The producers of Edinburgh’s Christmas Underbelly have enlisted the help of Mr and Mrs Santa Claus of 1 Forest Drive, Reindeer Road, North Pole NP47 2020 to put some cheer back into all our lives – but especially for children living in Edinburgh.

Today they launch the exclusive partnership to bring the magic of Santa’s Official Grotto online this Christmas to all Edinburgh residents, big or small. We met with Santa on a trial call to discuss the new-fangled set up and he seems to be already well used to the technology and looks very much at home in his grotto, partly filled with gifts ready for Christmas.

Santa Claus, who as you know, runs the world’s biggest manufacturing and delivery company from his workshops in the North Pole, is helped by over 600,000 elves and 10,000 reindeer. He does sometimes use other delivery services like Amazon but the main part of his work takes place on Christmas Eve when he climbs aboard the sledge drawn by the reindeer and delivers parcels himself. This year he will have a special exemption from all governments and public health officials to make the worldwide journey.

Santa’s Digital Grotto, Edinburgh Christmas, Underbelly

Although it might be more difficult to meet up with family this year, it is hoped that Santa at Home will offer children of all ages, from all over the world, the unique opportunity to meet Santa in a personalised and private Zoom session live from the North Pole. The magic of Santa’s Grotto will be transmitted in a safe, socially distanced online experience for everyone in Edinburgh to enjoy. 

And all EH postcode holders will receive a 20% discount when booking Santa at Home Official.

Up to 6 children can meet Santa in one session and unlimited family members can also join a session to watch their children, grandchildren, cousins, nieces or nephews meet Santa LIVE from the North Pole.

Thanks to Santa’s unique magical powers (and a bit of elbow grease from his elves and the “big children”) he knows each and every child taking part in the call by name.

He will consult his own file of inside information about all the children making sure the experience is completely personalised to the children who he meets. With the consent of parents and carers the session will be recorded. Santa at Home will send a video file FREE as a very special Santa present to keep.

The first 100 people to book sessions with Santa will automatically be entered in a prize draw to win a 2-night stay in an Apex Hotel when restrictions allow.

Santa at Home is a magical opportunity for family and friends, grandchildren and grandparents, and cousins and aunts to come together in a shared and special moment online, allowing everyone to cast aside worries of the last year and to enjoy a moment of pure festive joy with Mr Claus himself.

Santa at Home is proud to be supporting Great Ormond Street Hospital Children’s Charity (GOSH Charity) and The Brain Tumour Charity this Christmas. All customers will be given the option at checkout to make a donation, with all proceeds being split equally between the two charities, supporting their invaluable work.

To develop his Zoom presence in preparation for this special experience aimed at children and their loved ones, Santa has been working with Gill Robertson, Artistic Director of the internationally acclaimed Catherine Wheels Theatre Company, Musselburgh-based producers of work for children and young people. 

Key Facts:

  • Fully private and personalised sessions for Santa at Home are now available to pre-book with slots available from Monday 23 November until 24 December.
  • EH postcode holders receive 20% discount.
  • Sessions start at £42 for up to 6 children from multiple households (equivalent to £7 per child).
  • Unlimited invited grown-ups 
  • Free recording of the session will be shared with participants (adult consent required)
  • Each bespoke Santa at Home session will last up to 12 minutes and is a unique and personalised experience for children, parents, friends and extended family alike. Big children will be expected to help Mr Claus and his Elves in gathering vital information. 

Mr Santa Claus said: “I’ve been elf-isolating for hundreds of years and absolutely nothing is going to stop me from zooming down your chimney on Christmas Eve – I am a key worker after all!  I’m also really excited to be able to meet all you wonderful children of Edinburgh via the tippedy-tap computers, tablets and other gadgets this year.  My new online grotto will allow me to meet up to six children at any one time and all the people you most care about can join in the magic as well.”

Ed Bartlam and Charlie Wood, Directors of Underbelly said: “Christmas is all about family and we wanted to make it possible for families to gather together to share in a special festive moment. With so many of us experiencing difficult times and maybe facing a lonelier Christmas this year, we are very pleased and honoured to partner with Santa Claus to offer Santa at Home Official to residents of Edinburgh, big or small.

“We are also delighted to be able to offer a 20% discount to all EH postcode holders who we hope will enjoy the magical opportunity to meet the man himself at his base in the North Pole.

“We are pleased to be supporting two amazing charities on this special project, GOSH Charity and The Brain Tumour Charity, both of which are very close to our Underbelly hearts. Their life-changing work is incredibly important, and we hope that our Santa at Home visitors will be able to help support them as much as possible.

“Whether you’re a Santa’s elf or a little Grinch, Santa at Home is bound to put Christmas joy in your heart, so get booking!”

Producers of Santa at Home Official, Underbelly, also revealed the special digital programme for Edinburgh’s Christmas earlier this month which focuses on helping Edinburgh residents and businesses in these unprecedented times of hardship. 

Advent Stories, daily bedtime stories written by Edinburgh and Lothians young budding writers and read by Santa Claus himself, will be published online and freely accessible, every day of the Advent for everyone to enjoy.

Shining a special light on the amazing array of artisan producers, makers, local retailers, bakers, gift companies, accessory and clothing businesses, hotels and restaurants in the Scottish capital, Neighbourhood Market is a digital platform established to support and celebrate local, independent businesses and it is live now!

For information on how to submit a story or to explore and shop in the Neighbourhood Market, visit

Santa’s Digital Grotto, Edinburgh Christmas, Underbelly