Whilst a Japanese rock'n'roll bar might well be the perfect wedding space for a select few, the enlightened team behind Daniel San realised that those heading to the tranquil beach setting of Manly to celebrate their nuptials are likely to prefer a setting that's a little less kamikaze. And so the Beachside Dojo was created to represent the home of rock god Daniel's zen-like girlfriend whose calmness is the perfect yin to temper the loud and brash yang going on downstairs.
Opened in October 2014, the Dojo (which means "meeting place" in Japanese) is located at a spectacular vantage point on North Steyne with east facing views through the famous pine trees and sweeping views of Sydney’s iconic Manly Beach from the outdoor terraces.
The Beachside Dojo comprises two spaces: the Sunrise Dojo and the Northern Dojo. Both are architecturally designed with crisp white interiors and strokes of Japanese influences and they connect both internally and via the outdoor terrace. The Sunrise Dojo is the main space holding up to 120 people for a standing reception or up to 80 people seated, whilst the adjacent Northern Dojo is a more intimate space holding up to 80 guests standing or up to 40 seated. This makes the Northern Dojo perfect for smaller or lunchtime weddings but it can also be used for ceremonies or as a wet weather back up.
Whilst the overall theme of the Beachside Dojo is Japanese there is a distinct underlying aesthetic of clean, Hamptons-like styling, reminiscent of the Sunset Room at the Watsons Bay Boutique Hotel, and that's not a huge surprise given that both venues are owned by bar entrepreneur Fraser Short and his business partner Arthur Laundy. And if the popularity of the WBBH is anything to go by, then Manly should start bracing itself for a tsunami of fashionable weddings.
Catering is ably handled by executive chef Benjamin Orpwood, formerly of Toko, who offers options of shared feasting plates, experience tasting stations or the more traditional alternate drop, all based on a food philosophy of freshness and seasonal focus.
With the advantage of a late license receptions at the Beachside Dojo can party on through to midnight, and being part of the Novotel Manly Pacific Hotel complex means there are 213 hotel rooms to crash out in just a flying kick away.