It’s Christmas Eve! This month, I went on a search for the best Christmas decorations in Tokyo. We all know Japan’s winter lights, called illuminations in Japanese, are outstanding, but they don’t have much to do with December 25th. I didn’t come across any nativity scenes but I did find one enchanting display in Ebisu.
The Westin Tokyo is a high-end hotel next to the popular Ebisu Garden Place. The hotel is often used for weddings and special banquets, and the rooms here are known to be pretty extraordinary with breathtaking views of Tokyo. For the festive season, they decked out their marble-floor lobby and grand staircase with so much Christmas cheer! The theme they went for this year was ‘Christmas Wonderland’, in celebration of the final months of the Heisei Period.
Like a scene out of the Nutcracker, the lobby had been transformed into a wondrous Christmas dream. It’s not everyday in Japan that you see a Christmas tree with presents underneath. There was even a gorgeous electric train set that did laps around the tree. The wooden nutcracker dolls dotted around the lobby reminded me of my favourite ballet; and the figurines, pine cones and baubles were all beautifully hand crafted. Like I always say, the Japanese are masters at paying attention to every detail!
I felt like this display would evoke nostalgic memories for people who grew up in western countries even if they didn’t have trees as grand as this one. And for the Japanese who have come to celebrate Christmas by eating KFC and a strawberry sponge cake, it gives them a glimpse into how others around the world decorate their home for this holiday season.
How about you? Do you put up any Christmas decorations in your home?
Cosy fireplace corner
Double layer train set – one slow, one fast
Naughty horse eating the tree
Christmas cake shop straight out of a fairytale
Merry Christmas, everyone!