“The setting calls to mind a holiday greeting card: rugged mountains, majestic cedars, and the very real possibility of snow,” according to the magazine. The article highlighted The Bracebridge Dinner
event. Celebrating its 85th season this year, The Bracebridge Dinner is recognized as one of the most sought-after holiday events in the country. In 2006, The Wall Street Journal reported, “Bracebridge is, without much doubt, the country’s, if not the world’s, premier Christmas dinner.”
During each Bracebridge performance, up to 300 guests enjoy a lavish, seven-course feast by Ahwahnee Executive Chef Percy Whatley, with service meticulously choreographed as part of the pageantry. The Ahwahnee Dining Room, with its 50-foot ceiling topped by massive log beams, serves as the Great Hall at Squire Bracebridge’s manor. The entire room is a stage, crowned by an elaborate squire’s table and decked with holiday decorations, many of which are restored originals from the first productions in the late 1920s.
This remarkable American theatrical tradition transforms the hotel into a 17th century English manor for a feast of food, song and mirth for eight performances, held from December 13-25. Visitors are also invited to attend complimentary concerts featuring world-class artists singing holiday, pops and Broadway standards in the hotel’s Great Lounge on nights alternating with The Bracebridge Dinner.
Additional activities in the hotel’s Great Lounge include caroling and a Christmas Eve reading of “The Nutcracker Suite.” Skiers, boarders and snowshoers can relax and revel in the snow-blanketed Yosemite scenery with the return of the eco-friendly Oakhurst shuttle to Yosemite National Park’s Badger Pass Ski Area.
The Ahwahnee®, operated by Delaware North Companies Parks & Resorts for the U.S. National Park Service, is widely considered the crown jewel of national park lodges. The Ahwahnee was recently selected for Conde Nast Traveler’s
2011 Readers’ Choice Awards. It is listed as a National Historic Landmark and each year earns four diamonds from AAA. The Ahwahnee was recognized by Conde Nast Traveler magazine’s “Reader’s Choice Awards” in 2010 as one of the top 100 resorts in the United States. The Ahwahnee’s executive pastry chef, Paul Padua, was honored as Western Regional Pastry Chef of the Year by The American Culinary Federation (ACF) after winning a competition at the regional conference in May 2011. The Ahwahnee was named on Travel + Leisure’s list of the World’s Top 500 Hotels in 2008. In 2007, Yosemite's Ahwahnee Dining Room, managed by Delaware North Companies Parks & Resorts, was inducted into Nation's Restaurant News' Fine Dining Hall of Fame.