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24 fabulously festive things to do at UK hotels this Christmas season

Charlotte Johnstone
Let the surrounding Hampshire nature inspire you for Chewton Glen's Christmas Flowers Morning Workshop

From crafty workshops and carol concerts to plastic-free gift fairs, Christmassy cookery courses and wintry pop-ups, we've rounded up some of the most festive hotels in the UK – with something to book for every day up to Christmas. Enjoy!

Dec 1: Christmas crafternoons at The Curtain, London

The Curtain hotel's '12 Days of Christmas' invites guests and non-residents to celebrate the season with cabaret performances, festive films at LIDO (the rooftop bar and brasserie which will be trainsformed into a wintry cinema) and a series of ‘crafternoon’ workshops. Among these are wreath-making masterclasses where arrangements are created with a contemporary Shoreditch spin. Others include lino printing and wrapping paper making (Dec 5). See website for details.

Tickets cost £50pp including a glass of mulled wine on arrival. Rooms from £179 (020 3146 4545; thecurtain.com).

Read the full review: The Curtain, London

Classes such as wreath-making take place throughout December Credit: Robert Hodges

Dec 2: Ugly Christmas jumpers at Henrietta’s, London

Start the season with a bang at Henrietta Hotel in Covent Garden. Miracle, a festive cocktail pop-up which originated in New York, borrows from chintzy Seventies American Christmas tradition, with a good dollop of nostalgic flavour inspired by a “1970s Christmas home”. Though December 2 saw the official “Ugly Sweater” party, you can still don that bobbled attire should you visit throughout the rest of the month.

Cocktails from £12; booking essential. Rooms from £249 (020 3794 5313; henriettahotel.com).

Read the full review: Henrietta Hotel, London

Expect a good dollop of nostalgic flavour inspired by a ‘1970s Christmas home' at Henrietta's Miracle pop up

The 12 stays of Christmas

Dec 3: Cathedral Choirs with Belmond Le Manoir aux Quat'Saisons, Oxfordshire

Throughout December several carol concert evenings will take place at St Mary’s church a short walk from the hotel. Evenings start at Belmond Le Manoir with a glass of champagne and canapés before a short torch-lit walk to the candlelit church. On December 3, The Choir of Christ Church Cathedral will be performing followed by a five-course dinner back at the hotel paired with wines from the cellar. 

Dec 3; tickets £280 per person including, champagne and canapés, concert and dinner. Rooms from £249 (01844 278881; belmond.com).

Read the full review: Belmond Le Manoir aux Quat'Saisons, Oxfordshire

Throughout December several carol concert evenings will be take place at St Mary’s church near Belmond Le Manoir aux Quat'Saisons

Dec 4: Après everyday at Montague on the Gardens, London

With comforting food, a warm tent, all the candy you can eat and even flurries of “snow”, Montague on the Gardens' ski lodge is the setting for a hearty winter warmer, whether it's December 4 or January 4. The “Ski Pass” grants access to the lodge, a festive platter and a choice of three drinks from the bar where hot choctails, wine, beer, spirits and warm mulled wine will be served. It's the Bloomsbury alternative to an après bar in the French Alps. Salute!

Ski pass bookable until Jan 5, 2020 (booking essential); costs £38pp. Rooms from £194 (020 7637 1001; montaguehotel.com).

Montague on the Gardens' festive pop up is a convincing alternative to an après ski bar in the French Alps

Dec 5: Festive Wonderland at Four Seasons Hampshire

Not only will you be able to get your Christmas shopping done, but money raised from donating, buying gifts and food will help support The Brain Tumour Charity, a local charity dedicated to funding research, raising awareness, campaigning and providing support. Festive carols will be performed by the Dogmersfield School choir as well as live piano music from Lewis Bolland as guests shop, skate on the hotel’s ice rink, and indulge in mince pies and mulled wine.

Dec 5; 6pm-9pm. Rooms from £253 (01252 853000; fourseasons.com).

Read the full review: Four Seasons Hampshire

Festive Wonderland at Four Seasons Hampshire has an ice rink

Dec 6: Christmas Karaoke at Mama Shelter, London

With just two weeks left until Christmas, it’s time to warm up those vocal chords. Mama Shelter in Hackney has two karaoke rooms where you can hark your favourite festive tunes whilst availing of a bar menu that includes burgers and pizzette. The first hour is free for hotel guests, and for those waiting their turn there are arcades games in the lobby. 

Karaoke costs £25 per hour. Rooms from £85 (020 7613 6500; mamashelter.com).

Read the full review: Mama Shelter, London

Mama Shelter in Hackney has two karaoke rooms where you can let out your inner Tina Turner Credit: FRANCIS AMIAND/FRANCIS AMIAND

Dec 7: Bottomless baubles and bubbles at the Hoxton Holborn, London

Forget hand-knitted sweaters; 'tis the year for hand-lettered baubles and at the Hoxton Holborn you'll be able to get those creative juices flowing with bottomless bubbles. Hosted by the London Craft Club, the workshop will teach you the basics before putting your newfound skills to use. Customise your own hand-lettered baubles to give to friends and family as gifts – or to fill gaps on your tree. 

Dec 7; from 12pm-2pm; tickets cost £35. Rooms from £159 (020 7661 3000; thehoxton.com).

Read the full review: The Hoxton Holborn, London

Get the creative juices flowing with bottomless bubbles at the Hoxton Holborn

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Dec 8: Wonderful not wasteful – plastic-free gifts at Sea Containers London

Sea Containers London have partnered up with eco-friendly shop Plastic Freedom this December. Embracing the Attenborough factor, everything that you can buy in this pop-up, situated in the hotel's gallery, is completely free of single-use plastic, from candles and grooming sets to tree decorations and Christmas sock sets. Furthermore, there’ll be a sustainable gift-wrapping station that uses recycled, hand-printed paper with hessian bows. 

Pop up takes place Dec 6-8. Rooms from £168 (020 3747 1000; seacontainerslondon.com).

Read the full review: Sea Containers London

Everything you can buy at this pop up in Sea Containers' gallery is completely free of single-use plastic

Dec 9: A doggy afternoon tea with a festive twist at Egerton House Hotel, London

The Egerton is the picture of Christmas cheer this December. The entrance has been transformed into a Victorian shop front, with two Christmas trees and lots of garlands, lights, Victorian sweets and homemade gingerbread for guests to enjoy. The fun doesn't stop there: the ever-popular doggy afternoon tea has been given a festive twist and those four-legged friends are encouraged to don their best Christmas outfits for the chance to win a doggy afternoon tea gift voucher.

Doggy afternoon tea £25; Festive afternoon tea £48. Rooms from £257 (02075892412; egertonhousehotel.com).

Read the full review: Egerton House Hotel, London

The ever-popular doggy afternoon tea has been given a festive twist Credit: Egerton House Hotel

Dec 10: Silent night at Mandarin Oriental, London

If you need a break from all the Christmas hubbub, seek refuge in the Mandarin Oriental’s Silent Night. From 5pm onwards there will be no music or talking at the globally renowned spa for the night. Come alone or bring a loved one, and finish your experience with a stay in a room overlooking Hyde Park so that you can wake up to a restful morning with views transporting you to the countryside. 

Silent Night includes breathing exercises and 80-minute full body massage; from £195. Rooms from £560 (020 7235 2000; mandarinoriental.com).

Read the full review: Mandarin Oriental, London

From 5pm onwards, there will be no music or talking in Mandarin Oriental's spa

Dec 11: Afternoon tea with a festive twist aboard the Sunborn yacht, London

Take your afternoon tea on the deck this year at Sunborn to the city-slick views of Canary Wharf and Docklands. With a festive menu that includes winter berry trifle, spiced cranberry scones, and turkey and cranberry sandwiches, you'll leave feeling as 'full as a stocking on Christmas morning'. There is also an option to make it more decadent with a Laurent Perrier Champagne Tasting flight.

Traditional Afternoon Tea £35pp; with Laurent Perrier Champagne Tasting flight £50pp. Rooms from £115 (020 3714 811; sunbornhotels.com).

Read the full review: Sunborn London

A festive menu at the Sunborn includes turkey and cranberry sandwiches

Dec 12: Christmas Chocolate Paradise spa treatment at The Landmark, London

There should be no shortage of sweet things at Christmas, which is why The Landmark is offering a Christmas Chocolate Paradise spa treatment. Including a head-to-toe chocolate scrub, body exfoliation, followed by a chocolate wrap, the 65-minute treatment doesn’t end there as you can avail of the spa for the next two hours. Take advantage of your time at one of London’s great railway hotels by continuing the blissful escape with a room overlooking the Winter Garden. 

Available from Dec 2-Jan 5; £130. Rooms from £311 (020 7631 8010; landmarklondon.co.uk). 

Read the full review: The Landmark, London

The Landmark is offering a Christmas Chocolate Paradise spa treatment as part of its festive offerings

Dec 13: Shopping at The Lanesborough, London package kicks off

Once you've ogled the beautiful tree by Ralph & Russo, and indulged in a gluttunous themed afternoon tea, take a chauffeur-driven car to Harvey Nichols where you can meet and greet the fashion house’s style concierge or enjoy a private shopping experience with a stylist (the jewellery department is a must). The fun continues back at the hotel with a dedicated butler service and breakfast in Michelin-starred, decadent Céleste. 

From Nov 13 2019-Jan 7 2020. Rooms from £735 (020 7259 5599; oetkercollection.com)

Read the full review: The Lanesborough, London

Once you've ogled The Lanesborough's tree by Ralph & Russo, and indulged in a gluttunous themed afternoon tea, hit the shops like a VIP

Dec 14: Kids' Gingerbread Workshop with Hotel Chocolat, The Hoxton Southwark, London

Children become chocolatiers for the afternoon with Hotel Chocolat at The Hoxton in Southwark. As one of the world's few chocolate makers to grow cocoa on its own plantation (Rabot Estate in Saint Lucia), this is the last word in UK chocolateering pop ups. Children will learn the bean to bar process, touching and tasting freshly roasted cocoa beans. The budding Willy Wonkas then create their own chocolate gingerbread treats, which make a special addition to Santa’s plate of biscuits. 

Dec 14; 11am-1pm; costs £10. Rooms from £160 (020 7903 3000; thehoxton.com).

Read the full review: The Hoxton Southwark, London

Keep the kids entertained with a gingerbread workshop at The Hoxton Southwark

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Dec 15: Tinsel Tea Party at The House at Beaverbrook, Surrey

Tuck into onion bread sandwiches stuffed with sage butter, roast turkey and spiced cranberry sauce; stilton and roasted fig scones with jam and truffle butter; and a mélange of delicious fancies and mini mince pies in your own Tinsel Tea Party. Afterwards plump for one of the house's beautiful suites and a spa treatment or two if you feel like making a meal out of it.

Afternoon tea from £50pp. Rooms from £320 (01372 571300; beaverbrook.co.uk).

Read the full review: The House at Beaverbrook, Surrey

The House at Beaverbrook is very cosy come Christmas Credit: Copyright 2019. All rights reserved./Rinkoo

Dec 16: Advanced Christmas Flowers Morning Workshop at Chewton Glen, Hampshire

Originally built in the 18th century, this country house hotel retains the charm of the country pile while also embracing the 21st century with a set of contemporary treehouse suites. Located in Hampshire, let the surrounding nature inspire you for the Christmas Flowers Morning Workshop. You will learn to make a Christmas door wreath and a table arrangement using fresh flowers, materials and an array of seasonal accessories. A delicious two-course lunch with a glass of wine, coffee and mince pies will be served in one of their dining rooms afterwards.

Course from £125 for non-residents. Rooms from £325 (01425 275341; chewtonglen.com).

Read the full review: Chewton Glen, Hampshire

Let the surrounding nature inspire you for the Christmas Flowers Morning Workshop at Chewton Glen Credit: Adrian Houston Limited/Adrian Houston

Dec 17: Carols with Bailiffscourt Hotel & Spa’s 13th-century chapel, West Sussex

Transport yourself in time with Christmas carols by candlelight in a 13th-century chapel. The magical event begins with your choice of either lunch, afternoon tea, or dinner before proceeding to the chapel to listen to (and perhaps sing along with) The Agnes Collective. Set on the grounds of Bailiffscourt Hotel in West Sussex, you can make your way to your own house or cottage afterwards.  

Dec 15-17; tickets from £55pp. Rooms from £215 (019 0372 3511; hshotels.co.uk).

Read the full review: Bailiffscourt Hotel & Spa, West Sussex

Enjoy Christmas carols by candlelight at Bailiffscourt Hotel & Spa's 13th-century chapel

Dec 18: Christmas with Caines; Gala Dinner at Lympstone Manor, Devon

The gala dinner kicks off with champagne and canapés before guests are seated for a six-course tasting menu with wine matchings selected from Lympstone Manor’s 600-bottle-strong cellar. The Michelin-starred, BBC Great British menu icon, who is revered for his modern European cuisine sourced where possible from the South West, will introduce each course, sharing stories about the recipes and how each dish was created. Complete the experience with a stay – preferably a room with an outdoor bath overlooking the Exe estuary. 

Dine and stay from £765 double occupancy (01395 202040; lympstonemanor.co.uk).

Read the full review: Lympstone Manor, Devon

Lympstone Manor’s Christmas gala dinner is a chance to enjoy excellent food in the company of Michael Caine Credit: ©2018 Matt Round Photograph

Dec 19: The Sopwell House winter wonderland welcome party, Hertfordshire

In honour of the festive season, this historic Georgian country house is hosting a welcome party to new joiners on Dec 19 (it's one of the country's first members' spas and opened earlier this year). Get to know new fellow members over wine and a three-course dinner before throwing some shapes on the dance floor. Perhaps plan ahead for the morning after with an ESPA or Clarins treatment to ensure you leave Sopwell House glowing. 

Tickets cost £69pp Sun-Wed; £89 Thur-Sat. Rooms from £189 (01727 864477; sopwellhouse.co.uk).

Read the full review: Sopwell House, Hertfordshire

In honour of the festive season, Sopwell House is hosting a welcome party to new joiners on Dec 19 Credit: x-default/Pete Webb

Dec 20: Medieval banquet at Coombe Abbey, Warwickshire

Feast like royalty in the abbey that was once the largest and most influential monastery in Warwickshire. Start the evening with mead cocktails before tucking into a four-course meal that features pottage, marinated rib of swine, roasted fowl and apple and apricot crumble. A stage show shall entertain while you eat, and beakers of wine and ale will quench parched banqueters. For the sinful, there are confessional booths in the hotel’s lobby, serving as remnants of the abbey’s monastic past.

Tickets cost £46.50. Rooms from £75 (024 7645 0450; coombeabbey.com). 

Read the full review: Coombe Abbey, Warwickshire

Feast like royalty in Coombe Abbey, once the largest and most influential monastery in Warwickshire

Dec 21: Make mince pies at Lucknam Park, Wiltshire

The elegant country pile offers not just a Michelin-starred restaurant and a luxurious spa but also a cookery school. This Christmas, impress family and friends with creations resulting from their Festive Baking course including mince pies, almond and cherry stollen and a decorated chocolate Yule log. The course includes lunch, tea and coffee and ends at 3pm, giving you ample time to take a stroll in its 500-acre parkland. 

Course £140pp. Rooms from £245 (012257 42777; lucknampark.co.uk).

Read the full review: Lucknam Park, Wiltshire

Impress family and friends with creations learned from Lucknam Park's Festive Baking course

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Dec 22: It’s a Wonderful Life – festive flicks at Covent Garden Hotel, London

Rewatching classic Christmas movies is inevitably a highlight of the season and Covent Garden Hotel elevates the experience with its weekend film club. Guests are invited to afternoon tea or a two-course lunch with a glass of wine in Brasserie Max followed by a screening of It’s A Wonderful Life. Follow up with post-film conversation in the bar, nearly always filled with theatre-goers given its central location in the pretty Seven Dials area.

Tickets cost £45. Rooms from £336 (020 7806 1000; firmdalehotels.com).

Read the full review: Covent Garden Hotel, London

Covent Garden Hotel hosts a weekend film club during the festive season

Dec 23: Little Elves arts & crafts workshop plus cookie decorating at Goldsborough Hall, North Yorkshire

It promises to be a jolly time for Santa’s little helpers at this workshop. Children will be able to get as crafty as they like, as well as making and decorating Christmas cookies. It's thirsty work so the session includes soft drinks, biscuits and a gift from under the tree. Follow up with a stroll around the grounds of the stately home and see if the little ones can spot one of Santa’s reindeer. Round up the festive occasion with a stay in the house that has played host to Oliver Cromwell’s Army and Princess Mary in the past.

Tickets cost £15. Rooms from £195 (01423 867321; goldsboroughhall.com).

Read the full review: Goldsborough Hall, North Yorkshire

Children will have a jolly time in the workshops at Goldsborough Hall

Dec 24: A Christmas house party at Grantley Hall, North Yorkshire

Those with a desire to spend Christmas day like a lord or lady can book the hotel’s “house party”. Expect plenty of mince pies and mulled wine, champagne and canapés, plus feasts, buffets, breakfasts and brunches. Late-night parties at Valeria’s champagne and cocktail bar add to the revelry, but for something more genteel there will also be a guided walk to Fountains Abbey, a service at Ripon Cathedral and evening entertainment with a pianist and singer. Plus there’s the spa for a spot of post-party pampering. 

Packages (Dec 24-27) from £1,300pp based on two people sharing a Deluxe Room (01765 620070; grantleyhall.co.uk).

Read the full review: Grantley Hall, North Yorkshire

Those who want to spend Christmas feeling thoroughly spoilt should head to Grantley Hall

Dec 25: Season's greetings wherever you are in the world, from Telegraph Travel