Nothing kicks off the start of the festive period for us quite like a visit to the Christmas extravaganza at Schilliger in Gland. The theme changes each year and this year inspiration comes in the form of "Noël Gourmand". For someone whose favourite things include Christmas and baking, this was an absolute delight!
We decided to make our first visit last Sunday morning and as we stepped through the door the children each grabbed a balloon before they were lured into the magic with gingerbread men decorations and some of the famous life sized animals which feature in their displays. Around the corner and Alba spent a good while staring at the bear who was baking cookies and we told the children they could each choose a small thing to take home. They have a nice display of beautiful biscuits so Alba and Jude both opted for those and we took one for Elio too.
It’s really a glorious feast for the eyes and I loved the beautiful pastel colors of the gingerbread village centre pieces, the gorgeous traditional Santa models and the huge array of beautiful candles. We lingered over the baubles and the children enjoyed picking out their favourites - you can even get one personalized which is such a beautiful idea and a perfect gift. We try and add a new special ornament to our tree each year and this would be a wonderful addition!!
Another highlight for us is the area where they have a Christmas model village set up with moving parts and incredible detail. I picked Alba up so she could see and she delighted in pointing out little features and identifying the types of shops we could see. It’s such a charming display and there is help on hand if you want to start creating your own.
Next we headed out into the greenhouse area where there was a stunning array of festive plants and spaces dedicated to workshops for children, you could also grab a cake and a cup of tea and soak up the festive atmosphere. We headed through the pet area where Alba decided she wanted a tortoise (vetoed) and Jude enjoyed watching the fish. I chose myself a beautiful Poinsettia and since they have lots of different varieties including a tangerine colour so its hard to choose, and Jude decided he would like a small cactus so he carefully choose one before we picked up a few bits and pieces from their food area before heading home.
As every year, it’s a beautiful experience and I've already been back again this week to meet a friend again for a hot chocolate in their beautiful café. We always come home feeling really excited about Christmas and full of inspiration for decorations, table settings and gift ideas.
Schilliger in Gland are opening their doors every Sunday until 15th December, and don't forget they also have stores in Geneva and Matran too!
We were lucky enough to have the chance to bother Camil Schilliger, Head of Marketing and Communication with a couple of questions. Here are his answers:
- How long does it take to set up the Christmas market and when do you start?
In general, we start looking for the theme nearly a year and a half in advance. When this is defined, we usually have a whole year to complete the Christmas market. The setting up in the stores lasts between two and three weeks and starts at the beginning of October. In total, it is about 5000 hours of work internally.
- What is your personal favourite part?
We do not have a special place in the Christmas market. Every place that enchants us, reminds us of our childhood, or makes us dream is our favourite!
- What is your advice to people wanting to choose the perfect tree?
The Nordmann fir is an excellent tree with balanced branches and has the advantage of not losing its needles, even when they are dry. In addition, it is not afraid of heat.
Once your tree is purchased, quickly remove the transport net to allow it to return to its natural shape. If you opt for a cut fir, the choice of a support is necessary. The support log is a classic option. However, installing the tree in a water tank will allow it to last longer. Be sure to add regularly. In any case, absolutely avoid placing your tree near a heat source (radiator), which would accelerate its drying. If you have underfloor heating, raise your tree (wooden crate, stool ...)
Thank you to Camil and the team at Schilliger for their warm welcome, as always.
(Entre Genève et Lausanne, à 10mn de Nyon)
Route Suisse 40 1196 Gland (VD) Suisse Contact et horaires
+41 (0)22 354 44 44
(Entre Vevey et Berne, à 10mn de Fribourg)
Route du Bois 1753 Matran (FR) Suisse Contact et horaires
+41 (0)26 407 33 00
(A 15mn du centre de Genève)
Route de Base 1228 Plan-les-Ouates (GE) Suisse Contact et horaires
+41 (0)22 794 77 47