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New Zealand Venues - Comprehensive Directory of NZ Venues for Hire
Your choice:
Parties are about having fun, so go for it. If you think of the most memorable parties you've been to, they've often had a distinctive venue. Look for a venue that's going to set the right atmosphere for you. It's a good idea to get the feel of the place. Is it party-friendly?
Where:
It mightn't be the first thing you think of but you could have a party in the Players' Changing Rooms at a sports stadium or in a tent at a game park. Some New Zealand museums luckily open up one or more of their galleries for parties, and there are theatres and cinemas offering very distinct and different venues. A cruise on the harbour can be fun. Great parties can of course be held in a more traditional hotel, historic house, or local hall.
Is the venue the right size?
Start with a rough idea of the number you expect. What are you going to do at the party? Just socialize with drinks and snacks? Full sit-down dinner? Entertainment or dancing? Too monstrous a venue could lack friendliness, too small and you're cramped.
Going to have dancing?
Make sure there's room. Are there any noise restrictions? Does the venue have its own sound system? If not, can you set up DJ's equipment or amplifiers for the band? You don't have to hire a ballroom. Some simpler venues have areas suitable for dancing or a portable dancefloor that can be specially set up.
Special conditions:
Let's start with the alcohol. Most parties have it. Is it allowed? Can you provide your own? Are there bar hours? Also can you put up decorations? Is smoking allowed in one area or outside? What are the rules on set-up and clear-up times?
Practical considerations:
Is access to the venue straightforward? More than one open door in and out of a party can create security problems. However, adequate fire exits which may be shut but not locked are essential and required by regulation. Does the venue have a safe space for guests to leave their coats and valuables while they're rocking? Is there disabled access to the venue? Is all the basic equipment provided - tables, chairs, table-linen, for example? Are the toilet facilities adequate for the number of guests you expect? Are there toilet facilities for the disabled? Is heating provided in winter? Is the lighting appropriate? Can you change it if it is too bright or too dark?
Transport and accommodation:
Look at how close the venue is to public transport and taxis, particularly if your guests will be drinking. How easy it is to park the car is a consideration for those who come with designated drivers. You could also check out the accommodation nearby in case your guests want to stay the night.
Catering:
Some venues have a preferred caterer or caterers and can give you a quote not only for the venue hire, but also for the food and drink per head. Other venues leave the choice of caterer, decorator, etc. to you. If making your own arrangements, do you need a kitchen? If you do, make sure that all the equipment you need is provided and that the power supply will be turned on for your party.
Payment:
You usually need to pay a deposit to book a venue in advance. Is the deposit refunded if you cancel the booking? Are any extra fees payable? If there is a written contract covering the hire of the venue, make sure that the points you agree with the managers are covered.
Last Word:
If at all possible, visit and check out the venue in advance. Make friends with the manager/caretaker beforehand and try to be on similar terms when you leave. HAVE FUN!
Other Venue Selection tips: | Choosing a Wedding Venue | Outdoor Wedding Venue tips | Conference Venue Checklist |


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