Two weeks ago we launched our Make History competition in partnership with Tourism New Zealand, in which one lucky Australian same-sex couple will win a wedding in New Zealand on August 19 2013 – the date the Marriage Amendment Act comes into effect.
And a lot has happened in a fortnight. Our former Prime Minister, Julia Gillard, who remained opposed to marriage equality, was ousted by long-time adversary and recent marriage-equality convert, Kevin Rudd. The pressure is now on Rudd as our new leader to make good on his promise to give ALL Australians equality in matrimony.
But in the meantime, the only option left to us is to get hitched overseas. And going on the evidence of our competition there is certainly no shortage of romantic souls out there hoping to wed their same-sex partner.
The number of entries we have received is now well in excess of 200 and still climbing. There’s still time to enter our competition, which closes at midnight on July 10 2013.
Don’t miss out. Head to our Facebook page and tell us why you and your significant other should be the couple who make history for same-sex Australian couples everywhere. Thanks to everyone who has entered, and good luck!
Some of the best spots to tie the knot in New Zealand
The Oyster Inn in Oneroa Village, Waiheke Island, opened in November 2012 and has become an instant hit. The Inn is styled as a timeless Kiwi beach bach and features restaurant, event space, shop and three guest rooms. Perfect for an intimate wedding with friends and family. The menu focuses on simple food including locally sourced seafood – oysters, whitebait, crayfish. www.theoysterinn.co.nz
Matua vineyards is a beautiful place to enjoy a wedding among the vines and is only a 30 minute drive from central Auckland. View work from local artists, sample gourmet goodies, enjoy an elegant reception lunch at the adjacent Hunting Lodge restaurant, or even challenge your party to a game of petanque on the lawn.
For a natural wedding that is breathtakingly original, look no further than the black volcanic sands of Piha Beach. It’s easy to see why people get swept up in the rugged beauty of the coastline. Lion Rock stands solidly guarding the northern end of Piha beach. www.aucklandnz.com/destinations/piha
At Lochmara Lodge there are conservation projects, nature walks, a Kakariki feeding encounter, native birds and wildlife, art galleries, sculpture trail and an artist studio. Kayaks, hammocks, a beach, rope swings, a flying fox, an outstanding café/restaurant with the best local food and wine, and a Bath House day spa. Lochmara Lodge specialises in laid-back, informal weddings, where the happy couple can relax and enjoy their special day with their guests. www.lochmaralodge.co.nz
Wither Hills Vineyard
The spectacular barrel hall and outdoor terrace areas are available for exclusive wedding ceremonies, with a tasting room providing the perfect backdrop for a beautiful wedding reception. Numerous photography locations throughout the venue offer a complete package for the discerning couple to enjoy a memorable day. www.witherhills.co.nz
A water’s edge retreat, Raetihi Lodge is a superb wedding venue for its seclusion and privacy providing all the intimacy to create the perfect occasion and the perfect memories for a ceremony and reception within the Marlborough Sounds. The jetty has wonderful views of the Kenepuru Sound for a glamorous wedding shoot. www.raetihilodge.co.nz
Old St Mary’s Convent Vineyard Estate
At this Marlborough estate there are endless opportunities to create a dream wedding, be it in a romantic garden setting or in the charming historic chapel. This beautifully renovated Victorian convent sits in 60 acres of parklands and vineyards and features the historic St Michael’s Church as well as an idyllic lake. www.convent.co.nz
INFO: For more information visit www.newzealand.com