A Lavish Winter Wonderland Quinceañera Party at Westfield Greenville Event Venue in South Carolina
photo courtesy of & planner: Lemiga Events | design & floral: C. Wamen Floral & Events | venue: Westfield Greenville Event Venue
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The Only Quinceañera Guide You Need

A Lavish Winter Wonderland Quinceañera Party at Westfield Greenville Event Venue in South Carolina

Your child’s quinceañera party is a once-in-a-lifetime celebration. Syma Levy, Managing Director and Founder of Oulala! What an Event, reminds us, “Little girls in the Hispanic/Latin communities dream of their quinceañera for years! It is a huge milestone and so important to the entire family.” 

Planning such a major event starts early. Levy tells us, “Just like debutante balls, families start to plan for their daughters’ quinceañeras at least 18-24 months prior to the date.” Why so soon? “This is a huge party that marks the transition from child to adulthood. Since the pandemic, the sooner you start planning and booking the vendors, the better. There is a huge backlog because of all the events that were postponed.”

Moreover, “Every family’s celebration, regardless of size and budget, needs to be special and make memories that will last for a lifetime,” Levy shares. Of course, we couldn’t agree more.

We sat down with several quinceañera vendors for an inside look into the planning process. Keep reading to learn everything from how to choose your quinceañera theme to how to find the best entertainment company in town. With the help of PartySlate, planning a quinceañera party has never been easier.

1. Hire a Quinceañera Planner
2. Book a Quinceañera Venue
3. Choose a Quinceañera Theme
4. Read up on Quinceañera Traditions
5. Hire a Quinceañera Photographer
6. Select Your Florist and Design Team
7. Plan the Perfect Entrance
8. Choose Your Court of Honor
9. Say Yes to the Quinceañera Dress
10. Choose Your Party Entertainment
11. Finalize Your Other Vendors

1. Hire a Quinceañera Planner

Alice in Wonderland Themed Quinceañera at The St.Regis in Houston, Texas
photographer: Elizabeth Naggar | planner: Oulala! What an Event | venue: The St. Regis Houston

Planning a quinceañera party involves many steps. First and foremost, we always recommend hiring a quinceañera planner. Your quinceañera planner will guide you through every step of the planning process, from perfecting your vision to finalizing your vendor team. 

Levy of Oulala! What an Event, explains the importance of hiring a planner. “There are hundreds of small details that need to be taken care of when planning a big event.” Because many of these details are unknown by parents, it’s important to hire an experienced planner. “A great quinceañera planner will be able to offer you sound advice on what to do, and when to do it,” Levy states.

Alice in Wonderland Themed Quinceañera at The St.Regis in Houston, Texas
photographer: Elizabeth Naggar | Oulala! What an Event
Alice in Wonderland Themed Quinceañera at The St.Regis in Houston, Texas
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Orchestration

“I always refer to the quinceañera planner as the ‘orchestra director,’” Levy shares. “They are responsible for orchestrating all the vendors and making sure they produce a beautiful symphony that will make music to their ears.” 

Moreover, an event planner is there for every step of the planning process. “From identifying the right venue, to booking the caterer, hotel room blocks, band, entertainers, and more,” Levy says. “A great event planner will be the last person to leave the venue and ensure that all the gifts and family’s belonging are delivered to the client’s home the night of or the following business day.” 

Seamless Planning Process

“Hiring a quinceañera planner will allow you to focus on some of the bigger aspects of the special day,” Levy shares. “Event planners will have a better idea of what areas of the quinceañera celebration planning to tackle first, and in what order. A quinceañera planner will save you the time and headaches of attempting to figure out what to do, and when to do it.” 

Vendor Team Selection

But that’s not all. Your event planner can help guide you as you assemble your vendor team. “Event planners build up a list of vetted industry connections which they can tap into when planning your celebration,” Levy shares. “Chances are your event planner will be able to find the perfect vendor for your specific needs, and they can often extend better pricing to you because of their long standing relationship with the event community.” 

Vision

Creating a seamless planning process is only half of the equation, however. Event planners are also artists. “They will bring your vision to life,” Levy says, “and allow you and your family to enjoy the celebration.” According to Levy, a quinceañera planner is responsible for creating the experience and overall vibe of the celebration.

2. Book a Quinceañera Venue

Elegant Quinceañera at Signature Manor in Houston, Texas
photographer: Tomas Ramos Photography & Film Productions | planning & venue: Signature Manor | rentals: HEP Rentals

A great quinceañera party starts with a great venue. Venues book up fast, so it’s important to start searching for an available venue early in the planning process. When visiting venues, it’s important to know the right questions to ask — as well as which amenities and services are available. Before you begin your search, you’ll want to consider:

  • Your budget
  • Guest count
  • The venue’s familiarity with hosting quinceañeras
  • Bi-lingual staffing
  • Preferred suppliers and vendor requirements
  • In-house catering options
  • A/V capabilities
  • Accessibility
  • Parking options

Choose a Venue With Experience

Red and White Quinceñera at Signature Manor in Houston, Texas
photographer: Tomas Ramos Photography & Film Productions | Signature Manor
Red and White Quinceñera at Signature Manor in Houston, Texas
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We always recommend working with a venue that has experience hosting quinceañeras. An experienced venue will have a better grasp on the timeline of your celebration — as well as specific traditions and rituals.

PartySlate reached out to Signature Manor, a full-service venue in Houston for additional insight. Signature Manor routinely hosts quinceañera parties in their grand ballroom. “For such a big day, nothing should be left to chance,” the team at Signature Manor tells us.

The team reminds us that an experienced venue can offer suggestions for how to include important quinceañera traditions. “Your venue should have experience in coming up with solutions for you when padrinos y padrinas are involved,” the team advises. “As a small bonus, you’ll save quite a bit of time by not having to explain quince traditions like la última muñeca, as well as damas and chambelanes.”

An experienced venue can even offer advice on smaller details such as where to place certain tables to accommodate dining and dancing. This attention to detail is only possible from a venue familiar with the ins and outs of a quinceañera party.

Prioritize Certain Amenities

Elegant Quinceañera at Signature Manor in Houston, Texas
photographer: Tomas Ramos Photography & Film Productions | Signature Manor
Elegant Quinceañera at Signature Manor in Houston, Texas
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The Look of the Venue:

“Every quinceañera is special and unique,” the team at Signature Manor tells us. “You’ll want to make sure that your venue fits the theme (if there is one) or can be decorated to match.” See more on quinceañera themes below.

A Venue Coordinator:

We also recommend asking your venue if it will provide a venue coordinator. The team at Signature Manor says, “Having a venue coordinator who understands the ins and outs of what a quinceañera involves as well as the typical customs and must-haves during the event will make planning a lot smoother.”

Scheduling:

Make sure you know whether a potential venue hosts more than one event at a time. “You don’t want to have someone else’s guests at your event or have conflicts with DJs,” the Signature Manor team reminds us.

All-Inclusive Options:

“The best thing to make your event totally stress-free?” the team says. “Ask your venue for un paquete con todo incluido. Some venues have an all-inclusive experience to make planning much easier.”

3. Choose a Quinceañera Theme

Theatre Inspired Quinceanera
photographer: From the Hip Photo | venue: Celebration Ballrooms

A party theme ties together every element of the celebration — from floral and décor to catering and entertainment. It’s important to choose your quinceañera theme early on in the planning process, so you can create a seamless experience for both the quinceañera and her guests.

The team at Cortez Event Agency, a South Florida event planning company, shares, “The most important thing to take into account when selecting the theme of the party is the quinceañera’s style.” Help your child consider their favorites such as:

  • Colors
  • Hobbies and Activities
  • Movies and TV Shows
  • Music
  • Holidays and Seasons
  • Travel Destinations 

Once you select a quince theme, it’s time to bring the vision to life with the help of a talented vendor team. But first, click on the following for more party theme inspiration:

4. Read up on Quinceañera Traditions

Beautiful Fairytale Quinceañera at The Ritz-Carlton Grande Lakes Orlando
photographer: Leo Photographer | planner: The Soirée Co. Wedding and Event Planning | floral: Raining Roses Productions | venue: The Ritz-Carlton Orlando, Grande Lakes

A quinceañera is so much more than just a party. This beloved event celebrates your child’s transition into adulthood, while honoring your family’s culture and heritage.

We sat down with event planner Annie Nuño of The Soirée Co. Wedding and Event Planning to learn more about how to incorporate quinceañera traditions into your child’s bash. She shared the ins and outs of such traditions as:

  • The court of honor 
  • The grand entrance
  • The quinceañera toast
  • Changing of the shoes
  • Father and daughter dance
  • 15 candle ceremony

Read Quinceañera Traditions 101: How to Honor Family & Culture to learn more.

5. Hire a Quinceañera Photographer

Vibrant Quinceañera at PUBLIC Hotel in New York
photographer: Christian Oth Studio | planner: Brilliant Event Planning | design & floral: Ed Libby Events | venue: The public Hotel

Make sure your child’s quinceañera party lives on long after the celebration ends with a beautiful photo album and video. You’ll want to remember the most meaningful moments of the celebration, so make sure to hire a trusted photographer and/or videographer for your event.

Before you meet with your photographer, consider your budget, and write down a list of important questions to ask. We recommend starting with the following:

  • What is your photography/videography style?
  • What is your editing style?
  • Can we request specific photograph shots?
  • Will we have access to the entire photo gallery?
  • What does your photography/videography package include?

6. Select Your Florist and Design Team

Now that you know how you want your quinceañera party to look, you need to hire a talented design and floral team to bring your vision to life. We sat down with Luis Molina, Owner of Fantasy Designers, to learn more about the importance of hiring a professional design team.

Molina tells us, “There are a ton of options on themes and styles to go with. As such, it’s important to have someone that can not only produce the dream but can also give suggestions that can relate to designs and colors — with all the given parameters such as the location and budget.” Molina reminds us that a quinceañera party can be more of a production than some weddings. “It’s important to have someone that understands all the aspects, so you have a successful event.” 

So how will your design team transform your quinceañera venue into your dream celebration? Molina always starts with the stage decorations. He says, “To me, the stage decorations are truly the most important part of any quince. It’s the focal point of the entire party.” He continues, “It gives the wow factor, and will be the most photographed part of any quince. It serves many purposes, but clearly nothing else sets the theme than the background to the event.” See how the team at Fantasy Designers uses stage decorations to center the celebration:

Great Gatsby Quinceañera at Hilton Miami Airport Hotel in Miami, Florida

Wow With a Beautiful Custom-Built Backdrop

photographer: Dalton Photography | planner & choreographer: Charlene Rodriguez | design & floral: Fantasy Designers | venue: Hilton Miami Airport Hotel | entertainment: Power Parties DJ’s, Lighting and Hora Locas

Burlesque Themed Quinceañera Party at Gulfstream Park in Hallandale, Florida

Go With Marquee Signage

photographer: Lopez Falcon | design & floral: Fantasy Designers | venue: Gulfstream Park

Cinderella-inspired quinceanera party with cold fireworks | PartySlate

Add Cold Fire Works to Up the Wow Factor

photographer: Batista Photography | coordinator & choreographer: Events by Eli | design & floral: Fantasy Designers | venue: Trump National Doral Miami | entertainment: Event Factor

In addition to your stage decorations, you’ll want to consider the following quinceañera decorations:

  • Centerpieces
  • Head table decorations
  • Seating
  • Dance floor
  • Cake Stand
  • Photo ops

7. Plan the Perfect Entrance 

Theatre Inspired Quinceanera
photographer: From the Hip Photo | venue: Celebration Ballrooms

Expect all eyes on the quinceañera as she enters her reception. A grand quinceañera entrance often goes above and beyond a traditional wedding entrance. In addition to music and an MC, a quince entrance may feature over-the-top elements such as a cold fireworks display, confetti drop, horse-drawn carriage, and more.

You can also have your entrance double as a photo op for guests. Turn your entrance is an Instagram-worthy backdrop with balloons, florals, and other on-theme decorations.

Work with your quinceañera planner to coordinate the logistics of your child’s entrance. You may also want to consider working with an entertainment company or av & technology company. Lastly, don’t forget to make sure your child’s quince entrance complies with any venue regulations. You may need permits for bringing a horse on site, for example. 

For further inspiration, see some of our favorite entrance ideas and décor below:

Glamorous Gold Quinceanera in Houston, TX

Arrive on Horseback

photographer: Lauren Ashley Photography | planning & design: DeMartino Design Group | linen: Nuage Designs

Beautiful Fairytale Quinceañera at The Ritz-Carlton Grande Lakes Orlando

Step Out of a Fairytale Carriage

photographer: Leo Photographer | planner: The Soirée Co. Wedding and Event Planning | floral: Raining Roses Productions | venue: The Ritz-Carlton Orlando, Grande Lakes

PartySlate's Celebration of New Beginnings Brings Top Influencers & Industry Leaders Back Together in New York

Enter Through a Balloon Tunnel

photographer: Afrik Armando | planner: Elegant Occasions by JoAnn Gregoli | design & décor: Jennifer Gould Luxe Event Design | venue: The Glasshouse | balloon installation: Balloon Design Studio

PartySlate Cocktail Party for Influencers & Event Luminaries at TAO Chicago

Wow With a Floral Corridor

photographer: Colin Lyons Wedding Photography | planner: Paulette Wolf Events | design & floral: Yanni Design Studio | venue: TAO Chicago

8. Choose Your Court of Honor

Beautiful Fairytale Quinceañera at The Ritz-Carlton Grande Lakes Orlando
photographer: Leo Photographer | planner: The Soirée Co. Wedding and Event Planning | floral: Raining Roses Productions | venue: The Ritz-Carlton Orlando, Grande Lakes

The court of honor traditionally includes 14 damas (girls) and 14 chambelanes (boys). While many modern quinceañeras feature a smaller court, the symbolism remains the same. The court of honor represents the love and support surrounding your child’s transition into womanhood. Many families choose close friends and family members such as cousins to fulfill this important role.

The court of honor is responsible for performing a waltz for the celebration. Additionally, they often put on a baile de sorpresa (surprise dance) for the quinceañera. Lastly, they will be needed for all preliminary photo sessions.

In addition to choosing a chambelan escort as the main escort, many modern quinceañeras select a dama de honor to serve as a maid of honor.

When choosing your court of honor, consider the following:

  • Send out formal invitations asking them to take part as a dama or chambelan
  • Consider covering the cost of dress and tuxedo rentals
  • Communicate in advance what you will expect from your court

9. Say Yes to the Quinceañera Dress

Choosing THE dress is a major milestone in planning a quinceañera. It’s also the most fun element. Make sure to finalize your quinceañera color theme before you begin your search for the perfect ball gown. Click on the link above to see how your quinceañera decorations can complement your dress — and vice versa. But first, a preview:

A Lavish Winter Wonderland Quinceañera at Westfield Greenville Event Venue in South Carolina
photo courtesy of: Lemiga Events
A Lavish Winter Wonderland Quinceañera at Westfield Greenville Event Venue in South Carolina
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Elegant Quinceañera at Signature Manor in Houston, Texas
photographer: Tomas Ramos Photography & Film Productions | Signature Manor
Elegant Quinceañera at Signature Manor in Houston, Texas
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Pro Tip: Share a picture of your dress with your quinceañera planner and design team so they can create a party vision to match your attire. 

10. Choose Your Party Entertainment

Over-the-top entertainment is a staple of any grand quinceañera party. From the first daughter/father dance to the final dance party, entertainment shapes the look and feel of your reception. We sat down with Will Torres of Power Parties DJ’s, Lighting and Hora Locas to learn the ins-and-outs of throwing an unforgettable quince party.

Types of Quinceañera Party Entertainment

“Quinces are a once in a lifetime experience and tradition for Latin families and parents to go all out for this special moment,” Torres tells us. Hiring a knowledgeable DJ is a must. You’ll want to make sure the music ranges from Top 40 hits to Latin favorites — so there’s something for everyone.

Torres also tells us, “Another very popular entertainment aspect is the Hora Loca! This is ‘The Crazy Hour,’ which has become almost a staple at every party with LED robots, stillwalkers, and themed dancers.” Special Effects include “C02 cannons, confetti blasters, cold sparks, and great lighting to create the proper atmosphere for the party.”

Make it Memorable

“First and foremost the DJ makes or breaks any party,” Torres shares. However, a/v and technology is just as important. “Great sound and lighting creates the electricity in the room. A room with great energy, lighting and music translates to packed dance floors!”

Pro Tip: Decorative dance floors are more likely to engage crowds — even reluctant dancers. You can even extend your theme to the dance floor with the right colors and designs.

Luxurious and Elegant Quinceañera at Sandlewood Manor in Tomball, Texas
photographer: macanthony studios | Royal Luxury Events
Luxurious and Elegant Quinceañera at Sandlewood Manor in Tomball, Texas
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11. Finalize Your Other Vendors

A memorable quinceañera party requires a full team of party vendors. Use PartySlate’s Vendor Directory to find local and destination vendors. You can also click on the following to begin your search. Use the filters to narrow your search by event type, Hispanic or Latinx companies, or location.

Meet the Panel

Oulala! What an Event

Oulala! What an Event
Houston, TX
Event Planner

Signature Manor logo | PartySlate

Signature Manor
Houston, TX
Venue

Power Parties DJ's, Lighting and Hora Locas logo | PartySlate

Power Parties
Miami, FL
Entertainment

Fantasy Designers logo | PartySlate

Fantasy Designers
Miami Lakes, FL
Design & Floral

The Soirée Co. Wedding and Event Planning logo | PartySlate

The Soirée Co.
Orlando, FL
Event Planner

Cortez Event Agency logo | PartySlate

Cortez Event Agency
Doral, FL
Event Planner

Next Steps …

Planning a quinceañera party takes time and energy. PartySlate is here to help. Use PartySlate to find:

  • Your quinceañera venue
  • Top vendors
  • Party idea & inspiration 

Click on the following for helpful resources and directories: