10 over-the-top gingerbread creations

By Michele Shapiro
December 19, 2018, 2:08:10 PM EST

Not all homes are made to be lived in. During the holiday season, gingerbread houses, which originated in Germany more than five centuries ago, are a treat for the senses (and, ultimately, stomachs). But pastry chefs at some renowned hotel properties have made it an annual ritual to outdo themselves by creating holiday displays made of gingerbread that are so big and beautiful, you wouldn’t even consider eating them. Check out this elaborate array of displays of some all-time favorites.

1. Broadmoor Hotel
WHERE:Colorado Springs, CO

bread 1

(Photo: Chad Chisolm)

For 33 seasons and counting, The Broadmoorhas created a larger-than-life gingerbread display in its lobby. The hotel broke with tradition in 2016 when 10 master pastry chefs and two carpenters constructed a 12-foot-long, 8-foot-high train that took an estimated 288 man-hours to make. The life-size gingerbread engine celebrated the 125th anniversary of the Pikes Peak Cog Railway. (A 150-square-foot replica of the property’s Pauline Chapel in 2017 was equally awe-inspiring.)

2. Wentworth by the Sea, a Marriott Hotel & Spa
WHERE:New Castle, NH

bread 2

(Photo: Wentworth by the Sea)

In 2017, the hotel’s culinary team transformed 350 pounds of gingerbread into an 8-foot-tall Victorian house decorated with hundreds of gumdrops, lollipops, and licorice whips. The display also included a train station—and moving locomotive that thrilled young onlookers.

3. Kingsmill Resort
WHERE:Williamsburg, VA

bread 3

(Photo: Kingsmill Resort)

No detail was overlooked in the 6-foot-tall grandfather clock that the Kingsmill Resort’s executive pastry chef built from scratch in 2015. The level of detail in the towering timepiece was truly extraordinary. Perhaps most memorable were the clock’s inhabitants—a bevy of mischievous marzipan mice that had their own furnished apartment in the clock’s center. (Talk about prime real estate!)

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