A Gingerbread House, er, Hotel, er, Tower at Essex House

We’ve gone a bit overboard with holiday hoopla this month. But how do you pass up a gingerbread house that’s a grand-scale replica of the Jumeirah Essex House Hotel and stands ten feet tall?

Not easily if you’re in the hotel lobby. This gingerbread house is a tower, so tall it stands up to the hotel’s not-so-petite Christmas tree.

It also smells divine as you might expect from a confection concocted from 48 lbs. of sugar, 48 lbs. of margarine, 17 quarts of milk, 180 lbs. of flour and 3 1/2 lbs. of spices.

Essex House Gingerbread House — fragrant and tall (photo c Joe J. Sutikno and Deden Putra

Besides replicas of the hotel’s marquee and famous rooftop sign lettered in edible 24-karat gold powder, the hotel sports 700 windows illuminated from within (peek past the amber paper and you’ll see electric lights).

The hotel’s executive pastry chef Dedan Putra termed building the house “one of the highlights of the holiday season.” And a good thing given that he and his team clocked in 180 hours designing, baking and decorating it.

We wouldn’t try this at home. But for heartier guests, visitors — or just the curious — Putra is offering free gingerbread classes on December 23 and 27 from 3:30 pm to 4:40 pm. For information, check out the hotel’s Facebook page: www.facebook.com/jumeirahessexhouse. Classes include a gingerbread tasting.

Prefer something stronger than gingerbread? On Friday, December 17, walk past the gingerbread house to the hotel’s South Gate bar for a spicy Cranberry Agave cocktail for a happy hour price of $10 from 4:30 to 6 pm.




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