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Garden party ideas for a big celebration holiday cottages

Party Houses

Garden party ideas for a big celebration

Sarah P 23 August 2022

When the sun is shining, nothing is more enjoyable than gathering your favourite people for a big celebration in a beautiful flower-filled garden. Whether there’s a milestone birthday on the horizon, an engagement to commemorate, or you’re looking to host a memorable stag or hen do, we’ve got some great garden party ideas for adults and children that will transform your event into something extra special.

Imagine spending a warm afternoon sipping cocktails beside your private outdoor pool, tucking into homemade creations baked in your own pizza oven, and challenging each other to a game of Footgolf on a private course. Those are just some of the exciting things you can look forward to in the gardens of our large houses in the UK, which you can see the full collection of by clicking the button below. 


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Garden tea party ideas

Garden tea party ideas

There’s nothing more British than a quaint garden tea party with mismatched China cups, sumptuous cakes, and quintessential garden games. Set up long tables on a terrace or scatter pretty bistro tables around the lawn for small groups to sit together.  

Food and drink ideas for a tea party:

Serve finger sandwiches with traditional fillings and a cake stand packed with scones and cakes such as lemon drizzle, Victoria sponge, millionaires shortbread, summer tartlets and macaroons. Provide pots of tea and coffee, Champagne and soft drinks like cloudy lemonade or orange juice. 

Garden tea party decoration ideas:

Decorate with vases of freshly picked flowers from the garden, floral napkins, and pretty tablecloths, leaving room for cups and saucers, small plates, and tiered cake stands.

The perfect venue: Gilling Lodge | Richmond, North Yorkshire | Sleeps 16 + 1 dog 

We've picked out even more stunning large houses with beautiful gardens perfect for dining alfresco. 


Hawaii garden party ideas

Hawaii garden party

Create a vibrant, tropical paradise with these fantastic Hawaii garden party ideas which look great in the summer sunshine. Centre the party around a well-styled Tiki bar, throw hula hoop competitions and limbo contests and be sure to play summer tunes that sound perfect by the beach or pool. 

Food and drink ideas for a Hawaiian luau:

Create a vibrant, tropical paradise with these fantastic Hawaii garden party ideas, which look great in the summer sunshine. Centre the party around a well-styled Tikki bar, throw hula hoop competitions and limbo contests and be sure to play summer tunes that sound perfect by the beach or pool. 

Hawaii garden party decoration ideas:

Set up a Tikki bar, provide Hawaiian leis, grass skirts and beach balls, and if you’re lacking the real thing, get a few inflatable palm trees! String up some lights and place a few lanterns around to light the way.

The perfect venue: Casasands | Camber, Sussex | Sleeps 12 + 2 dogs

See more fabulous beach houses and large coastal cottages


Garden wedding party ideas

Garden wedding ideas

Summer garden party weddings are a popular choice for couples because they offer stunning backdrops and plenty of flexibility, whether you choose to have a marquee or not. Imagine the photos and memories you'll make in a beautiful, well-kept garden with rose bushes and manicured lawns. 

Food and drink ideas for a garden wedding party:

Take the stress off and hire an outside caterer or one provided by the venue, so you know it's all been taken care of. The options are endless; you could have a pizza van, street food, sit-down meal, BBQ, hog roast or a finger buffet! 

Garden party wedding decorations:

Use drapes, bunting, fairy lights, foliage and flowers to style alters, arbours and archways. Lay down a carpet for the aisle and position chairs strategically around it. Personalise your garden party wedding with fun additions like sweet carts, lawn games, ice cream stalls, photo booths, swings, live musicians, and kids’ corners.

The perfect venue: The Country Retreat | Sleeps 18 + 3 dogs

See more fabulous wedding venues in the UK.


Festival-themed garden party

Festival themed garden party

A fun and simple garden party idea for festival lovers! Whether it’s a reunion to get a group of friends together or a birthday celebration, there are plenty of ways to make a festival garden party special and unique to your group of friends or the guest of honour. 

Festival garden party food ideas:

Why not set up a few foodie stations like a pizza oven, BBQ grill, Taco bar and curry pot? Make some classic summer cocktails and serve them in large mason jar-style drink dispensers, as well as a few cans of cider for the classic festive vibes. 

How to decorate for a festival-themed party:

Transform your garden into boho heaven with ease and without breaking the bank. All you need is some bunting, fairy lights, camp chairs, old mirrors, floor cushions and rugs. You could even get hold of some hay bales and cover them in blankets as seats and tables. 

The perfect venue: Bodweni Hall | Balan, North Wales | Sleeps 27 + 3 dogs


Vintage garden party ideas

Vintage garden party

This vintage garden party is a charming way to theme an al fresco summer soiree with character, style, and interest. There are so many unique and fun ways to decorate, and it provides an elegant garden party setting for family gatherings or celebrations with friends. 

Vintage garden party food and drink ideas:

Set up a vintage lemonade stand with colourful paper straws and mason jars, serve finger sandwiches and small nibbles, and don’t forget cake stands stacked high with cupcakes and big slabs of Victoria sponge.

Decoration ideas for a vintage garden party:

Fill bird cages with flowers, use old books as table centrepieces, hang mirrors and large photo frames and even bring old furniture outside to put food and drinks on. Colourful and patterned bunting gives a summer-fete feel too! 

The perfect venue: Alvington Manor | Lydney, Forest of Dean | Sleeps 19 + 2 dogs

Search our collection of country houses to find beautiful venues to host a vintage tea party. 


Garden hen party ideas

Garden hen party ideas

Organise a garden hen party with the perfect mix of fun and games alongside pampering and relaxation. Challenge the hens to an energetic game of badminton, squash, or table tennis before mixing up some fruity cocktails, donning your bikinis and plunging into the pool or rejuvenating in the sauna or bubbling hot tub! 

Food and drink ideas for a garden hen party:

Treat your hen to something a little special and organise an extravagant sharing table. Either book a company to set one up for you or get creative and give it a go yourselves. Make sure you’ve got cocktails, Pimms and prosecco at the ready too! 

Decoration ideas for a garden hen party: 

Re-use old pallets as rustic tables and set out blankets and cushions for laid-back seating. Use a balloon arch to create a space for those all-important selfies with the girls. 

The perfect venue: The Colloquy | Kington, Herefordshire | Sleeps 16

See our guide to hen party ideas for a whole host of celebration ideas. 


Garden stag party ideas

Garden stag party ideas

A garden stag party offers so much scope for a huge celebration, whether you’re planning your own stag do or you've been given the task. Arrange some friendly competition with games and activities like football, rounders, table tennis or darts. You might even find that your venue boasts a swimming pool or hot tub! 

Food and drink ideas for a garden stag party:

Stock up on good BBQ food! We’re talking steak, pork chops, ribs, kebabs, burgers and all the trimmings washed down with cold beers. Take a few cool boxes with you or set up a bar with drinks and fridges, so everything you need for a garden stag party is to hand.

Decoration ideas for a garden stag party:

You could dot a few wheelbarrows around full of ice for beers and set up the ultimate BBQ station with diner-style tablecloths, sauce and condiment boxes, and buckets for cutlery. Set up beer pong and flip-cup tables and have a games area with a dart board, football, and pool table. 

The perfect venue: Roman Farm | Buxton, Peak District | Sleeps 18 + 2 dogs 

See our guide to stag party ideas for more inspiration. 


Garden party entertainment and games ideas 

Garden games

As well as ideas on how to decorate a garden for a party and what food and drink to serve, take a look at our ideas on garden party games and entertainment ideas that will suit adults and children alike.   

  • Garden games: croquet, giant Jenga, quoits, Connect 4, boules
  • Summer fete games: hoopla, hook the duck, tin can alley, coconut shy, hit the hammer, splat the rat, welly throwing
  • Host your own sports day and set up races and games of rounders, football, tennis etc. 
  • A treasure hunt for adults and children
  • Retro photo booth with polaroids 
  • Hire a band or musician to play live music
  • Set up some speakers and play your own garden party playlist 
  • Hire a magician to do tricks to suit all ages
  • Employ a children’s entertainer
  • Set up a kid’s corner with books, colouring, toys, and games
  • Provide marshmallows and hot chocolate for a campfire party after dark 
  • Set up a sweet cart with retro goodies
  • Organise a ‘pimp your own prosecco’ (or Pimms and cocktails) cart and personalise your tipples 

Book a large house in the UK 

Have any of these outdoor party ideas taken your fancy? Whatever the occasion, you’re sure to find a special setting for a garden party to remember within our collection of large houses in the UK. Many of our venues come complete with swimming pools, hot tubs, spas, games rooms and cinema rooms, so there is plenty of entertainment for guests of all ages. From country houses to coastal hideaways, our large and luxurious houses have everything you need to host a big celebration. 

Disclaimer: Whilst every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of the information at the time of writing, please ensure you check carefully before making any decisions based on the contents within this article.

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