The annual Santa photo is a great way to capture how your children grow and change each year. However, for those of us with special sensory needs, the busy and noisy mall environment can be overwhelming.
We have a list of Santas who you can meet in a comfortable and calm environment before the hustle and bustle of the busy pre-Christmas shopping begins.
Find your nearest sensory friendly Santa from the list below.
#1: Sylvia Park, 286 Mt Wellington Highway, Mt Wellington, Auckland
Santa loves spending time with everyone, and from the 16th to the 18th of December he will be available at his Sylvia Park home for those children who find the normal hustle and bustle of a mall overwhelming. While Sylvia Park is best known for its array of fashion and buzzing atmosphere, during this period it will be transformed into a quiet, calm environment for families whose children suffer from sensory processing disorders, allowing them to meet Santa. For an hour, the shopping centre’s lights will be dimmed and music turned down to accommodate these families, ensuring no child misses out on the magic of meeting Santa.
– Monday 16th December – Wednesday 18th December, 8am-9am
– Sylvia Park Santa Set (near Peter Alexander). Bookings essential.
#2: The Palms, Corner Marshland & New Brighton Rds, Christchurch
Private Santa photo sessions for children with special needs and sensory processing disorders.
These exclusive sessions are held before most of the stores open and no background music to avoid overpowering senses.
Private bookings are essential and offer no queues and an understanding Santa.|
– Saturday 7th and 14th December 2019, 7am – 9am
– Sunday 8th and 15th December 2019, 8am – 10 am
Phone 03 385 3067 to book.
#3: Queensgate Shopping Centre, Queens Dr & Bunny Street, Lower Hutt
No queues, no music, no spotlights, and a chair next to Santa.
Sensory Santa is an inclusive event for families with special needs. Get a photo with Santa in a sensory-friendly environment.
Available 7 December 2019 (8am to 9am) and 8 December 2019 (8.30am to 10am). Booking essential.
#4: North City, 2 Titahi Bay Road, Porirua
Sensory Souls presents Sensory Santa for families with special needs children who may require a quieter, less chaotic, and more controlled environment.
Sunday 8 December 2019, 7.45am – 9.45am.
Spaces are limited – book now.
#5: Bayfair, Mt Maunganui
Private Santa photo sessions for children with special needs and sensory processing disorders. No crowds, loud noises, music or bright lights.
|Monday 2 December:||6.00pm||–||7.00pm|
|Friday 6 December:||8.00am||–||9.00am|
|Wednesday 11 December:||2.30pm||–||3.30pm|
|Sunday 15 December:||8.00am||–||9.00am|
Book Sensitive Santa with the Customer Service Team.
#6: Westfield Centres, 4 Auckland locations
There’s so much happening at your local Westfield this Christmas with fun festive activities! But there’s still an opportunity to calm things down and get a photo of your child with Santa in one of the Sensitive Santa sessions.
Bookings are essential. Check your local Westfield for dates and times.