Christmas in the Philippines is definitely something to look forward. There are lanterns, Christmas carols, “Simbang Gabi,” family reunions, parties at the office, parties at school, and parties at home.
But for us who prefer the condo lifestyle, hosting a Christmas party in a condo holds a few things for consideration. Here are the seven most important things to consider when planning a holiday party everyone would surely enjoy.
First and foremost of the concerns is the limited space. For instance, a one-bedroom condominium in Makati has a floor area of 37 square meters. How many guests can this unit comfortably host? Maybe ten, but definitely not 20. Be realistic with the numbers. An overcrowded space is no fun and will contribute to more noise.
If you prefer a big party with a large guest list, rent the condominium’s function hall. You will have more space for entertainment and fewer noise complaints.
Consider throwing several small parties instead of one big party, say one for family, one for friends, and one for colleagues. This way, you can entertain more without overcrowding your unit.
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Bear in mind that most condominiums have parking space for residents only. Work with your condominium administrator on the parking situation. There may be some parking slots you can rent for a couple of hours. If not, plan alternative parking with your guests.
Also, ask your guests to carpool for fewer parking problems.
If you are serving drinks, Grab is the best option for your guests.
For most people, a party means delicious food. While everyone will look forward to the scrumptious delights you will serve, never force yourself to go over the budget in preparing a grand little feast. Be practical depending on your theme and your guests, you can turn your party into a potluck or “bring-a-dish” party. Just make sure to assign or agree with your guests on what to bring. Though you cannot have too much dessert, you may have too little entrées.
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A party is not a party without some cheery tunes. And with Spotify providing convenient access to thousands of music and curated playlists, you don’t need to a DJ to keep your party going.
If you want a DIY route, try mixing up some jazz for class, some R&B for soul, some Hip-hop for dance and some carols for the Christmas spirit. Also, remember to play the iconic Mariah Carey’s “All I Want for Christmas Is You” and Jose Maria Chan’s “Christmas in Our Hearts” a few times for maximum Christmas feels.
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Games are often the main entertainment of a party. Why? Games allow people to be competitive and have fun simultaneously. For a party in a limited space like a condo unit, it is convenient to host one or two simple games that do not take up too much space. Popular games like Pinoy Henyo, Chubby Bunny, and Christmas Charade will be a piece of cake to host as everyone is familiar.
For a lively party game, inclusion is the key. Make sure the game engages all your guests and no one is left out. If there is a wide age range, be creative and modify the rules to apply to young kids and older adults.
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If you are decorating to impress, there is only one word to remember: Instagram.
A happy celebration always makes a good photo. Naturally, your guests will take photos throughout the party not only as keepsakes but also as social media fodder. One way to make your party Instagram-worthy is by picking a theme and sticking with it. It can be as simple as a choosing a Christmas color scheme and integrating it with your napkins and linens.
Another way is by setting your decors up properly and cleanly. That means clean linens, invisible tapes, hidden wires, and swept floors.
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A party lasts for a season but neighbors are forever. Whether they are newly moved-in or long-time friends, slightly annoying or overly polite, be kind and considerate to your neighbors. Inform them of the date and time you will be hosting a party. If you are comfortable enough with them, provide them a number they can contact you (and not the police) when the noise gets too much.
And if it is the kind of party wherein you can invite anyone and everyone, invite your neighbors. After all, Christmas is for everyone.