Imagine if you can – no roaring log fire but the heat of the morning sun. Welcome to Christmas on Necker Island. The staff is wearing Santa hats and greet the guests as they come in still wearing their pyjamas! We do not serve normal breakfast on Christmas morning – instead it’s much more relaxed with fresh baked goods and chocolates (yes, we start the day with chocolate!), and of course the champagne flows all day.
The furniture is arranged in a giant circle and while carols play in the background (and some guests sing along), the gift giving begins. If it’s a Branson Christmas we get involved in the gift receiving and giving but with all other guests we do our staff secret Santa in the evening.
Later on the watersports boys organise the annual Christmas sailing race around the island. By the time the guests get back they are very hungry and tuck straight into the Christmas brunch. The afternoon is spent lounging around the beach pool, kitesurfing, snorkelling or kayaking and spending time as a family or with a group of friends.
Santa then comes to pay a visit after being discreetly dropped off on the sandspit with his sack of goodies. His ‘sleigh’ (a hobiecat wave) brings him back to the beach where the children are waiting. The giant sack full of presents is emptied and lots of pictures are taken.
Meanwhile the chefs are hard at work in the kitchen preparing the feast – turkey with all the trimmings and Christmas pudding of course. Guests often gather at the Great House bar for some carolling by the piano and sometimes the little ones will put on a nativity play to entertain their parents. Dinner is served and another party begins!
Depending on the year the staff will get to join in the fun and the feast or otherwise will create their own in the staff village if they are not working… Christmas in the Caribbean is certainly different, but for those of us used to the cold and the snow, we still dream of roaring log fires!