A CORNISH hotel welcomed a very important guest this week – and there wasn't a reindeer or a sleigh in sight. 

The Headland brought an entirely new meaning to ‘air mail’ this week when Father Christmas arrived in Newquay to deliver a 12-foot Christmas tree, which will be the centrepiece of the hotel’s festive celebration.

Falmouth Packet: The fully decorated tree is flown into The HeadlandThe fully decorated tree is flown into The Headland (Image: The Headland Hotel)However, known for arriving in a sleigh pulled by reindeer, this Santa arrived at the hotel by a hot air balloon.

After gently touching down, he enlisted the help of Headland staff to unhook the giant fir tree and transport it inside to take the pride of place in the hotel’s reception area.

Veryan Palmer, hotel family director said: “A flying visit from Father Christmas provided the perfect way to put our guests and staff in a festive mood.


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“It was fortunate that he sailed in on such a calm day because hot air balloons don’t perform well in windy conditions.

Falmouth Packet: Santa enjoys the Newquay surf Santa enjoys the Newquay surf (Image: The Headland Hotel)“He delivered the Christmas tree with all the skill and pose of an extremely experienced balloon pilot. It was an eye-catching way to mark the start of the Christmas season and caused quite a stir amongst guests and local walkers.”

Once the Christmas tree was handed over to the Headland, Father Christmas also found time to sample nearby Fristal Beach’s world-famous surf, before taking to the skies again to make his next delivery.

The Headland will be hosting a selection of wreath-making workshops and Festive Afternoon Tea which has become popular with guests.

For more information and to book visit www.headlandhotel.co.uk.