This holiday season, Gaylord Palms Resort will introduce ICE! featuring Christmas Around the World for the first time in Orlando, showcasing different cultures and their wintertime festivities. In addition to this new ICE! attraction theme, other celebrations of the holidays will join to create the resort’s “Everything Christmas in One Extraordinary Place” event, Christmas at Gaylord Palms presented by FUJIFILM INSTAX®.
A New World of ICE! at Gaylord Palms
Celebrating the 15th season in Orlando, ICE! presented by Pepsi® returns to Gaylord Palms to deliver frozen fun to everyone! This year’s ICE! featuring Christmas Around the World celebrates the world’s diverse holiday traditions, representing United Kingdom, Mexico, Germany and more.
“We’re excited to offer this theme in Central Florida, a destination welcoming millions from around the world every year,” said Johann Krieger, General Manager for Gaylord Palms Resort. “This year’s ICE! theme also inspired our creative team to add new activities and live shows that celebrate cultures and highlight diversity during this special time of year.”
Artisans from Harbin, China, home of the world’s largest ice and snow sculpture festival, travel more than 6,000 miles to hand-carve more than two million pounds of colorful ice into larger-than-life sculptures. When guests enter the nine-degree attraction this year, they will discover holiday scenes from various nations and two-story ice slides surrounded by sculptures and international tidings, all before ending with a trip to the North Pole to experience Santa’s toy workshop. The ICE! experience ends with the Frostbite Factory live ice carving showcase and the traditional Nativity created with crystal clear ice.
All-New Performances and Experiences
Gaylord Palms welcomes back an exciting, new season of Cirque Dreams Unwrapped – reimagined by Broadway director and renowned Cirque Dreams founder Neil Goldberg. Never-before-seen acts, artistry and costumes set in a magical and timeless wonderland bring this new high-flying adventure for the entire family onto the atrium stage. This latest Cirque Dreams Unwrapped spectacle is a thrilling 25-minute, action-packed experience of amazement, theatricality and imagination that will have guests on the edge of their seats. Complimentary seats will be available on a first come-first seated basis, while Guaranteed Seating may be purchased in advance.
Guests wishing to enhance their show experience should reserve a place at a Cirque Dreams Unwrapped Dessert Party, available on Saturdays during December. Incredible views from a private fourth-floor viewing patio provide a unique perspective for the Cirque Dreams performance as guests enjoy a special buffet of holiday sweets from the Gaylord Palms culinary team paired with beverages to please all ages.
Gaylord Palms’ dazzling atrium becomes even more merry and bright during Joyful, a spectacular new multisensory experience surrounding the resort’s six-story Christmas tree. Joyful will feature an exclusive holiday musical score along with millions of dancing, choreographed lights during the 12-minute nightly shows that illuminate the resort’s atrium.
More joyful noise will fill the resort’s atrium with the new Sounds of the Season Concert Series featuring a capella concerts on select nights in December. Local performance groups appearing include Voctave, Gaylord Palms STARS (resort staff) and the Orlando Gay Chorus, along with a very special collaboration between Opera Orlando, Orlando Philharmonic and the Orlando Ballet. All performances will be onstage in the St. Augustine Atrium and include a special concert patron-exclusive visit to the resort’s popular ICE! attraction following the performance.
As guests explore the sights and sounds of Christmas at Gaylord Palms, they’ll discover a brand-new experience, the Christmas Tree Trail. Set inside the Everglades Atrium, this Christmas Tree Trail offers a display of nine magnificent trees provided by Balsam HillTM, adorned with decorations honoring the culture and traditions of various countries including Brazil, China, Italy and more. Guests can explore the trail at their leisure, admiring the décor while learning about international holiday celebrations.
Guests will encounter some extra Christmas magic when they visit the new, immersive Reindeer Express Post Office. Kids are invited to jot down their top Christmas wishes on a postcard before entering this special facility to send their wishes off on a journey to Santa. When kids submit their postcards, they can watch as the cards are stamped and prepared for delivery via a special scan, sending their wishes directly to the North Pole before returning the card to them as a special Christmas keepsake.
The all-new Build-A-Bear Workshop® Scavenger Hunt sends guests to find Snowburst, the Gaylord Hotels Polar Bear, along with his bear buddies (each with a holiday talent) as they make sure Gaylord Palms is festively decorated with holiday cheer! In addition, guests can choose from all kinds of furry friends to bring home, including the exclusive light-up Snowburst polar bear, as imaginations soar at the Build-A-Bear Workshop® at Gaylord Palms.
Award-winning buffet restaurant Villa de Flora brings back the hearty and heartwarming Breakfast with Charlie Brown & Friends, allowing guests to pose with Snoopy and hang out with Charlie Brown and Lucy. In addition to the Peanuts Gang meet and greets, the breakfast includes a delicious morning buffet with themed dishes, such as Charlie Brown’s Build-Your-Own-French-Toast Station with Snoopy’s Maple Syrup, Pig Pen’s Dirty Hash Browns, Lucy’s Flap Jacks and Woodstock’s Granola.
Christmas at Gaylord Palms invites guests to return to the festive Alpine Village, the central hub for holiday happenings. In addition to ICE!, the area is home to various attractions; shows; seasonal food, beverage and retail locations; and Photos with Santa, where holiday memories can be captured inside his toy workshop.
Gingerbread Decorating Corner presented by Hallmark Channel’s Countdown to Christmas continues to be a deliciously fun holiday tradition. Guests may select a gingerbread house or a themed cookie kit to enjoy a sticky and fun interactive experience, creating sweet souvenirs that can be carried home unless someone eats them first! The delightful larger-than-life gingerbread pair, Cinnamon and Nutmeg, will also be available for toasty hugs and holiday photos.
Mrs. Claus’ Christmas Traditions brings the First Lady of the North Pole back to Gaylord Palms as she leads a half-hour interactive show. Guests enjoy classic holiday stories and a sing-a-long, plus a delicious finale as the holiday hostess presents everyone with warm cookies and a glass of cold milk.
Santa’s Snow Throw puts real snow in the hands of guests as they show off their pitching prowess by tossing snowballs at a variety of interactive targets. Bragging rights go to those with the best aim!
Snow Tubing sends guests zooming down an eight-lane tubing hill covered in real snow. This all-ages attraction offers both single and double tubes to accommodate children and parents. Evenings are enlivened with Cosmic Tubing, complete with flashing LED lights and high-spirited holiday music.
How to Visit Christmas at Gaylord Palms
Guests seeking to save can bundle multiple attractions and experiences by purchasing a Play & Save Pass, available in three tiers: Silver, Gold and Platinum. All passes include ICE!, Snow Tubing and Build-A-Bear Workshop® Scavenger Hunt. The Gold Pass adds Santa’s Snow Throw and Mrs. Claus’ Christmas Traditions. For the greatest savings, purchase the Platinum Pass, which also includes priority front-of-the-line access to ICE! and a gingerbread decorating kit. Play & Save Passes are available for adults and children and offer as much as 30-percent off depending on the bundle selected.
The best way to experience all of Christmas at Gaylord Palms is with an overnight stay. One-night packages start at $240 plus tax, resort fee and parking. Packages include ICE! tickets for two (with option to add additional adults or children) plus a souvenir family photo. Overnight guests may also schedule a visit to ICE! during the daily hotel guest-exclusive Extra Cool Hour from 9 a.m. to 10 a.m. Make the holidays merrier and extend the package to stay for multiple nights!
Christmas at Gaylord Palms is open daily from November 21, 2017 – January 7, 2018, including holidays. For additional information and to book packages or tickets, visit ChristmasAtGaylordPalms.com.
We will be attending the November 20th media preview so make sure you are following along on Instagram!