Built circa 1860, Ascot House exudes historic charm. Originally purchased from the Crown for the sum of 118 pounds, the mansion has remained the reception venue of choice for many of Melbourne’s finest weddings, parties and events for more than 140 years.
Councillor John Thomas Smith was the first owner of Ascot House, and during this era guests would arrive at the 58 acre property by horse and buggy. John Thomas Smith was a member of the first council of the City of Melbourne and subsequently became Lord Mayor of Melbourne from 1851 – 1864. He was a benevolent man who continually involved himself in charity work.
Arthur Fenton, another prominent councillor, acquired Ascot House in the early 1900’s. He was a colourful character involved in early aviation and catering. He subsequently heralded Ascot House into the catering field and under his guardianship this stately home became the premier reception house it continues to be today.
Throughout the years, the ownership of the property has passed through many capable hands, however many years after the Smith family had vacated, the prized collection of family silver was found buried under the cellars at Ascot House. At this time, the collection of silver was worth more than the property. Exquisite pieces of the silver are still used in Ascot House today.
There are many incredible stories associated with old mansions and Ascot House Receptions is no exception. It is believed that the original Smith family silver was taken to Government House in 1934 and used by the Duke of Gloucester, who later became Governor General.
The exceptional reputation of Ascot House Receptions has been established through its history and continues with the care and service of the Patinyotis family who have owned the property since 1979. The rich heritage and enduring elegance of Ascot House makes it one of Melbourne’s finest and most sought after venues for contemporary weddings delivered with a touch of class.