The Raft – Perth’s event venue on the Swan River is now open.
The Raft – Perth’s newest event venue vessel, was officially opened on Sunday by the Minister for Environment, Stephen Dawson and the Minister for Tourism, Paul Papalia.
The Raft is the brainchild of brother and sister duo Katie Chrystal (27) and Dan Chrystal (29), permanently moored on the Swan River (31°57’40.0″S 115°51’03.2″E to be exact) and destined to host Perth’s hottest events. It started its life as a fireworks barge and is now set to bring some pops of colour and excitement as Perth’s premier event space.
The opening of The Raft included a welcome to country by Murray Yarran, who detailed his families long connection to the Swan River or Derbarl Yerrigan as it is known in the local Noongar language.
What’s it like onboard?
Space-wise The Raft is modern and open – the perfect blank slate for any event, and you’re ferried to the moored vessel by the exclusive use of their 40 patrons tender vessel – skippered by their Captain via a 10-minute journey – available throughout your event.
The Raft’s retractable roof is perfect to protect party guests from the elements when required, but leave the vessel as open to the beauty of the river as possible.
There’s a focus on local producers when it comes to The Raft’s drinks list, with notable inclusions to the bar including spirits from Old Young’s Distillery (Swan Valley) and Little Things Gin (Cottesloe).
Catering on board will be smooth sailing thanks to Hyder And Shears, so you know your guests are going to be well fed.
How did The Raft come to life?
The project to bring The Raft to life required a “shift in thinking from bureaucrats in charge of environmental protections” said Tourism Minister, Paul Papalia.
He hoped it would herald a wave of new ventures that capitalised on the natural beauty of the Swan River.
“While protecting the environment if you are able to allow people to enjoy it – there is a value to that… (and) people become more respectful of what we have, and they’ll be champions of defending it. You can’t ringfence things, you’ve got to allow people to experience them and enjoy them and that’s what this is.”
Here’s some things you may be interessted to know about The Raft:
Does the raft move?
No, The Raft is permanently anchored at 31°57’40.0″S 115°51’03.2″E.
It is purposefully designed and positioned to ensure patrons are protected from the both the wind and swell.
Even the landlubbers among us will likely forget at times they are on the water.
How do you access The Raft?
Patrons arrive at Barrack St Jetty No.5 prior to boarding the tender vessel. The 40 person tender transports patrons to and from The Raft (10 minute return journey).
This is the only way out to The Raft. Private moorings are not permitted.
What is the raft capacity?
The Raft can cater for a maximum of 250 patrons standing and 180 seated.
Can we BYO?
No. The Raft is a fully licensed venue with no option to BYO beverages. Heyder & Shears are The Raft’s exclusive caterers and will work closely with you to create a delicious experience.
Can we bring our own decorations?
All furniture, materials and permanent fixtures on The Raft are carefully considered. If you have any additional requirements such as flowers, signage or personal items, this can be arranged with The Raft crew.
What do we do in the case of bad weather?
The Raft has a retractable roof and blinds that completely enclose the venue from rain.
Can I disembark the raft during an event?
YES! Throughout your event, the tender vessel is available for all guests to safely come and go as they desire.
Is the raft accessible?
Yes. The tender vessel has a purposely built loading platform, suitable for wheelchairs.
Are minors allowed on board?
Yes. All accompanied minors must be reported to senior crew prior to any event to ensure appropriate safe arrangements are made.
Is swimming permitted?
No, swimming is not allowed.
We can’t wait for the event season to start so we can come and check out this incredible venue again!
For further details visit theraftperth.com.au.
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