The holidays will be merry and bright across America this season as shopping centers and retailers prepare to welcome visitors from around the world beginning at Thanksgiving and continuing throughout the New Year. Travelers both young and old will enjoy the festive lights, sounds and merriment found in popular U.S. vacation destinations while shopping for holiday gifts to bring to friends and family back at home. America’s Premier Shopping Places, a collection of shopping and dining destinations located throughout the U.S. is proud to announce the following holiday events sure to delight visitors of all ages.
Water Tower Place (Chicago, IL) – November 22-23 2008- Magnificent Mile Lights Festival presented by Harris. The Magnificent Mile is transformed into a winter wonderland for the Annual Magnificent Mile Lights Festival presented by Harris. The nation’s official kick-off of the holiday season begins on Saturday with the festive lighting of more than one million lights along North Michigan Avenue, followed by a spectacular fireworks show over the Chicago River. All weekend long the sights, sounds and tastes of the Festival will wrap you in the holiday spirit. Start your holiday season at Water Tower Place and enjoy special savings and incentives with Premier Perks. www.shopwatertower.com
The Shops at Georgetown Park (Washington, D.C.) – Georgetown Park is a winter wonderland for the Holidays! In addition to the décor and entertainment featured at the Center, Georgetown itself is transformed into a fanatastic Dickensian Village. On December 7, 2008, Georgetown will host “Merriment in Georgetown,” a not-to-miss event featuring street entertainment including caroling, balloon art, stiltwalking, and more. Local choirs will entertain as well. Shops and restaurants will feature special events and pricing for that day. The evening will top off with the Holiday Boat Parade at the Georgetown Harbor. www.shopsatgeorgetownpark.com
Harborplace & The Gallery (Baltimore, MD) – They’re the talk of the town during the holiday season in Charm City. Santa’s arrival and Merry TUBACHRISTMAS at Harborplace! Celebrate the season at Harborplace & The Gallery as it is transformed into a winter wonderland filled with the joys of holiday shopping, dining and entertainment at the heart of the Inner Harbor.
On Saturday, November, 22, 2008 at 11:00 a.m, children of all ages will giggle with glee as Santa’s shouts HO, HO, HO from his long sleigh ride from the North Pole to the Harborplace Amphitheater. While in Baltimore, Santa is available daily to gather wish lists and pose for photos. Return to Harborplace on Saturday, December 6, 2008 at 3:00 p.m. for the most unique holiday event of the season. More than 200 tuba and euphonium players fill the Harborplace Amphitheater to perform holiday music. Musicians travel near and far from local communities and surrounding states such as Pennsylvania and Delaware to share a little holiday spirit.
For more information about the events, visit www.harborplace.com or call 410-332-4191. Mark your calendars now for a trip to Harborplace & The Gallery, Charm City’s holiday hotspot! www.harborplace.com
Park Place (Tucson, AZ) – Park Place Welcomes Back a Magical Holiday Tradition with SANTASTIC™ EXPERIENCE– Park Place presents a new one-of-a-kind holiday experience that will make adults reminisce of their childhood and children burst with excitement. This innovative experience, Santastic™, takes visitors on a magical journey through interactive components guaranteed to awaken every sense. The Santastic experience opens at Park Place on November 14, 2008 and continues through December 24th. Upon entering the world of Santastic, families are enticed by captivating features such as:
• Santa’s mailbox, where once opened, a blast of peppermint-scented snow helps zip letters directly to the North Pole.
• Energized Santa’s helpers who escort families through a winding, scent-filled road of the exhibit.
• A very accurate Naughty or Nice meter – just pull the lever and await your fate.
• The big man himself, Santa Claus, who diligently listens to everyone’s holiday wishes – and delights crowds with a few magical surprises up his sleeve.
Throughout the Santastic journey, shoppers listen to original holiday music, experience brilliant snow and light shows and are cheered on by Santa’s helpers every magical step of the way. In addition, each family receives a photo card at the start of their experience that captures every spontaneous smile, giggle and reaction.
“Santastic is a celebration of Santa Claus and the magic he invokes in the hearts, minds and dreams of children and their families,” said Doug Johnson, director of strategic partnerships and member of the experience team at General Growth Properties, Inc. “Our hope is that families embrace the invitation to prepare, participate and experience Santastic, as we customize each step and present a place that both they and Santa Claus deserve.”
Consumers also can experience a part of Santastic by visiting www.santabelievesinme.com. The Web site includes an overview of Santastic, photos and video of the experience, mall locations and hours of operation. In addition, families are encouraged to visit the site to complete and print the “Letters to Santa” form to place directly in Santa’s mailbox located at the Santastic exhibit. www.parkplacemall.com
Bayside Marketplace (Miami, FLA) – A Holiday Filled With Sunshine Awaits Travelers To Miami. Join Bayside Marketplace on beautiful Biscayne Bay as they welcome the holiday season. Listen to beautiful brass quartets and strolling carolers as you enjoy the sparkling holiday decor. Santa parades through the Marketplace every evening from December 16 through 23. On New Year’s Eve, Bayside is the place to be, with live entertainment all day at the Marina Stage and a spectacular fireworks display at midnight. Contact the Bayside office at 305-577-3344 for additional information. www.baysidemarketplace.com
Galleria Dallas (Dallas, TX) – A Holiday On Ice and The Nation’s Tallest Indoor Tree Greets Guests In Dallas. Galleria Dallas epitomizes holiday shopping with its unique combination of holiday traditions paired with the most contemporary and cutting edge holiday fashions and gift ideas. For more than a quarter century, this bastion of style has presented the region’s most remarkable and talked about holiday celebrations, featuring a full month of entertainment for the whole family, and the finest array of world-class stores and boutiques.
Shoppers are treated royally from the moment they approach Galleria as familiar red-suited parking attendants simplify parking in the center’s more than 10,000 covered parking spots or direct them to one of more than a half dozen conveniently located valet stands.
Inside the famed center, shoppers always visit Center Court to view the centerpiece of the Galleria holiday celebration. Soaring to a height of 95-feet from the glistening ice rink to the massive glass atrium, is Galleria’s majestic Christmas tree. The elegantly outfitted tree is the country’s tallest indoor tree. Sparkling with nearly a quarter million lights and more than 10,000 ornaments, the Galleria Christmas Tree is one of the region’s most photographed and cherished holiday icons.
Beginning the day after Thanksgiving, and continuing every Saturday until Christmas, Galleria’s Center Court is host to dazzling Grand Tree Lightings. Missile Toes, Galleria’s acrobatic ice skating Santa, lights Galleria’s elegant tree with fireworks, light and music. Missile Toes is joined by an impressive cadre of world-renowned and local accomplished ice skaters.
The spectacular tree hosts thousands of guests who enjoy the center’s famed daily Illumination Celebration, as the remarkable lights on Galleria’s tree appear to dance to a specially choreographed selection of holiday favorites. Illumination Celebration twinkles each day at noon, 2, 4, and 8 p.m. (no 8 p.m. shows on Sundays). Additionally, weekend shoppers will enjoy a variety of strolling musicians as they entertain guests from across the country. Throughout the season and direct from the North Pole, Santa will greet guests and create holiday memories from Galleria’s Level Two. www.galleriadallas.com
Fashion Show (Las Vegas, NV) – “Believe in the Magic” Features Santa, Dancers and Celebrities on The Las Vegas Strip. Fashion Show’s annual “Believe in the Magic” holiday production premieres at noon on Friday, Nov. 28. The show runs Fridays through Sundays until Dec. 7. Starting Friday, Dec. 12 through Wednesday, Dec. 24 the show runs daily. Show schedule is noon, 2 p.m., 4 p.m. and 6 p.m. with the final show on Dec. 24 commencing at 4 p.m. The Show features a 35-foot Christmas tree, Fashion Show dancers, artificial snow that falls from the mall ceiling, cameo appearances by several local celebrities including Las Vegas’ very own Mayor Oscar B. Goodman, and, of course, Santa. The show is free and unfolds on the runway in The Great Hall (near Nordstrom) at Fashion Show, at the corner of Las Vegas Boulevard and Spring Mountain Road. For more information, call 702- 784-7000. Santa will remain at Fashion Show through Dec. 24 at 6 p.m. and is available daily during center hours for photos. Santa is located in Fashion Show near the entrance to Nordstrom. A variety of photo packages and merchandise is available. www.thefashionshow.com
South Street Seaport (New York, NY) – The Big Apple Chorus Helps New York City Ring In The Holidays at South Street Seaport. Historic Pier 17 and cobblestone streets offer visitors the perfect location to take in the sights and sounds of a Manhattan holiday. The center’s tree lighting will take place on November 21st, with holiday sounds by The Big Apple chorus, NYC’s premier a cappella group, who also entertains on weekends under the lights of the Seaport’s spectacular live tree. www.southstreetseaport.com
America’s Premier Shopping Places is an award-winning branded collection of tourism-oriented shopping centers located throughout the United States which are owned and/or managed by General Growth Properties, Inc. The centers are located in the heart of America’s best-loved cities as well as along America’s scenic highways and byways, attracting millions of visitors annually from around the world. For a complete listing of destinations and further information, along with high-resolution photos, visit www.americasshoppingplaces.com or contact Kathy Anderson, Travel & Tourism Manager at firstname.lastname@example.org.
General Growth Properties, Inc. is the second largest U.S.-based publicly traded real estate investment trust (REIT) based upon market capitalization. General Growth has ownership interest or management responsibility for a portfolio of more than 200 regional shopping malls in 45 states, as well as ownership interest in master-planned community developments and commercial office centers. General Growth’s international portfolio includes ownership and management interest in shopping centers in Brazil and Turkey. The Company’s portfolio totals approximately 200 million square feet and includes more than 24,000 retail stores nationwide. General Growth Properties, Inc. is listed on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol GGP.