10 Fun Company Holiday Party Ideas in NYC
Published by Joshua Hirsch.
Where did the year go? It always feels like time flies when you’re so focused on productivity. Why not thank your team for a job well-done while celebrating your home city? These 10 holiday party ideas will help your NYC team bond — just before it’s time to ring in the new year.
Holiday Party Ideas Tips
- Take a poll to see what everyone in your department wants to do — don’t be the only person in the office who’s interested in your planned activity
- Decide if you want to schedule the party during work hours or in the evening; the holidays are busy for everyone! Plan ahead to ensure everyone can make an after-hours party
- Plan alcohol and non-alcohol related activities to keep things professional (yet still laid-back)
- Consider paying for rideshares or taxis home if the festivities go late
- Opt for an activity that celebrates New York City! Why not take advantage of living and working in one of the greatest cities in the world?
NYC Food Tour
One of the best holiday party ideas to celebrate NYC (and your team) is a food tour. The Big Apple is famous for its iconic foods. Discover the city’s best bagels, pizza, hot dogs and dumplings on a food tour of the city.
We might be biased, but we happen to think this idea is particularly great for companies because you can schedule a food tour during business hours. It’s also pretty versatile. Since we visit stops both indoors and out, we can modify the tour for inclement weather.
If you’re hoping to score a spot at one of the city’s iconic bars this November or December, we recommend booking early! Or, you could always push your holiday party ideas until the new year when things have died down a bit.
Some of the best rooftop bars in NYC for holiday parties include:
- Bar SixtyFive (the bar one level below Top of the Rock)
- The Standard at the High Line
- Metropolitan Museum of Art Rooftop
- Gansevoort Hotel
- Birreria at Eataly
Visitors head to NYC from far and wide to experience one of the city’s most iconic winter activities: ice skating. Luckily, strapping on skates makes for a pretty good holiday party idea, too.
There are several spots for ice skating throughout the city including;
If you have your hearts set on skating at Rockefeller Center, though, we recommend booking after the new year. This rink is so popular that they don’t book large groups during the peak season in December.
Indoor Lawn Games
Just because the weather outside is getting frightful doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy a little summer fun! The Royal Palms Shuffleboard Club will transport to back into summer for a few hours.
Play shuffleboard while listening to either live or recorded music. When you’re hungry, simply walk to one of the food carts and head up to the bar for libations. We love this holiday party idea because it gets your team working together and active — instead of simply sitting at a bar or a restaurant for a few hours.
Chat with your coworkers and enjoy a few cocktails while sailing around the New York Harbor (or up and down the East River), courtesy of Circle Line Cruises.
Sleep No More
One of the most famous shows in NYC, Sleep No More is an interactive play that will transport you and your team straight into the plot of “Hamlet.” It also happens to be one of the most unique holiday party ideas on this list.
Divide into groups and wander the Mckittrick Hotel’s over 100 rooms. Stop and watch the show, or take a break in the bar. Create a scavenger hunt to help your team completely immerse themselves in the experience.
City-Wide Scavenger Hunt
Want to explore more of the city? Investigate every nook and cranny with a scavenger hunt. Create one especially for your team — or get Watson Adventures to build one for you.
Does your team love movies and TV shows? Build a scavenger hunt around your favorite spots from “Friends,” “How I Met Your Mother,” “Ghostbusters” and more. If you love music, you can always stop by bars and clubs made famous by Blondie, the Ramones and Lady Gaga.
Dyker Heights Bus Tour
If you really want to get into the holiday spirit, we recommend heading down to one of the biggest residential holiday light displays in the city.
Since the 1980s, the residents of Dyker Heights, Brooklyn, have been covering their homes in lights, animatronic Santas and glowing reindeer. On select weekends, there are refreshments and live music. A Slice of Brooklyn (most well-known for its famous pizza tours) takes visitors to Dyker Heights on a coach bus.
Your teammates will learn all about the history of South Brooklyn before getting to the neighborhood for the main event: blocks and blocks of lights!
New York Botanical Gardens
Each year, the New York Botanical Gardens transforms their grounds into a winter wonderland. Outdoor displays are covered in lights, and a miniature train chugs its way through recreations of famous NYC buildings and landmarks — all made of natural materials.
There’s even a bar with beer, wine and hard hot cocoa. Listen to carolers singing your favorite songs and cozy up near the heat lamps.
We recommend coupling this excursion with dinner or hours devours on nearby Arthur Avenue, otherwise known as the ‘real’ Little Italy in the Bronx. Better yet, why not schedule a food tour of the area?
Dinner and a Movie
If you’d rather just relax a little, why not schedule dinner and a movie for your group? You can eat dinner before the movie — or, rent out a theater that will feed you while you watch the movie in a private theater.
Nighthawk Cinema and Syndicated Bar Theatre and Kitchen both specialize in culinary/cinematic experiences. The best part? You can choose a current run film or an oldie but goodie. And if you book a private party, your team won’t get shushed when Bruce Willis defeats Hans Gruber.