I know… Summer has hardly begun, and I’m not one to wish away the year BUT when 16% of Christmas parties are booked in May, and 14% in June, I thought this was the perfect time for me to share my party wisdom with you! I’ve put together a list of questions that I continuously get asked by my ‘non event prof’ friends and colleagues on how best to organise their festive parties… read on to get your answers!
“I haven’t got the biggest budget – where should I begin?”
If you’re like many and have budget restraints to worry about then the best option for you is a venue that offers a Christmas Party package and is fully themed for the entire festive period. This ensures the initial package price is all you need to spend and there won’t be any hidden entertainment or production costs to worry about! The Brewery offers a fabulous theme each year and 2019 is no exception as they’re transforming the venue into the Goodnight Cabaret! From theming to entertainment to yummy food, they have it covered in one package price.
“HELP! I have no idea where to start!”
If you’ve never organised an event before and it’s something you’ve just been lumbered with this year, first things first, don’t stress! It’s a big job but also an exciting one! The perfect option for you is to get the professionals in, starting with a venue finder. A lot of people steer away from professional support as they think it’s costly, but some venue finders offer a completely FREE venue-finding service! Their years of expertise can help find you some real gems to impress the rest of your office – what’s more, you can sit back, relax and take all the glory on the night and it doesn’t cost you a penny!
“Do we HAVE to have a seated three course meal?!”
No! You can do whatever you like! (Well, to some extent!) In all seriousness, the world is your oyster when it comes to your festive events as the main objective is usually to thank guests for their hard work and show everyone a good time before they head off for their Christmas break. You know your colleagues better than anyone and if you think they’ll prefer street food style catering then go for it – it allows more time for dancing and keeps the evening nice and informal. In fact, you wouldn’t be alone, according to a recent survey by industry experts seated lunches and dinners are on the decline with 63% of Christmas party bookers now opting for a more informal style celebration. A great venue for street food style parties is Café de Paris, the venue is the PERFECT place to party and offers lots of yummy options like a taco stall with accompanying bowl food being served to guests.
“What day of the week is best to hold our office Christmas Party?”
A lot of offices have a favourite day that work bests for them but if you’re looking at the majority of the UK then Thursday is the day! Thursday is close enough to the weekend for everyone to be in the party spirit but doesn’t eat in to your personal time at the weekend. It allows everyone to be in the same hungover boat together the following day – you only have one day of work to get through and you also have the opportunity to get all the gossip form the night before! Or if you really can’t cope with a hangover at work then you only have to take one day off, and you get the bonus of a long weekend! Winner!
“What venues would you recommend for this year?”
There’s so many to choose from that’s a tough question to answer and it really depends on the brief, however, my personal top three venues for Christmas this year would have to be….
- Welsh Chapel – I found this gem when looking for a blank canvas venue that still had character, for a client wanting to do a full production event, it was perfect! This year Bourne and Hollingsworth are doing the work for you and are transforming the forgotten chapel into the ‘Winter House’ and it’s set to be the ultimate drinking and dining experience in the heart of the West End!
- If you’re a small group but looking for a large party atmosphere then shared parties are for you! In my opinion, the Smart Group host the best shared parties in town! This year my fave of theirs is Christmas in New York at Battersea Evolution – perfect for dancing the night away and getting fully immersed into a theme!
- The Box in Soho has recently opened its doors for private hire and it’s a top choice for your Christmas Party if you’re looking an uber cool, intimate affair! The Box, otherwise known as the ‘Theatre of Varieties’ is well known for its cabaret show which can be tailored for private events.
So that’s Christmas in a nutshell! If you’ve been lumbered with organising this year’s celebrations, then I cannot recommend free venue finder’s enough – they work in the industry day in day out so know all of the best new openings and exciting Christmas offerings. Of course my favourite is Eventify – they have over 15 years of experience and offer a personalised service, they can also manage the whole thing for you including being there on the evening so you can party the night away – bonus!
All that’s left to say is happy planning! And happy partying of course! Merry Christmas!