We know it’s summer, the sun is shining, and the last thing on your mind is Christmas, but take it from us - now really is the time to start planning to avoid stress down the line and all the best venues being snapped up.
If you're responsible for planning the work Christmas do, the pressure is on to plan a night that everyone will enjoy, from the CEO to the interns, and one of the most important decisions is the venue. Take a look at our top tips to make yours the best yet.
It might seem obvious but finding the right size venue is vital - too big will feel empty and soulless, too small will feel cramped and claustrophobic. Ensure your venue has the right capacity and go for a visit before you book - with any tables or chairs set out - so you can visualise your group in the space.
Next up and equally as important is location. If you’re not staying in the office, your venue should be accessible for people to arrive and leave easily and safely.
Think about timings; when you’ll stop working and what time you want the party to start - this will dictate how far from the office the venue needs to be. Most people will likely have a few drinks, so access to public transport to get home could be key too.
Make sure you find out what's included at each venue. Some more traditional venues will offer packages, others may just be venue hire only. There’s no doubt that dry hire venues are the way to go if you want to save money and put your own stamp on things.
Often with package options you can be limited too as you're tied to the venue’s food and drink options and costs. With dry hire, you have a blank canvas and can infuse the event with new flavours, formats and have more control over the price.
Speaking of food and drink, think about if you want a sit down catered meal, a buffet or canapes. Or why not get more creative and have some different street food stalls and bars? You could even have a street food truck parked outside as a real talking point!
Choosing the right venue is half the battle with creating a good atmosphere. A conference function room will offer little atmosphere compared to the dramatic vaults of somewhere like Village Underground.
Think how you can organise the room to follow the format of your event - do you need tables for food? A dance floor? You can also drum up more atmosphere by choosing something a little different, like a photo booth, mixologist or a signature cocktail.
Our biggest tip of all? Don’t do it all by yourself – searching for a venue and sorting all the catering especially during the Christmas period is a strenuous task.
We're at your service to provide you with venue options, and offer a place to find and manage all quotes for food and drink centrally in your Feast It dashboard. It’s free to use, just fill out a quick form and our team will get right on it!