The ability to host an enjoyable party is truly a gift. It shows an appreciation for friends, food and booze, and forgiving that guest who accidentally cracks your faberge egg. But there’s more to hosting an awesome party than being gracious. It requires stuff. Very cool stuff. Even the best of hosts need some new cool stuff at times. And so we present the best party gift ideas for men this holiday season, broken out by price (Gala = expensive; Cocktail Party = mid-range; Block Party = inexpensive). Party on.
Rocking PacMan Bench – $25,000
The relationship between PacMan and Blinky would have been very different if they’d been sitting on a rocking bench instead of running through a maze. An homage to balance and opposition, the PacMan bench requires each sitter to trust the others in order to function. In other words, Blinky wouldn’t survive without PacMan and vice versa. Perhaps this bench won’t change the outcome of epic battles between enemies, but it will make the living room the most fun room in the house. It requires at least two people to activate the see-saw motion and is guaranteed to entertain anyone who sits in it.
Patio Table with Built-in Cooler– $485
Going inside to retrieve more cold beverages or food when the party is outside is the job that no one wants. So much can happen in that time: The best joke might be told; Doug might do his ostrich impression; Doug might do any number of other weird things that Doug likes to do that no one wants to miss. Eliminate the fear of missing out and the need to get up for a refill with this picnic table with inlaid cooler. The center trough can keep everything from beverages to a raw bar chilled and within reach. Doug and the rest of the guests will be ever grateful.
Cast Iron Dish Fire Pit – $398
The harnessing of fire, man’s greatest achievement. It continues to play an important role for humanity, not to mention outdoor entertaining. Guests forced to endure a party with no source of warmth are guests who won’t come back. This sleek cast iron fire pit will keep guests from getting frosty both physically and emotionally. It can be placed on a three-legged stand or directly on the ground and, over time, will develop a patina as a protective barrier that will preserve its integrity.
Bose SoundLink Mini Bluetooth Speaker II – $179.95
A good sound system is key to a successful party. It keeps the tunes cranking while helping drown out the annoying friend of a friend that will inevitably show up. The SoundLink Mini Bluetooth speaker II delivers a fuller and deeper sound than its compact size suggests. Small enough to fit in the palm of a hand, this wireless speaker easily connects to a smartphone, tablet or other Bluetooth device so it can go wherever the party ends up. There’s a good chance the rechargeable battery, which powers the speaker for up to 10 hours, will outlast most guests.
Swissmar Swivel Raclette – $150
Ah, the Swiss, those masters of chocolate, cheese, timekeeping and neutrality. But that’s not all they have to offer—they are also pros at having friends over for a memorable evening of food and festivity. How, you ask? With a raclette grill. Raclette cooking is a time-honored tradition in Switzerland, where pals gather ‘round the grill, chatting, drinking and cooking together. This swivel raclette has two levels and can grill nearly everything (sorry, chocolate, your domain remains the fondue pot). Food cooks on the top level while cheese melts in the trays below, creating a tasty meal for all before the cuckoo clock strikes the hour.
Game Night Crate – $99.99
Any successful party host knows that guests can not live by food and drink alone. Well they technically can, but guests these days are demanding. They also want fun. And games. Enter the Game Night Crate. It’s got three games—Codenames, Boss Monster and The Resistance—that can keep anywhere from 2 to 10 players amused, as well as some gourmet snacks to keep the crowd in tip-top playing form.
Ammo Can Poker Set – $99.99
Some trace the beginnings of poker to a domino-card game played by a 10th century Chinese emperor; others believe it to be from the Persian card game called “As Nas.” In the US, it is traced back to the French game “Poque,” which eventually made its way to the New Orleans area where, like many things, it got slightly disheveled and emerged a bit different. Since then, poker night has been a mainstay on the party circuit and a great way to get the gang together and take their money. The Ammo Can Poker Set has two decks of custom playing cards and 300 casino-weight chips and is one of the best entertaining gifts for men.
Pizza Grilling Crate – $99.99
Pizza has so much going for it: it’s tasty, easy to eat and great for a party with all those finger-friendly slices. But, make no mistake, partygoers have a scale of pizza perception. Oven baked is totally legit. Delivery is a cop out. Frozen is just a party foul. Now, to really get guests shouting “mama mia,” grilled pizza is the way to go. To get a taste of your friends’ culinary creativity, you can even throw a Make Your Own Pizza Party. From Passione Pizza Flour to a foldable wooden peel, The Pizza Grilling Crate has all the ingredients needed to serve up the perfect pie.
Spin! Eat! Win! This carnival-inspired lazy Susan puts a new spin on passing the meatballs. The maple wheel, with vintage colors and carnival spinner graphics, allows guests to pass small dishes and condiments while playing games (either from the included game sheet or from one’s own imagination) using the numbers and phrases on the wheel. This is one hard-working lazy Susan.
Naturally Chilling Ceramic Ice Bucket – $79.95
Hot ice cubes will definitely ruin a party. This award-winning ceramic ice bucket will keep things cooler longer with its natural insulation—by running it under cold water for 90 seconds, its exterior will absorb the water, which will slowly evaporate to keep ice chilled for up to four hours.
Lacquer Serving Tray – $69
Sometimes it’s just best to give a practical gift. Sure, shiny things are fun and state-of-the-art gadgets are exciting, but many times they lose their appeal after a few weeks and end up at the back of a shelf, never again to see the light of day. But practical gifts, the ones that make day-to-day life simpler, have true staying power. Trays are practical. They’re great for serving cocktails or food and make entertaining and post-party cleanup easy. These lacquer trays are brilliant in their practicality. They are also bright and cheery with a glossy coating that keeps them protected from spills and stains.
Old Fashioned Popcorn Popper – $39.99
The discerning guest palate does not want simple microwave popcorn for a snack. No! They want the authentic, freshly popped, non-nuked popcorn. This old-fashioned popper will be able to fill that bill with ease. It’s fun and easy and won’t beep annoyingly when done.
Road Trip Placemat Pad – $21.99
Everyone loves a good road trip. It’s filled with adventure and fun and weird roadside attractions—giant dinosaurs, the world’s tallest thermometer and waffle houses! Sadly, you can’t take a whole party on the road—liabilities, folks—but you can bring the road to the party. These tear-off placemats with images of vintage roadside signs will dress up the table in old-fashioned Americana while keeping it clean.
Couch Guest Book – $14.95
The party may be over, but the memories of a fun evening will last and last. Although sometimes memories can be cloudy, especially after a particularly good party. With prompts and space for artistic expression, this guest book allows partygoers to share their thoughts for posterity and help prevent beautiful memories from fading too soon.
Drawful 2 – $8.99
Sometimes parties hit a lull. The energy dies down a bit, there’s a palpable awkwardness and that snobby neighbor threatens to leave. Well, all it takes to get the good times rolling again is Drawful 2. It’s an outrageous online game that lets up to eight players draw their way to endless fun using their smartphones or mobile devices. With 50% more prompts, bonus score streaks, Twitter sharing, censoring and a family-friendly mode, this new version is a drawfully good improvement that party people will love. We got next.
Check out more gift guides for every guy.