Do you remember how excited you got about your birthday as a youngster? As we get older this excitement tends to dwindle, at least a little. Yet there is something about those BIG birthdays that return us to the days of our youth.

But forget the ice cream and jelly.

Our 40th and 50th birthday is an excuse to get our friends and family together for some great food and just a few drinks. It is no surprise that these landmark birthdays are often one of our biggest and most exciting life events.

But getting your BIG birthday right takes a little strategic planning. With plenty of experience in planning and hosting great nights out, here are our tips for throwing the ultimate BIG birthday in Oxford this year.

Plan, plan, plan

It isn’t every day that you reach a landmark birthday. So, for this very special occasion, a bit of planning will be required. What you need to plan depends widely on the scale and complexity of the party you will be throwing.

Firstly, you will want to work out exactly who you will be inviting. Not only does this let you give people plenty of notice of your upcoming event but it also allows you to better understand the size and type of venue you will need to book.

birthday balloons

Deciding on the theme or tone of the party will also help with the venue choice. Ask yourself:

  • Will it be smart or casual?
  • Is there going to be food?
  • Will you want people to dance?
  • What type of drinks will people want to drink?
  • How late will you want to be partying?

Once you have created your guest list and you have answered some of the questions above, you put yourself in a good position to start looking for a great venue to host your party.

Booking your venue

You may well decide that your party will be best hosted at home. However, doing so can lead to a lot of stress related to getting everything ready on time. You also risk overzealous party guests breaking or damaging some of your beloved belongings or spilling drinks on your floors and tables…

…don’t even get us started on the major clean-up operation the following day.

So, many people decide to host their party at a dedicated and professional venue. This allows you to relax and let them deal with the stress and risk associated with planning a big party. It also takes the guesswork out of ‘how much booze should we provide’ and gives people options on which beverages they want to enjoy.

Do everything sooner

We can’t move our birthday. Therefore, when it comes to making plans for your birthday it is better to sort everything as soon as possible. This includes booking the venue on a date which is as conveniently close to your birthday as possible and ensuring that you give all your guests the most possible notice of when your event will be held.

birthday drinks

Consider birthday gifts

A big birthday often means big gifts.

It is a good idea to give your guests some guidance on what you would love to receive. Making gifts memorable can be done in a number of different ways. For example, you may ask everyone to contribute to one large gift or experience such as an exciting holiday.

If you already have everything you want in life, you could always use your birthday as an opportunity to raise money for a charity or cause close to your heart. Alternatively, you could really get the party started by asking everyone to put their gift money behind the bar.


Here at The Varsity Club, we help you celebrate your BIG birthday in style. By offering the perfect private hire party space, our professional staff and relaxed atmosphere lets you create an event to remember. For a limited time, we are also offering those who book private hire for their 40th or 50th with us 4 or 5 bottles of Bottega Gold prosecco to get the party started.