Whether you own a pub, restaurant, hotel, or any other venue that hosts events, we’re sure you’ll have started thinking about Christmas. The festive season sees event-organisers and venue-owners embracing the Christmas spirit by decorating and dressing up their venues in many different ways.

Decorations aren’t just meant for the tree after all, but how do you go about decorating an entire venue? You want your winter wonderland to have both traditional and modern elements to entice your visitors and guests, at the same time as presenting something a little different from the rest. Your décor will need to last you through late November to early January, and not to mention for year after year to save you some money too.

We tell you our top tips for dressing your venue this Christmas to help save you stress, time and money during this fun and festive period.

Make an entrance

Your first question will probably be ‘Where do I start?’ and the answer is the entrance, of course! It doesn’t have to take much to create an entrance with the wow-factor. You might consider your lobby to be the ‘grand entrance’ of your venue, or maybe the doorway your guests or visitors walk through. Whatever it is you choose as your ‘grand entrance’ or focal point, it will introduce your theme and help to dictate the general atmosphere you’re looking to achieve around your venue.

Dress to suit your venue

Before you think the focal point to your décor has to be awe-inspiring and extravagant, you need to consider your venue. Does it suit that essence of extravagance, or is it more suited to understated decorations? Simple decorations of soft lighting and a rustic look can be just as effective, especially if it’s more suited to your venue’s style.

If you’ve got a log fire for example, make the most of it! It’s an easy way to create a cosy atmosphere inside your venue. A log fire’s warm and welcoming glow in your reception room will really get your guests in the Christmas spirit, and a fireplace is so easy to decorate in the ever-popular rustic theme. Simply decorate the surroundings with artificial evergreens, twigs, berries and other logs, and you’ll have a gorgeous and versatile winter-time décor that will last you for years to come.

Choose a simple colour scheme

It’s important that you stick to a simple colour scheme because otherwise your venue can quickly lose its festive feel and become something that is overwhelming and sometimes, quite tacky. By keeping to a colour scheme, the look of your venue will remain tasteful and appealing for guests, and it will be better for your budget too.

Think about table décor

For pub and restaurant owners, table decorations are something you have to take into account. Whilst you don’t want to have anything that will take up too much space on the table (or take up too much of your budget for Christmas decorations!), we’d recommend a small arrangement of artificial flowers in a jar or Oasis foam, or simple candles in festive colours like deep reds and greens, or perhaps whites and silvers. These effortless decorations can provide a lot for the atmosphere of your venue, and cost very little.

I ncorporate the traditional

The thing with Christmas décor is that a lot of it has a timeless feel, despite its common dedication to traditional elements. The classic look and feel is something that is loved by all. Christmas trees, wreaths, pine cones, red berries, baubles and sparkles ooze an ever-familiar fun and festive ambience.

But don’t feel like you have to stop with the traditional elements, bring it up to date with modern and contemporary décor too if it suits your venue. Think about experimenting with materials, how about playing around with fairy lights in jars or other decorative glassware to create some magical-looking decorations?

Don’t forget lighting

Speaking of lighting, it’s a really important aspect of any venue – whatever time of year. Not only can it really set the scene, but getting it right will improve the overall atmosphere and experience for all of your guests’ visits. It can’t be too light and it can’t be too dark – otherwise you’re either blinding your guests, or they’ll be scrambling around in a desperate search for the food on their plates.

White Christmas lighting is a versatile look that you, or event-organisers, can play around with very easily to get some different looks with minimal effort. Of course, you can opt for more colourful lighting if that’s the look you’re going for with your festive décor. And don’t forget those candles for a really warm and wintery look to your venue.

It’s all about the atmosphere

Piecing together your decorations should results in a festive feel that looks appealing to all those that see it. But it should also create an atmosphere in your venue – think about the kind of atmosphere you want to create, and then go for it.

At Christmas, it’s most popular to go for a warm and welcoming atmosphere, particularly in the hospitality industries of hotels and restaurants, so consider that when choosing your décor. This can be as simple as making the most of your lighting, to bringing in little extras to top up that festive feeling for you, your staff and your visitors.