Your Ultimate Guide to Hosting a Dinner Party

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Planning and Prep

No matter what scale you choose to plan your dinner party, always remember to adequately prepare for it. Start with the budget, then the guest list, then the menu. These are the first things you should consider when hosting a dinner party. Your budget determines the venue if you’re not using your home. Also decide if you want it outdoors or indoors.


Plan your dinner party according to what you can afford. Consider if you want a buffet or a three-course meal. If this is a special dinner party for an occasion then you may have to start planning your budget at least two to three months prior to the event.



Hand-made, printed or sent via email? Depending on how simple or traditional you would like your dinner party to be, choose the most appropriate way to invite people. Formal events require formal invitations. Remember, cheaper is not always better; there’s something off about inviting the US ambassador to Nigeria for a dinner party at a specially curated space with a mere Whatsapp message or Facebook invite! You can find free templates for classy invitations with a simple google search: from sites like, Canva etc. Just fill in your own party details.

Food and Drink


If you do not plan to cook by yourself, have a hand in planning the menu alongside the chef in order to offer the best to your guests. You know your guests personally- ask if they have any allergies so that no one is in danger. Also, keep their personalities in mind. Is that elderly Chief likely to appreciate your hors d’oeuvres and French cuisine, or will he be more receptive to traditional food? Your menu should accommodate everyone but still be streamlined. Also have a variety of drinks.

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Recipes: Stick to Old tricks

If you are doing some good old home cooking for your guests, now may not be the best time to experiment with new recipes. Cook your classics, the ones that get your family excited anytime you wear an apron.

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Consider your space and the kind of dinner party it is. If it’s a simple dinner, you need minimal decoration. If you are having a themed party, you’ll need to decorate. It may be cost-effective to make some decorations by yourself as opposed to buying all of them. You can rent from party shops or decoration companies or your decorator can focus on transforming your event space within your budget.

Party Ambience and Seating

It’s your job to always make sure your guests stay entertained throughout the night with good conversation, light music or even hired entertainment. Candles and soft lighting are a good idea for ambience. Are you inviting people that already know each other? Perhaps you want a good mix of people from different spheres? If some know each other and some don’t, mix it up. You can use place cards. Let people sit with one or two people they know and no more. That way, conversation goes round and nobody feels isolated. Keep people in conflict far away from each other.


Now go on and host the dinner party of the year. Remember to tag us in your pictures!


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