Living room ideas for entertaining - 10 of the best

If you're the sociable type then chances are your living room will be the centre of your home entertaining space. Check out our design ideas to make the most of it... For more ideas visit

Supper parties, birthdays and more relaxed gatherings – whatever the occasion, when you invite guests into your home, you’ll want a smart living room that’s dressed ready for their arrival.

Love to have a sing-along at parties? You’ll need to dust off the piano that has recently become a sideboard in the corner of your living room! Draw attention to such a piece with statement lighting, such as a chandelier, or illuminated decorative letter lights that spell out ‘Love’.

Minimalists with an unfussy white living room and gloss white storage cupboards can easily add a little shimmer with decorations as simple as a string door curtain. Or replace lampshades with glass pendants that will sparkle as they catch the light.

If it’s a special occasion then you can really let your imagination run wild with a glamorous room design. Add velvet or faux fur throws, or perhaps even splash out on a new sofa such as a sumptuous modern take on a Chesterfield design.

Go for a contemporary sofa colour such as rich plum or purple against a white backdrop for maximum effect. Quirky pieces such as a vintage gramophone or a film-set style standard lamp will really set the scene.

If a gramophone is a little too vintage for your style, bring out the record player (or mixing decks) instead. Proudly display your vinyl, books and CDs on wall-to-wall shelving that will make your treasured music collection a colourful feature. Decorate walls with a display of your favourite album covers in contemporary white frames.

1/10 Decorate your living room for entertaining

white wall with chair in living room

(Image credit: TBC)

Take a browse through our gallery of beautiful design ideas and find inspiration for your next party.

Contemporary white living room with shimmer curtain
Wipe-clean surfaces. Check. Minimalist decor. Check. This living room design idea is the perfect pad for party people. Watch you don't pull down the shimmer curtain, mind!

Similar shimmer curtain

2/10 Living room with entertaining area and food platters

living room with pillows and candle

(Image credit: TBC)

Have guests, need cushions. And LOTS of them. Be inspired by this living room design idea and create the setting for an intimate soirée with mood lighting and artfully placed bowls of tear bread (how terribly bourgeois!).

Similar cushion

3/10 Glamorous living room with grand piano and chandelier

living room with door and piano

(Image credit: TBC)

This rather glamorous living room design idea harks back to simpler days when all you needed to entertain your guests was a pianoforte and a corseted lady with a half-decent set of pipes...

Similar chandelier

4/10 Dramatic movie-themed living room with moody lighting

living room with chairs and teapoy

(Image credit: Future PLC/Emma Lee)

There's nothing like a living room design idea with a bit of mood lighting and an old-fashioned gramophone to get the party started...

Living Space
Julian Chichester

5/10 Stone and wood open-plan living room

living room with wooden flooring and teapoy

(Image credit: Future PLC/Mark Luscombe-Whyte)

Wide open spaces, a polished wooden floor and stunning views make this living room ready to party in less than 60 seconds. Which is significantly less time than we take to get ready...

Chaise longue and sofa
Antonio Citterio at Aram

6/10 Large open-plan living room with tiled floor and balloons

living room with white wall and peacock statue

(Image credit: TBC)

tiled floor in the living room is your friend when your home is a party pad. It's much easier for your cleaner to wipe up spillages afterwards... Oh, and balloons are good, too.

Similar flooring

7/10 Rich modern living room with mini bar

living room with mini bar and chair

(Image credit: Future PLC/Matthew Williams)

Ah yes, the living room mini bar - the beleaguered mainstay of many a home-spun party. Thankfully, this design idea is more hotel chic than Del Boy. Although we're not sure about the taxidermy on the wall...

Similar cabinet

8/10 Vintage-style living room with upright piano

living room with upright piano and world globe

(Image credit: Future PLC/Mel Yates)

This living room design idea has got good old-fashioned knees-up written all over... Although in actual fact it has LOVE written all over it. In light. Which is WAY cooler.

Similar chair
Lloyd Loom of Spalding

9/10 Party living room with DJ decks and vinyl records

party living room with dj decks and vinyl records

(Image credit: TBC)

If your living room design doesn't include DJ decks and a feature wall full of achingly cool vinyl then you have not arrived.

Similar shelving

10/10 Traditional-style living room with bar area

traditional style living room with bar area

(Image credit: Future PLC/Robert Sanderson)

Maybe it's the stools, but there's something a little bit hotel bar about this living-room design idea. Not that we're complaining...

Bar stools
Roche Bobois
Bar design
Henrietta Holroyd

Looking for decorating ideas? Head over to our dedicated bedroomliving room and kitchen channels.


Tamara was Ideal Home's Digital Editor before joining the Woman & Home team in 2022. She has spent the last 15 years working with the style teams at Country Homes & Interiors and Ideal Home, both now at Future PLC. It’s with these award wining interiors teams that she's honed her skills and passion for shopping, styling and writing. Tamara is always ahead of the curve when it comes to interiors trends – and is great at seeking out designer dupes on the high street.