There’s no Christmas celebration quite like Italy’s Natale (Italian Christmas), when family and friends gather to enjoy cherished traditional recipes and fine wines.

This year, diners at The Shangri-La Hotel, Tokyo’s Italian restaurant Piacere can tuck into a festive weekend brunch until Dec. 24 in that merry spirit with a vast buffet of Italian appetizers and classic roast chicken.

Soup, gnocchi and risotto, as well as a choice of main dish such as a wagyu steak burger and king crab eggs Benedict are also on offer. The brunch is from noon until 4 p.m. on Sat., Sun. and holidays, and is priced at ¥8,000 (¥10,000 between Dec. 22 and 24).

Additionally, Piacere’s executive chef Andrea Ferrero will be presenting a decadent eight-course Christmas dinner from Dec. 21 to 25, featuring Milanese breaded veal loin and Oma tuna poached in extra virgin olive oil. The dinner is priced at ¥22,000 and runs twice an evening; from 5:30 to 8 p.m., and from 8:30 until 11 p.m.

This delicious blend of Japanese and Italian hospitality is complemented by breathtaking views of the midwinter Tokyo skyline, sure to dazzle guests celebrating with their nearest and dearest.

The Shangri-La Hotel, Tokyo is two minutes from Tokyo Station Nihonbashi Exit. For more information and reservations, visit www.shangri-la.com/jp/tokyo/shangrila/ or call 03-6739-7888.

Eclectic celebrations aplenty this holiday season

Nagoya Tokyu Hotel is pulling out all the stops this Christmas. From seasonal menus to live performances and exclusive stay packages, guests are in for an extraordinary treat this yuletide season.

First-floor all-day dining establishment Montmartre has prepared a Christmas buffet to be available during both lunch and dinner hours from Dec. 22 to 25. Atrium lounge Grindelwald has also prepared an evening buffet featuring smooth jazz and live vocals on Dec. 15, 16 and 22 to 25.

Furthermore, the hotel will be hosting three live Christmas dinner shows: a concert featuring singer-songwriter Koji Tamaki on Dec. 19, a Chinese lute performance on Dec. 23 and a candlelit Noh performance on Christmas.

As if that wasn’t enough, the hotel is offering up its luxury suite rooms — which typically only cater to domestic and international VIPs — for guests to spend their Christmas in style. Starting at ¥51,900 for the Corner Suite and topping off at ¥104,400 for the Royal Suite, this one-night stay for two comes with a half bottle of Champagne, access to the Executive Business Salon, free use of the Fitness Club and a relaxing breakfast the next morning.

Nagoya Tokyu Hotel is 15 minutes by car from Nagoya Station or five minutes from Sakae Station. For more information or reservations, visit https://www.tokyuhotels.co.jp/nagoya-h/index.html or call 052-251-2411.

Exclusive Christmas dinner boasts Italian flair

ANA Crowne Plaza Hotel Kobe wishes its guests a Merry Christmas with a savory twist. From Dec. 22 to 26, the hotel’s 36th-floor restaurant and bar Level 36 joyously presents Natale, a luxurious Italian Christmas dinner course guaranteed to bring cheer and good tidings for all.

Priced at ¥9,000 (¥12,000 for the meat course), Natale is available via reservation only and will be served during specific time slots during the restaurant’s dinner hours: 
5 p.m., 5:30 p.m., 8 p.m. and 8:30 p.m. Slots fill up quickly, so the hotel recommends booking as soon as possible.

This yuletide-exclusive was created by the hotel’s seasoned chef Takehiro Imada, who himself spent many years in Italy perfecting his craft. Appetizers include marinated salmon, smoked duck and quail affogato, followed by spinach and mussel soup with flame-grilled scallops and sea urchin. Guests will have the choice of main course between grilled half-lobster and abalone with lemon, salsa verde and checca tomato sauce, or grilled Banshu beef loin accompanied by sauteed mushrooms cooked with garlic and parsley, along with roasted seasonal vegetables with red wine and grain mustard sauce.

ANA Crowne Plaza Kobe is adjacent to Shin-Kobe Station. For more information or reservations, visit www.anacrowneplaza-kobe.jp or call 078-291-1121.

In line with COVID-19 guidelines, the government is strongly requesting that residents and visitors exercise caution if they choose to visit bars, restaurants, music venues and other public spaces.

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