Afternoon tea with Santa
Father Christmas himself will be the guest of honour at this cosy holiday treat. There are photo opportunities (which are great for kids and Instagramming adults alike), gingerbread house decorating and an afternoon tea buffet.
QR190 (adults), QR95 (kids aged 6-12), free (under six). Dec 19-24, 1pm-3pm and 5pm-7pm. Venezia Ballroom, Marsa Malaz Kempinski, The Pearl-Qatar, www.kempinski.com (4035 5011).
Chocolate house and buffet at Banana Island
This year, not only is Zest café on Banana Island building an entire chocolate house (made with hundreds of kilos of chocolate, gallons of royal icing and thousands of pieces of candy), but they will also be having an all-you-can-eat chocolate buffet featuring more than 100 chocolate desserts.
Chocolate buffet: QR80 (adults), QR40 (kids aged 6-12). Dec 1-31, daily noon-9pm; Chocolate house, from Dec 15. Banana Island Resort by Anantara www.doha.anantara.com (4040 5050).
Festive afternoon tea at Seasons Tea Lounge
The Four Seasons scooped up our 2016 award for Best Afternoon Tea, so we’re excited to see what festive treats they’ll have lined up for their tiered trays this Christmas.
QR215 (with one hot or cold beverage). Dec 19-21, 3pm-6.30pm. Seasons Tea Lounge, Four Seasons Hotel, Doha, West Bay, www.fourseasons.com/doha (4494 8600).
Festive tree lighting at The Westin
This is the first time The Westin has had an official tree-lighting ceremony, and they’re going all-out with a choir, treats and festive food and drink.
Free. Mon Dec 19, 4pm. Lobby, The Westin Doha Hotel & Spa, Salwa Road, www.westindoha.com (4492 1555).
InterContinental Doha tree lighting
West Bay will sparkle a little brighter when the InterContinental switches on the tree lights. The glittering ceremony will have festive drinks and pastries, Santa handing out gifts to kids, a choir belting out Christmas tunes and even the opportunity to snap up festive hampers.
Free. Mon Dec 19, 7pm. InterContinental Doha, West Bay Lagoon, www.ihg.com (4484 4919).
Kempinski tree lighting
There is a giant tree coming to the lobby of the Kempinski Residences and all the decoration, stollen and ambience you could hope for. But what we’re most excited about is the first sip of the signature Valrhona hot chocolate. We don’t care how hot it is outside.
Free. Tue Dec 20, 6pm. Lobby, Kempinski Residences, West Bay, www.kempinski.com (4405 3333).
K Festive Boutique
This festive emporium of gingerbread houses, cookies, traditional stollen cakes, panettones, cinnamon stars, mince pies and more transform the lobby into a winter wonderland.
Daily from Mon Dec 19, 10am-10pm. The Grand Lobby, Marsa Malaz Kempinski, The Pearl-Qatar, www.kempinski.com (4035 5011).
Marriott Carol Singers in Lobby
A choir will be delivering festive music and seasonal cheer every night from Monday December 19 all the way up to Christmas Eve. It’ll really put you in the festive mood.
Free. Dec 19-24, 7-8pm. The Lobby, Doha Marriott, Ras Abu Aboud Street, www.dohamarriott.com (4429 8499).
Rugby Club winter market
Nothing says Christmas quite like a game of rugby. Er, actually that doesn't sound right, but there is a strong community spirit and market stalls, a grotto, bouncy castle and good vibes at the club’s festive market.
QR10 (adults), free for kids. Sat Dec 3, 9am-1pm. Doha Rugby Club, Ahmed bin Taymiya Street, www.doharfc.com (6674 4905).
Second Chance Christmas Fair
A Christmas fair with a good cause, browse handmade crafts, book and more. There will be a Santa’s grotto, face painting and a bouncy castle, as well as raffle prizes and seasonal cheer. All proceeds go towards raising money for the more than 200 rescued dogs and cats at the centre.
QR50 (adults), QR25 (kids). Fri Dec 2, 4pm-8pm. Parkview Pet Center, Madinat Khalifa North, www.parkviewpetcenter.net (4417 1560).