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9 Tips For Planning Corporate Christmas Parties


Congratulations! You’ve been chosen as the planner for this year’s office Christmas party. Well, either that or you nominated yourself – very commendable. Either way, you might be wondering where to start with the party planning, but don’t fear. We have you covered.

From finding a date and venue, to finding appropriate Christmas party activities ideas in Manchester, there's a fair bit to think about. CitySuites can help take the pressure off if you choose to host your Christmas party with us. We have a range of spaces, from our stylish Private Dining Room which can fit groups of up to 12 people, to our entire Embankment Kitchen restaurant if you're planning a big do. Drop us an email to if you'd like to know more. 

Read on for our top 9 tips for planning the best office Christmas party in Manchester this year!

1. Find a date

The first thing you need to take care of when creating a special office Christmas party is to find a date - which you can easily do using something like Doodle Calendar to plan it effectively. 

Take into account everyone's schedules, of course. Nobody likes missing anything Christmas-related when it comes to work, so make sure you understand what everyone's availability is when thinking of dates.

Celebrate Your Work Christmas Party In Manchester With Citysuites And Embankmnet

2. Plan in advance

Once you’ve got your date, it’s time to start planning the most memorable of Christmas parties. Luckily, Manchester is full of weird, wonderful and fun activities for you and your colleagues to get stuck into! 

Start thinking and researching about what everyone would like to do. If you’re a small team with common interests, this will be much easier. But if you are a larger team with a mix of personalities and hobbies, it could be a bit tricky. If not everyone enjoys a night on the town, maybe come up with an activity to start, followed by a meal and drinks, so that there is something for everyone to enjoy.

Fun Christmas party activities in Manchester include:

You could even hire out a venue like Embankment Kitchen and bring in your own entertainment. More on that below…

2. Set the theme

Give an idea about the dress code for the festive corporate party your planning for your workplace. If you're going straight from work, consider all the sparkling themes relating to Christmas you can incorporate into the staff dress code.

Think cheesy Christmas jumpers, or maybe tinsels and reindeer antlers! Or if you'd like to keep it sophisticated, you can't go wrong with formal attire. 

Whatever you choose, keep everyone in the loop so they can prepare their get-up.


3. Visit the venue 

A venue is worth visiting when you hire out a space in Manchester for your Christmas Party. It's good to understand the layout of the venue, and identifying the limits of the space. Think about how many can fit, what entertainment/decorations can go up, and so on. 

An ideal venue for Christmas hires in Manchester can set the right tone for your party. Which is why we're confident that our available spaces will be ideal to hire this December. Get in touch with our Conference & Events Executive to tour or hire our venues.

4. Festive food

The charm that comes with Christmas is the festive food, and planning the feast of your corporate party can take some planning. Ask colleagues for dietary requirements, and preferences for food and drinks when you're planning! Many bars, restaurants, and cafes cater to all food requirements, so there are no limitations when it comes down to food options. 

Embankment Kitchen has lots of options for Christmas dining options, from buffets to canapes. The festive menu this year in 2023 caters to all dietary requirements, including gluten-free and plant-based options. So consider us for your Christmas event.

Festive Cocktails At Embankment Kitchen In Manchester

6. Something to drink?

The drinks help create a fun atmosphere during any Christmas event, so it's important to get them right. If you're hiring out a bar for your party, make sure there's a mix of drinks for everyone available - it's not worth leaving anyone out! 

Manchester also has a vibrant craft beer scene. Various bars have large selections of drinks available, including Embankment Kitchen's own bar. From craft beers to win and fizz, create the perfect vibrancy this Christmas with your company.

7. Pick the right music

No Christmas party is complete without a bit of music and dancing. Some venues come with their own DJ, while others have space for you to hire your own. If you’re on a restricted budget, you might want to become the DJ for the night by curating your very own festive playlist (or you could just select one of Spotify's premade playlists if you don’t want to have your musical tastes potentially judged very harshly by your colleagues). Just check the venue has a sound system that you can plug into!

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8. Teambuilding… but make it fun

Many people shudder at the words “team building”, but not all team building activities are made equally, and there are ways to make the forced fun… actually fun. Besides, these kinds of activities get you interacting with colleagues who you might not speak to on a daily basis, so really they are a good way to build rapport and bring you closer to your team as a whole. And isn’t that the whole point of a work Christmas party?

So put away the newspaper – no one is building a structurally sound tower today.

Here are some ideas of fun and definitely NOT cringeworthy team building activities:

Storytime. Get your colleagues to submit a funny office-related story (something that they don’t mind being shared with the team) only to you. On the night, you can put your colleagues in teams and then list off the stories that have been submitted. Your colleagues then have to guess which story belongs to who!

Hygenic beer pong. Get the beer pong table and cups set up as normal, but fill the cups with water. Get into two teams, and whenever the ball lands in the cup, remove it from the table but take a sip of your own drink. In the end, everyone wins because not only are you not sharing germs in the following rounds, you don’t have to down several large measures of cheap lager.

Do the Dundies. Go full Michael Scott and create a list of “awards” like The Dundies where your colleagues can anonymously vote on who they think most deserves that award. Yes, this one might be a little cringe, but is bound to provide a few laughs (and a bit of friendly competition).

9. Something extra

So with the plans laid for what is sure to be the best office Christmas party of 2022, maybe you need just one more thing to make your festivities truly memorable.

Take your work Christmas party to another level with these ideas:

  • Secret Santa. Tis the season to… give a funny £5 or £10 gift to a colleague you barely know?
  • Floating Caricaturist. Have an artist go round and draw lovely portraits of your colleagues.
  • Photobooth – with props. Silly dress-up fun + good lighting = Instagram heaven.
  • Karaoke. You might be surprised at how well Janet from accounts can blast out a ballad.

If you'd like to know more about what CitySuites can do for your Christmas Party, view our various Celebration Spaces here or get in touch with our team at

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