The days have become crisp and the scent of cinnamon and spices has started to fill the air. One of our favourite and most enjoyable traditions during the festive period is the building and assembling our gingerbread villages which can be found in lots of our hotels in London. Our pastry chefs Victoria Villella, Giovanni Constantino and Alessandro Paoloni have excelled themselves – the houses stand out as delightful and creative endeavours that are impossible not to bring joy!
On the 1st of December in the early hours of the morning, the Firmdale elves begin to pull together our most impressive gingerbread village at Ham Yard Hotel. Victoria, Head Pastry Chef, begins to think about the designs as early as July.
Initially the houses were all lined up on the reception desk…
Then, once the baseboard was put in position and the perimeter wreath was secured, the snowy trees were fluffed and Victoria began to place the houses and bring the village to life.
The church, taking centre stage, is simply spectacular!
Once they were happy with the arrangement of the houses, the smaller details were added to the scene. Snow, homemade edible pine trees, toadstools, gingerbread men, deer, bunnies and even a moving train was added.
Our Group Executive Head Chef, Joe Fox, was also there to give a helping hand… although sadly there were still a few causalities!
Down the road at Haymarket Hotel, Giovanni has been busy creating this gingerbread village, which can be spotted in the entrance of Brumus restaurant and bar. One favourite element is Father Christmas going down the chimney.
Alessandro at The Soho Hotel did a phenomenal job with his. It even features a house representing the hotel’s iconic Botero cat in the reception. When installing this one, a child in the drawing room said not being able to eat the sweets is ‘torture’! We quite agree.
What fun and such an achievement, we can’t wait to see what next year’s gingerbread villages look like!