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It might have been a while since you've hosted your last dinner party. If you're gearing up for it, you may find all the planning required a little bit . . . confronting.
While there are some things that only you can do, there's a lot more that can be done by other people.
For example, even if you like to cook, hiring a private chef to take the pressure off and let you focus on enjoying your guests' company (and the 8,000 other things you have to plan) might start to sound a good idea, doesn't it?
If you don't like to cook, it could be the secret that launched a thousand dinner parties.
So if you're looking at private chefs in Perth - or anywhere you are, for that matter - consider this list of potential benefits:
1. Spend more time with your guests
Even for those who love to cook, preparing the food for your own dinner party may mean you end up missing the whole thing.
If you hire a private chef, not only will you feel less pressure, you'll get to spend more time with your guests before, during and after the meal!
Studies have shown that a robust social network is a better predictor of your well-being than data from a fitness tracker. So why not find a way to make your dinner parties reinforce your social ties with friends and family? (1)
2. Try some more adventurous food
Maybe there's something you're particularly keen to try, whether it's sushi or a soufflé, that you just don't feel ready to tackle. Hiring a private chef is a great way to pick the food based on what you want to have, not if you know how to make it.
3. It can be cheaper than an expensive night out
It makes sense that a meal at a restaurant costs more - you're paying for the space, the time and the labour of all those involved. One estimate suggests that half the price you pay per dish goes to something other than the price of the ingredients. So if a steak is USD$30, $15 of that is paying for everything that's not beef.
If you hire a private chef, there are still costs involved beyond ingredients, of course, but not nearly what you'd be paying for a night out in town.
4. Stay in your own space
There are all kinds of reasons why you and your guests might feel more comfortable staying in your own space rather than going out to a restaurant.
You don't need to worry about navigating the city streets and laneways, and you can rest assured that your children are tucked away safely in their beds (and you can check on them in a pinch).
5. Take some of the planning off your plate
Just like you might get some help in your garden or handling a pool, it makes sense to get some expert assistance when it comes to planning and executing your next dinner party menu.
With the cooking out of your mind, you can focus on the many, many other things that need to be taken care of.
What else is there to plan?
A lot, actually. A month or so out, you'll want to focus on things that take some lead time. For example, picking a theme that's seasonal but exciting.
It doesn't need to be fancy dress, but don't be afraid to get creative. You'll also want to plan the flow for the party-how you'll get from cocktails, to dinner to drinks afterwards.
Finally, figuring out a date and sending out some invitations also takes time and energy. (2)
Once you're a couple of weeks out, consider the ambiance. Decor and music need to match the mood, and you should consider the seating arrangements and get any decorations for the place settings ready. (2)
As the party approaches, make sure you dedicate enough time to clean (everything) and rearrange the furniture as needed. Take a walk-through of your space to make sure you've put everything away that might not be worth showing off to your nearest and dearest. (2)
Finally, when the day comes, make sure you're ready and grab flowers or any other decorations that need to be fresh. Your private chef will help ensure that this is the only thing you need to be worried about. (2)
If even one of the benefits listed above strikes you as intriguing, a private chef is worth considering for your next dinner party. While they can't make conversation with your guests or enjoy the evening for you, those are likely things you can take care of yourself!
1. "Why Spending Time With Friends Is One of the Best Things You Can Do for Your Health", Source: Social support health benefits
2. "Planning a Dinner Party: Your Checklist", Source: Planning a dinner party