Looking for ways to get away but not wanting to travel? Hello Staycation! These at-home vacations are perfect for celebrating a birthday, anniversary, you name it! Whether you end up exploring your own city with local attractions & accommodations or bringing exotic travel destinations to your home, there are endless possibilities for getting some vacation reprieve without having to go too far. 

After the pandemic halted travel, many were looking for ideas on how to still have a travel experience while remaining safe and following guidelines. Staycations have always been a great, fun alternative to physically travelling, so even as other countries and domestic travel open up, there isn’t a reason why you can’t still make your home an iconic destination and treat yourself to the ultimate staycation.

Dream Disney Vacation Turned Staycation

This mindset came to Joe when thinking about what to do for his wife’s 40th birthday. They were planning on going to Orlando for an epic Disney and Harry Potter World vacation. However, travel wasn’t looking like the best idea for them in Fall 2020 so they decided to cancel their plans. Joe still wanted to do something special for Colleen to give her the vacation pampering and experience she deserved. And that’s when he called in Naturally Yours Events to help conceptualize how to bring Orlando to Chicago. 

After planning their wedding a few years ago, we were thrilled to work with Joe again to surprise Colleen for her birthday. We quickly got to work, brainstorming ideas for themed rooms around the house that corresponded to different areas or rides of the Disney and Harry Potter theme parks. 

As she walked up to the house, Colleen was greeted with a large, “Welcome to Orlando” sign and a colorful balloon display. Colleen loves balloons so we teamed up with Kio Kreations on this project to create all the balloon installations as well as the floral arrangements.

Inside, Colleen found a birthday party dreamland of all of her favorite Disney parks, rides, and experiences. A custom printed map based on the house’s floor plan would help lead the birthday gal throughout all the different lands of her Orlando staycation.

One of Colleen and Joe’s favorite things to do is collect pins from their Disney trips. So he gave Colleen her own lanyard to go on a scavenger hunt and find all the pins around the house.

staycation birthday welcome sign balloon installation

Bibbity Bobbity Birthday Boutique

On your birthday, it’s a necessity to be pampered right? We created a boutique fit for a queen with custom princess-themed balloon displays and gave Colleen the beauty accessories she needed to feel like royalty all day.

Finding Neverland & Tea Time in Wonderland

Grow up? Never! The living room was turned over to the pirates as we incorporated themes from Pirates of the Caribbean and Peter Pan. A printed banner was created from pages of classic Disney books and we sprinkled in some Tinkerbell magic into a floral cloche and a Magic Kingdom birthday cake. 

Seeing as the Tea Cup ride is one of Colleen’s favorites, we had to go down the rabbit hole and create a space where they could stop and take a break for tea. Pastel parasols hung from the ceiling in this Alice in Wonderland inspired window vignette with gorgeous floral arrangements set in vintage tea cup & saucer vases.

It’s a Small World When You’re on Staycation

Joe wanted to create a dining experience for Colleen that would transport her from their Chicago home. And what better way to do that then to have an Epcot themed dinner!

Kio Kreations created a travel tablescape with various globes, suitcases, floral centerpieces, and illustrated cityscape cut-outs. DocTamal created a multi-course, cannabis-infused menu that incorporated flavors from around the world. 

Final Birthday Stop: Harry Potter World

Along with Disney World, Joe and Colleen planned on travelling to Harry Potter World at Universal. So we transformed their basement into Diagon Alley as the final stop on this birthday staycation.

We decorated the space with banners and balloon installations corresponding to the different Hogwarts houses. Cobblestone brick appliques led you down the stairs where floating candles & cobwebs added to the atmosphere of our staycation version of the “Leaky Cauldron” pub. Colleen received her own magic wand after being ‘assigned’ to her house -Hufflepuff- by the sorting hat.

Honeydukes snack mix and butterbeer was a special nighttime treat and the perfect way to end Colleen’s birthday while maybe watching the entire collection of Harry Potter- ha!

We had a lot of fun collaborating with Joe for Colleen’s surprise birthday staycation celebration. If you’re planning a special occasion or want to get “away” just because, we’d love to help plan your very own staycation!

From designing decor, brainstorming activities, and planning out themed meals and entertainment, we can turn your home into another world. Reach out to us to start planning, we would love to hear where you want to ‘go’!

disney birthday staycation


Event Planner- Carlene with Naturally Yours Events

Florist / Balloon Artist- Kio Kreations

Photographer- Ingrid Bonne Photography

Caterer- DocTamal

Cake- Cake Chicago