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Exciting and New: a Love Boat Party!

In the mood for some disco-era decadence?  Set a course for adventure or set your mind on a new romance with a Love Boat party.  Just like the show, make it a night of high-kitsch capers and craziness.

Love Boat Party Invitations

For invites to your Love Boat party, try a tri-fold travel brochure, something low-tech and lovely you’d have found in a travel agency at the time.  Borrow lyrics from the Love Boat theme to set the mood, and be sure to include an itinerary, a list of ship-board amenities, and a suggested packing list for appropriate cruise wear.

What to Wear to a Love Boat Party

A Love Boat party is essentially a unique spin on a ’70s party, so your cruisers should dress accordingly.  To help them, create a “packing list” and divide the recommendations by gender and occasion, so guests have plenty of options to choose from.   You may also want to provide photo examples.  1. DAYWEAR A) On deck: ladies- mini or maxi dresses, belted pantsuits; gentlemen- crisp, white shorts (fitted, above the knee), neat polo shirts, protective eyewear B) Poolside: ladies- casually elegant fashion swimwear and sarongs, large-brim sun hats, platform sandals; gentlemen- your best racing briefs, plenty of sunscreen, thongs or deck shoes 2. EVENINGWEAR: ladies- disco dresses, tasteful makeup; gentlemen- social suit, modest jewelry.

Midnight Cruise Buffet!

Cruises are famous for their oodles of food, and the mythical Love Boat was no exception, so bring on the buffet!  Stock yours with pretty appetizers, champagne, a punch fountain, shrimp cocktail, and specialty desserts on stands: store-bought petits fours, giant brownies, berry displays, mini cheesecakes, mousse in chocolate cups, butter mints.  Bonus points for an ice sculpture!  You can buy simple molds at restaurant supply stores.

Cruise Party Atmosphere

Remember to divide and conquer your space by choosing sub-themes.  Some ideas: dining room/lounge with bar area, rented cocktail tables, polyester tablecloths, and candles; a passenger cabin dressed with a horrible bedspread, tacky art, and travel toiletries; a pool and deck area with lawn chairs, towels, sunscreen, signs, books, and flip flops.  In inbetween spaces hang destination posters for ports of call.  Create and set out fake newsletters with activities and shore excursions, spa packages, etc.  And, you can’t have too many nautical bits and pieces, like life preservers, oars, and blue and white accouterments.  For an over-the-top touch, create ship “signage” and post freely.

Theme Music

Music and sound effects will go a long way in selling your Love Boat theme party.  Assemble a collection of songs from the day and mix it with atmospheric instrumentals with ’70s arrangements.  You’ll need to rely heavily on sound effects, since the cruise ship theme is so fanciful.  Set up individual players in key locations where you can loop crowds, cheers, splashing, wind, glasses clinking, and sea gulls.

Love Boat Extras

If you think your guests can handle it, arrange for a couple of cheesy activities.  Start off easy by passing out confetti or paper streamers for guests to throw when new people “board the ship.”  Then set up an ongoing game of shuffle board in the kitchen or even initiate a conga line when everyone’s feeling festive.


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One Response to “Exciting and New: a Love Boat Party!”

  1. This sounds fun! Do you have any photos?

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