Ho­tels spread hol­i­day cheer world­wide

Christ­mas tree light­ing cer­e­monies fund pro­grams to help chil­dren in China and abroad, re­ports.

China Daily (Hong Kong) - - HOSPITALITY -

Jiang Wan­juan

oth­ing warms the hear t quite like the light­ing of a Christ­mas tree. Every year around this time, ho­tels wel­come the Christ­mas sea­son and ex­press grat­i­tude to their guests with sim­i­lar cer­e­monies.

Be­yond car­ols and tra­di­tional food, some ho­tels look for ways to reach out to those in need, as a spe­cial hol­i­day gift.

The Hil­ton Bei­jing’s an­nual Christ­mas tree light­ing cer­e­mony took place on De­cem­ber 3 with a char­ity event, dur­ing which the renowned “Christ­mas Train & Vil­lage” made its way to the ho­tel lobby, as it has for sev­eral years’ Christ­mas cel­e­bra­tions.

Through spon­sors and guests’ do­na­tions, the in­stal­la­tion helped to raise more than 125,000 yuan ($18,110) for the char­ity Morn­ing Tears, an or­ga­ni­za­tion that fo­cuses on help­ing the chil­dren of con­victs.

Since its de­but in 2010, the mis­sion of the Hil­ton Bei­jing’s Christ­mas Train & Vil­lage has been to ex­em­plify so­cial re­spon­si­bil­ity.

Through­out the past seven years, the project and its af­fil­i­ated Christ­mas Char­ity Bazaar have raised a to­tal of al­most 1 mil­lion yuan for sev­eral char­i­ties, fo­cus­ing on causes ben­e­fit­ing chil­dren.

The ho­tel has been sup­port­ing the Morn­ing Tears Or­ga­ni­za­tion for four con­sec­u­tive years, since 2013, to help chil­dren whose par­ents are serv­ing time in prison. The Hil­ton Bei­jing’s man­age­ment vis­ited the home of the Morn­ing Tears pro­gram in Zhengzhou, He­nan prov­ince, and ini­ti­ated var­i­ous aca­demic and ath­letic pro­grams for the chil­dren.

The ho­tel also con­ducted first aid train­ing for teach­ers to en­sure chil­dren re­ceive proper aid dur­ing emer­gen­cies. Its kitchen and house­keep­ing staff of­fered hy­giene classes to help care­givers to im­prove the chil­dren’s en­vi­ron­ment.

“We have done won­der­ful work in the com­mu­nity for seven years to im­prove the lives of chil­dren,” said Ste­fan Sch­mid, gen­eral man­ager of the Hil­ton Bei­jing.

“As Hil­ton Bei­jing’s staff, we hope the cer­e­mony is an op­por­tu­nity to make a pos­i­tive dif­fer­ence in our lo­cal com­mu­ni­ties.”

Col­lab­o­rat­ing with ma­ter­nal and chil­dren’s brand Sheng Tong Tong, Four Sea­sons Ho­tel Bei­jing set a Guin­ness World Record with this year’s Christ- mas char­ity event on Dec 10.

The “Largest Soft Toy Mo­saic” in the world was con­structed us­ing more than 4,000 Homie bears, which cov­ered 133 square me­ters.

Af­ter set­ting the record, the bears are be­ing sold to the pub­lic. Five per­cent of the sales will be do­nated to the Ed­u­cat­ing Girls of Ru­ral China pro­gram, a non-profit that seeks to give the gift of school­ing to un­der­priv­i­leged girls.

“It’s time to en­joy a new spirit of love, hope and joy sent through each one of those twin­kling lights on the Christ­mas tree with friends and fam­i­lies,” said An­drew De Brito, gen­eral man­ager of Four Sea­sons Ho­tel Bei­jing. “It’s also a time for giv­ing, to light up with hope for un­der­priv­i­leged girls.”

In t h e s o u t h e a s t o f t h e cap­i­tal, Sof­i­tel Wanda Bei­jing en­cour­ages guests to pur­chase an Or­bis star, each priced be tween 30 and 50 yuan, write their wishes on them and hang them on a Christ­mas tree in the ho­tel lobby. Or­bis is an in­ter­na­tional non-gov­ern­men­tal char­ity or­ga­ni­za­tion which de­votes its re­sources to aid­ing the vis­ually im­paired all over the world.

The ho­tel is com­mit­ted to rais­ing funds for the chil­dren through “A Thou­sand Stars for Or­bis”.

The ho­tel’s Gen­eral Mana g e r Je r e m y A n i e r e a n d Di­rec­tor of Or­bis North Asia Ge­orge Smith hung the first two Or­bis stars on the Christ­mas tree on Nov 24.

The char­ity event started dur­ing the ho­tel’s Christ­mas tree light­ing cer­e­mony. By Dec 10, the tree was full of Or­bis stars. Ac­cord­ing to the ho­tel, money from sales of the Or­bis stars will be do­nated.

In the west of the city, the Ritz-Carl­ton Bei­jing, Fi­nan­cial Street paid at­ten­tion to eco-friendly pro­duc ts and na­ture con­ser­va­tion.

The ho­tel in­tro­duced the new and mean­ing­ful con­cept through the eco-friendly Teddy Bear & BeePanda Af­ter­noon Tea in co­op­er­a­tion with Shan Shui Con­ser­va­tion Cen­ter, a na­ture con­ser­va­tion or­ga­ni­za­tion es­tab­lished in 2007.

BeePanda, a part­ner project of the Shan Shui Con­ser­va­tion Cen­ter, aims to in­te­grate sus­tain­able lo­cal pro­duc­tion of honey and other pro­duce into the devel­op­ment strate­gies of lo­cal com­mu­ni­ties of gi­ant pan­das’ nat­u­ral habi­tats, con­tribut­ing to bio­di­ver­sity con­ser­va­tion, as well as so­cial and en­vi­ron­men­tal wel­fare.

Through the pro­duc­tion and con­sump­tion of BeePanda honey, the ho­tel hopes to raise aware­ness among bee­keep­ers and con­sumers about the in­ter­de­pen­dence among species in a healthy ecosys­tem.

As in the past, the ho­tel in­vited chil­dren from Sun Vil­lage to per­form dur­ing the Christ­mas tree light­ing cer­e­mony on Dec 2. Sun Vil­lage is a non-gov­ern­men­tal char­ity or­ga­ni­za­tion ded­i­cated to nur­tur­ing and pro­vid­ing ed­u­ca­tion to chil­dren whose par­ents are in prison.

A l t h o u g h t h e Wa l d o r f As­to­ria Bei­jing did not hold a Christ­mas tree light­ing cer­e­mony, it raised 4,568 yuan from a char­ity din­ner, part of the “Meet me at the hyphen” Wal­dorf As­to­ria Ball, on Dec 9.

The money raised will be used to plant trees in North­west China to im­prove the en­vi­ron­ment and help lo­cal peo­ple to in­crease their in­come.

We hope the cer­e­mony is an op­por­tu­nity to make a pos­i­tive dif­fer­ence in our lo­cal com­mu­ni­ties.”

Con­tact the writer at jiang­wan­juan@ chi­nadaily.com.cn


Clock­wise from top right: The Ritz-Carl­ton Bei­jing, Fi­nan­cial Street’s staff cel­e­brate the Christ­mas sea­son with chil­dren on Dec 2. Sof­i­tel Wanda Bei­jing en­cour­ages guests to pur­chase an Or­bis star to raise funds for the vis­ually im­paired. Four Sea­sons Ho­tel Bei­jing sets a Guin­ness World Record, us­ing more than 4,000 toy bears to con­struct the “Largest Soft Toy Mo­saic” in the world. The Bei­jing Hil­ton stages a Christ­mas tree light­ing cer­e­mony on Dec 3. Ste­fan Sch­mid, gen­eral man­ager of the Hil­ton Bei­jing

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