With the holiday season underway, party plans are beginning to take shape in the form of lengthy to-do lists. One of the main ingredients in creating an occasion to remember is choosing the ideal location, one to match your group’s style and size without compromising all the fun features of a hosted event.
San Diego is full of festive spots to hold your holiday affair, and some of the best in the county rest under the same umbrella. Take a laid-back holiday BBQ to Gingham; toast under the 100-year old olive trees in Herringbone; gather among the downtown buzz at Searsucker; schmooze with cocktails next to the koi pond at Burlap; or celebrate under the open sky on the rooftop of Stingaree. These Enlightened Hospitality Group spots offer more than enough options to suit every need.
We chatted with Events Sales Manager for Enlightened Hospitality Group and The Fabric of Social Dining restaurants Mikki Alvarez. Mikki has the hookups to hosting the perfect party in San Diego. Discover more as she shares her top tips to creating a stand-out celebration.
DSD: First off, tell us about your role with EHGRP and private events?
A: I’m the Event Sales Manager for Enlightened Hospitality Group and The Fabric of Social Dining restaurants. We create memorable events for corporate, convention and social clients for the hottest collection of restaurants in San Diego. I oversee all of the parties and bookings and it is my job to ensure our clients expectations are met (and exceeded!)
DSD: Any tips for those looking to book a private event?
A: Have a good outline of what you are looking for your event. Some things to think about before you call are dates, times, approximate group size, budget and whether you would like a cocktail reception or seated dinner.
Make sure the event coordinator or planner seems like someone you’ll like working with. The more you two are able to connect the better the event will be!
Make sure to budget appropriately. Things like alcohol can add up; so make key decisions about what will be served (and how much) ahead of time.
Take a look at the menu ahead of time to see if the choices are ones you like and will accommodate guest’s preferences (if needed).
DSD: What styles can EHGRP venues accommodate?
A: Everything from a small lunch group, to a cocktail hour with our amazing Pick and Rocks signature cocktails, to a full-blown sit-down dinner. If our clients have an idea, we can almost always make it work!
DSD: What sorts of people/groups buy-out during the holidays?
A: Buy-outs tend to be big companies looking for a memorable holiday party. But since our venues have smaller group dining spaces that don’t require a buy-out as well, we see a lot of smaller family parties or business dinners, too.
DSD: What do you recommend for a small group looking for an intimate affair?
A: Within the Fabric of Social Dining, we offer many different guest experiences. So if you are looking for an intimate affair, I would suggest a semi-private or private dining table at Searsucker, Burlap or Herringbone. For lunch, Gabardine (which is normally closed for lunch), is a perfect sunny, airy spot to meet.
DSD: What do you recommend for a large group looking to entertain on a large-scale?
A: Partial or Full Venue buyouts are the way to go. This gives your guests the exclusivity of the space to enjoy themselves in the way only EHGRP can provide for them. Stingaree is known for being a nightclub, but the roof area can make an amazing space for a sunset soirée. Searsucker is also great for large groups.
DSD: How far in advance should people be booking?
A: Holiday dates book-up quickly so the sooner you can secure a date, time and venue the better.
DSD: What sizes of groups can you accommodate?
A: Anything from a party for 10 to a full venue buyout with 300 people.
DSD: What makes the EHGRP venues an ideal place to host holiday parties?
A: All of our spaces are fun - from the unique design touches, to the actual architecture of the buildings. There's the Asian Dragon chandelier at Burlap or 100-year old olive trees in the middle of the dining room in Herringbone. Each of the venues has its own flavor as well. If you want a laid-back holiday BBQ, Gingham can do that; if you want a company cocktail party by a koi pond, Burlap is just the spot. We have so much to choice from at our five venues!
Ready for your holiday party? Book at one of the EHGRP locations by visiting ehgrp.com.
Discover more private party ideas in our Private Events and Catering Guide