@mscuppycake: If my guests have a good time, I will have a good time; so, our guests are very important to us when it comes to things like:
The venue (eg not too far away; plenty of accommodation on site or near by for all budgets; accessible by both car and public transport)
The food (plenty of it; and something for everyone (we’re offering 2 choices for the starter and dessert, and 4 for the main, and are catering for our coeliac and pescatarian guests throughout the day)
The drink (providing way more than the average Brit)
The music (string trio for the ceremony and drinks reception to create atmosphere and provide background music; band; DJ; we will plan playlists carefully to ensure everyone is catered for and that there are no lulls in the dancing (gotten to be experts at this after hosting dozens of big parties)
The cake (4 different flavours all suitable for vegetarians, plus gluten free cupcakes for our coeliac guest)
The seating (plenty of it)
Provision for smokers (courtyard garden directly off the reception venue/dancefloor; at one venue we looked at smokers had to go down 2 flights of stairs)
The seating plan; people will be sat with people they know and get on with; where a couple doesn’t know anyone, they’ll be ‘paired’ with people we believe they will get on well with, and converse with
Having hosted/helped to host a number of events, from smaller dinner parties to larger parties (eg 60+ guests), I’ve got pretty good at it; and to be a good host you just have to consider your guests likes, dislikes, and comfort. Our parties always end later than anyone else’s (same crowd of people), and are always talked about for months (and sometimes years) because of the effort we put in to ensuring that everyone has a good time. For example, music is incredibly important in creating atmosphere; get it wrong and you risk people standing around, or leaving early.
For me, if our guests have a good time, we will undoubtedly have a great time. So, the music may not be what we personally would choose (I would have loved a swing band), but, we still enjoy it, and know our guests will love it; so the night will be way more fun than if I said ‘Fuck it, we’ll have a swing band!’ and then no-one dances. Etc.
My personal feeling is that if someone doesn’t care to consider their guests, they are better off eloping; the only areas we haven’t considered our guests are things that don’t affect them eg my dress/OHs suit/bridal party attire/decor/flowers.