Plan a top secret surprise party

Arranging a successful surprise party can be a challenging task. Organising the venue, invitations, decorations and the suprisee is a lot to take on.  But don’t panic, we have some top tips on all you need to know about planning a successful surprise party.

  1. Choose an accomplice

When it comes to throwing a surprise party you can’t do it alone.  We recommend that you find an accomplice who can help you with organising and who will support you in making sure everything is ready on the day of the party.  Make sure you select somebody with great organisational skills and ever greater discretion.

  1. Where and when

The first task is deciding on where and when your party will be held.  Make a draft guest list so you have an idea of numbers, that way you know what size venue you need.  Look into venues close by to where the surprisee lives as it makes it easier for everyone to get there. However, if there is 10 of you or less, perhaps look further afield and make a weekend of it. Most venues will have an events team that can help you with menus, drinks and making sure everything on the day is ready for your guests’ arrival.

  1. Top secret invitations

Once you have the venue and the date, it’s time to send out the invitations.  It is so important that the it is crystal clear on the invitation that the party is a surprise and guests need to keep all the plans top secret. Choose a method to send out the invitations in a way the suprisee won’t ever see, consider options such as making a private Facebook event, or send emails or text messages to your party guests.

Make it clear who the responses should go back to and that it’s essential that all guests arrive before your surprisee makes their grand entrance.  We would suggest setting the arrival time for guests 30 minutes before the guest of honour is due to arrive.  This allows for any stragglers to be in place in good time.

  1. Get Organised

Together with your accomplice make sure you have all the decorations and cake ordered and delivered to the venue on the morning of the party. This will avoid any last minute panics, streamline the party planning process and relieve some of the stress.  Don’t be shy to delegate any tasks to people you trust, the more help you get the easier it will be.

By getting all the party decorations and birthday cake delivered on the morning of the party,  the events team will have time to set the room up as well as give you all day to relax and prepare for the evening.

  1. Say cheese…

One role you will need to delegate is that of chief photographer and videographer to capture the grand entrance and get some great shots of the evening.

  1. Have fun!

Once the guest of honour has arrived it is time for you and your accomplice to relax and enjoy the party you have put so much time and effort into organising with the surprise.


If you would like to hold your surprise party or event at a Legacy, please contact the team at the relevant hotels

New Place, Southampton

The Angel Hotel, Chippenham

Chilworth Manor, Southampton

The Rose and Crown Hotel, Salisbury