Start a week early
Do a dummy run and cook the entire meal the week before, then avoid the dishes that will keep you away from your guests. The best dishes are small bites that can be prepared up to a week in advance, put in the freezer and then baked the day of your gathering.
De-fluff the sofa
We all know Dubai is a dusty city, but your home should be spotless before everyone arrives. Make sure your floors are sparkling and vacuum the sofa for all traces of cat hair.
Count your chairs
Your next step is to consider who your guests are – will they get on? Be sure to avoid combinations that will end up in a brawl over the baba ganoush.
Hold the steak
Make sure your guests can eat everything you plan to serve – some seemingly innocent treats, such as marshmallows, contain gelatin, so think twice before peppering your dessert with them. With the cultural diversity of Dubai, it’s important to know if any of your guests have any speciific health, religious or dietary requirements. If you’re unsure, just ask.
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Avoid bathroom trouble
Make sure yours is clean and well-stocked throughout the night. You really don’t want a messy bathroom with a dirty sink, towels that aren't fresh or an empty bottle of soap. How embarrassing!
Music is a minefield
Music sets the tone! Pre-drinks can be served to lounge-style music, then during dinner, it’s best to go for light jazz or soft piano, so people can talk around the table. Post dinner can be a little more upbeat, but it also depends on the age group and the reason for your dinner.
Ice, ice baby!
Have plenty of ice and glasses. You’ll need more than you think! Make sure you have three glasses at the table for each guest, but have another two spare per person (that’s 30 glasses for six guests). Washing glasses while you’re entertaining is not fun.
Remember, entertaining at home has implications such as spillages and noise control, so it’s always good to have an after-party venue in mind should you need or want to move the party on.