How to Host a Party in a Small Apartment

Noah wondered: How can I host an apartment party in my small space?

He lives in a 475 square foot studio apartment in a big skyscraper building in Chicago.

In this article, you’ll see how Noah hosted a cocktail party for his friends and colleagues inside his small apartment.

You should definitely do these things to plan an apartment party:

  • Collect RSVPs
  • Buy supplies 1 week in advance
  • Send reminder messages
  • Designate a place for coats and bags
  • Use welcome signs

Keep reading for more information on all of those, plus see photos and videos from Noah’s party and a floor plan of his apartment layout.

Why you should trust this article: My name is Nick Gray and I’ve helped over 50 people learn how to host house parties and apartment parties. I have a simple, easy method to help you host an awesome event just like Noah did.

Small Apartment Party: How to Do It

As a high-level overview, here’s what you should do:

Plan in advance

Plan your party at least 3 weeks in advance (the party runway!)

Collect RSVPs

Make a simple RSVP page to collect RSVPs (use one of these platforms).

Scroll down a few sections to see the RSVP that Noah used for his apartment party.

Noah and his friends in his first apartment party
Noah, far right corner, and all of his friends in a group selfie at his first cocktail party.

Buy supplies

You should purchase name tags, plastic cups (or alternate options), Sharpie markers, and other supplies at least 1 week in advance.

Send reminder messages

Send three reminder messages leading up to the party. You can see info and templates here.

Video Interview

Watch this video to hear from Noah about how his party went and what he learned.

Apartment Floor Plan

Here’s the layout of Noah’s apartment which is a total of 475 square feet:

Noah's apartment floor plan where he hosted his first cocktail apartment party
Layout of Noah’s tiny apartment for his party

During the party, Noah cleared out the coffee table from the Living / Dining room so there would be more space for people to congregate. He didn’t have anywhere easy to put this, so he just turned it upside down and placed it on his bed inside his bedroom.

Party Photos

These are some photos that we grabbed from Noah’s video tour of his apartment, which we’ll share below.

Welcome Signs

Other Photos

Small Apartment Party Video Tour

See this video that Noah filmed walking around his apartment during the party:

What worked well?

Here are things that Noah said worked really well at his apartment party:

  • Every single one of the people who said “Yes” on the RSVP attended.
  • Moving the coffee table out of the living room, and putting it onto my bed (upside down). This helped to make more space.
  • Welcome signs! Noah followed the book’s advice to help make signs that gave visitors important information as they exited the elevator to find his apartment.
  • Candle in the bathroom! “This felt really nice and added a good atmosphere to my home.”
  • It was pretty crowded the entire time: we had 18 people. That’s the most people I have had inside my apartment at one time.

Noah’s Party Invitation

This is a screenshot of the actual invitation that Noah used to invite people to his party and collect the RSVPs.


Here’s what Noah said about the experience:

No apartment is ever perfect, and even if that was an attainable goal, people are not coming for the apartment, they are coming for the human connection with friends old and new alike.

So, on March 15, 2022, I hosted my first cocktail party in a 475 sq ft. apartment. I had serious apprehensions about the space, but Nick promised me that it would work. I trusted him, and it turned out better than I could have imagined, with 19 people in attendance. For my next party, I am expecting 30!

I just wanted to say thank you so much to Nick for all your help over the last few weeks leading up to my first party. Your book is fantastic, and your 1:1 coaching on email made it even better. I really appreciate the impact this meaningful work has had on my life. I’m ready to schedule my next party and looking forward to continuing to hone my party skills and pay it forward to others!

Are you planning an apartment party in a small space? Check out my book for a step-by-step guide on how to make your party a success.

What you should do next...

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About the author

Howdy! I'm Nick Gray. Most people know me as the Founder of Museum Hack. I wrote a book, The 2-Hour Cocktail Party, about making new friends and building big relationships through small gatherings.