Market Overview

The Mission Inn Hotel & Spa Celebrates 20th Anniversary of Festival of Lights


The historic Mission Inn Hotel & Spa will kick off its 20th annual Festival of Lights holiday celebration with the highly-anticipated “flipping of the switch” lighting ceremony on Friday, November 23. The popular annual festival attracts over 250,000 visitors and is known as a free Disneyland-style holiday extravaganza that brings cheer to children and adults alike. The six-week long event will commence with a celebratory lighting ceremony and fireworks display, and continue through Saturday, January 5 with highlights including appearances by Santa Claus and live reindeer, horse-drawn carriage rides, freshly fallen snow and delicious holiday sweet treats provided by the famous original Casey's Cupcakes shop located at the Inn.

20th anniversary of Festival of Lights at Southern California's historic Mission Inn Nov. 23, 2012-J ...

20th anniversary of Festival of Lights at Southern California's historic Mission Inn Nov. 23, 2012-Jan. 5, 2013 (Photo: Business Wire)

New this year, the historic Mission Inn Hotel & Spa will unveil the world's largest mistletoe, measuring 12 feet by 8 feet long. Designed by a special team of artisans, the beautiful, grand and romantic lighted sculpture will be another reason why Festival of Lights is a beloved Southern California tradition not to be missed.

A gift to the community from hotel owners Duane and Kelly Roberts, Festival of Lights hosts one of the largest collections of lights in the nation.

Festival of Lights, by the numbers:

  • Over 3.6 million brilliant lights
  • 250,000+ Festival of Lights guests in 2011
  • 12' x 8' Mistletoe
  • Over 400 animated figures, including angels, elves and carolers
  • 10 weeks of round-the-clock preparations, orchestrated by a crew of 30
  • 20 years running / 1992 inaugural year

“We are honored that the Festival of Lights is celebrating its 20th year,” said Duane and Kelly Roberts, Keepers of the Inn. “Festival of Lights has become such a cherished part of the holiday season, with many families making it an annual tradition.”

Both residents and travelers can delight in this spectacular Southern California holiday tradition that also includes an elaborately decorated Christmas tree (changing every two weeks), Dickensian carolers singing cheerful holiday tunes, a pop-up outdoor ice skating rink, a “12 Days of Christmas” holiday drink menu, festive culinary offerings at the hotel's dining venues ranging from the AAA-Four Diamond Duane's Prime Steaks and Seafood to the lovely Spanish Patio, and hundreds of characters dressed in 17th century costumes that evoke the spirit of the season.

For information on holiday stays and travel packages at The Mission Inn Hotel & Spa, please visit, or call 1.800.843.7755. For details about Festival of Lights, please visit

About The Mission Inn Hotel & Spa

Originally opened in 1903, The Mission Inn Hotel & Spa incorporates design elements from throughout the southwestern United States, Mexico and several Mediterranean countries. Recently named a AAA Four Diamond Resort, the hotel features 238 guest rooms, including 27 suites, and four restaurants: Duane's Prime Steaks and Seafood, Inland Southern California's only AAA Four Diamond restaurant; Bella Trattoria, featuring cuisine from Southern Italy; Las Campanas Restaurant and Cantina, featuring gourmet Mexican cuisine in a beautiful al fresco garden setting; The Mission Inn Restaurant and Spanish Patio offering signature “Comfort Foods” from its new state-of-the-art display kitchen and romantic courtyard dining. In addition, The Mission Inn Hotel & Spa recently added a new wine bar, 54° at Duane's and Casey's Cupcakes. The hotel also offers Kelly's Spa, a luxurious, European-style spa; a sparkling swimming pool and Jacuzzi surrounded by lush gardens; a fitness center; a historic museum; and access to championship golf, shopping and other recreational activities nearby. The hotel, which is situated on an entire city block of the quaint Mission Inn District of Riverside, Calif., is listed in the National Register of Historic Places and is a State of California Historic Landmark. For more information or reservations please call 1-800-843-7755 or go to

Murphy O'Brien, Inc.
Niki Jensen | Kevinie Woo

View Comments and Join the Discussion!