Santa HQ is a long standing tradition for our family. We love taking an afternoon to get dressed up, check our naughty or nice status and have that immersive experience at Santa HQ. Check out a quick walkthrough and make sure to read to the end to see how you can spend less time in line!
Disclosure: We partnered with Santa HQ. All opinions are my own.
An Immersive Experience at Santa HQ
We have always made it a point to see that big guy in red. My kids look forward to it and honestly, I do as well, because the magic that you see on those little faces is worth every bit of it. For the last 4 years we have went to Santa HQ at our local mall, Flatirons Crossing in Broomfield, Colorado.
Santa HQ is an immersive experience and one that we always enjoy. From the Naughty or Nice O’Meter to the Elf Observatory with tons of fun to a private meeting with Santa, Santa HQ really does a great job of bringing the magic to life.
A Santa HQ Walkthrough
There are Santa HQ’s at 15 of Macerich’s top properties throughout the nation and each of them is set up with a revolutionary Santa Claus visit that guides visitors through an immersive, interactive holiday experience, using state-of-the-art digital technology. Users in Colorado can expect to check out the Naughty or Nice O’Meter, The Control Center for the North Pole, Elf-Ray Vision and of course the traditional visit with Santa Claus.
Our kids look forward to seeing their name on the Nice list each year. They talk about it for weeks and as soon as the moment comes they are really excited. It is fun to see those little names pop up on the nice list and to watch their reactions and discuss who was rated more nice and how to get that rating higher.
Once you have made it through the Naught or Nice O’meter it is time for some hands on fun in the observatory. Families are walked through and everyone is encouraged to get their hands going and really check out everything that is happening around the North Pole. Every single time, my kids run to that control center. Something about pushing buttons, pulling levers and looking at what is happening on the screen makes the control center priority #1.
Santa’s helpers at Santa HQ are always great about getting the tablets that give everyone Elf-Ray vision into their hands so they can really see what is going on. The kids stand on different cogs that are on the floor of the observatory and point the tablets to different features in the observatory and watch them come to life!
They love seeing the elves being silly and all the presents being moved around. It really is cool and often we take a little extra time in the observatory before moving to see Santa himself! Before the kids get to visit Santa, there is a little photo opportunity with some holiday flair to commemorate their experience through Santa HQ, and then it is time for the big moment. Watch our video below to see everything in action!
Private Meeting with Santa
I have not been to any of the other Santa HQ’s but in Colorado, our meeting with Santa is tucked away nicely so that the kids can have their own time with Santa without a bunch of people gawking. I love this, because I have one REALLY outgoing kiddo and one that shys from the spotlight.
Santa is always really great. Honestly, so attentive, so jolly and welcoming and that real beard is pretty impressive as well. My kids are able to spend the time they need to let him know exactly what they are hoping and wishing for and there is no pressure for them to hurry through. I love that it is private and that my kids can be their authentic selves without that pressure and those smiles we get for the photo all parents look forward too, are just everything.
When it is time for the kids to say their goodbyes, they are given a little elf activity book from the big guy in red and are sent on their way with a reminder to continue to be really good and leave those yummy cookies out!
The activity book has little trading cards in it that are collectable and my kids have a COLLECTION, so we definitely look forward to seeing which elves are featured on the cards and keeping those activity books on hand to entertain the kids while we busily drive around during the holiday season.
Spend Less Time in Line!
I have an exclusive offer for my readers. Santa HQ wants everyone to spend less time in line and purchase a Fast Pass today! Visit their website to secure your fast past and pre-purchase your photo package. You just select the date you want to go, a 30-minute time window to use your fast pass, then pre-pay online and you are good to go!