Located in the center of the hustle and bustle of Machu Picchu Pueblo is the smart, contemporary and comfortable El MaPi Hotel by Inkaterra. The down-to-earth and relaxed atmosphere of the small town continues into the hotel ensuring that your Christmas and New Year’s vacation in Peru is pleasant and fulfilling. Speaking to the Resident Manager of El MaPi Hotel, Gloria Neyra, we explored the festive and traditional beauty of Machu Picchu Pueblo and the relaxing El MaPi Hotel during the Holiday Season.
Please include a brief introduction about yourself, your position and El MaPi Hotel.
The role that I perform at the El MaPi Hotel by Inkaterra is the Resident Manager and my responsibilities are to ensure the hotel functions well and maintains a good level of service. I make sure that our travelers have the best experience during their stay in Machu Picchu Pueblo in a comfortable, modern place and with a high, qualified service.
Why do you think that Machu Picchu is the perfect place to visit for Christmas & New Year’s Eve?
The atmosphere that surrounds Machu Picchu Pueblo, formerly known as Aguas Calientes, is a more traditional and charming feel. As a small village, it has maintained its authenticity and customs adding to your experience. The people here are very friendly and it is a well-known place due to its many traditional celebrations, processions and parades.
Do you have any special celebrations going on or near your hotel during Christmas & New Year’s Eve?
Near to the hotel is the town’s church which always has a beautiful ceremony for Christmas on the 25th December.
What is your stand-out Machu Picchu memory at Christmas or New Year’s Eve?
One Christmas in the hotel, there was a group from Greece, who shared their Christmas traditions and celebrations with us. They had brought with them from Greece a cake that had a gold ring inside it and several ribbons embedded in the cake. Each person had to take a ribbon and pull on it. The person who pulled the ribbon with the ring on it had to organize the next trip for the whole group and bring gifts for everyone. It was very interesting because they invited all the staff to share this tradition and celebrate with them as well as there being lots dancing and smiling.
How do Peruvians celebrate Christmas and New Year’s Eve?
As Catholic, I always celebrate Christmas with my team at the hotel as we observe the arrival of baby Jesus. Celebrating New Year’s Eve is very interesting and special as it signifies new beginnings and it is exciting because of all the new experiences that are waiting for you in the coming year.
What is the Christmas and New Year’s Eve activity you would recommend to people staying at El MaPi?
There is something for everyone. Christmas is a lovely experience and staying in a religious town, you will feel the warmth of home. The New Year is incredible because the idea is to go to the ruins of Machu Picchu on the 1st January and receive the first energy and rays of sun of the New Year.
What advice would you give to travelers coming to Machu Picchu during the Holiday period?
That they enjoy their time at the Machu Picchu ruins in all ways possible as it is a place full of energy. Machu Picchu is a lovely place to visit during Christmas and New Year.
Where and what is the best Christmas and New Year’s Eve celebration in Machu Picchu?
To spend Christmas and New Year’s Eve sharing with all the locals and other travelers in the Central Square of Machu Picchu Pueblo.
Please can you share with us a special story/legend from Christmas or New Year’s Eve about Peru or Machu Picchu?
The best thing about spending Christmas in Peru is that the Peruvians are very friendly and throughout my career I have spent Christmas in different parts of Peru. I’ve always been welcomed into homes by different families and everywhere you go, you will be made to feel at home.
What will you be asking from Santa this year for Christmas?
This year I will be asking for a lot of peace and love for everyone; that we will all be fortunate enough to find happiness and have the opportunity to get to know new and amazing places.