Tag Archives: valletta

Christmas in the City

christmas in valletta

Christmas is an exciting time for most of us – both adults and children. However, there is more to it than just receiving a beautiful gift. It is also a way of showing our appreciation towards our loved ones. When selecting gifts for our loved ones, we should put in extra thought and consideration. This may seem a mission impossible due to our busy schedule. Indeed, Christmas shopping is a task which many people dread, especially due to the extra expenses. However, if we make time to personally hand pick gifts or with a little bit of planning ahead, everyone will be happy, including your bank account.

Christmas shopping can be turned into a fun experience. Here are some ideas on how to make your Christmas shopping easier and more pocket friendly this year! If you don’t want to over spend, put a limit on the amount that can be spent and introduce Secret Santa, or as a second option, rather than buying individual gifts, aim to buy one gift and pool in the same amount. When considering gifts for your family members, perhaps you could choose something that can be enjoyed equally by everyone. Whether it’s a family board game or a family trip to a fun park, choose something that would help you create the memories together as a family. Besides, it will also ease the technology gap between parents and children. If you are a head of an organisation, you might want to consider getting a game for the common room, where most employees spend their time during the lunch break or where they hang out after work. It should be something fun which will reduce stress, strengthen working relationships, make people interact and build a stronger team… because a happy working environment equals happy employees and therefore positive outcome for the company. You should always bear in mind that Christmas is a time for us to spend quality time with our closest ones, be it friends or family. It is the time to reconnect, have fun together and create memories. At the end of the day, Christmas is about giving but having no expectation of receiving anything in  return – it’s about making others happy and having fun whilst doing so!

This Festive Season join us for a merry atmosphere and great food in a cosy and spectacular place. On behalf of the Grand Hotel Excelsior Team we wish you all the best for Christmas and the New Year 2018.

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Explore Valletta: The Palace Armoury

Palace_Armoury__Valletta_9The Palace Armoury in Valletta is one of the world’s largest collections of arms and armour that is still housed in its original building. The Knights of St John were a unique brotherhood of resolute warrior monks. From Malta, their island stronghold, these combatant aristocrats from the noblest houses of Europe, carried out their relentless crusade against the Ottoman Turks in defence of the Catholic faith.

The Palace Armoury is certainly one of the most visible and tangible symbols of the past glories of the Sovereign Hospitaller Military Order of Malta. Grand Master Alof de Wignacourt transferred the Order’s arsenal to the Magisterial Palace in 1604 where it was the pride of the Order. Apart from being lavishly adorned with elaborate trophies of arms, it held enough arms and armour to equip thousands of soldiers. It was housed in the magnificent hall at the rear of the building, right above its present location.

At present, it is displayed inside two halls that were originally the stables of the palace. Following the forced departure of the Order of St. John from Malta, the armoury somehow lost much of its original grandeur. However, it was restored and was officially opened as Malta’s first public museum in 1860. Although only a fraction of its original splendour remains, the Armoury still contains abundant material of Italian, German, French and Spanish origin from principal production centres. Also displayed is an exotic selection of Islamic and Ottoman arms and armour. Apart from the massed arms of the common soldiers in the collection, the enriched personal armours of the nobility still manage to make a statement. Various areas of the Palace State Rooms and Armoury are currently undergoing restoration. We apologise for any inconvenience this may cause.


Reasons to Visit:
1. Unique display of suits of armour owned by Grand Masters Alof de Wignacourt and Jean de La Valette.
2. Arms and armour used by the Knights of St. John between 1530 -1798 and by the Ottoman Empire during the Great Siege of 1565.
3. A varied selection of firearms used for both military and sporting purposes.
4. A chance to see a selection of artillery pieces originally used for battle on the fortifications.

Valletta will have the honour of holding the esteemed title of European Capital of Culture in 2018. If you plan to visit Malta be sure to visit interesting places around the capital, Valletta. Contact the Concierge Desk at this luxury 5 star hotel on the doorstep of Valletta for some great tips on places worth visiting during your next holiday to Malta.

Photo credit: Aaron Briffa & Viewing Malta

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Things to do in Malta this Winter

Visiting Malta this Winter? There are several things you can enjoy whilst exploring the islands. From country walks to visiting museums, there is surely something for everyone to enjoy. Have a look at some of our tips that will make your holiday in Malta worthwhile.

Hagar Qim Temple

Hagar Qim Temple – © Viewing Malta

1. Visit Hagar Qim, Malta’s prehistoric freestanding Megalithic temples situated in Qrendi
2. Practice your photography
3. Go out cycling one morning or afternoon
4. Have you tried painting? There are so many beautiful sceneries around Malta and Gozo
5. Go karting in Ta’ Qali
6. Try horse riding at least once in your life

Ggantija Temples Gozo

Ggantija Temples Gozo – © Mick Cundy & Viewing Malta

7. Go back to the past; visit the ‘Ggantija Temples’ in Gozo
8. Dance the night away at one of the nightclubs in Paceville
9. Visit the ‘Kordin 111 Neolithic Temples’

War Museum

War Museum – © Rene Rossignaud

10. Go to the ‘Malta War Museum’ in Fort St Elmo in Valletta
11. Visit the ‘Museum of National History’ in Mdina
12. Visit the National library in Valletta

Mgarr ix-Xini Coastal Tower

Mgarr ix-Xini Coastal Tower – © Pauline Dingli & Viewing Malta

13. Go to Mgarr Ix-Xini cove in Gozo
14. Visit the Royal Navy Prison Museum in Corradino
15. Take a trip out to the newly opened National Aquarium in Qawra
16. See the ‘Fat Lady’ at the Tarxien temples
17. Admire ‘The Magesterial Palace & Armoury’ in Valletta
18. Take time to explore at least one seasonal cultural event

The Grand Hotel Excelsior’s prime location allows easy access to all tourist locations around the Maltese Islands. The main bus terminus provides services to all towns and villages and is only a few minutes away from this luxury 5 star hotel in Malta. If you’d like to explore places around Malta, kindly contact the chauffeur driven service at this superior hotel.  With a list of tours and excursions they will surely help you enjoy a unique and memorable Malta holiday.

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