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Here we are now, entertain us: how to host an occasion to remember

Brianna Lance

Creative Consultant / Musician / Artist

The ingredients to a great partyMusic and surroundings to me are the most important things. For any party. You can have five or 50 people, but if you’re somewhere amazing with good music you’ll have fun regardless. Or at least I will. My signature drink … I don’t drink alcohol anymore so I always like to have bitters and soda. I always serve … Strange dance moves. My ultimate three guests … I think whoever loves dancing and isn’t concerned with what other people think of them are the best guests. So I would just pick my three friends that most embody that. My never-fail soundtrack ... Disco. 

Georgia Cherrie

Co-Founder, Paris Georgia

The ingredients to a great party … Good friends, music and a summer setting like the beach or a garden terrace.  My signature drink … A glass of rosé at home, and if I’m out, a Moscow mule. I always serve … Cheese platters with lots of blue cheese and fig jam. My ultimate three guests ... I lived in Barcelona for four years and met some truly beautiful people I still call my best friends. If I could invite them and my friends back home to one party that would be my absolute dream guest list. My never-fail soundtrack … Kendrick, Amy Winehouse, and some Jamiroquai for a boogie! 

 Mitch Orr

Chef, CicciaBella Italian Osteria + Bar

The ingredients to a great party … Good people, good music, good food. Pretty simple, really. My signature drink … Set the digital kettle to 86 degrees and make a pot of Yunnan Gold red tea. And have some Radikon on deck. I always serve … Fried chicken wings. My ultimate three guests … Rihanna, DJ Khaled, Bill Simmons. My never-fail soundtrack 
90s R&B, baby.

Charles Ainsbury

Spirits Evangelist, Proof & Company

The ingredients to a great party … Preparation is key – food, music, drinks, cutlery, glassware, crockery, games, whatever. You want your guests to feel like they’ve got everything they need ... It’s a nice touch and shows you care and appreciate them. And if you’re prepared, it puts less stress on you as a host so you can enjoy the party too. And no acoustic guitars. Last thing you need is some smug jerk who knows Wonderwall to ruin the vibe. My signature drink … Punch. Ask a bartender for a great recipe and prep it a few hours before the party. You can serve your guests easily, they can serve themselves and, once again, you can enjoy the party too.  I always serve … The person who’s really funny when they’re drunk. If they’re having a good time, everyone’s having a good time. My ultimate three guests … A bartender, a chef and a DJ.  My never-fail soundtrack … Some vintage R&B is always a good move; there’s always a great beat and bass line that keeps the heartbeat of the party at the right pace. I prefer online playlists rather than curating one myself as it’s less stress, there’s no awkward silences and there’s ALWAYS someone with an opinion about music (see comment about the smug jerk with the guitar), so the more ‘third party’ you can make it, the better.  

Daniel Pepperell

Chef, Hubert

The ingredients to a great party … A hot grill. My signature drink … Sbagliato. I always serve … Flamin’ hot off the grill. My ultimate three guests … Ash, Marlo and a babysitter. My never-fail soundtrack … My personal playlist ‘Trap hour’.

Jade Sarita Arnott

Founder, Arnsdorf

The ingredients to a great party … Here is the one secret that I recommend: make sure you have one or two people that you have only recently met on your guest list. My signature drink … Vodka, soda, fresh lime and a slice of cucumber. I always serve … A dark chocolate tart with an almond coconut base. It’s vegan and gluten-free but tastes rich and delicious, so caters to a broad range of guests. My ultimate three guests … Eileen Gray, Patti Smith and Carry Somers (founder of the Fashion Revolution movement). My never-fail soundtrack … I’ve been revisiting my Magnolia Electric Co. / Songs: Ohia albums lately. Jason Molina sadly passed away a few years ago but was a prolific songwriter. 

Jerico Tracy

Gallerist, Jerico Contemporary

The ingredients to a great party … An eclectic playlist, bare feet, an abundance of candles, endless wine and loved ones. My signature drink … Gin and tonic. I always serve … Champagne upon arrival. My ultimate three guests … Sophie Calle, Tracey Emin and Cindy Sherman. My never-fail soundtrack Lay Low by Lou Doillon.

Emerson Bath

The ingredients to a great party … Music, lighting, tequila. My signature drink … Extra dirty martini. I always serve … Black truffle almonds. My ultimate three guests … Three supermodels from IMG. My never-fail soundtrack … The Martinez Brothers, live from Ibiza.

Franzi Frings

Model / Artist

The ingredients to a great party … Great music, great people, cool location – maybe in a forest. My signature drink … Whiskey sour with eggwhite! I always serve … Good wine.  My ultimate three guests … One that is entertaining, one that is new and one best friend. My never-fail soundtrack  Heroes from David Bowie, or Buvette.

Miranda Darling


The ingredients to a great party … Are always the people. You need to put your attention to curating the right mix of personalities. I always try to make sure everyone is friends with at least someone else at the party, then I think about who they might enjoy meeting. It’s a bit like matchmaking and curating at once. If your guests are making delightful and unexpected connections, the party will be brilliant. It’s important to look after your guests – introduce them to people, make sure they have a drink, etc –  but the more relaxed you are, the more at ease your guests will feel. It’s important to put effort into making things look beautiful, but it doesn’t need to be perfect! Just fun. My signature drink … Champagne always lifts the mood – and be as generous as you can afford to be. Your guests feel well-treated and it turns anything into an occasion. I always serve … Something I have prepared myself, and that you can eat with one hand – and no garlic! My ultimate three guests … I could never limit it to three but Farah Pahlavi, the Empress of Iran, would be there, as well as Marina Abramović, the artist, and Kate Tempest, the spoken-word poet. I think that would make an interesting exchange. My never-fail soundtrack … I always choose the music to suit the vibe of the celebration,  so it is never the same: an Indian banquet, for example, might have Ravi Shankar blending into Bollywood soundtracks as the night progresses; a casual barbecue will probably demand breezy Jamaican rocksteady ... African beats are great if you want to dance. 

Marionne De Candia

Facialist / Founder, Mx Skincare

The ingredients to a great party … Set the atmosphere.  I love white roses everywhere, good company, great food, music and wine. What I like comes from my Italian background and reminds me of Italy. My signature drink … Aperol Spritz –  followed by my favourite Stefano Lubiana wines from Tasmania.  I always serve … Spanner crab linguine with lemon, garlic and parsley. Served with toasted ciabatta. My ultimate three guests … Ram Dass for his wisdom and humility, Jane Goodall for her courage and compassion, Keanu Reeves for his kindness and generosity. My never-fail soundtrack … Luke & Sebastian for their mellow acoustic music. Perfect over dinner with interesting conversation. 

Henry Wilson


The ingredients to a great party … Comfort food, good lighting, drinks and no-fuss friends.  My signature drink … (Can’t go past a classic Martini with a Sicilian green olive). I always serve … Cheese and salad at the end of a meal. I hate that we have adopted this idea of eating cheese as a snack before a meal. My ultimate three guests … Lee Mack, Stephen Fry, Jo Brand. My never-fail soundtrack ... Start with Paul Desmond, end with Romare. 

Steven Yatsko

Photographer / Associate Editor, Models.com

The ingredients to a great party ... When everyone has an agenda, and booze. My signature drink … Boddingtons, an Old Fashioned and a shot of tequila if there is dancing. (Dancing, part of the first question). I always serve … Whatever people bring. But I have some wine sitting around.  My ultimate three guests … Jean Reno, Eva Green and my East Village friends who count as one. Oh, and Nathan Fielder.  My never-fail soundtrack ... Anything on Chances with Wolves! 

Daniel Mitchell 

Creative Director, Potato Head Beach Club 

The ingredients to a great party ... Great people and great music on a fantastic sound system.  My signature drink ... Bali arak. My ultimate  three guests ... John Lennon, Alan Watts, Hilda Sembiring. My never-fail soundtrack ... The Stranglers.

Lucinda Rose


The ingredients to a great party … Good people, good music and good food will make any party great. My signature drink … Always a strong Negroni. I always serve … Pizza and prosecco. The perfect union. My ultimate three guests … Someone to bring champagne, someone who likes making cocktails and someone who offers to do the dishes! My never-fail soundtrack ... 70s disco classics.

Mikey Nolan

Co-Founder, Double Rainbouu

The ingredients to a great party … Some big personalities, some wallflowers, a SodaStream, a well stocked fridge, friends who can cook. Good weather always helps get people in the mood if you can arrange it. My signature drink … I just got given a SodaStream for my birthday and I didn’t really know what it was when I unwrapped it, but now I’m really into it, so anything bubbly I guess. I always serve … I’m no wizard in the kitchen so always something really simple on the barbecue. At About Life they have these turmeric chicken skewers that take about 20 seconds to cook, require no plates and are delicious. They are my current go-to.  My ultimate three guests … Just my friends. My never-fail soundtrack … Depends on the type of occasion. Moondog is really good for dinners. Generally I like the sound of good banter, raucous laughter and maybe some Rihanna.

Alys Hale

Model / Musician

The ingredients to a great party … Clever and beautiful guests, strong drinks, strong speakers and strong soundproofing. My signature drink … Champagne. I always serve … Champagne. My ultimate three guests … Friends, lovers and champagne. My never-fail soundtrack ... Severed Heads for dancing then Django Reinhardt for digesting.

Camilla Freeman-Topper

Co-Founder, Camilla and Marc

The ingredients to a great party … An interesting mix of guests from diverse professions and backgrounds. A combination of artists, professionals and creatives plus a politician or two can add a dynamic mix. My signature drink … Margarita. I always serve … Killer cheese platter, that is no ordinary cheese platter. My ultimate three guests … For conversation – Woody Allen or Truman Capote; for entertainment – Kurt Cobain or Madonna; for style – Yves Saint Laurent. My never-fail soundtrack … Classical – Mahler; rock – David Bowie or Nirvana; electronic – Max Cooper. 

Georgina Harding 

Co-Founder, Semaine

The ingredients to a great party … Great food, better wine and even better company.  My signature drink … Negroni – however, I am much better at drinking them than I am at making them. I always serve … Plenty of food, for that second wave of hunger once everyone has had a little bit too much to drink, and ALWAYS a few different desserts. My ultimate three guests … A party-starter, an intellect and a wild card. My never-fail soundtrack …70s disco. Ease the guests in during dinner with something slightly more ambient, then as soon as food is over, 70s disco all the way!

Jill Bauwens

Co-Creative Director, The Kooples

The ingredients to a great party … Happy music, funny friends and tasty drinks!  My signature drink … I live for a good Bellini made with FRESH peach purée (very important!). Peaches are in season now so I like to treat myself with a Bellini at the end of a long day.  I always serve … Very good wines, thanks to my husband, and yummy desserts. My ultimate three guests …Would be Michael Jackson, the Spice Girls and Elton. My never-fail soundtrack ... I leave the music to my husband who knows exactly what I like to hear at what moment. He rarely fails. 

Amy Finlayson

Artist / Director, The Fin Collection

The ingredients to a great party … Great attitudes, good music, open minds and quality drinks. My signature drink … A crisp glass of rosé. I always serve … Rosé ... My ultimate three guests … Andy Warhol, Pablo Picasso and Tracey Emin. My never-fail soundtrack … Sade.

Gail Elliott

Co-Founder and Creative Director,
Little Joe Woman by Gail Elliott

The ingredients to a great party … It’s all about the people you invite as it’s so important to create a relaxed but fun atmosphere … much better to have small gatherings, often! My signature drink … We like to start with champagne and, living in Bali, it’s nice to serve a fresh, pinot grigio or pinot noir sangria. I always serve … We love Mexican food – there’s a lot of preparation involved but once that’s done, it’s fresh, healthy and great for sharing.  My ultimate three guests … Just our friends and family … the people in our lives, people who we love. My never-fail soundtrack … My husband Joe Coffey takes care of the sounds but it’s pretty much a mix of our favourite Spotify playlists.

Marina Cortbawi

Designer, Merlette

The ingredients to a great party … Cocktails and good conversation. My signature drink … Pisco sour. I always serve … Guacamole. My ultimate three guests ... Bill Murray, Yoko Ono, Larry David. My never-fail soundtrack … Prince, Depeche Mode, Talking Heads, Jefferson Starship.