Ok, so you are thinking of hosting a poker night at your place.
Let me share some of the tips that I have learned over the years by trial and error. I will try to cover some of the real basics that can help you become a great host and your friends enjoying the game to the fullest.
Hosting a successful poker night may not be as simple as it might appear.
You need to ensure that you have all the necessary tools required to play poker — a proper poker table, cards, chips, etc. You would also need some drinks and snacks. A well-curated jazzy playlist will really set up the mood and keep up the tempo. You might also feel like arranging for some cigars for during or after the game, if some people in your group might enjoy it.
And of course, you need the players.
You can have a game with a small group as well but ideally there should be about 6-8 players to have a good game, so you will need to invite them and coordinate the timings with everyone.
You should try and visualize how would you like to host the poker party right from you opening the door and welcoming your guests.
Do you propose to serve the drinks and snacks right away? Will you have a cut-off time until when you will wait for those coming in late? What will you do for the no-shows? Do you have a backup plan if you run out of snacks or drinks? Do you have a dedicated poker and dining table or will you be using a convertible poker table? Do you have the right sized poker table for the games you might be playing?
A good host should also have a back-up plan for most of such unexpected eventualities.
You might also need to communicate well before the party.
You can email or text a reminder a week in advance, though it might not hurt if you send more than one reminder in the week running up to your planned game night. Once you have decided the date, let all your invites know about it and make sure they mark it up in their calendars and also do send at least a couple of reminder texts or emails before the big night.
Now, if you're inviting just close friends, it is not like that they would get upset in case things do not go smoothly that night. However, if you plan for the eventualities and make sure everything goes off smooth that night, the game would be even more enjoyable.
After all, you planned this night to have a great evening with your friends, isn't it?