York’s only five-star hotel promises to offer its customers a great Christmas experience.
The Grand Hotel York has geared up for the holiday season with a range of treats, stressing that it’s open to locals too.
The former railway headquarters in Station Rise has put itself in the limelight and launched its festive offerings.
Now the 207-room Edwardian hotel has 22 trees and 12 wreaths, including a 5-foot wreath that was installed by a crane.
There are also 16,000 balls, three (not real) reindeer and almost 500 meters of garlands around the hotel.
General Manager Simon Mahon said: “This also includes the iconic staircase, which many people enter and take pictures of. It goes from the basement to the 5th floor.”
In the coming weeks, the hotel’s cooking school will host parenting and gingerbread classes, as well as classes on how to cook the perfect Christmas meal. Festive cocktails and “roaring” fires add to the seasonal atmosphere.
The hotel offers Christmas and New Year packages. It hosts festive afternoon teas, there’s Christmas in the courtyard and you can book time in a glass-domed ‘terrarium’.
New Year’s Eve offers live entertainment at the Rise Restaurant and Bar for £150 per person, including a hearty three course meal and champagne. For the ‘more lavish celebration’, the Legacy Restaurant offers an eight course tasting menu with wine pairing and live music for £295 per person.
But the Christmas lunch at £150 per person for five courses is already sold out.
In addition, 2023 promises a 23 per cent discount for the first 23 bookings daily from January to March and a half-board Winter Escape package for £99pp for two people.
Business is “really positive” with November and December looking “really strong”.
Simon said: “It’s evident that families are enjoying the delights of York. Our cooking classes are really strong and we’ve seen an increase in spa bookings as people indulge in wellness breaks.”
People have yet to see the full impact of the cost-of-living crisis, but post-pandemic, they are anxious to “make up for lost time” and “seize the day”.
“If they have the money, they spend it and have a good time. Experience counts!”
Earlier this year, The Grand won a Catey’s Award for Hotel of the Year. Conde Nast also declared it the winner for Best Afternoon Tea Place.
So a £39.95 or £49.95 Afternoon Tea is “great value” as it’s the same price as Betty’s or much cheaper than the comparable £67 at the Ritz or £95/£100 at the Claridge’s in London.
In the meantime, the hotel strives to emphasize its role as part of the York community. It has collected clothes for the Keep York Warm appeal, supports York-based charity Hopping Street Kitchen for the homeless and recently raised £6,000 for charity Burn Chef in September. It also supports clean water campaigns in India and Nepal.
The Grand York can be found at: thegrandyork.co.uk