Did you volunteer to host the New Year’s Eve party this year? Are you starting to worry it might be a greater feat to pull off than you first imagined? It’s easy to fall into the same boozy, stand-around-talking, catch-the-ball-drop-on-TV, fall-asleep-on-the-sofa type of event that many of us experience most years—and for some, that may be just what the doctor ordered. But, if you find yourself with a hankering for something a little bit different, let us outline a few alternative ideas for making this New Year your kind of party. And don’t worry, boozy-home-affair included.


The Boozy Party

If you’re choosing to go full throttle, high octane, big guest list, lots of drinks… maybe consider putting away your most precious items. Push your furniture to the sides of the party room so you have a makeshift dancefloor and lots of seating for sore feet come 1am. Consider draping some throws over your sofas to protect them from any spills. If you have dishwasher-safe glassware that will save you a lot of hassle in the morning—just load it up and program it to start in the wee hours. Snacks are always a good idea; dot them around side tables in little bowls for guests to pick at when they please. And trust us, they always please.


The Dinner Party

New Year’s Eve often includes drinking, but alcohol doesn’t have to be the star of the show. Why not put on a spread and showcase your wonderful cooking skills? Or, if you lack those cooking skills, order some tasty takeout—you can even set it out on your finest china plates to give it a little extra pizzazz. Sitting around a dining table is a wonderful way to usher in the new year; you’ll be chatting into the night and you might even miss the countdown, but it won’t matter because you’ll be having too much fun to care. One tip is to not start your evening too early, or all that scrumptious food might make guests sleepy before the clock strikes 12.

A table display of crockery, cutlery and glassware.
A fully stocked drinks trolley.

The Popcorn and Pajama Party

Who says it has to be boozy? Sometimes the final night of the year calls for cozy loungewear and nostalgic movies. Plump up the pillows, assemble all the throws, light the candles (real or LED) and set out lots of nibbles for the ultimate overnight slumber party in which you can chat into the early hours of the first day of the next year. Youngsters involved? Embrace your inner child and use those textiles to build yourself a snug fort. For those of you who want to forget that the year is coming to an end altogether, we can’t think of a better way than burrowing down with your loved ones. 


The Game Night

We’re partial to a good game at OKA; nothing brings people together like a bit of friendly competition—for the most part… Whether you enjoy board games, card games, or prefer something a little more structured, there’s something for everyone. Why not try a murder mystery game set in which the scene is set and the script is written for you? It’ll take the onus off your hosting skills and guests will have to dress up and get into character, so outfits will probably be garnering all of the focus. Set out bowls of finger food to break the tension and make sure you’re offering a selection of drinks for everyone’s preference, whether they want their brains’ razor sharp or delightfully mellowed. If you’d like more tips on hosting the ultimate game night, take a look at our handy guide.

A set of dominoes displayed on a green lacquered tray.
A cosy armchair in a sitting room.

The ‘Let’s Go Out for a Round’ Evening

Take away the burden of organizing the drinks and nibbles by starting at a bar near where you live. That way, guests will have a few drinks and relax by the time you all decide to head back to your place, blissfully merry, where you can have a few more chilled glasses of champagne if you fancy it. Whether you head back pre- or post-countdown, you can continue the night with some games and, the best part, fall into your own bed rather than staying on somebody else’s sofa or having to think about taking a taxi home.


The Staycation

Don’t want your house to end up in a state? Or perhaps the opposite—don’t want to clear up the mess that already resides in every room before guests arrive? (We won’t tell anyone.) Consider renting a home away from home for you and your guests, where all the mess isn’t your responsibility. We all know it can be hard to enjoy yourself when you’re worrying about others having fun and causing chaos, but this way you can release all the tension you feel when you think about your mother-in-law spilling a bright red Cosmo all over your favorite rug and enjoy one or two yourself. If there is some special occasion glassware you were set on using this year, you could still bring it along to add your own touch to the event, along with your own decorations to string up around the place for extra festivities.