A stop with Santa Four-year-old Evelyn Zhang sits with Santa in The Cottage at Uptown. The Santa-approved Christmas Cottage is now open for business on the main plaza of Uptown shopping centre. The cottage was recently assembled in the Cowichan Valley and was shipped in. Travis Paterson/News Staff

Santa at home in his Uptown cottage

Bookings already running into December

Santa’s back at Uptown, and he’s brought cookies.

The Santa-approved Christmas Cottage is now open for business on the main plaza of Uptown shopping centre. It was recently assembled in the Cowichan Valley and was shipped in.

While mall Santas pop up all over the continent, Uptown’s has a unique approach. The visit is booked and prepaid online, so there is no lineup, and each family has 10 minutes with the man in the red suit. There are candy canes, if you’re so inclined, but the photo is only shared digitally.

The model was especially helpful for 4-year-old Evelyn Zhang’s two-and-a-half-year-old sister, Chloe, who took a few minutes to warm up to the idea of a photo with the big fella.

Without the lineup, and the privacy of the cottage, the kids can get used to the environment, it’s less stressful, said Trisha Lees, public relations for Uptown.

Bookings are already running into December. Interested families can register at shopuptown.ca/thecottage.


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