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Experience Santa Like Never Before

by Bill Sweeney
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This is a sponsored post in partnership with HGTV’s Santa HQ. All opinions and love are my own.

It’s that magical time of year where we all act like kids, tee up that letter to Santa and look for the best Santa experience we can find! One of the top questions in may house this time of year has to be “Where is Santa?” Well, he’s everywhere this time of year! It may seem like a lot, but to me and my family, that’s a very good thing. There’s just a level of comfort and joy (pardon the pun) that you just can’t seem to feel at other times of the year!

I always loved visiting Santa, singing Christmas carols on line, sitting on this lap, and letting him know the one or two top toys I really, absolutely, had to have that year. LOL, the list was so much longer, but my parents told me to stick to just the highlights!! Santa is a busy man, after all. This year, I was so pleased to check out HGTV’s Santa HQ with my family!! It was really a fantastic experience that I’d love to tell you more about. I think you’ll appreciate all it has to offer…I know your kids will. Check out this video!!



HGTV’s Santa HQ is all about the wonder and awe. It’s Christmas and Santa we’re talking about here, people! This is a place that truly revolutionizes the traditional Santa Claus visit that we all know so well. My family and I couldn’t believe what a great show and experience it was!! With Calebs letter to Santa in hand, we wandered joyfully through an immersive, interactive Santa experience using state-of-the-art digital technology to really make the experience pop! 

Why It’s Such a Unique Experience

In today’s world, everything has to be digital? Right? The kids are all about it, and so are the adults. It’s all about the look, the feel, and the interaction. And the experiences of today seem to be more and more of all of those things!! Santa HQ delivers the best Santa experience with all of that by incorporating special mobile apps, social-media-ready opportunities, and even augmented reality. 

Santa HQ’s Elf Academy

I loved how the kid’s stepped on the Naughty or Nice meter to see how nice they have been! I also really loved HGTV Santa HQ’s Elf Academy. This really made the whole Santa experience for us! This is a new, family-friendly feature packed with really fun, interactive technology including the Magic Mirror. We transformed into one of Santa’s elves and virtually tried on various elf outfits! It was so much fun for Caleb, he loved it! He couldn’t stop laughing…and neither could we.

With Elf-Ray Vision, we explored Santa’s Observatory through the use of tablets and an augmented reality experience. And don’t forget to create your own customized Elf-ID card using the new Elf-ID app and a “selfie.”

Photo Opp

Even with all of this fun, don’t worry, you can still deliver your letter to Santa and ask the “Big Guy” to not put coal in your stocking!! Traditional photo opportunities with Santa Claus with a variety of photo packages are available and waiting for you!!! This is must, a real keeper we always love to have. It’s so nice to just see each year’s Santa pictures, tracking the kids growth. Ok, I’m about to tear up, so let’s just say, it’s a nice thing to have.

HGTV’s Help Through Holiday Giving Drive

HGTV’s Help Through Holiday Giving is a program that encourages visitors to donate toys for underserved children during the holiday season. In past years, HGTV’s Help Through Holiday Giving has collected more than 66,000 toys benefiting local organizations such as Forgotten Angel Tree, Salvation Army Angel Tree, Toys for Tots, and Spark of Love Stuff a Bus. 

Special Events

There are so many great events hosted at the centers, you just have to check it out for more details.  There are some amazing events specific to each Santa HQ center. For example, there’s Sensory Santa, which is a sensory-friendly holiday event at Valley River Center made to support the sensory, physical, and developmental needs of this special audience. There’s also a Yappy Hour for you and your furry friend for an exciting night of pet photos, cocktails and holiday cheer. My personal favorite has to be meet Santa’s Elves!! The official elves of Santa HQ, Jack & Strawberry bring the holiday cheer with caroling, photo opportunities, storytime, hot chocolate and much more!!!

Have Your Best Santa Experience

The magic of the holidays goes hand-in-hand with the home. HGTV and its brand are the perfect partners for this meaningful holiday experience. And they want to make your Santa HQ experience as seamless and fun as it can be with a fast pass.

You probably know the concept of the fast pass well from your times are various theme parks, and it works just as well here!! It’s easy! Simply select the date, a 30-minute window of time to use Fast Pass, pre-pay online, upgrade their package by adding a family photo weeks/days in advance, and opt-in to receive text reminders about their Fast Pass window. It literally takes minutes, but may save you so much time. It’s a no-brainer!!! Spend less time in line and purchase a Fast Pass today! 

Find Out More

We experienced HGTV’s Santa HQ at the awesome Queens Center in Queens, NYC!! You can visit ShopQueensCenter.com/SantaHQ to secure a Fast Pass, pre-purchase a photo package, and find out more about Santa hours and events!!!

Also, be sure to check out Queens Center on Twitter (@Queens_Center), Instagram (@QueensCenterMall), Facebook (@QueensCenter), ShopQueensCenter.com/SantaHQ, or seach hashtag #santahq!!!!

This is a sponsored post in partnership with HGTV’s Santa HQ. All opinions and love are my own.

Experience Santa Like Never Before was last modified: December 13th, 2019 by Bill Sweeney

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Jessica Collazo December 16, 2019 - 12:40 PM

That’s a great experience. Your kids look so excited and happy. Looks like a fun family activity for the holidays.

Roger Willis December 16, 2019 - 12:46 PM

I know our grand kids would be giddy to experience this in person! There is just so many festive activities for the whole family.

Matt Taylor December 16, 2019 - 1:14 PM

That is so cool! HGTV is great and such a great event to sponsor. If I had kids and was in NYC I would definitely go there. Oh wait, I just looked it up and there are two of these locations near me, in Chandler and Scottsdale. Awesome!

Stacie December 16, 2019 - 3:49 PM

Santa HQ is the best thing to happen to Christmas since sliced bread if you have kids. It’s truly a magical experience.

Ntensibe Edgar Michael December 17, 2019 - 4:50 AM

Nnniiiiccceeeeee….Santa away from home is a Christmas made best! Santa HQ, I admit, delivers on that. Plus, those selfies and photos will always go a long way in the digital age we are in now.

Heather December 17, 2019 - 12:20 PM

I’ve heard so many great things about Santa HQ! I know my kids would love it!

the joyous living December 17, 2019 - 1:58 PM

hi bill. you’re absolutely right. santa hq is a blast. i just went for my 4th year in a row. 2 times i have taken the dog and you should see the elf vision w/ the dog moving in the photo. camera can’t find the face LOL.

Tiffany La Forge-Grau December 17, 2019 - 3:08 PM

What an awesome way to go visit Santa! I love the naughty and nice meter; so cute!

katrina Kroeplin December 17, 2019 - 8:51 PM

my 7 year old would seriously go crazy over this. she still believes in santa so this is perfect for her. looks like everyone had a great time.

Clarice December 17, 2019 - 10:00 PM

So happy to know that you had a good time. We also make sure to visit Santa every year. It is a great memorable experience for the kids.

This Santa HQ is just a whole new experience. We hope to get to have this in our area too.

Sheri December 18, 2019 - 12:07 AM

What an amazing experience, especially if you have kids. We are off to the Santa Clause Village in Rovaniemi in the Lapland region of Finland. Santa experiences with kids make for a lot of wonderful and special memories.

Subhashish Roy December 18, 2019 - 1:16 AM

Santa HQ is a great idea. Am sure kids and adults both would love the experience.

Anna December 18, 2019 - 4:23 AM

Looks like such a cool experience for kids! I´ve never heard of HGTV’s Help Through Holiday Giving before – what a great program!

Lily December 18, 2019 - 5:59 AM

Wow HGTV HQ! I need to make my way there!

Allie Mackin December 31, 2019 - 1:48 PM

Oh wow I had not heard of this. It sounds like a great place to take the family and to take the kids and a nice break from technology and phones. I hope you guys had a great Christamas

Allie of


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