Summer is in full swing, with high temps, long days, and no shortage of crammed rooftops. So naturally, we want to book a getaway (or four), spend every evening dining alfresco, and — you guessed it — throw a fun get-together with friends. Thumbing through the internet's how-tos, it may seem like not a lot of work — just whip up a few brightly colored mocktails, fill a patio with glitzy decor, put on a good playlist, and boom, you've got an ideal summer bash. But not so fast. The truth is: Hosting a party so special that people will be talking about it long after your last guest leaves can take some serious planning (not to mention supplies).
Fret not, though, because together with American Express (which just launched its new Cash Magnet Card), we tapped celebrity event planner Karleen Roy to break down a few simple steps any host can take to throw a party that guests — be it work wives, BFFs, or next-door neighbors — will never, ever forget. From thinking up a super-genius theme to plotting impressive (as opposed to cheesy) activities, the party pro's guide covers every single base. Ahead, her six expert tips to pulling off your next big gathering with ease.