Holiday Entertaining with Lisa Vorce
December 24, 2013
ChristmasEntertainingInterior Design
When celebrity event planner Lisa Vorce invites you to peek at her home, all decked out for the holidays no less, you know it's going to be good. Christmas pretty of the loveliest variety adorned every surface, and we are beyond smitten. While we were at it, we took the chance to pick her brain on all things holiday entertaining and her advice is some you don't want to miss! Captured by the wildly talented Elizabeth Messina, there's a full gallery filled with extra luxe details.
SMP: So we all know by now that everything you touch turns to pure gold, but is there anything you're particularly proud of when it comes to your Holiday decor this year?

That’s so nice to hear, thank you! I just wanted my home to be comfy and cozy this year. I’m proud of the simplicity of the décor I chose. Less is more for me this year. The simple décor paired with fresh garland and florals, Christmas music in the background and mulling spices on the stove… It's holiday perfection for me.
SMP: Can you share a bit of your inspiration behind it?

I was inspired by memories from my childhood. My mother did such a great job of decorating the house for the holidays. I typically keep my house fairly neutral for the holidays, but this year I decided to bring in a pop of red like my mother used to do. My tree is almost identical to what our Christmas trees looked like growing up (Minus the loads of silver tinsel my mother used to use. Couldn’t quite get myself to go there yet!).
SMP: One thing every home should have at Christmas?

Mistletoe! Everyone should have a daily holiday smooch under mistletoe!
SMP: One holiday tradition you wouldn't mind putting to rest?

Please… can we put the white elephant gift exchange to rest???
SMP: What's on your Christmas playlist these days? Confession: I can't stop listening to Michael Buble's album!

Christmas Joy in Latvia. It’s a compilation of purely angelic Latvian Christmas cantatas. Warms my soul!
SMP: I'm sure we're all dying to know, what are your top tips for entertaining this season?

My take on holiday entertaining is similar to how I run my events – take care of your guests! From the moment they walk in the door -- to their departure… keep spoiling them with your hospitality. Greet your guests at the door with a fun sparkling beverage (my current holiday libation obsession – Cava & pomegranate) and send them off with a fun departure treat. Sending guests home with left-over desserts in cute packaging is an easy thing to do! A La Modo on Esty has the cutest pie slice boxes.
SMP: Are there any especially ground-breaking entertaining ideas you'll be implementing this year?

We’ve already had quite a few houseguests this holiday season. I’ve been having a lot of fun spoiling our guests with “hotel” like service… bottled water, slippers & robes at the bedside, amenities in the restrooms (toothbrushes, lotions, bath salts, candles etc), and delicious chocolates on their pillows with “turn-down service” at 6 pm! For over-night guests, this is an excellent entertaining idea to implement!
SMP: Do you have a go-to recipe you make every year?

My husband does all the cooking – so I’m off the hook there! However – when I’m off to a holiday party and don’t want to show up empty-handed… I always make my great Aunt Teresa’s “faux” almond roca recipe. Aunt Teresa lived to the fabulous age of 97 and was always in the kitchen baking amazing treats for us! Her faux almond roca recipe is quick, easy and de-lish! (I've shared her recipe below)
SMP: You have such a knack for discovering (and implementing) the most gorgeous details into everything you do. What are some of your favourite resources? The rest of us need help!

I think the greatest tip is to try to find resources off the beaten path. As wonderful as the mainstream stores of the world are – people will have seen everything already. Been there, done that! I love to select unique items from antique stores or from online resources that feature curated products like Biscuit Home  or Horne (both owned by former clients of mine) – and of course Boutique Theo !

Something as simple as an interesting vase showcasing traditional Christmas floral like red or white Amaryllis can make for stunning holiday décor. Never underestimate the power of fresh floral! Petite floral vignettes (monobotanical arrangements don’t require any floral arranging skills!) around the house mixed with candlelight will make you look like an entertaining superstar!
SMP: Your favourite holiday tradition?

The true spirit of Christmas for me is seen through the eyes of a child. Since I don’t have children of my own… my favorite tradition is opening presents with my nieces & nephews. Aunt Lisa & Uncle James give the best presents!! It is so much fun waking up at the crack of dawn and watching them rip open their presents!
SMP: And lastly, what's on your wish list this year?

Well… the side of me that looooves presents has an obsession with Hermes enamel bracelets. I love combining the different colors and patterns. So beautiful.

The other side of me that knows I have all I need - wishes for soooo many animals to be adopted and loved this year!
View as
Aunt Teresas Almond Roca
Prep Time
10 Minutes
Cook Time
10 Minutes
Total Time
20 Minutes
I sleeve unsalted saltine crackers 2 sticks butter
1/2 cup sugar 1/4 to 1/2 package semi sweet choc chips
chopped nuts/smashed peppermint sticks or other topping of choice
Line cookie sheet with foil.
Place a layer of crackers to completely cover cookie sheet.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
On stovetop, bring butter and sugar to a boil. Stir until creamy
Pour butter/sugar mixture evenly over crackers
Bake for 10min (until very light brown)
Remove from oven, immediately sprinkle with chocolate chips
Wait one minute (for choc to soften) and then spread evenly
Add toppings (or no toppings) of choice
Freeze over night. Best served chilled.
Pull from foil, crack into pieces.