The Melbourne Bowling Club, the oldest in Australia, encourages all visitors to come & enjoy a game or two of lawn bowls. In 2014, we celebrate our 150th birthday, so why not come and enjoy the party!
As an incorporated member’s club, the Melbourne Bowling Club is a place for members & guests. The Club was founded in 1864 and since then has been a place where members have come to bowl & socialise. We ask that all visitors & guests abide by rules of the Club and act in a way that is mindful of the Club’s environment, and respectful to members and other guests.
Bowling is what we are good at here at the Melbourne Bowling Club, as evidenced through more appearances in the Melbourne Metropolitan Premier League Lawn Bowls Grand Finals, than any other club. So we love it when people want to come and try bowls at Our Club.
But you don’t have to bowl to enjoy our facilities, you can hire the Clubroom (for large groups up to 300) or the Jack High room (for small groups up to 50) for any variety of events including; birthdays, engagement parties, weddings, reunions, awards nights, product launches, corporate training or workshops, team building plus fund-raising (trivia or games night) to name just a few.
Our Licence Rules and Regulations
As an incorporated club, and to comply with our liquor license, all visitors to the Club are required to sign in. If you come to the Club to bowl, or to attend a function, you will be required to sign-in. We will provide a sign-in sheet for your event, or alternatively you can provide a list of attendees. We use a system of wristbands in order to ensure guests have complied with these requirements.
For each event at the club we require someone (usually the host or organiser) to sign up as an Access Member. An access member becomes a member of the club for the duration of the event, and is the contact point for any issues during or after the event.
The Club is a fully licensed venue, therefore NO BYO.
The Melbourne Bowling Club practices and enforces the Responsible Service of Alcohol, and as such does not serve shots or doubles.
The bar is usually open during events, unless advised otherwise. Drinks can be purchased by guests on consumption, alternatively you can run a bar tab. Bar tabs can be set by dollar amount or drink type (eg tap beer, house wine & soft drinks, or all beer, house wine, RTDs & soft drinks, or any combination). For bowling events, we also offer drinks packages for 3, 4 or 5 hours duration.
To make it easier for you we offer different options/packages, which we believe accommodate differing needs & budgets. We are also happy to discuss tailoring an event to suit your specific needs, if our suggested options do not appeal.
Bowling Only Events
- Bowling sessions are allocated in two hourly intervals, longer by arrangement
- We provide all the equipment (bowls, mats and jacks)
- A Bowls Host is on-hand to explain how to play, how to bowl and assist you during your session
- Social/Corporate bowlers generally go barefoot. The Club, at its discretion, may allow guests to bowl in thongs, crocs or other flat-soled shoes, No Heels or No Tread
- We can organise a competition (round robin or knock-out) if required
- If due to inclement weather you cannot bowl, your group will have access to the clubrooms & amenities. In this instance we charge $5 per person, with any difference credited to the bar tab or refunded
- We can arrange catering to enjoy during your event
|Size of Group||
Bowls Season (September to April)
|Low Season (May to August)|
|up to 10||$20/person||$10/person|
|11 to 56||$200/rink||$10/person or $120/rink|
|57 to 160||$200/rink or $1,500/green||NA|
|161 to 210||$1,500/green or $3,200 all rinks||NA|
- Bowling Time – 2 hours (extended sessions by arrangement)
- Playing numbers – The preferred number of bowlers on each rink is up to 8 (2 teams of 4, or any other combination). For large groups we can accommodate up to 10 bowlers on each rink
- Rink – Playing area for a game of bowls
- Green – collection of rinks
- NA – during Low Season, only 5 rinks available
Room Hire Only Events
The Melbourne Bowling Club has two rooms available for hire, the Clubroom, our large space, is in the main part of the Club. While the Jack High room is a small space, with direct access to a bbq area and courtyard.
- The Clubroom can comfortably accommodate up to 150 guests for a seated meal, or up to 300 guests for a cocktail/stand-up function
- The Clubroom can be configured in various ways, including lecture style. It can also be divided into two smaller areas if necessary
- Tables in the Clubroom are round and seat 8 people
- The Clubroom includes a dance floor and small stage
- AV equipment (only in the Clubroom) includes; cordless microphone, DVD player, iPod connection, large screen and projector with a connection for PC.
The Jack High room
- The Jack High room seats up to 32 guests, depending on configuration, or can accommodate up to 50 standing
- The Jack High room has small rectangular tables, which are easily configurable, in to horse shoe, lecture or boardroom configurations
- The Jack High room has access to a sheltered courtyard
Room Hire Costs
|Room||Bowls Season (1 September to 31 March )||Low Season (1 April to 31 August)|
|The Clubroom (up to 300)||$150/hour, or $550/half day, or $900 per full day or evening||$100/hour, or $350/half day, or $550/full day or evening|
|Jack High room (up to 50)||$100/hour, or $300/half day, or $450/full day or evening||$75/hour, or $200/half day, or $350/full day or evening|
- Event Duration – half day = 4hrs, full day = 8hrs, evening = 5/6hrs
- The room hire prices are minimum prices and can vary depending on the level of access, time required prior to your function and level of decoration and clean up
- Room hire prices may vary if combined with bowling, catering and/or bar spend
Whether you want simple finger food, platters to snack on throughout your bowling session or stylish, innovative canapés for a corporate event, we have a range of menus for every occasion. We can also design a special menu to suit your specific requirements.
We also have a range of sweet items, plus more substantial items served in small bowls or noodle boxes which can be enjoyed standing up. These can be added to any menu if required.
A Small Group Surcharge of $100.00 is charged where applicable.
Our BBQ menus are suitable for all types of events, corporate, social, and family gatherings
- For corporate functions, create a relaxed, fun environment for your staff & clients, while helping make your event at the Club memorable and stress free.
- For friends and family, a great way to enjoy warm summer weather outdoors without having to lift a finger indoors.
- Choose to enjoy your BBQ before your bowling session or afterwards.
- BBQ menus are served as a buffet, with guests helping themselves
- Please advise of any special dietary needs when confirming menu choice.
Final numbers to be confirmed 3-business days prior to event
The Club has a well stocked bar with 6 beers/ciders on tap and over 15 beers/ciders available in bottles. We have a good variety of spirits and limited but fine selection of wines, available by the bottle.
During events at the Club there are several options to manage your bar/alcohol spend. You can run a tab where you set the type of alcohol available for consumption and/or the dollar limit. Guests can buy their own drinks and pay on consumption. Or you can run a combination of the two, where there is a tab for some drink options, but guests buy their own if they want something different/special.
Alternatively, if yours is a bowling event you can choose a drinks package. The advantage of drinks packages is the cost of beverages is known before the event, to make budgeting & managing costs easier.
|Basic – 3 hours||$50.00/person||Tap (Beer/Cider), House Wines, Soft Drinks (excl Sports Drinks)|
|Basic – 4 hours||$60.00/person||Tap (Beer/Cider), House Wines, Soft Drinks (excl Sports Drinks)|
|Premium – 3 hours||$80.00/person||All Beer (tap/bottle), All cider (tap/bottle), All Wines (house/premium), All RTDs & Soft Drinks|
|Premium – 4 hours||$100.00/person||All Beer (tap/bottle), All cider (tap/bottle), All Wines (house/premium), All RTDs & Soft Drinks|
- Drinks Packages are available for groups of 40 or more people
- Drinks packages are only available to groups who bowl
- All drinks package are served by the glass
- The Basic package includes all soft drinks, excluding sports drinks
- The Premium package includes all soft drinks
- Drinks packages are only valid if they apply to the entire group
Costs & Payments
- To secure your event a deposit is required
- Your deposit in non-refundable, but is transferable if you cancel less than 14 days prior to your event
- All outstanding amounts are to be paid on the day, at the conclusion of your event
- For exclusive use of the club and/or premises there is a minimum spend of $12,000
Booking Terms and Conditions
- All guests/visitors to the club are required to sign in order to meet our liquor license. You can provide a list of guests or we will provide sign-in sheets.
- All guests/visitors will be issued with wristbands to show they have signed in.
- For events with food provided by our in-house caterer, full payment & final numbers plus any special dietary needs are required 5 days prior to your event.
- The Melbourne Bowling Club practices & enforces the Responsible Service of Alcohol. As part of this we do not sell “shots” or “doubles”.
- Car parking at the Club is very limited and at times restricted to members only.
- As we are very close to Windsor Train Station and tram routes, 5, 6, 64, 78 & 79 we suggest you travel to and from the Club via public transport. For those who drive adjacent to the Club is on street parking, while across Chapel St are public car parks.
- If due to inclement weather you are unable to bowl, the charge per person will be $5.00 per person. Any difference in prepayments can be added to a bar tab or refunded.
- The Club provides all the equipment required to bowl, as well as instruction at the start and assistance as required during your 2 hour bowling session.
- To bowl, guests are required to bowl bare foot. At the discretion of the bowls host or other staff member, guests may be allowed to wear thongs or other flat/soft soled shoes (no heels).
- Bowls in best played in teams of 4. We suggest you organise your groups this way to maximise your time and enjoyment while bowling.
- If required, the Club can organise or assist in organising round robin or knock competitions. Please advise prior to your event.
- If your event does not include bowling (room hire only) or includes use of a room, any decoration or music is to be arranged by the host.
- The Club has basic audio visual equipment. Please arrange a visit prior to your event to ensure equipment is compatible with your requirements.
- If you cancel more than 14 days prior to your event, you will receive a refund of any deposit and/or other prepayments, or you can transfer the monies for an event on another date. If you cancel within 14 days of your event, your deposit will not be refunded but can be transferred for an event on another date.
- Payment of any outstanding monies is due at the conclusion of your event. We accept cash or credit card (AMEX, Master card & Visa).
- If required, your security bond will be refunded within five days of your event.
Need a place to hold a trivia night or games night, or want to bowl for charity to raise money for any purpose or special cause, then why not use the Melbourne Bowling Club?
We have helped heaps of groups & organisations run successful fundraising events. With indoor and outdoor event spaces, the Club is a fantastic venue for fundraising. We can accommodate groups of up to 300 people, and can tailor an event to suit.
Whether you want to bowl, use the clubrooms or both, we can help you raise money for your kindergarten, school, sporting or social club, favorite charity or any other worthwhile cause.
In our clubroom you can host a cocktail party for up to 300 people, a trivia or games night for up to 200 people, while on our greens you can have around 150 people bowling at any one time.
In order to help you maximise your fund raising efforts we also offer the following:
- Optional Drink Surcharge or Charity Levy. Each time a guest buys a drink we add a little extra (50c to $1.00), which we collect on your behalf, then provide to you as a lump sum
- Silent Auction. You provide the items we run the auction. We register all bidders, so no names are used during bidding, adding to the mystery & intrigue, while the ensuring you maximise the value for each item. In essence, we act like the government officials who watch over the lottery draws
- Prize. The club will donate a Lawn Bowls Experience, worth up to $200.00, to help you with your fund raising efforts. The Lawn Bowls Experience is 2 hours of lawn bowling for up to 10 people, with all equipment and tuition provided. This prize is valid for three (3) months from the date of the event and can be redeemed on any day, other than Saturday, subject to availability
Got any questions, have a look to the right and click on the appropriate button for more details about costs, catering or bar options and FAQs.
What are you waiting for? Get in touch and together let’s raise some money!
Corporate Events (Barefoot Bowling)
Is it Party Time?
Isn’t it time you did something more than just stand around a function room for your next event (Christmas Party, End of Financial Year Do, or Social Club event)? Yes, of course it is! At the Club you can bowl, drink, eat & party.
Got any questions, have a look to the right and click on the Booking Enquiry button for more details about costs, catering or bar options and FAQs.
What are you waiting for? No one wants to hide behind the fake palms anymore!
Give us a call to discuss your needs, or click on the Corporate Barefoot Bowling button on the right.
Celebrating team achievements/milestones or do some team building?
Want to celebrate an achievement or build team morale, with an activity where everyone can participate? Lawn bowls is a great way to do either or both! You can bring the team to the Club just to bowl, or you can use of the clubrooms for presentations or seminars, then bowl. For either option we can provide food & drinks.
We provide the room (lecture style or tables), you provide the presentation
- We provide the AV equipment (microphone, projector & screen), you provide the computer (PC only)
- We provide tuition and all the equipment required for bowling, you provide the bowlers
- We can arrange a competition (round robin or knock-out), you provide the teams
- We can cater (or you can do it yourself), you provide the dietary requirements
- We have a well stocked bar, you can run a tab or pay as you go
What are you waiting for? No one will have access to the photocopier, so there will be no regrets!
Need more then beer to bring your friends together?
Are you bored of meeting friends at the pub, where the prices are always going up and the music is so loud, you can’t hear what your friends are saying? If so then come to the Melbourne Bowling Club. At the Club you can bowl, chat & drink, while still being able to hear everything!
Got any questions, have a look to the right and click on the booking enquiry button for more details about costs, catering, bar options or FAQs.
What are you waiting for? Let’s get the conversation started!
Are you over expensive cocktails?
Do you want to compare pedicures (and share a nice bottle of wine or bubbles), but have not been able to find the right excuse to get your friends to expose their toes? Well here is your chance, all in the name of sport, or catching up, or drinking. The feeling of “real” grass under your feet is hard to beat, and it makes showing off your pedicure easy, all while playing bare foot bowls.
Got any questions, have a look to the right and click on the booking enquiry button for more details about costs, catering or bar options and FAQs.
What are you waiting for? Pop on the shellac & throw off the sling backs!
Celebrating a birthday, end of exams or just the end of the week?
Is it that time of the year again where you have to stop and think, I might be older, but am I any wiser? As lawn bowls is an old man’s game, bringing friends to the Club is the perfect way to celebrate getting older. We can accommodate a relaxed or low key affair, through to a major production.
Got any questions, have a look to the right and click on the booking enquiry button for more details about costs, catering or bar options and FAQs.
What are you waiting for? If you bowl on your birthday we will even shout you a free drink!
How much time does it all take?
It depends. From our experience the following seems true;
- Bowling only – about 3 hours (arrive 30 mins before your session, bowl for 2 hours, last drinks & boasting, then move on)
- Bowling & Food (small groups) about 4 hours (same as above with an hour to eat)
- Bowling & Food (large groups) about 5 hours (same as above with an hour to eat plus extra time to organise things)
Is there parking available on site?
On-site parking is limited, so we suggest using public transport to get to & from the Club. Close public transport options include:
- Windsor Train Station or
- Trams 5, 6, 64, 78 & 79
- Taxis are easily hailed on Chapel St, only a short distance from the Club
Can we hang around after our bowling session?
During our bowls season the Club gets crowded, so we may not be able to accommodate you. We try to agree on arrival & departure times when we confirm your booking.
What if the tab at the bar finishes for my event/group, can I stay and keep drinking?
As the Club practices the Responsible Service of Alcohol it all depends. Generally when the bar tab finishes so does service.
Can I bring my own food to BBQ?
No, our licence and food and safety policies preclude self catering. We can provide BBQ and other catering packs to suit a variety of needs.
We have never bowled before do we get instruction?
Yes, a bowls host gets you started and is around to help if needed.
What do I need to bring?
We supply all you need for bowling, you just need to bring your mates or work colleagues.
Do I have to bowl barefoot?
Mostly yes. Our bowling greens are living things and most shoes you wear elsewhere can damage the green.
- If you can’t bear the thought of going barefoot, you may be allowed (at our discretion) to bowl in thongs, crocs or flat-soled shoes (NO HEELS or NO TREAD). Check with your bowls host.
What if it rains?
You may get wet, but you may still be able to bowl.
- If you can’t bowl and come to the club you will be charged $5.00 per person.
- Any difference between that and your deposit can be transferred to a bar tab, or refunded.
- We have various activities to keep you occupied if required.
What happens if I need to cancel?
- For bowling only events, if you cancel more than 14 days prior to your event, your deposit can be refunded or transferred to another date. If you cancel within 14 days your deposit will not be refunded, but can be transferred to another date
- For events with catering, if you cancel more than 14 days prior any prepayments will be refunded, or transferred to another date. If you cancel within 14 days payments will not be refunded, prepayment for other expenses can be transferred to another date. You will be charged for the agreed catering cost.
What if not everyone in the group wants to bowl?
If you don’t think everyone will bowl you should hire rinks, enough to give all those who will want to bowl a chance. If your group is less than 10 people, everyone who comes to the club will have to pay the person charge applicable to the season ($20 for Bowls season, $10 for Low season).
How many people can I fit on a rink?
Ideally, it is an even number of people up to 8, so you can have 2 teams. To accommodate large groups our rinks can hold up to 10 people, that is two teams of five.