Expert Tips for Planning a Bridal Shower at Toronto’s Top Venues

When it comes to planning a bridal shower, there’s no shortage of details to consider. From the venue to guest count to menu options and décor, whether you’re hosting or helping to organize, the process can easily become overwhelming. To help quell the planning stress, O&B’s expert event specialists are sharing their tips for ensuring your shower goes off without a hitch, plus their venue picks for every type of bride-to-be.

What's the vibe?

When looking into spaces to host a bridal shower, figure out who will be attending and what you need out of your chosen venue. Will it accommodate your guest count? Will it feel empty if your gathering is on the smaller side? If you have older guests attending, is it accessible and will they feel comfortable in the space? If the bride-to-be is looking for something girly, an airy space with lots of light will easily achieve a feminine vibe. Depending on the season, a terrace or outdoor space might also be worth considering as part of your wish list.

For the Instagram influencer bride, O&B suggests: Beaumont Kitchen

Does size matter?

Big or small, busy or intimate, there’s really no hard-and-fast rule when it comes to guest count for a bridal shower. If your bride-to-be has a big family and you are looking to host a larger crowd, ensure you consider the budget, especially when menu planning. A seated affair and coursed meal will run you more than a mix and mingle-type gathering with passed canapés. Whichever direction you choose, you’ll want to consider the type of atmosphere you’re looking to create first and foremost and then consider what details are required to pull it off for the size of your event.

For the King West girlie, O&B suggests: Luma

To brunch or not to brunch?

When it comes to timing, our event experts give brunch (or lunch!) a big thumbs up. By hosting an event earlier in the day, it can end at a reasonable hour, which is especially appreciated by guests when it comes to a weekend celebration. An earlier event also takes a bit of the pressure off as there’s a tad less formality. Your guests can still enjoy a drink or two with mimosas and lighter cocktails or enjoy a delicious non-alcoholic refresher. You don’t want to host a mini wedding, so maybe leave the seated dinner party to the day the couple says ‘I do’.

For the French Riviera honeymooner, O&B suggests: Maison Selby

Don’t let it drag!

As is often the case for bridal showers, Sunday is a popular day to host. What can easily get overlooked in the planning process is the tendency of your event to drag on. Regardless of when you’re hosting, but especially when it comes to a Sunday, be considerate and try to keep your event relatively short and sweet. Many guests may be travelling to your venue, so consider the time they are taking out of their day to do so and what’s required of their return trip. Keeping the shower to a reasonable length will allow attendees to enjoy your celebration and still tend to their weekend responsibilities — the best of both worlds.

For the Italian carb connoisseur, O&B suggests: Parcheggio

Don’t try to do it all yourself

With so many venue options in Toronto, how do you know you’re selecting a space that stands out from the rest? Do your research when it comes to food and quality of service and go with a reputable company that does both exceptionally well, as is the case for O&B venues. A true one-stop shop, O&B takes care of all the details so you’re not spending hours sourcing rentals and having to set everything up on time. From tables and chairs to linens, staff and custom menus, O&B does it all. Do yourself a favour and take the pain out of planning!

For the Emily in Paris wannabe, O&B suggests: Biff’s Bistro

Remember, it’s a party!

There are a lot of little touches that can add to the bridal shower experience, such as the incredibly popular floral wall, favours, or other photo opp stations. Besides these add-ons, don’t be afraid to get creative and think beyond the traditional! No one likes a stuffy (and sometimes boring) event…give your guests something to talk about! The O&B events team recently hosted a bridal shower and arranged a DJ to spin some fun music (think lots of disco!) for around two hours post-lunch. Needless to say, everyone loved it and the celebratory feel had the room smiling from ear-to-ear.

For the salsa dancing queen, O&B suggests: Leña

For more venue inspiration, visit our event page.

Illustrations by Amanda Cavacas

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