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Breakfast with Santa at the Rock Center Cafe

Santa + breakfast + ice skating = ultimate holiday experience in NYC

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Breakfast with Santa

Breakfast with Santa

Patina Restaurant Group

More: Where To See Santa in NYC

Every winter, Rock Center Cafe hosts Breakfast with Santa on weekends from Thanksgiving to Christmas, as well as during the week immediately before Christmas. Participants will enjoy a family-style breakfast, small gifts from Santa's elves, and a visit with Santa, all while overlooking the Ice Rink at Rockefeller Center. Participants also get tickets to skate on the rink after breakfast with Santa.

This is a popular event, so reservations are essential. Reserve your Breakfast with Santa online as soon as you know you want to go in order to guarantee your spot.

What To Expect When You Have Breakfast with Santa at the Rock Center Cafe

Breakfast with Santa at Rockefeller Center lasts about an hour, so you should be sure to arrive on time for your reservation. (Typically, there are two seatings at 7:15 and 9:30, but some days there is just one seating.)

Breakfast is served family-style, with generous platters brought quickly to your table piled with eggs, french toast, fruit, sausage, bacon and a bread basket. The food was all fresh and tasty, if a little heavy. Coffee, hot chocolate and orange juice are also served, and we also requested a glass of milk for my son.

The Rock Center Cafe was decorated beautifully for the season, and offers diners a terrific view of the skaters on the Ice Rink at Rockefeller Center.

During the course of breakfast, elves bring around small toys for the children, and Santa makes a visit to each table. We were one of the last families to get a visit with Santa, and you could sense that he was sort of rushing through, though I did see him spend more time with other tables.

Getting Your Picture Taken With Santa at Rock Center Cafe

Diners can take their own photos with Santa, but there is also a photographer who will shoot a family photo for you. We found the photographer to be amateurish and somewhat indifferent (and at $40 for a physical copy, it's no bargain), so I'd encourage you to take your own photos with Santa. Since the photos are taken right at your seats, be aware of choosing an angle to avoid all the dirty breakfast dishes on your table.

I do wish that they had a more formal spot for taking photos with Santa, but aside from that, it was a fun holiday experience.

How Long Does It Take To See Santa at The Rock Center Cafe?

You should plan to spend 45 minutes to an hour having Breakfast with Santa at the Rock Center Cafe. Afterward, you can use your ice skating voucher to take a spin on the ice. Ice skate rentals are additional (in 2013 they are $10), but you're allowed unlimited ice skating time. It's not a terribly big ice skating rink, so most folks skate for less than an hour. (You can also choose to use your skating voucher any time during the current Ice Rink season.

Directions To Breakfast with Santa at the Rock Center Cafe

The Rock Center Cafe is located on the concourse level of Rockefeller Center.

You can enter the Rock Center Cafe by taking an elevator to the concourse level from above the Ice Rink at Rockefeller Center .

Subway service to Rockefeller Center:

  • B/D/F/M to 47-50 Streets-Rockefeller Center
  • 6 to 51st Street
  • 1 to 50th Street

Not in New York City? Check out some other Great Places to See Santa.

As is common in the travel industry, the writer was provided with complimentary services for review purposes. While it has not influenced this review, About.com believes in full disclosure of all potential conflicts of interest. For more information, see our Ethics Policy.

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