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Holiday Parties

Treat your guests to a holiday celebration that is one of a kind. Whether you are looking for a creative idea to honor your employees’ or clients’ hard work and dedication, or continue an alumni group holiday tradition, your attendees will enjoy a private event venue and experience the brilliant displays of colorful lights and festive holiday music throughout the Zoo.

Based on guidelines from health experts and state and local officials, traditional event offerings may be modified or limited in availability.

Venue Options

Explore our unique private event venues below to find your perfect fit. Whichever venue you choose, the event specialists at the Houston Zoo will work to bring your event to life.

Download our Venue Map to see where these venues are located within the Zoo.

Have Questions? Want Pricing?

Submit an inquiry using the form below, and a Houston Zoo event specialist will respond with more information.

Contact Us – Inquiry Form

Houston Zoo Special Events

In lieu of a traditional holiday party, purchase group tickets and Zoo Bucks (Zoo currency) for your attendees to enjoy Zoo Lights while practicing social distancing. Guests will have access to stroll the Zoo Lights walking path and will be able to redeem Zoo Bucks for food and beverage items at various dining locations and kiosks throughout the grounds.

Please note that reserved seating for dining is not available. Available for groups of 20 or more guests and must be booked at least two weeks in advance.

Hidden high up in the trees sits the Nau Family Gorilla Treehouse. This intimate and exclusive space is perfect for company meetings and dinner parties.

Incredible 30 foot maple table seats 32 or divides into separate tables seating 60 total (additional fee applies to separate table)

Audio-video capability
Private restrooms inside the building

Boardroom style: 32
Dinner style capacity: 60

This space is for grownups only! We look forward to hosting your board meeting, cocktail party or dinner in this exclusive location.

Enter Africa with panoramic scenery of the gorilla and red river hog habitat. Take the views to the next level by adding the Gathering Tent to your event.

Seating for 60 included
Built-in service bar
Light music permitted inside building

Seating: 60
Cocktail style: 70

The Reptile House offers an unforgettable setting for a most unique gathering. Treat your guests to an unusual “house” party that is sure to intrigue everyone in attendance.

Seating for 80 included
Distinctive desert and tropical displays in exhibits
Light music permitted inside building

Seating: 80
Cocktail style: 200

A journey through Natural Encounters is like a journey through an entire continent. See the homes of animals from the river’s edge, rainforest canopy, desert, and coral reef. Make it an elegant encounter with a seated dinner or party with the piranhas as you crawl through a see-through tunnel that looks into their exhibit.

Seating for 100 included
Built-in sound system
Built-in service bar
Light music permitted inside building

Seating: 100
Cocktail style: 150

This room without walls captures the simplicity and serenity of the Zoo.

Seating for 100 included 
Easy access to restrooms
Music with dancing permitted

Seating capacity under tent: 150
Cocktail style: 300

George R. Brown Conservation Education Center

Corral your party animals in this private indoor space great for a variety of entertainment options.

Seating for 100 included
Private restrooms inside the building
Music with dancing permitted inside building

Hall seating: 180
Hall cocktail style: 350

Nestled in the heart of the Zoo, this open tent is the perfect place for an unforgettable company outing or a serene evening event.

Seating for 200 included 
Daytime or evening rental
Easy access to restrooms
Music with dancing permitted

Seating capacity under tent: 200
Cocktail style: 400

On the edge of the African Forest sits this vibrant, covered party venue. It is the perfect place to gather for a large company outing or dance the night away with family and friends!

Seating for 200 included
Easy access to restrooms
Music with dancing permitted
Option to close tent panels
4 large ceiling fans

Seating under tent: 400
Lawn seating: 200
Cocktail style: 1,200

Looking for a zoo-nique experience? Ask about renting out the entire Zoo for an exclusive evening!

Find Out More


Taste Catering, the Houston Zoo’s onsite full-service catering partner, offers locally sourced and sustainable fare. The seasonal menu below has been crafted to fit your specific  holiday party needs.


Event Enhancements

Want to deck the halls and spread holiday cheer? From variety elves to photos with Santa, add on a few of the event enhancements below to create a holiday experience like no other in town.

Holiday Party Enhancements


“We had our company’s holiday party at the zoo during Zoo Lights. Our staff is still talking about it almost a week later! The food was excellent, as well as the service! The zoo’s event coordinator did an excellent job arranging the event for us. We definitely recommend having an event at the Houston Zoo!”
– Brenda Collier, Golder Associates, Inc.

“Our company hosted our annual holiday party at the Zoo. It was the first time we had done something like this before. We were very impressed with the venue staff and food! The Zoo Lights made the perfect holiday outing and we are looking forward to next year!”
– Brittany Kowalick, Tetra Tech

“ The Houston Zoo was a wonderful background for our company holiday party. The Zoo Lights added a special touch for our guests…The food was delicious and the ambiance was perfect for the event.”
– Stephanie Plugge, Exxon Mobil