If you have a sun shade, there’s a good chance Christmas is at your place this year – and for good reason. Sun shade systems are the best way to make everyone happy and comfortable, making for an enjoyable Christmas Day for all.

For all of you shade owners, we have come up with some hosting tips that will help you make the most of your pergola this Christmas. And from everyone at Undercover Industries, Mount Maunganui’s shade cover specialist, we wish you a safe and happy holiday season!

Open Up the Space Under your Pergola

If the area under your sun shade is set up for a family of four, you’re going to have to rearrange to create additional space under the shade to accommodate your guests. Remove furniture that you don’t need and bring out the extra folding chairs stowed away in the garage; put some floor cushions out for the kids and move bulky planters to the lawn.

Prepare for the Weather

While a sunny Christmas is what we’re hoping for here in Tauranga, the reality is some years the weather gods just don’t play ball. The beauty of a pergola is that you can host Christmas outside regardless of sun, wind or rain.

If sunshine is in the forecast, the sun shade will do most of the work for you, but make sure your guests are taken care of by providing plenty of fluids for when people venture out from under the awning. If it’s looking wet, you might want to get the outdoor blinds set up and make sure all seating is well under cover. You don’t need to worry about wearing sunscreen as our pergola systems offer 99.99% UV protection.

Try Family Style

Our favourite way to host Christmas Day is to set up the food in the kitchen family style. Let people serve themselves inside before bringing their plates out to enjoy at the outdoor dining table under the sun shade. There are so many benefits of family style – the food is kept out of the hot sun and away from the flies, clean-up is easier, and the host can take a break too.

Have a Drinks Station

We love the idea of setting up a drinks station for your guests with a variety of options to choose from. If you have lots of room under the pergola, an outdoor drink cart is convenient, but feel free to keep this in the kitchen too. Offer some NZ Christmas Day staples like beer, punch and water, add a festive specialty drink like eggnog, and of course keep everyone hydrated with plenty of water. It’s the little touches like these that make Christmas memorable.

Decorate Your Outdoor Space

Bring some festive cheer to your pergola with candles and lights, potted plants and, if you’re really keen, a mistletoe. You can opt for full-on festive with ornaments and colourful Christmas lights or keep it simple with some delicate fairy lights.

Plan Some Activities

With your Undercover Industries sun shade, we’re betting that your guests are going to stay well past lunch time. Have some activities planned, especially for the kids. Get some board games out, dust off that old petanque set and make sure the cricket bat is on hand.

Merry Christmas!

From the whole team at Undercover Industries, Merry Christmas. We hope you have a wonderful and safe holiday season, and put that sun shade system to good use!