The party season is hotting up, but can your home handle the heat?
Summer can be a tricky month for entertaining at home. With the sun blazing down, it can get too hot to host. On the other hand, long days and good friends make wonderful memories. Here are some tips to help you make sure your home can handle the heat.
Prepare the venue
Are you hosting people inside, outside or both? Set up your entertainment zone for immediate comfort. If your place will be heating up before the party’s even started, turn on the fans or air conditioning beforehand.
There’s nothing like a nice cold drink to keep cool. Arrange to have chilled water freely available. Consider having drink stations in a couple of locations, with bottles of water in buckets of ice and plenty of cups or glasses. Make sure to keep replenishing the water supply throughout your event.
Choose your moment
Identify the best time of day for your party. If your home becomes unbearably hot in the afternoon, for example, consider hosting breakfast or brunch instead of lunch or dinner. Also, it may be that it gets stuffy indoors but the patio remains cool, which might dictate where to host your event.
Pre-empt possible sources of guest discomfort. Outdoors in the day? Provide sunscreen and shade – perhaps a large umbrella or a bunch of cheap paper parasols. In the evening, remember mozzie repellent. Regulate the temperature using shade, fans and – if you’ve got it – air conditioning.
Match guest numbers to the size of your property. Unless you’re hosting a sweaty rave, a crowded house is not recommended for summer. If you want to keep everyone around the barbecue in the courtyard, for example, make sure they all fit comfortably.
Don’t forget that the venue is your home. When the guests leave, you don’t want a house full of insects or stuffy rooms when you head off to bed. Write some polite signs to ensure guests heed rules like closing the screen doors to keep flies out and shutting windows if the air conditioning is on (or opening them for airflow if it isn’t).
Summertime means a few extra considerations for party hosts, but the warmer weather shouldn’t stop you from having a season of socialising at home.
Author: Alan Faint, http://www.hfcahobart.com.au/