SHOW TRIP BUILDER Open Arrow

Open Arrow SHOW TRIP BUILDER SHOW TRIP BUILDER Open Arrow

Essential Packing for your short break

We know you’re probably well practised in the art of packing, but you’d be surprised at just how many essential holiday items are forgotten each trip! With our essential packing guide, you can leave for your trip knowing you haven’t missed a thing.

Stag Party

The men need to pack…

Clothing – The men of the group will be wanting to bring a mix of casual and smart wear. Jeans/shorts and T-shirts will serve fine during your day to day activities, but when you’re heading out into town for a nice group meal and a few beverages, you’ll be wanting to smarten up, so be sure to bring formal shirts, a dapper watch and smart shoes at the very least! Some pubs and clubs can refuse you for not wearing the appropriate attire. Also, you can never bring enough underwear. Who knows what your stag party will entail!

Swim Wear – Whether you’re staying in self catering accommodation with a pool/hot tub, or you’re taking part in an activity that will leave you soaked through, you’ll be needing a pair of swim shorts and a towel. Forgetting these may lead to some embarrassment in the group…

Stag Party Games and Accessories – The essentials here consist of playing cards, a couple of pegs, duct tape, and plastic cups for the all important beer pong championship. One of the most commonly forgotten items is a portable speaker. How else are you going to play those killer tunes for everyone to hear?

Bits and bobs – Toothpaste, toothbrush, mouthwash, aftershave, deodorant, shower gel and shampoo, hair gel, and extra loo roll. Nobody likes to hit the bog roll panic button during action. Painkillers will be needed after the big night and it may be wise to bring some fresh gum too. Oh and don’t forget the two P’s; plasters and protection! Just in case you miss a couple of the complete obvious items, don’t forget your phone charger and money too!

Fancy Dress – This is optional and depends on what sort of event you’re going to, but if you’re heading out on your best mate’s stag do you might need to remember your superhero costume, or hilarious items to fit your carefully planned theme.

Food and Alcohol – If you’re lucky enough to be staying in a large self catering property then you’ll be looking to cut some costs by bringing your own food and alcohol. You might decide to throw a BBQ or get the party going at home before you head to the clubs with a few pre-drinks. Between the whole group, a supermarket shop won’t cost you anything!

ID – Just don’t risk it. If one of you can’t show your ID then the chances of getting into your favourite club are pretty slim. Leave no man behind!

The Party – Finally, this is going to be the stag party to top all other stag parties. Bring your A-game and give your best mate one of the most unforgettable experiences of his life.

Hen Party

The women need to pack…

Clothing – You’ll want to cover outfits for every possible situation. Dresses for those beautiful sunny days. Jeans, tees and sweaters for those winter mornings and of course, comfy clothes for when you’re in your holiday house feeling a little delicate, and flat shoes. Let’s not forget the most important outfit of your break; the evening gown. Carefully pack your most glamourous dress, stunning pieces of jewellery, and killer pair of heels.

Swim Wear – Whether you’re staying in self catering accommodation with a pool/hot tub, or you’re taking part in an activity that will leave you soaked through, you’ll be wanting to bring your best swim suits and towels.

Bits and bobs – Toothpaste, toothbrush, deodorant, perfume, shower gel, make-up and wipes, shampoo, painkillers, plasters and hairspray. Just in case you miss a couple of the complete obvious items, don’t forget your phone charger and money!

Fancy Dress and Accessories – This is optional and depends on what sort of event you’re going to, but if you’re heading out on your best friend’s hen party then you may want to bring out your customised sashes, ridiculous hats and whatever other party props you have lined up. If you need a little inspiration for props, you can go shopping here! How else is everyone going to know you’re out on a hen party? One of the most common forgotten essentials is a portable speaker to get your dance on. Straighteners / curlers are a must and it’s also worth checking whether your accommodation supplies hair dryers otherwise it could spell disaster!

Food and Alcohol – If you’re lucky enough to be staying in a large self catering property then you’ll be looking to cut some costs by bringing your own food and alcohol. You might decide to throw a BBQ or get the party going at home before you head to the clubs. Between the whole group, a supermarket shop won’t cost you anything!

ID – Just don’t risk it. If one of you can’t show your ID then the chances of getting into your favourite club are pretty slim.

The Party – Finally, this is going to be the hen party to top all other hen parties. Bring your A-game and give your best friend one of the most unforgettable experiences of her life.

Pub Crawl in Brighton

These are our picks for the best pub crawl in Brighton (more…)

The Office Christmas Party

 Why Book a Christmas Party

What better way for corporates and organizations to celebrate Christmas than by organising an office Christmas Party that reflects the ethos of the company in hand? For many companies the ‘Christmas Do’ is regarded as a highly significant event – one in which its highly valued employees and clients are treated to a large thank-you for all their loyalty and efforts over the year.  Many companies really push the boat out to ensure a memorable event, and that’s where companies like Christmas Connections really come into their own. A specialist in bespoke office and corporate party planning, it works with larger companies to create a whole range of stunning and unusual bespoke Christmas Party events from intimate and exquisite dinners to huge extravaganzas.

“At Christmas Connections we understand everything that is involved to produce a major corporate event not just in terms of the logistics but also with the corporate message.,” says Christmas Connections MD Justin Sayers.

When should you book a Christmas Party?

If you want the pick of the crop, our advice to you is book your Christmas Party soon, if not right now, and then you can enjoy the rest of the summer season in the knowledge that your office Christmas Party festivities have been well and truly taken care of.

As the South’s favourite corporate party specialist, we are all too aware of the nightmare planning scenario that can occur if you can’t get the availability for the dates that suit your organisation’s Christmas festivities. So, be an early bird and make sure you get the best deals and timing for your organisation, and then you can enjoy the rest of the summer season, safe in the knowledge that the office Xmas event is well and truly taken care of.

Why use a party finding service?

When you’re planning the perfect office Christmas Party, choosing the correct venue is key to a successful event. No one knows this better than Christmas Connections, the office Xmas party specialist that has a host of superb and unusual venues on its books for companies who want to throw a stylish and glamorous event. Christmas Connections has a wide variety of Christmas Party venues on offer across the UK such as London Earth Galleries, London Aquarium, London Zoo, Old Trafford, Chelsea Football club and Whipsnade amongst many others. Christmas Connections offers superior off-the-shelf shared parties with optional drinks packages or will arrange bespoke corporate parties that reflect your company’s ethos and brand values.  Whatever your needs and budgetary requirements Christmas Connections can organise the perfect office Christmas Party for you. For more information call Christmas Connections on

What Did We Do For Our Christmas Party Last Year?

Dinosaur Christmas Party

Christmas With The Dinosaurs At The NHM!

Christmas comes but once a year, or so was thought by the 1936 animated short film produced by Fleischer Studios, but if you organise Christmas parties all year round, can you get excited by going to another party yourself? Well, the answer is, of course, yes! If you plan and organise Christmas parties for your daytime career then you get quite good at what’s going to be the party of parties of the season. And this was going to be the Christmas party of all Christmas parties…

So after 16 years of wining and dining, wiggling and dancing to the early hours you start to realise life is good, you’ve drunk the cocktails you’ve enjoyed the party atmosphere but as always you want more. So when the invite came for a “Christmas party with the dinosaurs”, I thought jeez I have to struggle through Christmas day with the Jurassic mother in law and now I have to do a pre-Christmas bash with the old croc too! But I was wrong, well at least about the other guests, they were not going to be the prehistoric battle axe draining your life away but they were going to be the crème of the industry world invited to a Christmas Party at the Natural History Museum.

Yes, this was the party I have been waiting for for years, and it was everything I imagined. Kicking off with a skate around the ice rink with the back drop of the museum and the Christmas lights twinkling made for a great way to start any Christmas party. Definitely, put you in good mood for the night. Leaving the ice for a waiting après skate drink were waiters with trays of bubbly, or cocktails, take your pick – we certainly did. Enjoying a cool drink in the Christmas Lodge was perfect, relaxing and chatting, catching up and just enjoying the evening.The stand-up starter was a great idea to keep the guests talking and moving around, so much food, note to self, must remember this is the starter and not go to town and fill up on the range of cheeses, meats, pickles, bread, snails and frogs legs. Yes, it was great!

A bell rang and guests were invited from the themed Christmas lodge into the museum. Walking up to the entrance all lit up red and candle light was very dramatic and inviting. Upon entering you’re met (with my mother in law), no, of course, it’s the dinosaurs. I’m always amazed at the transformation of venues from day time service to breath-taking venues for a party. The walkways of the various creatures from history are always intriguing, whilst building a little tension before arriving at the Darwin Centre and one of the biggest tables I have ever seen – 150 guests. It was beautifully decorated with fresh flowers and various mosses, glassware and candle lights.

Service began after a short speech with a fabulous meal of roasted loin of venison, with venison Wellington and venison terrine, fabulous food. Again with lots of wine and conversation, merrily participated in and received from the industry party goers. It’s not easy to please the industry, after all, we see the different parties, venues and catering from numerous Christmas events, but looking around everyone was engaged and enjoying the evening. The meal finished off with blackberry and apple “pop tart”, before more alcohol and a call to the upstairs cocktail and cream cake bar – can this party get any better?!? You may scoff at the thought of Earl Grey cocktails but I can inform you that they were refreshingly delicious, Note to self no 2, these are going down too quickly.

And now time for the dances move, some may have said they were not current more pre-historic, but in my defence, I was at the right venue for some caveman shapes! All in all, it was a very good night, the catering was superb, the venue was fabulous and highly memorable, and the hosts were exceptional.

The Stigma

The office Christmas Party a night to remember or a night to forget — depends on who you are. For Internet Infidelity expert, Ruth Houston, the office Christmas Party season is one where vigilance matters most. As part of her annual Christmas Infidelity Campaign(!), Houston strongly recommends that significant others and spouses accompany their other halves to the office party especially if they suspect or want to avoid a workplace affair. Paranoia? Well, not if you analyse the stats that Houston has given on her website (http://www.infidelityadvice.blogspot.com/).

• A London survey reported that 1 in 10 respondents started a relationship at the company Xmas party. Twenty-five percent surveyed said that’s where they met their future spouse.

• A survey by Men’s Health magazine found that 44% of males said they’d had an affair with a co-worker at a holiday office party at least once in their life.

• In a survey by Trojan Condoms, 49% of the employees expressed their willingness to “go all the way” with a fellow employee at the Christmas party if the opportunity presented itself. However, 33% said they’d previously had sex with a colleague during or after an office Christmas party.

• An OfficeSMART survey revealed that 64% of office workers said they personally knew of affairs that started at their office Christmas party.
So there you have it – the office Christmas Party with all its possible illicit intrigue, tension and romance – enough drama to last a whole year!

What To Do After Christmas?

The Christmas period is a wonderful and magical time of year, so it’s only natural that a lot of staff suffer from post-Christmas blues when they have to return to work. January presents an ideal opportunity to bring your staff together, refocus and engage their attention, but most importantly motivate your force so their working efficiency is optimum! Did you know “highly engaged employees are 38% more likely to have above-average productivity?” That’s a highly alarming number, and the welfare and motivation of your staff is an increasingly important factor to the success of your business. One the most effective and proven ways of boosting staff morale and productivity is by hosting a corporate team building event. Discover new skills within your workforce, encourage internal communication and let your staff know just how much you appreciate and value their time and dedication.

Here’s our favourite corporate team building events:

Flat Out Chariot Challenge 

The Flat Out Chariot Challenge combines creativity and communication to create a dynamic and cooperative team building experience. Your task is to build a full scale Roman or Celtic chariot against the clock, and then compete in a race against your fellow colleagues – choose your team wisely! You don’t need to be a professional carpenter for this event as each team is supplied a plan of action to build their cardboard chariot. Unfortunately, horses are absent from this event so you’ll need to elect the strongest member of your team to pull the chariot whilst another cracks the whip from your sturdy vehicle. This is a fun experience that brings out the best in your team and encourages ingenuity, co-operation and good-natured competitiveness.

 

The Apprentice Team Building Event 

If you work in business then you’ll more than likely be familiar with Lord Sugar, his budding apprentice candidates and his fearful firing finger. This team building event is styled around the hit BBC series The Apprentice. Once divided into teams, you’ll begin your corporate event with a brief from our own powerful business mogul, accompanied by his stern faced business advisers. Once briefed, teams will depart onto their exciting challenge!

Your objective? Make as much money possible for a local charity and to score the highest number of points, through the completion of a series of tasks. Only the team, who returns having achieved the highest figures, will be hired! It’s up to the teams to plan their time wisely and play to each of their strengths. Perhaps you’ll find some new hidden talents within your teams? The winning team will receive two bottles of champagne and the Hired or Fired trophy. Highly competitive and highly enjoyable.

 

Orchestrate

Orchestrate is a dream come true.  A powerful musical challenge with delegates coming under the conductors baton as a symphony orchestra. This incredible team building event turns a group of people with absolutely no musical ability into a real symphony orchestra in the space of 90 minutes. This is Orchestrate! – a sensational corporate experience that will transform your staff and bring them together as never before.

You’ll learn to play a range of classical instruments ranging from violins to violas; cellos to brass; and percussion to woodwind.  Your staff will work in separate sections under the guidance of expert musicians. Once proficient they will then come together as one mighty symphony orchestra to play a specially-written, five-minute-long piece of music. The effect is electrifying.

 

The Secret Spy Experience

This Secret Spy Experience is designed to live up to your expectations of being a secret agent with the adrenaline, equipment and realism of a covert spy operation. This experience is as real to a covert surveillance operation as anyone can make it!

Your ultimate goal is to arrive at a point when the villains can be arrested as part of the final Strike. You will collect evidence by way of images and video, overheard conversations and incriminating documents. The city you’re in becomes the “playground” and you’ll wear covert radios and ear pieces to communicate. Intrigued? We thought you would be.

Da Vinci Code

This thrilling activity captures your imagination in a quest to crack the curator’s code. This is a really special team building event because the historical artifacts used are works of art that have been ingeniously designed and created by a team of professional artists and sculptors. Each one holds secrets and clues that relate to the mystery facing your teams. The Da Vinci murder trail follows a plot similar to Dan Brown’s best selling novel (with all references to religion and religious sects removed). It’s not necessary to have read the book or seen the film because this event is an experience in itself.

Introducing Adventure Connections 5.0

Our trusted and beloved website (version 4.0) has at long last been put to rest after serving us humbly for the past 16 years. If you’re lucky enough to have visited our site in 2017, you will have seen the site’s new transformation complete with our new Trip Builder function!

(more…)