The interior of PJ Clarke’s Manhattan restaurant features holiday decorations conceived by the team at Neave Decor.

There’s no lovelier feeling than walking into a restaurant after a day of Christmas shopping or looking at the lights around town, and being surrounded by delicious food in a warm, inviting, festive atmosphere. We know from experience!

Last year, Neave Décor had the opportunity to deck the halls at PJ Clarke’s Manhattan restaurant locations. It was a great opportunity to flex our décor muscle in three distinct, unique spaces and show off their personalities with a Christmas twist.

With those projects in mind, we’ve put together a tip sheet for other Manhattan eateries on how to decorate and transform your restaurant into a winter wonderland this year.

Here are four ideas to get the jingle ball rolling.

Pay homage to your neighborhood

New York City has so much history and culture. From the ethnic groups who first settled in your neighborhood to the moments in history that make it what it is today, there’s so much inspiration to be found on the streets and sidewalks just outside your door.

Talk to your neighboring businesses, too; maybe there’s a way for all the storefronts on your block to come together and celebrate your past this holiday season!

Let your cuisine guide you

Plenty of international cultures have wonderful holiday traditions that could guide your restaurant holiday decorations for the season.

In Germany, parents hide a pickle ornament inside the Christmas tree, and the first child to find it gets a special gift. Italians decorate with a ceppo, a wooden “tree of light” that holds small gifts, candy and fruit — with a manger scene on the bottom.

In Mexico, children swat at star-shaped piñatas during Las Posadas, a nine-day celebration leading up to Christmas, to symbolize Mary’s nine months of pregnancy.

A little research could teach you a lot!

Don’t forget your employees

We’d never suggest you wrap your employees in tinsel or battery-powered twinkle lights, but never underestimate the fun and festivity of a little well-placed holiday “flair” for your employees during the holidays.

Getting them into the spirit — with a button or hat at a family restaurant, or a sprig of live holly at a fine-dining restaurant — may help your customers find their spirit, too!

Respect other faiths

Have a little fun with your restaurant holiday decorations…just like PJ Clarke’s in Manhattan.

For many diners during the holiday season, it’s all about Christmas.

But did you know, for example, that New York City is nearly 10 percent Jewish? Hanukkah actually shares its date this year with Thanksgiving, so decorating to honor that holiday specifically may not take priority, but there are plenty of other faiths and beliefs to consider.

You’ll want to strike a delicate balance in your decorating between tokenism, overdoing it, and leaving these other faiths out entirely. Here’s a short guide the Neave Décor professionals put together about how to decorate your business for customers of all belief systems.

Looking for professional help to decorate and put the finishing touches on your Manhattan restaurant’s holiday decorations? Neave Décor’s experienced designers can execute all the details.

Call us at (845) 463-0592 to schedule a free holiday décor consultation, or fill out the web form to the right, and we’ll get in touch with you to start the process.