As a nation, us Brits – on the whole – can be pretty sociable. Sometimes there’s nothing we like more than a good old-fashioned chin-wag with our loved ones. However, in recent years, we’ve tended to opt against heading away from our home comforts. In 2001, reports showed that just over half of the UK’s adults would prefer friends come over to their house to socialise rather than head to a pub or restaurant. By 2017, this figure had substantially risen to 75%. And with two pubs on average closing each day in Britain, the rise of home entertainment is clearly having an effect.
What is it about entertaining at home, that we like so much?
Expense is a major factor (isn’t it always!). The average cost of a three-course meal in the UK last year stood at £28.59, excluding drinks and gratuity. That means that, with the price of drinks hiked up in most restaurants, you could easily pay over £50 per head on your dinner date — and that’s not factoring in other expenses, such as taxis!
Socialising in your own home means that you can load up on your fave food and drink for a fraction of the cost – what’s not to like!?
How often do we say ‘we must meet for a catch up’ but never follow it up? Organising a get-together can often be hard work and fall by the wayside. That’s where home parties come in handy. Unlike many bars, kids are allowed! This means less hassle in needing to find a babysitter if you have little ones as you can just bring them in tow. Great, eh?
Taking it in turn to host also means that the whole social circles shares the cost.
Singing our praises
Everyone likes to be applauded. Gaining the plaudits from our peers can be a real ego booster, no matter how much we deny it. Hosting a good party or gathering can hold you in high esteem within your family our social circle. After all, we all remember who used to hold the best house parties at school, don’t we?
Read on to see how you can get your home perfect for home socialising…
This is a no-brainer. If you visit any supermarket when the sun is shining, you’ll be met with a limited selection of sausages and burgers and empty beers, wines and spirits shelves. Those summer months and lighter late nights give us the perfect opportunity to bask in the fresh air and wine and dine outside. With so many barbecues to choose from, it’s simple — and cheap — to pull out the barbecue and cook a feast on the coals (or gas).
How about a seating area?
Beer gardens are great. But for plenty of us, our own garden is the place to be. While we love our lawns, we need a seated area to offer to our guests, especially if food is on the menu. Often, we choose to deck out an area of our garden and decking boards are a perfect, low-maintenance option. This allows you to have a designated area for guests to congregate, eat and drink and best of all, it doesn’t take much to clean up afterwards!
A hot tub!
I’m not kidding! The hot tub is fast becoming a garden favourite in the UK. Despite the dramatic change in weather over the winter, hot tubs can actually be suitable for all-year-round entertaining. In Newcastle, sales were 600% higher in the first four months of 2018 than the whole of the previous year. With prices vastly varying depending on the model and size, the idea of relaxing in the comfort of your personal garden spa is clearly one that appeals.
Creating your own home bar
This idea has previously been on the back burner because of cost; but it is now becoming more popular. A garden bar is becoming increasingly sought after in the UK to those who have enough spare space. While these can be professionally built huts, some are using their imagination and recycling materials to create a one-off garden bar out of caravans and summerhouses. Imagine being your own landlord and not needing to deal with kicking out time?
And how about purchasing some cheap optics for your kitchen – after all, we all like to showoff our gadgets, don’t we? An impressive alcohol selection will look all the better in a well-presented manner.
The must-have dining table
It rains a fair bit in the UK(!) so if the weather isn’t great – come inside. Some people prefer to eat their dinner in front of the television, and that’s fine. However, a nice dining table can come in extremely handy if you are entertaining guests. Whether it’s for a ‘Come Dine with Me’-effect, sit-down meal, or just to place your buffet snacks and drinks on while people chat away, a table could be a great purchase. Make sure you place it in a space that still allows you to freely navigate around it and doesn’t clutter your room.
How about it then? With the rise of home entertaining set to continue, make sure you make the most of the space you have available and wow your guests with your amazing hosting skills.
We’re very proud to bring you this feature in association with Arbor Deck and Dine Indulge. For more inspiration for your home, please pay a visit to our interiors page.