From five-star feasts and food markets to pampering spas and magical ballet, Mandarin Oriental hotels have the holiday season covered
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Emma Love, Acting Editor
The festive season is upon us. Cue city streets decorated with twinkling lights, carol-singing choirs and plenty of excuses to gather friends and family together over dinner or celebratory cocktails. In Bavaria, Germany, where month-long markets are the place to buy seasonal gifts (the oldest market dates back to the St Nicholas Markets of the 14th century), Mandarin Oriental, Munich has put together a White Christmas Escape package including hot wine and stollen on arrival and a six-course menu at Japanese-Peruvian restaurant Matsuhisa. The perfect excuse to splash out on a party outfit!
If you happen to be in the French capital, toast the Christmas celebrations with a glass of champagne on the covered terrace of Bar 8 at Mandarin Oriental, Paris. The hotel will also be setting up its own Christmas market in the garden where you can stock up on a selection of delicious cheeses and cold meats, oysters and caviar. Elsewhere, at Mandarin Oriental, Geneva there is a pop-up mountain-style restaurant, Le Chalet, serving comforting Swiss cuisine, and at Mandarin Oriental, Bangkok, you can welcome in Christmas Eve at The Riverside Terrace, tucking into local and regional specialities before entertainment that includes a live band, fireworks over the Chao Phraya River and even a surprise appearance by Santa Claus himself!
In the Czech capital, take time out from sipping warming, traditional Glühwein (sold from wooden huts in the Old Town’s main square, pictured above) with a pampering session in Mandarin Oriental, Prague’s Spa. The Silent Night therapy on 14 December is a chance to disconnect, unplug and escape from the festive shopping madness. Of course, Christmas wouldn’t be complete without a trip to the theatre, either to watch a children’s pantomime or a more grown-up ballet. Plump for a classic performance of The Nutcracker at the Fox Theatre in Atlanta to the sound of a live orchestra (for guests at Mandarin Oriental, Atlanta, tickets are part of a special December package).
Finally, anyone in Hong Kong should head to Paris chocolatier Maison Chaudun in The Mandarin Cake Shop at Mandarin Oriental, Hong Kong. It’s just the place to pick up a selection of chef Gilles Marchal’s luxurious pavé ganaches. An ideal sweet treat for a last-minute stocking filler.