December 8


11 stylish ways to entertain your guests at a cocktail party – the ultimate guide

How to host a cocktail party – 11 ways to entertain your guests in style

Are you planning to host a cocktail party and want to impress your guests with a perfect and stylish event? Look no further! In this article, we will provide you with 11 ultimate tips for hosting a cocktail party that will make your guests feel like they’re in a freestanding published magazine.

First and foremost, you must have a well-stocked bar with a wide variety of drinks. From champagne to colorful cocktails, make sure you choose a range of beverages that will cater to all tastes. Invest in a high-ball glassware and consider having wine glasses and saucers as well. Having the right glassware will add a touch of elegance to your party.

Additionally, you’ll need a stylish and well-designed bar area or trolley where you can display your drinks and glassware. Make sure to arrange everything in an organized and visually appealing layout. The bar area will not only be a practical place for your guests to get their drinks, but also a beautiful backdrop for your party.

If you have enough space, consider creating a separate lounge area where guests can relax and enjoy their cocktails. This can be done by adding comfortable furniture, such as sofas and armchairs, to your living room or any other suitable room. Furthermore, a must-have feature for your cocktail party is a well-decorated table with all the necessary accessories, such as ice buckets, tongs, and garnishes like lemon or lime slices.

Don’t forget about the lighting! Use warm and cozy lighting to create a welcoming and intimate atmosphere. Consider using dimmer switches or candles to set the mood. It’s all in the details!

To add a touch of period elegance to your party, you can hire a professional stylist or do it yourself. You can choose from different themes, such as the roaring 20s or mid-century modern, and incorporate corresponding decorations and attire. Imagine your guests sipping their cocktails while feeling like they’ve traveled back in time!

Lastly, make sure you plan everything in advance. Send out invitations at least a month before the party to give your guests enough time to RSVP. Plan your menu, create a shopping list, and prepare any dishes that can be made in advance. Consider hiring a bartender to help you with the drinks so you can focus on hosting and entertaining your guests.

With these tips in mind, you’ll be well on your way to hosting a cocktail party that will have your guests talking for months to come. So go ahead, invite your friends, and get ready to enjoy a night of delicious drinks and stylish entertainment!

How to host a cocktail party

Backdrop and lighting

Creating the perfect backdrop and lighting is essential for hosting a cocktail party. Whether you have a cozy living room or a spacious outdoor area, make sure the space is well-fitted with the right lighting conditions to set the mood.

Styling the table

Choose the perfect table linens and designs to style your cocktail party. Whether you go for a classic and elegant look or a more modern and sleek design, the styling of your table will make a big impact on your guests.

Stocking the bar

Make sure your bar is well-stocked with a wide array of drinks. From champagne and wine to high-ball and low-ball glasses, having a variety of options will cater to different tastes. Don’t forget the garnishes, tongs, and spoons for serving.

The ultimate bar cart

A bar cart is a must-have for any cocktail party. It not only adds a stylish touch to your space, but it also provides a convenient area for your guests to help themselves to drinks. Make sure your bar cart is well-stocked and easily accessible.

Bespoke cocktails

Take your cocktail party to the next level by offering bespoke cocktails. Have a selection of unique and creative drinks that are sure to impress your guests. You can even hire a mixologist to create custom cocktails for the evening.

Entertaining activities

Keep your guests entertained with fun activities or games. Whether it’s a themed trivia night or a cocktail-making competition, providing entertainment will ensure that your guests have a memorable time.

Cozy seating areas

Create cozy seating areas where your guests can relax and socialize. Arrange comfortable seating options, such as sofas, armchairs, and ottomans, to make sure everyone feels at home.

Period details

Add some period details to your cocktail party to give it a unique and glamorous touch. For example, display vintage champagne saucers or antique cabinets to create a sense of elegance and history.

July Gournay

Caroline Howley, founder and director of July Gournay Interiors, suggests that the key to hosting a successful cocktail party is to pay attention to the details. From the choice of music to the selection of glassware, every detail counts.

1 Fit a home bar in to your kitchen

Creating a home bar in your kitchen is a great way to entertain your guests in style. Whether you’re hosting a cocktail party or just having a few friends over for drinks, a well-stocked home bar can make all the difference.

When fitting a home bar into your kitchen, consider the following:

  • Choose the right location: Look for a place in your kitchen where a home bar can seamlessly fit. It could be a console table, a built-in area, or even a cozy corner.
  • Stock it with essentials: Make sure your home bar is well-stocked with a variety of glassware, including low-ball and wine glasses. You’ll also need essential bar tools like a cocktail shaker, jigger, muddler, tongs, and a bottle opener.
  • Organize your liquor: Create a designated space for your liquor and mixers. You can use cabinets or a bar cart to store your bottles. Consider using a trolley or console table as a functional and decorative feature.
  • Include non-alcoholic options: Don’t forget to offer non-alcoholic options for your guests who don’t drink or prefer not to. You can include a selection of non-alcoholic cocktails or alcohol-free drinks like mocktails or soft drinks.
  • Add garnishes and mixers: Enhance the flavors of your cocktails by providing a variety of garnishes like citrus slices, herbs, and sugar rims. Have mixers like tonic water, soda, and fruit juices on hand for guests to mix their own drinks.
  • Create a stylish backdrop: Use lighting, artwork, or a well-designed backsplash to make your home bar area stand out. Consider using a mirror or a landscape painting as a backdrop.
  • Make it cozy: Add comfortable seating options like bar stools or small chairs to make your home bar area a social space where guests can relax and enjoy their drinks.
  • Published: July 20, 2021

Having a home bar in your kitchen is the ultimate accessory for any host. With a well-stocked bar and a stylish setup, you can impress your guests and ensure that everyone has a great time.

2 Add a drinks cabinet

When it comes to hosting a cocktail party, having a drinks cabinet is a must-have. A drinks cabinet is not just a functional piece of furniture, but also an essential element of the overall aesthetic of your party.

There are a few different options when it comes to choosing a drinks cabinet. You could opt for a console table with built-in storage, or you could go for a freestanding cabinet. The period style of the cabinet will depend on the overall theme and style of your party.

The drinks cabinet is where your guests can help themselves to their favorite cocktails. If you like champagne, a drinks cabinet with a built-in champagne bucket would be perfect. Alternatively, you could go for a cabinet with high-ball glasses and all the necessary tools for creating the perfect cocktails.

The drinks cabinet should be fitted seamlessly into the overall design of your party. It should be placed in a central location, where it is easy to access for your guests. You could also add some stylish lighting to highlight the cabinet and create a warm and inviting atmosphere.

When it comes to stocking your drinks cabinet, there are a few essentials that you should have. Wine glasses, champagne flutes, and high-ball glasses are a must. You could also invest in some unique and stylish glassware to add a touch of sophistication to your party.

In addition to the glassware, you should also have a selection of spirits, mixers, and garnishes on hand. A well-stocked drinks cabinet will have everything your guests need to make their favorite cocktails.

If you don’t have a drinks cabinet, you could use a bar cart or a stylish side table as a makeshift solution. The important thing is to have a designated area where your guests can help themselves to drinks.

Adding a drinks cabinet to your cocktail party adds a touch of elegance and sophistication. It not only provides a practical function but also acts as a stylish backdrop for socializing and entertaining.

In conclusion, if you’re planning to host a cocktail party, adding a drinks cabinet is a must. It is an essential piece of furniture that will enhance the overall aesthetic of your party and provide a place for your guests to help themselves to their favorite drinks.

3 Create a self-serve drinks station

One of the best ways to ensure that your guests are well taken care of during your cocktail party is to create a self-serve drinks station. This will not only save you time and effort, but it will also add a stylish and interactive feature to your event.

Sarah Davies-Bennion, the editor of Gournay Interiors, suggests investing in a console table or a drinks trolley that is specifically designed for this purpose. You can choose a stylish and bespoke design that fits well with the overall theme and styling of your party.

Alternatively, if you don’t want to invest in a new piece of furniture, you can simply use a bar cart or a regular table to set up the self-serve drinks station. Just make sure that it is sturdy enough to hold all the drinks and accessories.

Before the party, make sure to stock up on a wide array of drinks. This can include wine, champagne, various spirits, mixers, and non-alcoholic options. It’s always a good idea to have a mix of both classic and more adventurous options to cater to different preferences.

When it comes to glasses, choose a mix of high-ball and low-ball glasses to accommodate different types of drinks. You can also add some wine glasses and champagne saucers for those who prefer these options. Make sure to have enough glasses for all your guests, and also consider having a few extra ones in case of accidents.

In addition to drinks and glasses, don’t forget to set up a selection of garnishes and mixers. Some essential options can include lemon and lime wedges, cocktail cherries, olives, and mint leaves. You can also provide a variety of sodas, fruit juices, and tonics for those who prefer to have their drinks without alcohol.

To make it easier for your guests to serve themselves, make sure to provide all the necessary tools and accessories. This can include ice buckets, tongs, cocktail shakers, strainers, and bar spoons. Having these items easily accessible will encourage your guests to get creative and make their own drinks.

If you want to add a touch of sophistication to your self-serve drinks station, you can also consider adding some decorative elements. This can include a small vase with fresh flowers, a stylish tablecloth, or some ambient lighting. These simple additions can help create a cozy and inviting atmosphere that will make your guests feel comfortable and relaxed.

By creating a self-serve drinks station, you can ensure that your guests have a great time socializing and enjoying themselves without having to constantly be at the bar. It allows them to take control of their own drinks and gives you more time to mingle and enjoy the party as well.

4 Choose a portable bar trolley

When hosting a cocktail party, having a dedicated space for drinks is essential. A portable bar trolley is a stylish and functional solution that can easily be moved around your home to accommodate your guests’ needs. With an array of cabinets and fitted shelves, it can help you organize and display your drinks and glassware in an organized and attractive way.

These portable bar trolleys come in a variety of designs, from basic to designer, so you can choose the one that fits your personal style. Some designs even feature built-in wine racks or glass holders to make serving and storing your drinks even easier. For those who like to entertain, investing in a portable bar trolley can be a worthwhile addition to your furniture collection.

A portable bar trolley can seamlessly fit into any room, whether it’s the kitchen, dining room, or living room. It can be used as a standalone piece or as a complimentary addition to an existing console table or entertaining area. The versatility of these trolleys allows you to create a designated space for drinks without having to invest in a full bar setup.

Caroline Guinness, the former style conditions editor of House & Garden, published a book called “How to Host a Cocktail Party” where she shares her tips and tricks for hosting successful parties. In her book, she advises that having a portable bar trolley is essential for hosting any kind of party, as it allows guests to help themselves to drinks without having to constantly ask for refills.

Having a portable bar trolley not only serves a functional purpose but also adds a touch of elegance and sophistication to your cocktail party. The beautiful designs and high-quality craftsmanship of these trolleys can elevate your party’s styling and overall ambience.

So, whether you’re hosting a small gathering or a large soirée, having a portable bar trolley is a perfect addition to your entertaining repertoire. It will make serving and enjoying cocktails or non-alcoholic drinks much easier and more enjoyable for both you and your guests.

5 Make sure you have the right glassware

When it comes to hosting a cocktail party, having the right glassware is essential. Not only do different types of glasses enhance the presentation of your beverages, but they also enhance the overall experience for your guests. Here are some tips to help you choose the best glassware for your cocktail party:

1. Consider the type of cocktails you will be serving

1. Consider the type of cocktails you will be serving

Before you start shopping for glassware, think about the types of cocktails you plan to serve at your party. Each cocktail has its own specific glassware that is designed to enhance its flavors and aromas. For example, martini glasses are perfect for serving classic martinis, while high-ball glasses are ideal for long, refreshing drinks like mojitos or gin and tonics.

2. Invest in a variety of glass types

To cater to the diverse tastes of your guests, it’s a good idea to have a variety of glass types on hand. Consider having a selection of wine glasses, martini glasses, high-ball glasses, and old-fashioned glasses. This way, everyone can enjoy their preferred cocktail in the appropriate glass.

3. Make sure your glassware is well-stocked

There’s nothing worse than running out of glasses during a party. To avoid this, make sure you have enough glassware for all your guests. A general rule of thumb is to have at least two glasses per person. If you’re hosting a larger party, consider renting or borrowing additional glassware.

4. Pay attention to the quality of your glassware

Investing in high-quality glassware not only adds an elegant touch to your party but also ensures that your cocktails are served in the best possible way. Look for glasses made from crystal or durable glass that won’t easily chip or break. Good quality glassware will last for many parties to come.

5. Display your glassware in an attractive way

Your glassware can double as a stylish decor element at your cocktail party. Consider displaying your glassware on a bar cart or open shelving in your kitchen or dining area. This not only makes it easy for guests to help themselves but also creates a visually appealing backdrop for your party. You can also enhance the display by adding some colorful garnishes or arranging the glasses in an interesting pattern.

By following these tips, you can ensure that you have the right glassware to host the ultimate cocktail party. Whether you’re serving martinis, highballs, or champagne, having the right glasses will make all the difference.

6 Create a dedicated entertaining space

When hosting a cocktail party, it’s essential to have a dedicated space for entertaining your guests. This not only creates a focal point for the party but also helps to keep everything organized and allows guests to easily navigate the party. Here are a few tips for creating a stylish and functional entertaining space:

1. Choose the perfect backdrop

1. Choose the perfect backdrop

Consider the overall style and theme of your party and choose a backdrop that complements it. Whether it’s a colorful feature wall or a cozy fireplace, a well-designed backdrop sets the mood for the party and adds visual interest to the space.

2. Invest in quality furniture

A well-designed table and comfortable seating are essential for creating an inviting entertaining space. Opt for high-quality furniture that is both stylish and functional. Consider investing in bespoke cabinets or a freestanding bar cart to display your glassware and cocktail ingredients.

3. Pay attention to lighting

The right lighting can make a huge difference in creating a welcoming atmosphere. Install dimmer switches or use a combination of table lamps, floor lamps, and overhead fixtures to create a cozy and inviting ambiance. Use candlelight to add a touch of romance to the space.

4. Choose the right table linens

Select table linens that complement your party theme and color scheme. Crisp white linens always create an elegant and classic look, but you can also choose colorful linens or patterned tablecloths for a more festive vibe. Don’t forget to add napkins, coasters, and placemats for a polished look.

5. Display your glassware

Showcase your beautiful collection of glassware by displaying it prominently in the entertaining space. Use glass cabinets or open shelves to store your glasses, and arrange them neatly according to their types and sizes. This not only adds an element of visual interest but also makes it easy for guests to help themselves to their preferred cocktail glasses.

6. Arrange garnishes and bar tools

Keep a selection of garnishes, such as lemon slices, lime wedges, and cocktail olives, within easy reach of the entertaining space. Use small dishes or spoons to display the garnishes, and provide tongs for guests to help themselves. Place essential bar tools, such as a cocktail shaker, a strainer, and a muddler, on the bar cart or a designated area for easy access.

By creating a dedicated entertaining space for your cocktail party, you’ll not only impress your guests but also make it easier for them to enjoy the evening. Pay attention to the details and invest in quality furniture and accessories to ensure that your space is both stylish and functional. Cheers to a successful cocktail party!

7 Make sure you are well equipped

7 Make sure you are well equipped

When hosting a cocktail party, it is essential to have the right equipment and supplies to ensure a smooth and enjoyable experience for your guests. Here are some items you should consider having:

Trolley or Cart

A mobile bar cart or trolley is a stylish and practical addition to your cocktail party. It allows you to move drinks and supplies around the room with ease, making it convenient for both you and your guests.


Invest in a variety of glassware to cater to different drink preferences. You’ll want to have high-ball glasses for cocktails and wine glasses for those who prefer wine. Additionally, consider having low-ball glasses for serving spirits on the rocks.

Champagne Saucers or Flutes

If you’re planning to serve champagne, make sure you have either champagne saucers or flutes. These glasses are specifically designed to enhance the drinking experience and showcase the bubbly nature of champagne.

Bar Tools

Having a basic set of bar tools is essential for creating and serving cocktails. This includes a cocktail shaker, strainer, mixing spoon, jigger, muddler, and a citrus peeler. These tools will help you mix and garnish drinks with ease.


Make sure you have enough ice to keep your drinks cold throughout the evening. You can either purchase ice from a store or make it yourself in advance. Having a small ice bucket or ice dispenser on your cart or table is also a great idea.

Garnishes and Mixers

To add flair to your cocktails, have a variety of garnishes and mixers on hand. This can include citrus slices, olives, cherries, mint leaves, and various flavored syrups. These elements will not only enhance the taste of the drinks but also make them visually appealing.

Styling and Design

Add some extra flair to your cocktail party by incorporating stylish and sophisticated designs. Consider using a designer tablecloth, napkins, and coasters to elevate the overall ambiance of the event.

Non-Alcoholic Options

Not everyone might enjoy alcoholic beverages, so make sure you have non-alcoholic options available. This can include a selection of mocktails, soft drinks, and flavored waters. Having these alternatives ensures that everyone feels included and can enjoy themselves.

By ensuring that you have the right equipment and supplies on hand, you can host a cocktail party that is well-equipped to cater to your guests’ needs. So take some time to plan in advance and make sure all the essential details are in place!

8 Make space for serving canapés and nibbles

When hosting a cocktail party, it’s important to have a designated area for serving canapés and nibbles. This will ensure that your guests can easily access and enjoy these delicious appetizers while mingling and sipping on their drinks. Here are a few tips on creating the perfect space for serving canapés and nibbles:

  1. Choose a basic layout: Starting with a basic layout is key. Whether you’re hosting your cocktail party at home or at a venue, make sure you have a table or a counter where you can place the canapés and nibbles.
  2. Double up: If you have enough space, consider using two tables or counters for serving. This will allow your guests to approach from different angles and avoid congestion.
  3. Invest in a serving console: A serving console is a great addition to any party setup. It not only provides a designated space for serving, but also adds a touch of elegance and style to your party. Look for a console that seamlessly blends with the rest of your party decor.
  4. Choose the best serving dishes: The right serving dishes can make a big difference in the presentation of your canapés and nibbles. Choose dishes that are both functional and aesthetically pleasing. Consider using small plates, bowls, or platters that are designed specifically for serving appetizers.
  5. Don’t forget the linens: Using linens, such as tablecloths or napkins, can elevate the look of your serving area. Opt for linens that match the theme or color scheme of your party to create a cohesive and stylish look.
  6. Consider a beverage trolley: If you have the space and budget, consider investing in a beverage trolley. This stylish and practical piece of furniture can be used to showcase your drinks, glassware, and even garnishes. It will not only make serving cocktails easier but also add a unique feature to your setup.
  7. Keep the drinks separate: It’s important to keep your canapés and nibbles separate from the drinks to prevent any spills or accidents. Make sure to have a separate area or table for serving drinks, such as a bar cart or a designated drinks table.
  8. Have the essentials: Make sure your serving area is well-stocked with all the essential items you need, such as serving utensils, napkins, toothpicks, and tongs. These items will come in handy for your guests to serve themselves and enjoy the canapés and nibbles.

By creating a well-designed and well-stocked space for serving canapés and nibbles, you’ll make it easier for your guests to enjoy the delicious appetizers while socializing and sipping on their cocktails. So, take the time to plan and set up your serving area to ensure a seamless and memorable cocktail party experience for all.

9 Set the mood

When hosting a cocktail party, creating the right atmosphere is essential. The ambiance of your kitchen or entertaining area can make or break the party. To set the mood, consider the following tips:

Invest in cozy and stylish interiors

  • Make sure your kitchen or entertaining area is the best it can be. If you’re having guests over, they’ll likely spend a lot of time in this room. Invest in comfortable and stylish furniture, such as a trolley or a built-in bar area.
  • Alternatively, if you have a separate dining room or living room, then that may be a better place to host your cocktail party. Choose an area with enough space for your guests to mingle and relax.

Choose the right lighting

  • The lighting in your kitchen or entertaining area plays a crucial role in setting the mood. If you want a cozy and intimate atmosphere, opt for warm, dimmed lights. If you prefer a more lively and energetic party, go for brighter lights.
  • Consider adding some colorful string lights or lanterns to create a festive and fun atmosphere.

Feature stylish linens

  • Dress up your table with a beautiful tablecloth or placemats in a color that complements your party theme. Choose linens that are easy to clean and maintain.
  • Invest in some cloth napkins and napkin rings to add an extra touch of elegance to your table setting.

Have the right glassware

  • No cocktail party is complete without the right glasses. Make sure you have a variety of glassware suitable for different types of drinks. From martini glasses to tumblers, having a well-stocked bar is a must-have for any cocktail party.
  • If you want to go the extra mile, consider having some bespoke glassware with unique designs.

Create a stylish backdrop

  • Whether it’s a feature wall, a piece of artwork, or a decorative mirror, creating a stylish backdrop can help set the tone for your cocktail party.
  • If you’re tight on space, hanging a large mirror can give the illusion of a larger room and make your entertaining area feel more open and inviting.

By following these tips, you’ll be well on your way to creating the ultimate cocktail party atmosphere. Your guests will be impressed with your attention to detail and the effort you’ve put into making your home the perfect place for entertaining.

10 Choose statement glasses

When hosting a cocktail party, having the right glasses can make all the difference. Whether you’re serving alcoholic or non-alcoholic drinks, statement glasses add an extra touch of elegance and style to your event. Here are the 10 must-have glasses to consider for your next cocktail party:

  1. High-Ball Glasses: These tall glasses are perfect for serving long, refreshing drinks like mojitos or gin and tonics.
  2. Low-Ball Glasses: For those who prefer their cocktails on the rocks, low-ball glasses are essential. They’re ideal for serving drinks like whiskey or old fashioneds.
  3. Martini Glasses: Designed specifically for martinis, these glasses have a long stem and a wide, shallow bowl. They add a touch of sophistication to any cocktail party.
  4. Coupe Glasses: Similar to martini glasses, coupe glasses have a wider bowl and a shorter stem. They’re perfect for serving classic cocktails like champagne cocktails or daiquiris.
  5. Wine Glasses: While not specifically designed for cocktails, wine glasses can be a versatile option. They can be used for serving wine-based cocktails or even non-alcoholic mocktails.
  6. Champagne Flutes: If you’re planning on serving sparkling cocktails or champagne, champagne flutes are a must. Their long, elegant design is perfect for showcasing the bubbles in your drinks.
  7. Shot Glasses: For party games or strong shots, shot glasses are a great addition to your glassware collection.
  8. Irish Coffee Mugs: If you’re hosting a cocktail party in the colder months, consider serving warm drinks like Irish coffees. These mugs are designed to keep your drinks warm while also adding a cozy aesthetic to your event.
  9. Margarita Glasses: If you’re planning on serving margaritas or other tropical cocktails, margarita glasses are a fun and festive option.
  10. Mason Jars: For a more casual and rustic feel, mason jars can be a great choice. They’re perfect for serving drinks like lemonade or iced tea.

No matter which glasses you choose, make sure they complement the overall styling of your cocktail party. Consider the design, shape, and material of the glasses to create a cohesive aesthetic. Having a variety of statement glasses on hand will not only make your cocktails look better but will also enhance the overall experience for your guests.

11 Make your bar area memorable

When hosting a cocktail party, one of the most important elements is having a well-stocked and stylish bar area. This is where your guests will gather to socialize and enjoy delicious drinks, so you want to make it a memorable and inviting space. Here are some tips for creating an unforgettable bar area:

1. Choose the right furniture

The first thing you need to consider when setting up your bar area is the furniture. A freestanding trolley or a long table will work well for this purpose. Make sure it’s sturdy enough to hold all your glassware and drinks.

2. Style it with flair

After choosing the right furniture, it’s time to style your bar area with flair. Consider using stylish linens, such as colorful tablecloths or bespoke napkins, to add a touch of elegance. You can also add some decorative elements, like flowers or candles, to create a warm and inviting atmosphere.

3. Stock a well-stocked bar

No bar area is complete without a wide array of drinks. Make sure you have a selection of both alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages to cater to all your guests’ preferences. Consider including popular options like wine, beer, and spirits, as well as some specialty cocktails.

4. Invest in quality glassware

The glassware you choose for your bar area can make a big difference in the overall experience. Invest in high-quality glassware, including a variety of glasses like low-ball glasses, wine glasses, and martini glasses. This will elevate the presentation of your drinks and make them even more enjoyable for your guests.

5. Have the essential tools

To make sure you’re well-equipped for serving drinks, have the essential tools on hand. This includes items like bottle openers, cocktail shakers, strainers, and tongs. These tools will make it easier for you to mix and serve drinks, ensuring a smooth and enjoyable experience for everyone.

6. Create a feature with your drinks

Make your bar area even more memorable by creating a feature with your drinks. Consider adding a signature cocktail that represents the theme of your party, or create a special drink station where guests can customize their own cocktails. This will add a fun and interactive element to your event.

7. Take care of the details

The devil is in the details, so make sure you pay attention to the little things. Keep your bar area clean and well-organized, stocked with fresh fruit garnishes, and ice. Don’t forget to check the expiry dates of your mixers and other perishables in advance to ensure everything is fresh and in the best condition.

8. Consider a built-in bar area

If you have the space and budget, consider installing a built-in bar area in your home. This will seamlessly integrate with your existing room layout and provide a dedicated space for entertaining. You can also choose to have built-in cabinets for storage and display of your glassware and drinks.

9. Get inspiration from designers

When it comes to creating a memorable bar area, why not take inspiration from professional designers? Look for ideas and inspiration in magazines, online platforms, or hire a designer to help you create a stunning and unique bar area that suits your style and preferences.

10. Stay well-stocked

Nothing is worse than running out of drinks during a cocktail party. To avoid this, make sure you always have a well-stocked bar area. Keep an eye on your inventory and replenish any items that are running low. This will ensure your guests are always well-looked-after and can enjoy their favorite drinks throughout the event.

11. Make it memorable

Above all, remember to have fun and make your bar area a memorable part of your cocktail party. Pay attention to the ambiance, the drinks, and the overall experience. With the right attention to detail and a little extra effort, your guests will be talking about your bar area long after the party is over.

What do you need for a cocktail party

If you’re planning to host a cocktail party, there are a few essential things you’ll need to make sure your guests have a great time in style. From glassware to garnishes, here’s a checklist of the items you’ll want to have on hand:


  • High-ball glasses
  • Low-ball glasses
  • Wine glasses
  • Champagne saucers

Having a variety of glassware options allows your guests to enjoy their preferred cocktail and creates a visually appealing display on the bar or console table.


  • Colorful fruit slices
  • Herbs like mint or rosemary
  • Edible flowers

Adding garnishes to your cocktails not only enhances the flavors but also adds a pop of color to the drinks. Guests will appreciate the attention to detail and unique presentation.

Drink ingredients

  • Various liquor options (vodka, gin, rum, tequila)
  • Mixers like soda, tonic, and fruit juices
  • Syrups and bitters

Stocking your bar with a wide range of ingredients allows your guests to choose from a variety of drinks and flavors. It’s always a good idea to have some non-alcoholic options available as well.

Bar tools

  • Cocktail shaker
  • Jigger for measuring
  • Muddler
  • Strainer

Having the right tools on hand will make it easier for you (or your appointed mixologist) to create delicious cocktails for your guests.

Bar area

Create a designated area for the bar, whether it’s a dedicated bar cart or a console table. Keep it well-stocked and have all your glassware, ingredients, and tools easily accessible.


While the drinks are the main feature of a cocktail party, it’s important to have some entertainment options as well. Consider having a playlist of background music or even hiring a live musician or DJ to keep the atmosphere lively.

These are just a few of the basic things you’ll need for a cocktail party. Depending on your own preferences and the theme of your party, there may be additional items or details you want to incorporate. Ultimately, the goal is to create an inviting and stylish atmosphere where your guests can relax, socialize, and enjoy themselves.


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