Things To Do

Get Your Iso-Party On With 7 Epic Ideas For Birthday Celebrations In Quarantine

By Ava Wardecki

A doughnut with a candle

Has Lockdown thrown your birthday bash out of the window? Not to worry, Urban List has got your back. 

Our birthday gift to you—be it early or late—is a handy little guide on how to celebrate your birthday self-isolation-style. Sure you might’ve cancelled that restaurant reservation and pulled the plug on a raging house party, but by no means should you miss out on having a ball by yourself or with your bubble.

Get ready to give house party an entirely new meaning, here’s how to celebrate your birthday in isolation during lockdown.

Treat Yourself

First things first, food: the centrepiece of all birthday celebrations. 

  • Cheeseboard—Supermarkets and dairies being open over lockdown mean you’re only a line away from the cheeses, dips, crackers and charcuterie you need to style a killer cheese platter. For those less inclined to get out of their dressing gowns, we recommend hitting up these local legends who are delivering during lockdown.
  • Breakfast in bed—if this ritual isn’t already part of your isolation morning routine, that is. Enjoy the simple pleasures, and start your special day snug under the covers, while sinking teeth into a buttery pastry or doughy slice of bread, warm brew in tow. 
  • Boozy Brunch—Between pancakes (here’s a recipe btw), french toast, crumpets, toasties, eggs in all their glorious forms, fresh fruits and the preserves in the pantry, you can lay out quite the birthday brunch spread for your bubble. Or leave it up to the professionals to deliver their goodies. As for the booze? Keep on reading folks, we’re getting to that... 

CakeCake Time

Of course, you can’t forget a trusty birthday cake on your big day. If you’re a kitchen whizz (and are willing to part with a cup or two of flour in these scarce times) why not whip out the whisk and cake tin and bake your own creation. Or leave the baking to a bubble mate—it’s your birthday after all. For less of a commitment to the baking game, you can always grab a cake mix from the supermarket, or perhaps one ready-made fresh from the bakery section. For a less traditional (but equally scrumptious choice), snoop around the freezer section for an ice cream cake, or perhaps a chilled mousse or cheesecake. Don’t forget the candles while you’re there now, will you? Alternatively, some of the bakeries on this list will deliver a cake to your door. 

Get The Drinks Flowing

The government is on your side and has stamped alcohol as an essential service. And so are we, we’ve rounded up the best booze deliveries in the country, as well as the local vineyards that are delivering their drops straight to our doors to help you get your hands on your fave bottles. Fancy something a little, well, fancy? You'll find cocktail deliveries too on the above link who'll deliver—you guessed it—cocktails kits and glassware, so you can bring the glamour of a cocktail bar to your humble abode. 


Get Social (Virtually, Of Course)

House parties and movie nights are going to look a tad different this time around. Grab a drink, some snacks and a slice of cake and hang out with your friends—in pixel form, let us be clear—with the help of multi-user video apps like Houseparty or a trusty ol’ Zoom call. Why not pump up your fave tunes and bring your virtual pals out to the deck and garden to throw some shapes no matter who's watching. For a chill virtual movie night, download the free Netflix Party or Disney Plus Party extensions to your Google Chrome browser, or watch and react to any video using Facebook’s Watch Party. Thank you internet.

At Home Day Spa

Cue the fluffy towels and bathrobes, it’s time to treat yourself to an at-home spa session. You know that majestic bath bomb sitting pretty in your bathroom cabinet? The one you’ve been saving for a super special occasion? Run a bath, dim the lights, grab a glass of wine, and use it. 

While you’re flicking through your bathroom cabinet, pick out your favourite face masks, hair masks, the nail kit and polish and treat every inch of yourself to a touch of birthday TLC. To get an extra luscious home spa experience, pop your towel and bathrobe in the hot-water closet beforehand for that day spa fresh feeling.

Beauty supplies looking bleak? There are plenty of facemasks at great prices in the supermarket beauty aisle. You can hit up the pharmacies—they’re the secret beauty weapon during lockdown—as you’ll likely find bath kits, nail polish, and all kinds of skincare among the shelves. Or explore the depths of your pantry to see if you can rustle up a homemade birthday beauty treatment. We’ve got all the inspo and recipes you need right here

Girl sitting on a wall

Have A Virtual Shopping Spree

A gift to you from you is always a winner. Birthdays are the perfect excuse for items in your once window-shopped ‘wishlist’ cart to actually make their way to the checkout. At level 3 you'll be able to order non-essential goods straight to your door, assuming they can get it to you in a contact-less way. So consider your purchase a long-term investment to your special day: you’ll be supporting your favourite stores and will have a shiny new treat waiting for you at the other end. It’s basically a second birthday celebration, who can say no to that? 

Set A Future Party

Our lovely local businesses will need to be shown some love when lockdown is over. This is where you come in: by partying, eating, drinking and being merry. Choose your favourite eatery or watering hole, and pencil in a bunch of buddies to have a postponed birthday celebration there when things are back on track. Show the ultimate support and see if you can grab a voucher ahead of time—the pre-investment will surely be appreciated by our restaurateurs. 

Let’s not forget that many of the legends at these places were the ones donating profits to Australian Bushfire relief, shouting our sober drivers a free glass of fizz, and giving us the odd extra serving of fries—so we ought to return the favour. 

Remember pals, now’s the time to use your wallet for what you want to see more of in the world—and what you want to see, eat, drink and do at the tail-end of lockdown, so go forth and enjoy. Oh, and happy birthday.

In Auckland? Get your carbs delivered straight to your door.

Image credit: Ian Schneider, Sharon McCutcheon, Andre Hunter  

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