Hen Night Games to Get the Party Going

Vegas is not the only place for your last night of freedom with the gals. We can give you 2014 reasons to plan your hen do in London. Though, wherever you plan your hen night, games will add that fun quotient to your party. It’s not the lavish decoration that the bride will cherish, it’s the special moments she has had that will always remain with her like eternal memories. Therefore, being the best friend and the hen party planner, you should make every possible effort to make it special. And games will certainly help you to do that. We have handpicked our favourites and if we miss any, don’t forget to share yours in the comments below.

Naughty Pass the Parcel

Do you remember playing Pass the Parcel as a kid? Ours is an adult version of the same. Why not spice it up with naughty prizes and challenges. Fun lollies, massage oils, and ticklers can be used for fun gifts and prizes. And a naughty task like “kiss a stranger” will certainly take things up a notch. All you need is music, a few prizes, and tasks.

Do You Know Your Groom?

This is the best time to test how well the bride knows the groom. Make a list of questions about the groom for her to answer. This is the perfect game for the sophisticated bride who doesn’t prefer the feather boas and strippers. Tell each hen to ask one question and see what the bride answers.

Dress the Bride

Perfect for fashion freaks, it’s impossible to imagine a hen do without some dressing up. Split the hens in groups and hand out each team items such as bows, glitter, tin foil, cello tape, toilet paper, and let them go wild. See who comes out to be the most creative fashion designer (and the most funny too). Give them five minutes to dress up as a bride and see how they end up looking.

Karaoke

It’s not a game but a perfect party idea. If you think there is a pop star hiding underneath the bride-to-be, it’s the perfect time to uncover it. There are plenty of Karaoke bars in London but if you don’t prefer to sing it out loud in front of strangers, we have a list of private karaoke venues in London as well. So just get ready to grab the microphone and sing your heart out. You can even check out our hen party packages in London.

Been there, Done That

This one is truly an ice-breaker. Ask each of the hen to write a funny or embarrassing story about her experience with men and dating. And ask the bride to read each story aloud and also find out who has written it. It will inspire funny discussions and relieve the bride-to-be of pre-wedding woes too. This is the best way to offer the bride a giggle through your hilarious encounters and experiences.

Truth and Dare

This one is no brainer but you can always spice it up if you have planned things ahead of time. Be as creative as you can. Invent creative dares like kissing a bald man on the head or stand on the chair and belt out the "I’m a Little Teapot" song. Want something naughtier? Ask the bride to give a stranger a lap dance. And for truths, let your imagination take its course.

Male Model

Split the group in teams and give them a ball of play dough. Blindfold them and ask them to form male body parts with the dough. Give extra point to the one whose models turn out to be realistic (although chances are that the consequences would be hilarious.

Pin the Model on the Male

We have all played Pin the Tail on the Donkey. The player is given a tail and he has to pin it in the right spot while blindfolded. For hen do, you can try the same game but a Man will replace the Donkey and substitute the tail with...well, you can use your imagination.

These tried and tested games will definitely help break the ice and get everyone in the party mood. If you think we have missed your favourite, please share in the comments below.

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How to Plan an Event Using Social Media

Gone were the days when birthdays or special occasions were celebrated with the family or maybe with one or two best friends. Now, there is no apparent limit, when it comes to hosting parties. A kid wishes to invite the whole class to celebrate a splendid birthday, while the grown-up teen wants to throw a memorable wedding party with hundreds of guests. Thanks to countless party themes, venues, and decoration options available on internet.

With the help of internet, an event planner can find out unique venues to host a party, numerous DIY decoration ideas, and freebies to save money, and even send party invitations to guests. But, the main problem arises when the event organizer is not tech savvy at all. So, this guide will help you to host a celebrating using social media without being tech savvy.

Searching a Location

Choosing the right venue is often the most brainstorming part of event planning process, since even a little oversight can lead to major setbacks for guests. Every restaurant, theatre, bowling alley, and outdoor venue has its own party space that allows you to host your event in a unique style.

To check out what’s in store for you, just type “party venues” (specify as per your event) and your city’s name in the search box on Google or Yahoo. This way, you will discover affordable venues and obtain ideas that you never thought possible with only your budget limiting your choices.

Picking a Right Theme

A party theme is also one of the first elements you’ll need to decide on. You can visit Pinterest to collect new and interesting ideas. This visual discovery tool allows people to share boards of visual pins that are based on popular categories like style/fashion, party, travel, and food.

Log in your own Pinterest account to collect the ideas you find. Google Chrome users also have a leverage to install the Pin It Button, so they can pin things they like on the web as well.

Finding Ideas for Your Theme

If you’ve decided a theme for your party, but you don’t know where to start with a theme. Consider visiting the Pinterest and search your theme topic in the search box. Don’t forget to follow other users’ boards if they have similar tastes. Besides, you can also search the same at Google and explore the first few search results.

Invitations

There were days, when the invitations sent through the post office. But today, a majority of people prefer to send invitations through Emails. This not only helps in saving yourself time and money, but also to keep track of the RSVPs – with social media. You can also create an event page on Facebook, but don’t forget to use the “Invite Only” option in the privacy sections or you may end up with more guests than you expected.

Share Party Images

By creating a social media photo album, you can easily share your event images with all the people who attended or weren’t able to attend. Flickr is one of the best ways to upload or tag your photo album with something like “Brandon and Teresa Wedding Party”.

Be it a small or large, planning an event needs creativity and a lot of hard work. But, by utilizing these simple ideas, you can make your event planning easy breezy.

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Take Your Party On Board a Thames Ship!

From luxurious Ex-Navy Royal cruisers to pretty wooden vessels to even luxury yachts, Thames has a huge range of floating gems available for private hire. So this time around, take your guests on-board a Thames ship or yacht to knock their socks off. Become Pirates of the Caribbean Sea or the Ship Pilots on a treasure hunt, there are lots of themes you can pull together on a cruise. And now that summer has finally arrived, you can make the most of warm British weather while partying in the sun. We have painstakingly prepared a list of top cruises you can hire for your Thames adventure with guests.

West End on Thames

This leading boat party company has an array of boats, varying in , set against the backdrop of London’s popular landmarks. Parties are usually sound tracked by in-house DJs while the food is also a delight. Watch London lit up in the dark as you sail the night away. A range of delicious cocktails is available so guests can dance the whole evening sipping their favourite boozer. And not to mention, you get amazing photo opportunities for everlasting memories. West End on the Thames has a range of boats with capacity for up to 600 guests. Bar, restaurant, and club, all combined in one, the boat party here will be one to remember. Feel free to contact The City Collection to arrange your event at one of these floating venues.

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The Yacht London

Popularly known as “Mayfair of the river”, the motto of this London venue is “It’s Your Event”. And keeping this in mind, every event is styled and tailored to suit your particular requirements. The Yacht London has 4 spaces spread across 3 decks, all offering eye-popping views of the river from the glass-fronted rooms. The Yacht London has a history of hosting a range of events, from corporate parties and seminars to private dinners and wedding. Its romantic vibe makes it perfect for Valentine’s Day events and anniversary celebrations as well. And the best party is you can kick your party into the next day as the venue has a 3am late licence too.

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HMS Belfast

The last remaining cruiser of its kind, HMS Belfast is an emblem and a reminiscence of the rich British Naval history. Now turned into a museum, this Ex-Royal Navy cruiser is also available for private hire. And if you are looking for a summer party venue, HMS Belfast tops the list. Overlooking the Tower Bridge and Tower of London, this ship can easily sail with up to 250 guests. The magnanimous views are well complemented by tantalizing summer cocktails, BBQ menus, and live entertainment. All its traditional rooms still speak of the charm and character of the times gone by. This is where history and hospitality combine to create unforgettable event experiences.

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HMS President

Permanently moored in the City of London, HMS President is a floating jewel in the beating heart of the capital. Encircled by famous London landmarks moored amidst the whirling water of Thames, HMS President is fit for events ranging from weddings to conferences. The panoramic views offer a perfect photo opportunity. If your staff is tired of meeting at the boring conference hall, this venue on Thames will be a breath of fresh air. And if you are planning to exchange vows, what better than the open deck of HMS President against the stunning background of London landmarks. The Upper deck comprises Ballroom, Gunroom, and Quarterdeck while the President’s Suite consists of the front desk, Wrennery, and Captain’s Quarter.

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HQS Wellington

HQS Wellington is a unique vessel ideally located near West End at her mooring on Thames Embankment. This sailing gem can easily hold up to 250 guests. Owned by Honourable Company of Master Mariners, this floating jewel is right opposite the Temple tube station. It has three rooms and one quarter deck where you can party the night away. Varying in capacity, each room has an individual character. While the Court Room oozes sophistication making it perfect for business lunches and meetings, the Quarter Deck is ideal for summer boat parties all with cocktails out in the sun. The Alfresco Quarter deck offers unrivalled views of Thames and London landmarks. Committee Room is a smaller one of all spaces, ideally suited for private dinners and meetings.

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Hiring one of these venues means you can rest assured and expect to sweep your guests off their feet. And if you are thinking how to hire one of these, simply click on ‘Enquire Now’ and fill in the details. Our event team will get in touch with you at the soonest possible time with tailor made packages and options as per your event details. And don’t forget to tell us which one do you like the most by leaving a comment below. Keep calm and party hard!

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How to Save on Food and Beverages When Planning Events

After the venue hiring cost, it’s the food that eats up most of the event budget. And it’s the food that people remember the most of an event. This imperative budget blower is easy to manage if a few things are kept in mind. You can’t afford to fall short of food or hire a cheap caterer, but there are a few considerations that will help you cut down the food and beverages cost when planning an event in London. We know how much is it important to plan a ravishing event when you’re in London, the financial hub of Europe. And keeping that in view, here are a few factors to consider when planning an event in London.

Use What’s Available

When working it out with your event planner or chef, make sure to let him make suggestions based on the local produce. Seasonal and regional produce always proves to be cost-effective. So skip the idea of serving an international cuisine. Do a lot of locally grown fruit trays salads. It’s fulfilling as well as cheap.

Edible Centrepieces

It’s impossible to imagine an elite event table without a grand centrepiece. May be you are opting for something small like rustic lanterns, LED light vase, or something similar. As an alternative to these expensive table centrepieces, you can use edible centrepieces. Small cupcake stands with standard desserts and sweet treats work well. Or you can put glass bowls filled with fruits and veggies. These table arrangements will not only look eye-pleasing but are fulfilling and cost effective too. You’ll save huge bucks that you could have wasted on renting centrepieces.

Buffet or Plated

Think twice before you choose a caterer in London. It’s a common misconception that buffet is the most cost-effective serving style but it’s not. First, avoiding buffet, you’ll spend less on labour cost. Second, people are going to fill their plates regardless, so you’ll save on food as well. For buffet, the chef has to make more food than required just to make sure not to fall short which causes a lot of wastage of food. But buffet always allows guests more choices so there’s always something for everyone on the menu and it also encourages networking, as there is not set seating plan. If you choose to serve in buffet style, make sure to use smaller plates as people are less likely to consume much.

Control What’s Served

So you’ve hired the event staff to keep refilling the coffee cups of the attendees in a meeting or conference. That’s good because meetings are so boring and people need to refresh in between. But what if the staff refills the cup when there are hardly 5 minutes left in the break. A lot of pounds go to the drain this way. Always make sure that the staff serves people at the right time and in right portions. Ask the staff to fill glasses only on request.

Use Stand-up Tables

People eat more when seated, as it’s more comfortable. But stand-up tables are a nice option if you want the guests to concentrate on networking rather than on food. Stand-up tables mean they are less likely to eat all night which will save you money. This is especially preferable for cocktail receptions.

Queues are Okay

Don’t be afraid if there are a few lines at the bar. Although you don’t want long queues but small ones are okay. Five to six people waiting for the drinks will encourage networking and it is less likely for people to stand in the queue again to get their glass refilled. It will greatly reduce overindulging on cocktails.

Use Substitutes

Go Vegan if it’s okay with people. Veggies are always cheaper as compared to meat. And choose your substitutes wisely. Hake is a popular fish but costs way lesser. Soups are often overlooked. Soups are delicious, cheaper, and quite fulfilling leaving less room for other dishes.

These little things will help you a great deal in cutting down your food cost. Hopefully you’ll use these tips when planning your next event in London.

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Our Top Five Summer Party Ideas for 2014

Summer is on the way and The City Collection is expecting a great season of barbeques and summer cocktail parties. We have a range of rooftop terraces and garden venues up our sleeves but before that, we want to share some exciting summer party ideas to make sure that your summer fiestas this year go down a treat.

Take Your Guests Outdoors!

To kick start your Great British summer, the first thing you need to do is look for a suitable outside space. And we don’t mean a park or your backyard. This time around, take your summer bash into a landscaped garden, a glass-fronted conservatory, a courtyard with marquee, or a rooftop terrace or garden. Outdoor venues are great but you need to make sure that the al fresco space should be large enough to accommodate all your guests. When the sun will come out, all your guests would want to be outside to enjoy the much-awaited season.

It’s Time for Some Summer Drinks Reception!

Pimms reception and cocktail menus abound in summer so when you book a venue, make sure to ask if there are any special drinks reception packages. These creative concoctions are sure to kick-start your party so don’t forget to make the most of these. We have several BBQ party offers and packages at outdoor venues that you must check out if you are planning to host a summer bash in London.

Games = Fun

It’s hard to imagine a summer party without some outdoor games and activities, whether it’s a company team building event, a cocktail reception, or a family reunion. And choice is endless! All you need to do is choose the one as per the type of event. Tug o’ war, sack race, one-legged race, pinatas, boules, and swing-ball are a few all-time favourites. This way, your guests will also be able to spend more time in the sun.

Food Stalls

Instead of a sit down meal, serve your food in style at different food stalls. Having different stalls means guests will not have to stand in queue to get their favourite dish on the platter. It will also encourage movement and keep the guests outside which makes this serving style perfect for al fresco parties and summer events. Food stalls are designed to encourage mingling as well during the guest which is highly important in corporate summer events.

BBQ

Nothing shouts summer better than a barbeque. Strong flavours of the lip-smacking meat makes BBQ the best option to entertain your guests. Allow your guests to enjoy an at-leisure afternoon complete with smoking flavours of the grilled meat. Most of the venues have partnered with experienced caterers who bring the best BBQ menus on table so you need not worry as far as catering in concerned. And many venues also allow external catering as well so if you want to bring your own caterer, you are welcomed to do that.

These summer party ideas will definitely help you throw a ravishing bash underneath the shining sun. Jazz it up with Hula music and your guests will cherish it forever. If you need any assistance with choosing and hiring a venue, The City Collection is always there for help. Just drop an enquiry and we’ll find the best summer party venue in the city for you.

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Perfect Places for 21st Birthday Party in London

It’s the birthday you have been eagerly awaiting. The big 21! This milestone birthday is all about celebrating in an unforgettable way, as you’ve become a fully-fledged member of the grown up world. Since you’re going to carry the pictures and moments from this birthday with you for the rest of your life, you should invest time to pick a location that will let you to have a good time. Fortunately, London has plenty of clubs and bars that welcome you and all your guests with open arms to have a celebration on this special day. Here are some of the great locations in London for 21st birthday party that will help you have that amazing birthday experience.

Late Night Hang Out

What better way to enjoy your party than walking up to the club at 12:01 and start the night with your favourite DJ’s or bands? There are number of party venues with late license in London, offering a lively background for a 21st birthday party with your closest friends. A modish interior, live music, and superb choices of cocktails are just a few things that will make your party the best fun ever. Club Ten and Dirty Martini are great clubs for those looking a venue where they can enjoy dance and drinks

Fantastic Family Celebrations

There are some birthday boys or girls who want to do the unexpected and have a good time with their families. They prefer to host their birthday celebration at a location that is usually visited by families. Restaurants like C and B Old Broad Street and Minster Exchange are amusing venues for your birthday celebration. You can invite all your family members or savour a deep dish alfredo pizza dinner followed by an evening of playing games. Besides, the city also offers a number of venues like a bounce house, amusement park or the zoo to host your celebration.

Backyard Buffet

If your budget is running low, then you might be thinking to throw a homemade feast. People who are good at cooking can turn the celebration into an appetizing birthday dinner. But, if you’re not confident about your cooking, you should better order the food from your nearby restaurant. Besides, when you pick a menu, don’t be frightened of consider something new or different.

Al fresco Get-Together

Be dressed up to the nines and hang out with a friend or two for dinner and order a nice bottle of champagne. If this is all you want, then the city is sure to make your birthday a memorable affair. You can consider C and B City Point and Bank Of England Sports Centre to hold your al fresco functions in the capital. But, if you want to try something off-beat, you can plan a pool party in London.

Party with Loud Music

Why not pick a bar or pub as your party venue, where you not only have access to a dance floor but also have a variety of cocktails to choose from. Just dress in a fabulous attire and head to a bar like Grange Wine Bar and Medieval Piazza. The bar will ensure you to offer a spectacular backdrop to your dinner and dance events. So, you are sure to impress your friends with a memorable party.

The choice of space plays an important role in influencing the sensation of the party. So, make sure to hire a location that is perfect for your 21st birthday party.

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Ideas to Gear Up for Bad Weather on the Wedding Day

Many lovebirds dream about an outdoor wedding in a garden, on a riverside venue, or along a stretch of white sandy beach. But, the worst thing about having an outdoor setting is that you constantly need to bother about bad weather that can spoil your celebration. So, what do you do if the BBC weather forecast predicts a rain on your big day – particularly when you’re arranging an outdoor wedding? Obviously, you can’t control the weather, but you can get ready for stormy weather during your big day. Following are some of the expert’s suggestions that will help you gear up for not-so-great weather conditions.

Have a Back-Up Plan

While you’re searching for an outdoor location, make no doubt to ask your venue representative what if it rains. Although the city where you’re tying the knot is popular for sunny weather, you’ll still need to ensure you’re pleased with the unpleasant weather option. Whether the venue promises to setting up a marquee or shifting the entire event outdoor, it is necessary to ask your venue organizer about a backup plan before you book.

Shop for Stylish Rain Accessories in Advance

Dealing with rain becomes a little easier if you are well equipped. Rain accessories like umbrellas and rain gear that complement the colours used in your nuptials will look better than a standard yellow rain slicker or black coloured umbrella. Keeping these accessories close at hand for the day (if possible and within the budget) can make it unchallenging to deal with wedding–day rainfall.

Think Carefully About Weather Issues

There’s no doubt, rain is always a threat, but you need to consider minor weather issues as well. High winds and unseasonably hot or cold weather are some of the climatic situations that can ruin your wedding day. During the summertime, consider bringing in air coolers and serving your guests with chilled drinks throughout the day. For winter season, it is necessary to have heaters and blankets. And in case, the climatic situations are just too unpleasant, consider shifting things indoors – even if rain isn’t an issue.

Don’t Forget to Click Pictures

Even brides who have walked down the church aisle prefer to click some wedding pictures outdoor. So, make sure to choose a wedding venue that has secluded outdoor areas. This will help you to click some pictures and give your guests some comfortable seating spaces even if the weather is rainy.

Welcome It!

A marquee setting or indoor space can keep the rain and sun off. So, why not make the best of the situation by dealing with it with a smile. Get your fashionable rain accessories and boots ready and ask your photographer to get some fun photographs in the open-air. Get in touch with your wedding vendors about considering creative ways to make your wedding a memorable affair. And keep in mind – rain on your big day is deemed good luck!

If you’re like every other bride who’s planning an outdoor ceremony, then these ideas will help you to handle the bad weather on your wedding day.

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