Forget about the Elf on the Shelf. In this hotel, the whole room is about an elf. Buddy the Elf, that is.
The Royal Park Hotel in Rochester, MI, near Detroit, is no Scrooge about celebrating the season, with a ‘Gingerbread Forest’ in its lobby, and joyful Christmas trees, lights, and wreaths decking its halls, but one particular festive feature has captured the imagination of the internet.
It’s a hotel suite fully decked out in the theme lifted straight from the Christmas movie “Elf”. A life-sized Will Ferrell, as Buddy the Elf, looms large on the wall of the room, as does a big ‘Santa, I know him!’ sign over the bed. A Christmas tree is decorated with cards displaying some of your favourite Elf lines from the movie, and more than 5,000 feet of handmade paper snowflake garland festoon the room.
According to CNN Travel, in addition to movie references in the décor, “Guests get a fully immersive experience, including food inspired by Buddy's four main food groups: ‘candy, candy canes, candy corn and syrup.” Upon arrival, guests receive maple toasty tarts, chocolate-covered marshmallow snowballs, elf munch, which is a Chex mix with tasty additions including chocolate and marshmallows, and candy canes.”
The themed room sets the scene for guests to channel their own inner Buddy the Elf. Maybe by answering the phone in the room, ‘Buddy the Elf. What’s your favourite colour?,’ or following Buddy’s philosophy that ‘the best way to spread Christmas cheer is singing loud for all to hear?’ Hmm. That might get a noise complaint from neighbouring rooms.
In fact, the Elf room spreads Christmas cheer beyond the guests who check in. CNN notes the whole community benefits, with 10 per cent of the room booking fee going to support the city’s ‘The Big, Bright Light Show’.
Every year, downtown Rochester, MI, is illuminated with more than a million sparkling lights cascading from storefronts. It’s a festive endeavor that city officials note costs a lot of money to power, so donations like the proceeds of the Elf room help brighten Christmas for everyone in town.
Or, as Buddy the Elf would say to the residents of Rochester, "I love you! I love you! I LOVE YOU!"