at the time.
Awe-inspiring entrances come as standard in this space, unmatched in its history, grandeur and size. The venue is spread with original oak desks and chairs, lined with traditional green-reading lights, centred around a raised middle platform, perfect for MC’s and performers.
The reading rooms large desks are fixed but make for great dining tables under the domed galleries with the rooms grand acoustics reverberating around you.