Mexican Fiesta Banquet & Reception Decorating Ideas
Mexican themed banquets and receptions create a colorful and festive setting that is informal and relaxed. The universal appeal of a south of the border themed event makes it a popular choice that everyone can be a part of, while providing a broad range of decorating options.
Colors: In addition to the theme, choose 1 to 4 theme colors to maximize the visual impact and provide continuity throughout the venue. Red, green, and white are Mexico's national colors and are a popular color combination for decorating.
Purple, gold, red, and green are often associated with a Mexican Fiesta, however, you may wish to use plum, gold, salmon, and olive green for a more understated look.
Motifs: Include motifs and icons symbolic of Mexico and Mexican culture. Some easily recognizable items include:
- Mexican Serapes
- Mexican flags
- Chili Peppers
Dining Tables: Banquet and reception dining tables are typically rectangular or round. For round dining tables, create similar or duplicate centerpiece displays for each table. For a rectangular table, you can place a number of theme-related items down the center using a more significant decoration every few chairs. Be sure centerpieces do not obstruct eye contact between guests on opposite sides of the table.
Use a white tablecloth and lay Mexican serapes end-to-end down the center of the tables for a bold statement of cheerful color. Metal saguaro cactus candlesticks add height and the soft glow of candlelight. Space authentic hand-painted Mexican maracas and mini, charro sombreros between the candlesticks. Include Mexican jug and sombrero salt & pepper shakers and/or cactus and sombrero salt & pepper shakers in the center of each table.
Head Table: The head table is usually a rectangular table in the front of the room with the hosts and guests facing the other diners. This table is sometimes more elaborately decorated and should be skirted across the front. You may also decorate the front of the head table with a Mexican flag border or the more subtle Mexican Del Sol flag border.
Entrance: Make a big first impression by decorating the entrance area and reception table with unique touches. Use margarita string lights or chili pepper string lights at the sign-in table or in the reception area. Hang ceramic chili pepper ristras on each side of the doorway into the banquet hall or reception area. Place metal cactus decorations and red, green, and frosted white votive candle holders on the welcome table. Use a rustic cart for gifts instead of a skirted table.
Food: Food service and buffet tables are another way to incorporate fun and unique highlights to your event. Most banquets and receptions offer either hors d'oeuvres passed butler style or an appetizer spread. When passing hors d'oeuvres arrange for Mexican themed centerpieces in some or all of the trays as they are passed, such as the mini charro sombrero. Then, raise the Mexican flag in each hors d'oeuvre or entree with Mexican flag toothpicks.
For an hors d'oeuvre and appetizer food table, create a centerpiece of saguaro cactus candlesticks and a ceramic chili pepper. Place red, frosted white, and green votive candle holders at varying heights between the platters. For a dinner buffet, use red, green, and/or white mini lights or chili pepper string lights.
Bar & Cocktails: If you are using a skirted table for a bar, continue the Mexican theme with the ceramic red chili pepper canister and a few sprinkles of Mexican Ole confetti. Or place a few smaller items, such as, the Mexican wood balero, metal cactus, and/or gecko metal votive candle holder. For an actual bar, just use a single display item along with drink napkins.
Depending upon the size of your crowd, put detailed Mexican-themed cocktail napkins out for display and have the bartenders use red & green beverage napkins for service to reduce costs for a large group.
Ceiling: Decorating the ceiling of your banquet hall or reception area goes a long way in filling the space and making your event unique. Some options to consider are swags of tulle with green, white, and red mini-lights. Mexican flags or large hanging pieces of fabric in red, green, and white. For a fun and uplifting display, hang colorful pinatas from the rafters.
Flowers & Plants: Including the natural element of flowers and plants adds another dimension to your banquet and reception decorations. As large centerpieces or small accents, flowers make a beautiful addition of color and freshness to your event decor. Make your floral displays unique with red, green, and white submersible LED lights that light up the vase holding each arrangement. While strategically placed potted plants give a vast hall a much more comfortable and natural ambiance.
Party Beads: For an extra dose of fun, surprise your guests with party beads in red, green, and white. Use party beads as napkin rings at each place setting or fill a bowl or large martini glass at the reception table and bar. Beads make a great party favor that your guests will enjoy throughout the evening.