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£2,000 to see Santa: Harrods restricts access to its Christmas grotto to high-spending customers

£2,000 to see Santa at Harrods: Customers accuses the store of ‘behaving like the Grinch’ as it restricts Father Christmas access to high spenders

  • Only those with a Green tier 2 or above Harrods Reward card allowed Santa visit 
  • To qualify for the tier, customers must have spent between £2,000 and £4,999
  • Angry families slammed the decision saying Harrods is ‘behaving like the Grinch’

High-end department store Harrods is restricting access to its Christmas grotto to those who spend £2,000 or more. 

The 170-year-old London shop said only those with a Green tier 2 or above Harrods Reward card can visit Father Christmas.

In order to qualify for the tier, customers must have spent between £2,000 and £4,999. 

Distraught families, who have long visited the store’s Christmas grotto, slammed the decision saying Harrods is ‘behaving like the Grinch’.       

The 170-year-old London shop (pictured) has said only those with a Green tier 2 or above Harrods Reward card can visit Father Christmas

James Browne, 40, who has visited the grotto since his 15-year-old son Toby was a baby, told The Guardian: ‘They have lost the true meaning of Christmas and given into the commercialisation of the season. 

‘Visiting Father Christmas shouldn’t be reserved for those that are fortunate enough to frequent the store and spend thousands of pounds.’

The marketing director from Worcester Park, south-west London, added that his family’s Christmas tradition of visiting the grotto had now been ruined. 

Following outcry from disappointed families, Harrods has agreed to allow 160 lower-spending families the chance to visit the grotto. 

They will be slotted in among a total of 4,400 10-minute appointments with Father Christmas starting on Friday next week.  

Tickets to see Father Christmas cost £20 per child and the grotto will operate in the five-and-a-half weeks until Christmas Eve.  

A spokeswoman for Harrods said it was each year ‘overwhelmed by requests’ to visit the grotto and that is struggles to meet demand.    

‘The Harrods Christmas Grotto is offered by invitation only to Harrods Rewards customers in recognition of their loyal custom throughout the year, the spokeswoman said.

‘Due to demand, we invite Harrods Rewards customers who are Green tier 2 and above the opportunity to book tickets.’ 

Distraught families, who have long visited the store's Christmas grotto (stock image), slammed the decision saying Harrods is 'behaving like the Grinch'

Distraught families, who have long visited the store’s Christmas grotto (stock image), slammed the decision saying Harrods is ‘behaving like the Grinch’

There are four loyalty tiers at Harrods. These are: Green 1 Tier, which is spending up to £1,999; Green 2 Tier, which is spending between £2,000 to £4,999; Gold Tier, which is spending between £5,000 to £9,999; and Black Tier which is spending of £10,000 and over.

Ones tier level depends on their spend from January 1 to December 31. 

‘As your spend increases, so do the services and benefits you can enjoy,’ information on the Harrods website reads.

The news comes after the store was slammed as being out of touch for selling a £400 Christmas stocking made with real fur.   

The famous department store sells a variety of fur goods, but it’s 2019 festive stocking has been described as ‘tacky’ and ‘cruel.’ 

The £399 stocking being sold by Harrods is an exclusive to the Knightsbridge store, which used to hold a royal warrant. 

It is described as ‘an elegant and sophisticated seasonal accessory.’ 

A description on the shop’s website goes on: ‘This stocking is topped off with a sumptuously soft fur detail ensuring a luxurious touch every time you reach inside it.

‘The classic profile is finished with a knitted check pattern, guaranteeing that this design will effortlessly find its place into a modern house decor.’

It came days after it was revealed that Her Majesty the Queen has ditched real fur from her wardrobe, except for the ermine used on the crown jewels and state robes.

Read more at DailyMail.co.uk


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