When Pastry Chefs Play Architect: Gingerbread Monuments and Cookie Villages

December 23, 2017 Updated: December 23, 2017

Some hotels around the country are taking a page out of “Hansel & Gretel,” designing gingerbread houses and villages that look inviting enough to nibble on. No doubt, though, that the hospitality is notches above that in the Grimm Brothers’ tale. Here are some of the sweet creations.

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(Courtesy of Chateau on the Lake)


Candy and Cookie Village

The Candy and Cookie Village at Chateau on the Lake Resort Spa & Convention Center in Branson, Missouri, is a showstopper. Visitors to the Ozarks property can behold an entire village built with candy canes, cookies, Pop Tarts, jelly beans, licorice, malt balls, pretzels, graham crackers, candy bars, gummy bears, and other candies. The tallest structure is the church, with a bell tower that reaches 5.5 feet. Sleighs are made from candy canes and graham crackers, and village dogs from Frosted Mini-Wheats and M&Ms. Through Jan. 1. ChateauOnTheLake.com

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National landmarks at Gaylord National Resort & Convention Center in National Harbor, Maryland. (Courtesy of Gaylord)

Christmas on the Potomac

It’s Washington but all sweetened up, with recreations of the White House, the Lincoln and Jefferson memorials, the Capitol, and a 3.5-foot tall Washington Monument. The pastry team at Gaylord National Resort & Convention Center in National Harbor, Maryland, spent 340 hours working with 200 pounds of gingerbread dough, 200 pounds of powdered sugar, 170 pounds of Rice Krispies cereal, 216 pounds of marshmallows, and 90 pounds of candy. If this isn’t enough merry cheer for you, the resort also hosts a huge ice display, a suspended tree, and a musical production for the holidays. Through Jan. 1. ChristmasOnThePotomac.com

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The Gumdrop Toy Shoppe at Nemacolin Woodlands Resort in Farmington, Pennsylvania. (Courtesy of Nemacolin)

The Gumdrop Toy Shoppe

At 12 feet tall by 14 feet long by 12 feet deep, here’s a gingerbread house you can actually enter. At Chateau Lafayette, part of Nemacolin Woodlands Resort, in Farmington, Pennsylvania, The Gumdrop Toy Shoppe is one sweet toy store. It called for 500 pounds of flour, 110 pounds of brown sugar, 120 pounds of molasses, three pounds of cinnamon, 15 gallons of egg whites, and 200 pounds of candy. Inside, a rocking horse, train set, and antique toys beckon. On weekends, visitors can decorate their own gingerbread cookies. Through Jan. 1. Nemacolin.com