The spirit of Christmas has filled streets, shopping centres and many other places in Hanoi with striking colours, decorations and items.

The most jubilant places are public amusement areas, shopping centres such as Vincom, as well as restaurants and hotels, including Sofitel Metropole Hanoi, Melia, Sheraton, Daewoo and Sofitel Plaza , which are decorated impressively, splendidly and colourfully.

In front of souvenir and fashion shops in Luong Van Can, Hang Can, Ba Trieu, Cau Giay and Hang Ma streets are pine trees which are decorated with many colourful items.

Christmas trees, Snow White, ribbons and artificial reindeer can be seen in many offices in Hanoi .

Coffee shop owners have even decorated their shops with laurel wreaths and pine trees.

Churches have been well-decorated to welcome Christmas and the 2012 New Year.

The nearer Christmas day comes, the higher the demand for seasonal services, such as Santa Claus gift delivering, pine trees and Santa Claus clothing products.

Bich Tram, owner of a souvenir shop in Ton Duc Thang street said that a Santa Claus gift delivery service at home costs 100,000 VND/time within the inner Hanoi area. In previous years, the service was available between Dec.15-25. But this year, the service started from Dec. 5. The number of customers is forecast to double or even triple numbers from last year.

Artificial pine trees are still the first choice of customers. This year, trees ranged in price from 800,000 VND-1,800,000 VND. Meanwhile, Santa Claus clothing products are 60,000-300,000 VND for a set of clothes, and a Santa Claus hat is about 30,000-60,000 VND. The prices have increased by 20 percent over the same period last year.

This year, there are more made-in-Vietnam goods on the market, however Chinese goods still dominate Christmas sales./.