Global Village lights up its 21-metre-high Christmas tree in spectacular style

Family-friendly entertainment park's Winter Wonderland is ramping up the festive spirit

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'Tis the season for tree lightings in the UAE. Across the Emirates, particularly in Abu Dhabi and Dubai, Christmas trees are being decked out and switched on in high-profile venues.

On Thursday, it was the turn of Global Village, one of Dubai's most popular family-friendly attractions.

The 21-metre-high tree, which is decorated to celebrate various cultures, was turned on in a special lighting ceremony where staff dressed up as elves, toy soldiers and gingerbread men gathered among park visitors.

Global Village's Winter Wonderland has been welcoming the public since Tuesday, offering all manner of festive-themed attractions, food and entertainment.

From Saturday, Santa Claus himself will be at the Winter Wonderland and youngsters can share their wish lists with him until December 30. He will be hosting five scheduled daily meet-and-greet sessions, but visitors should keep their eyes peeled as he promises to pop up in the unlikeliest spots throughout the holidays.

Elves will also be performing flash mobs around the park throughout this time, while gingerbread men strolling around will be posing for photos.

Bauble-shaped kiosks have also been set up with stalls selling artisanal gifts, from decorations to foodie treats.

Expect plenty of picture-perfect festive installations across World Avenue and beyond, as well as a special structure at Celebration Walk that's decorated with golden Christmas trees and giant gift boxes.

Also boosting the festive spirit is the park's new eco-friendly Snowfest Ice Rink, which it describes as eco-friendly. The custom-made rink uses synthetic ice, which is a solid polymer material specifically designed for skating.

The park promises guests “the same experience as real ice skating, but without the wet feet and chilly noses”. Tickets to the rink cost Dh40 for 20 minutes.

Tree lightings across the UAE

On Friday, it's the turn of Abu Dhabi's opulent Emirates Palace, which will be turning on the lights of its grand Christmas tree in its central dome on level four.

For something a bit different, head to ME Dubai hotel in Downtown Dubai's The Opus by Omniyat building, designed by the late architect Zaha Hadid, for its digital tree lighting and display, which runs from December 14 to 28.

The multi-dimensional digital art showcase projects festive-themed designs at the atrium for one hour every day and all day on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day. It integrates music, human movement and thousands of LED lights.

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Updated: December 09, 2022, 7:00 AM