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How to plan a virtual office Christmas party

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Megan Murray
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Will your office Christmas party be taking to Zoom this year? Don’t worry, we’ve got plenty of ideas and activities to make it a success.

The office Christmas party is a thing of legend. The awkward games, the naff pub food, the chance to chat with your work wife without getting that disapproving look from your manager and, of course, all the gossip the day after. 

So, if you’re not about to let a little thing like a global pandemic get in the way of this year’s celebration, we’ve good news: you don’t have to. 

In fact, there are plenty of options when it comes to planning a work Christmas party online. Whether your colleagues are the ‘organised fun’ types who love a mind-bending challenge or if you’d prefer something more low-key, like a few drinks and a catch-up, these ideas have something for everyone. 

From fancy dress to enjoying a cocktail stirred up by one of London’s best bartenders, here are five ways to host a virtual Christmas do for your office.

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  • Wine tasting

    Connect your team with an activity that not only suits the festive season but also harks back to what you’d usually be doing at your office party: wine tasting.

    Carluccio’s is offering virtual wine tasting sessions hosted by a Carluccio’s sommelier or one of the Italian brand’s winemakers, and they have been designed with office parties in mind.

    Packages start from £35 per person but created with your team in mind, offering lots of bespoke options.

    Each interactive two-hour tasting is themed to a particular region, wine or specific grape variety and every guest is provided with six to eight different 50ml tasters. 

    You can also order some nibbles to go with it, from antipasti to arancini, for a food and vino pairing. All you need to do is compile your guest list and Carluccio’s will deliver the wines (and food). 

    Book your virtual zoom wine tasting or wine and food pairing contact sarah.strangeway@boparanrestaurants.com.

  • Virtual 'Christmas doo'

    The Together Works is an online platform which specialises in curating group activities for offices, such as team building challenges or Christmas parties. 

    They offer three packages but we think the ‘Christmas Works Doo’ sounds the most apt for this time of year. This online experience lasts four hours and covers three types of activities, of which there are many to choose from.

    From intense, time-focused challenges, to detective-inspired scavenger hunts and creative, design-led options, this is a fully-immersive afternoon of bonding for your colleagues.

    If you’re interested in finding out price points and creating a package for your team, email The Together Works on hello@thetogetherworks.com

  • Restaurant kits

    The appetite for restaurant kits has gone through the roof since the second lockdown started thanks to their fun, interactive nature and giving the experience of being in some of the UK’s most-loved restaurants.

    The Cinnamon Club has catered its restaurant kits to work for virtual Zoom Christmas parties by offering to drop off meals to over 20 households per order. 

    There are three different menus available to order until December 18 for nationwide delivery. The Four Course At Home Feast at £50 per person includes lamb shank roganjosh and Vivek’s famous garam masala Christmas pudding and warming nutmeg custard; or the Delhi-style Butter Chicken dinner at £120. 

  • Murder Mystery

    It sounds like it could be complicated, but let us assure you that this tried-and-tested group activity is a lot of fun.

    The Digital Murder Mystery Co. was founded in lockdown by Charlotte Ricard-Quesada and Christina Rhodes who, between them, have stacks of expertise in events. 

    The simple process guides you through picking a theme for your party (such as Runaway Rudolf, 1920s Paris and Vintage Circus) and the number of people, before sending off interactive digital invites to guests. The starting price is £275 for 12 players and £5 for more thereafter. 

    These invites are followed by a hefty PDF explaining each person’s character and their backstory, motive and clues, as well as fancy dress tips, a Spotify playlist of themed music to get ready to as well as meal and cocktail suggestions.

    We’ll leave what happens when you log in on the agreed date and time a secret, but we think extra points are in order for colleagues who dress for the part.

  • Cocktails at home

    In the good old days we would have popped to the pub or a swanky bar for the office party. Though we can’t do that right now, we can still enjoy sipping a few cocktails that have been expertly made by a bartender from some of London’s best bars, while having a good ol’ chinwag.

    There are lots of great cocktail kits out there which involve mixing up the drinks yourself, but to create the same experience as going to a bar for your colleagues, we think a pre-made option is best.

    The Drinks Drop works with bars in London and Manchester to create delicious cocktails which are sealed in handy pouches, popped in a letterbox-friendly box and delivered nationwide. 

    Boxes start at £19.50 and include two, six or a bespoke amount of cocktails and you can choose between delights like a plum negroni from Hawksmoor or a Brigadoon from Satan’s Whiskers.

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Megan Murray

Megan Murray is a digital journalist for stylist.co.uk, who enjoys writing about London happenings, beautiful places, delicious morsels and generally spreading sparkle wherever she can.

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