|Home | Issues | The Daily Star Home | Volume 1, Issue 30, Tuesday, December 23, 2003|
THE Christmas spirit is in the air, and the countdown to the New Year begins. Although there is no chance of the customary snow this year, there are plenty of ways to celebrate it. Christmas is undoubtedly the most important religious festival of the Christians in Bangladesh. However, you don't need to be Christian to enjoy this festival. Christmas is a time when the rich and the poor forget their inequality and differences and share each other's joy and happiness in their own way.
During the Christmas period many people celebrating it here in Bangladesh have family get-togethers or visit relatives and friends. The occasion is definitely a once-in-a-year for most people. To add to the wonderful union of people, native Christmas carols, house decorations, special home-made sweets and cakes embellish the occasion. These parties are also decorated with the typical Christmas greetings all around the houses and make the atmosphere quite warm and kind. The celebrations start on Christmas Eve, normally with the singing of the carols.
However, not everyone celebrates Christmas at home. There are different religious missions in Bangladesh, which celebrate the occasion separately, every year. Amongst these places for Christmas celebrations is Dhaka Sheraton Hotel.
This Christmas, the Hotel shall begin its celebrations with Christmas Carols in the evening at the Tea Lounge, and at all four of its restaurant's till 25 December, everyday. The Tea Lounge will also have a grand sale of Christmas bakery delights including Christmas fruitcake, yule logs and cookies.
As for Christmas Eve, the Sheraton Hotel is organising lavish buffet spreads at its in-house, Bithika Restaurant. On Christmas day, it intends to arrange fun and games for kids and a special Christmas lunch for the whole family. However, if one wants a quieter ambience, then dine in the confines of the prestigious Vintage Room. The whole hotel shall fall into the Christmas spirit, with special Christmas menus at most of the restaurants. With items such as the traditional roast turkey with stuffing, the strawberry parfait, X-mas cake and Chocolate mousse, the hotel promises to be quite a great place for the Christmas celebrations.
The Pan Pacific Sonargaon Hotel is also a great place to visit during these Christmas holidays. On Christmas day, the hotel shall arrange a pool party to capture the celebrations of the occasion. This party has been taking place for the past 8 years, so it is nothing new to regular guests. Children shall get their chances to take a picture with the infamous Santa Claus, who shall also be distributing chocolates as well.
The restaurants at the hotel shall also be providing special Christmas lunch and dinner, which really sets the mood for this Christmas. A visit to the hotel during Christmas Eve can really be quite romantic with a loved one. The in-house pastry shop at the hotel, shall also be celebrating the occasion in its unique way. The pastry shop shall be preparing different Christmas delicacies, starting from chocolate to Father Christmas cookies. They shall also prepare special pastries for Christmas.
Another way to celebrate Christmas in a family atmosphere would be to visit Pizza Hut during Christmas day. With its amazing popularity with city dwellers since it opened in Gulshan, Pizza hut can be a great place for the family to just get a bite to eat. The reunion of the family is definitely a part of the Christmas spirit and Pizza Hut is one of the best places in Dhaka to visit. Making reservations for the occasion is suggested, this famous Pizza outlet attracts customers from all over the city.
One more place to find all those delicious cookies and Christmas goodies, is the newly opened German Bakery and foods. This shop run by Master Chef Helmut Angelbert from Germany, is organising a Christmas dinner, followed by the already available delicacies of the shop. They serve European specialities, as well as mouth-watering German confectionery. The shop is also famous for its different breads. The German food place is situated in the infamous Banani Road no.11, right next to Hot Breads.
All these places shall definitely make this Christmas one very lasting celebration for the whole family. Keeping all this in mind, Star Lifestyle wishes all its readers a Merry Christmas.
By Mishel Ali Khan
Kissing Under the Mistletoe
Mistletoe was once considered to be a sacred plant and was believed to have miraculous properties, which could cure illnesses, serve as an antidote against poisons, ensure fertility and protect against the ill effects of witchcraft. Moreover, whenever enemies met under the mistletoe in the forest, they had to lay down their arms and observe a truce until the next day. From all these ancient stories, has come the custom of hanging mistletoe from the ceiling and exchanging kisses under it, as a sign of friendship and goodwill.
There is also another legend, where a man had to kiss any young girl whom, without realising it, found herself accidentally under a sprig of mistletoe hanging from the ceiling.
The custom of exchanging a kiss under the mistletoe can still be found in many European countries as well as in North America. Thus if a couple in love exchanges a kiss under the mistletoe, it is interpreted as a promise to marry, as well as a prediction of happiness and long life.
Today, kisses can be exchanged under the mistletoe any
time during the holiday season. So get your mistletoes hanging around
the house and pucker up.
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