Top Venues for Holiday Parties
With Thanksgiving now behind us, end-of-year holiday parties are coming up for many employees working in the Houston area. Our region is a major corporate center and headquarters to 23 Fortune 500 companies. Many multinationals and domestic companies, including more than half of the world’s top foreign-based corporations, have offices or warehouses in Houston, so holiday parties are a big business in our city.
And yes, we can’t ignore the fact that many employers said “bah humbug” to company parties in recent years. But the Houston economy continues to make a strong recovery following the downturn that began in 2014 when Houston lost some 74,000 oil-related jobs; and then the city got pummeled again after Hurricane Harvey hit in August 2017. This year – many companies are sparing no expense to celebrate the end of a year!
Did Someone Say Party?
So why do companies host holiday parties? Well for one, it builds culture and boosts company morale. These events provide a great opportunity to prioritize individual recognition during annual awards ceremonies at these events, and it shows companies value their employees’ happiness. Yes, a cash bonus or extra time off is also a great way to thank employees for their hard work, but a party is also a personal way to show such gratitude and recognition.
Parties also help employees get to know each other, not just as co-workers or teammates, but in a social setting where interactions may be more casual or relaxed compared to their normal, professional settings. An inclusive company holiday party allows co-workers to mingle with people they might not otherwise talk to on a regular basis. And this works out great for the company too because employee bonding in a social context is a key element of team building, which in turn can produce great business results.
You Don’t Want to Miss This!
Throwing the kind of party your employees actually want to attend requires careful planning, a wide consensus and some creativity. Smart planners will rank party elements by priority (entertainment, food, etc.) and then allocate the budget accordingly. Some companies host simple, at-work celebrations – like a holiday lunch or a casual after-hours party. Others go all out with a formal party, perhaps one that includes a theme, activity and/or live music.
Other end-of-year corporate event ideas range from wine tastings, chefs tables and mixology classes to sports events, group tickets, luxury suites and movie screenings. When providing rides to and from holiday parties, we’ve seen and heard about it all! Here are a few of this year’s top spots.
The Astorian is a throwback to 1920’s glamour and Art Deco design, discreetly situated in a landmark building. Located in The Heights, it has the capacity to hold up to 700 guests.
The Parador, located in the Museum District, is a premier social and corporate event venue. The historic building has all the appointments of a 5-star hotel, but it an intimate atmosphere.
Located in the historic Rice Hotel, Sambuca is Houston’s only rockin’ dinner club with a side of nightly live music!