Seeing the Northern Lights has always been high on my bucket list, and this week I’ve finally seen them – at The Peninsula hotel in Hong Kong. OK, fine, that was stretching the truth to a shameless extent, but it’s the year of Covid-19 travel bans and I’ll take what I can get. As it is, channelling Nordic Christmas spirit at the “Grand Dame of the Far East” has its definite charms. The Festive World – A Nordic Inspiration package is available throughout December until January 3, and we begin our journey, as Hongkongers do, by treating our stomachs. The package includes a HK$500 (US$65) dining credit for any of the hotel’s restaurants save Imasa, but it feels most in keeping with the spirit of the staycation to dine at Chesa. The Swiss restaurant has retained its Alpine charm for more than half a century, and if the cosy chalet setting and cheesy fondue don’t get your merry vibes tingling, I suggest you order a tall glass or three of the hot chocolate with whipped cream and chocolate flakes and rethink your life priorities. 13 new Hong Kong restaurants and menus to try this Christmas For those unfamiliar with the hotel’s layout, Chesa is located on the first floor, and while the lobby’s seven-metre-tall Christmas tree is an Instagrammer’s dream , my personal favourite festive decor has always been the massive snowy train set on the first floor landing. As it was, it takes me almost five minutes to get a good photo because a pint-sized fellow fan can’t stop climbing into the set-up. The post-fondue food coma is enough to drive us back to our room, which manages to be festive rather than kitsch with its Christmas decorations (although the bright red reindeer cushions do rather stand out against the room’s elegant cream and brown palette). The best Turkish herbal teas and their surprisingly powerful health benefits From the fir-lined fireplace complete with hanging stockings to the snow-white teepee and sheepskin rug, not to mention the stuffed reindeer and polar bear snuggling on the red and white blanket, it’s almost enough to make us forget that it’s 21 degrees Celsius outside. Staycations have become all the rage ever since the coronavirus has kept travellers homebound, and any hotel worth its salt has been coming up with value-added experiences to gain an edge over the competition, from pet-focused packages to ones where you can drive around in a Mercedes . The Peninsula, in keeping with its 90-year-old heritage, has themed its elective experiences around history. Video: where – and how – to eat hairy crab this season The Aviation Journey includes an aviation history tour and visit to the hotel’s helipad for photo opportunities, while the Grand Dame Journey is an educational tour on the stories and history of the hotel. I’m tempted by the Cinematic Journey, which promises classic movies in “a unique venue”, but given that the selected movie for the day of my stay is a Chinese one, and my British husband’s grasp of Cantonese extends primarily to taxi directions and bad words, I opt for the Motoring Journey. We are taken to The Peninsula’s basement for this particular experience, where we pass several of the hotel’s famous Rolls-Royce Phantoms in Brewster Green (which they’ve now claimed as Peninsula Green), and stop in front of a car that – even to my inexpert eyes – looks quite delightful. The restored 1934 vintage Rolls-Royce is just six years younger than the hotel itself, and to my surprise, it’s actually operational. As with the rest of the fleet, it has been modified by Martin Oxley, the hotel’s fleet vehicle manager, to suit today’s needs and tastes, and the cars are decked out with modern sound systems and even DVD players, not to mention more technical upgrades of which I have little understanding. I leave my motorhead husband jabbering away to the staff about torque and panelling while I step inside the car and sit in the back seat, trying to imagine myself in a time a few decades earlier and a few million dollars richer. Where do Donald, Melania and Barron Trump eat when they’re not at home? This has all been lovely so far, but I’ll be honest: I’ve been waiting for the evening. Specifically, the “Northern Lights inspired turn-down” that, to me, is the highlight of the package. I had some hazy concept of what they might do, but I still wasn’t expecting what I saw when I beeped into my room at 8:02pm. The living area is dark, lit only by the soft glow of the (fake) fire and candles dotted around the fireplace. Stepping through to the bedroom, the darkness gives way to colour. The teepee in the corner is lit up with tea lights, while the room itself is awash in hues of green, blue and pink. The Peninsula set up a small, discreet laser for the occasion, which painted the walls and ceiling in soft, misty light and traversing “stars”. I banish my other half to the next room and spend a good half-hour trying to capture the glowing bedroom on video, but it should really be experienced in real life. In a year of doom and gloom, it’s the first time I feel the stirrings of what I suspect is the festive spirit. My stay is before the programme’s official launch, so I actually don’t get to experience one key element of the package that lucky guests who book over Christmas will be privy to. Those partaking in this Festive World experience over December 25 will get a surprise visit from a very special guest in red and white, and I confess myself duly jealous. Other perks in the package include a daily breakfast for two at The Lobby and a one-way limo transfer. If you’re in the mood to splash out, I’d suggest booking a Deluxe Harbour View Suite as the layout allows for extra drama when it comes to the Northern Lights turn-down. Science and art, a perfect match? Here’s why teamLab’s founder thinks so The verdict Ho ho ho, yes. Whether you have a family, you’re an antsy globetrotter, or you’re just someone looking for some magic in the everyday, this package is well worth experiencing for a night or two. As mentioned above, try booking it over Christmas if you can, especially if you have children. Throw in a cheesy fondue meal, a spa treatment and the hotel’s gorgeous spiced tea, and you could well have yourself a winter wonderland. Want more stories like this? Sign up here . Follow STYLE on Facebook , Instagram , YouTube and Twitter .