by Kaylee Hultgren | November 01, 2007

illustrationTo make your year-end bash stand out, Bess Devenow, director of special events at Ripe (, a New York City-based luxury planning and lifestyle concierge firm, offers these tips.

Break the mold. Try planning an atypical outing, like scotch tasting with a noted expert or a private tour in an art gallery.

Book late. If you’re set on a place that is booked solid, throw an “extending the holiday season” fete in January. Post-season prices should be better, too.

Involve the crowd. To inspire even the wallflowers to socialize, Devenow suggests adding interactive elements, such as make-your-own hot-beverage bars and cookie decorating.

Hop around. If your group is on the smaller side, consider sampling a few different venues (three is probably enough).