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The enchanting lights of Christmas, from New York to Paris

Each year, in the run-up to Christmas, the world’s biggest cities light up. Images from Paris and New York and interviews with Tony Spring, President & Chief Operating Officer and Josh Groban, singer.Each year, in the run-up to Christmas, Paris dons its brightest lights. The Champs Elysées, the world’s most beautiful avenue offers a new festive look, made up of 4000 garlands and rings that twine around the 134 trees all along the avenue. And it is actress and former model Laetitia Casta, fairy godmother for a day that had the privilege to flick the switch! Windows of the biggest shops also display their creativity and magic as at Galeries Lafayette with decorations inspired by a fairytale ‘Once upon a time at Christmas…’ An enchanted forest, drawings of creatures, guest starring ‘Beauty and the Beast’. The centerpiece of the display is a magnificent Christmas tree, 20m tall planted beneath the store’s famous dome. Just around the corner, Printemps calls upon a special guest, American actress Gwyneth Paltrow who came to unveil the 11 window displays, all designed by Prada, the trendiest ready-to-wear label, beneath whose Christmas tree we would love to find a Prada signed parcel. Snow is falling in Paris and at Bon Marché with an animated Christmas incorporating a graphic gold and white look, a dreamy invitation to a magical forest. Across the Atlantic, in New York, world-famous department store Barneys provides in all its windows, a futuristic insight into Christmas, an idea conceived by French artist, Joanie Lemercier, centered around a lights’ display. Father Christmas, dressed all in white, swaps his traditional sledge for a faster, more innovative mode of transport, enticing visitors to soar over New York for a virtual adventure. As for the windows of huge store Bloomingdale’s, they honour an international Christmas…a festive opening included a children’s choir and a highly acclaimed concert. Interviews: Tony Spring: We had a wonderful concert with the New York children’s’ choir. They did a spectacular job, I think we had over 1000 people in the courtyard and of course the celebrity guest singer tonight was Josh Grobin. Josh Groban: We are celebrating a real New York tradition tonight which is the opening of the Bloomingdales holiday windows which, having come to New York since I was a kid for the holidays, it is something I think that we all look forward to, those moments in New York when you realise that this is the start of the season that we all find to be our favourite and this is my favourite. Music free of right/Bandit & Nikit - 2012.

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