What Cold? Have a Tropical NYE Party!

There is no way to be used to the cold weather, especially when we see friends in Australia and New Zealand celebrate the New Years at the beach. It’s not too late to plan anything! Already have plans with friends coming over? Celebrate the coming of 2014 with a dash of warm island vibe instead! Get crackin’, with a little help from us, below:

The Look

You don’t have to spend a bomb to bring the warm islands to you, you just need to play with colors! Look for bright hues like orange, green, yellow and blue. A little warning: Too many clashing colors will make this a tacky disaster! Keep things fresh with one solid bold-colored table cloth, instead of prints.

Pay attention to textures! Bamboo, wood and leaves are important to create the tropical vibe. It’s great to add contrasting colors too. Check out Martha Stewart’s genius way to make party cones out of banana leaves! Fasten at the seam with bamboo skewers, and your guests can use these cones to pick their favorite snacks!

Another quick and budget friendly way to invite the island feel is to use bright cocktail umbrellas as a decoration piece, like the paper lantern of cocktail umbrellas above. What a fun centerpiece! Don’t forget to use tropical fruits like bananas, mangoes and pineapples. Cut them up for guests to nibble on as dessert, or use as part of the table setting! Keep a look out at your local Asian market!

The Food 

It’s a fun party, don’t slave away in the kitchen! Make shrimp cocktails, which can made and refridgerated up to 24 hours before the party. SILive is convinced this is the perfect way to make restaurant-worthy shrimp cocktails, so give it a go!

We said no holding yourself hostage in the kitchen, right? Serve your guests sandwiches from ‘wichcraft, which we promise will definitely put a good spell on your guests! Try the Sicilian tuna with fennel, black olives & lemon on baguette. The bright taste of lemon will definitely transport your guests to a Caribbean island!

Chips and Mango Salsa

Want to add a fun flavor to the chips you’re serving? Your guests will appreciate this fabulous tropical mango salsa! You will need ripe mangoes, red onion, orange bell pepper, red Fresno chilies, cilantro, and lime. Don’t have mangoes? Try looking for peaches!

The Drinks

We know the Sgroppino is an Italian cocktail, but we couldn’t resist! This drink is so light, and seriously snazzy so it’s perfect for a New Year’s celebration! You will need Prosecco (which is basically Italian sparkling white wine or in Fiestah’s case, a great alternative to champagne!), chilled vodka, frozen lemon sorbet and chopped fresh mint leaves. Easy!

Photo: DivvyDown

Photo: DivvyDown

Do you really need Pina Colada? Try something that isn’t so heavy with a favorite like the Mojito! Our friends at DivvyDown have the perfect recipe for you to try out, with a recipe that serves six people. Remember our tip – Prepare in advance so you don’t have to be the reluctant bartender for the night!

Photo: ifood.tv

Photo: ifood.tv

How can we go wrong with Long Island Iced Tea? It’s got all the tropical tastes you’d need – tequila, rum and triple sec (with gin and vodka to sum it all up!). No tea needed here! Once again, DivvyDown‘s got a fabulous recipe that serves eight people. Be careful with this one!

The Music 

When the music is on and people are dancing their cares away, that’s the party you want! Get them started with songs from the Beach Boys, Elvis Presley to Jennifer Lopez and Rihanna for a Top 40 vibe. Want a sexier night in, try Hed Kandi’s ‘Beach House’ compilations!

The New Year’s Eve Activity 

It’s a tradition. Even if you don’t plan on making any, it’s still a resolution! Get your guests to fill up the cards with a free printable template. To go with the theme, print the cards in bright colors! Once everyone’s comfortable, pick the cards randomly and get guests to guess who the card belongs to. This way, resolutions made on this night wouldn’t be an empty promise anymore – everyone knows!

A Few Reminders 

Like any theme party, it’s all about the details you put in! Graham cracker crumbs can be used as part of the table setting, to give the effect of edible sand. If you’d like to send your guests home with a gift, we always suggest sweet treats or something to munch on! A tropical trail mix can be wrapped up in banana leaf party cones, or sweet cupcakes even. Once you’ve got the ideas, you can run so far!

Most of all, turn the heater on for your guests so that they can pretend to have balmy weather for a few hours!

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