21 Days of Christmas | Celebrate with… Mathieu Deslandes, Head of Royal Salute

Mathieu Deslandes, Head of Royal Salute shares his festive thoughts: why nothing beats a white Christmas, the stocking filler he’s been wishing for for years, and why there’s no better dram to toast the festive season than the Royal Salute 21 Year Old.

How will you be celebrating Christmas this year?
Being French, I am going back to Paris to celebrate Christmas with my wife’s family and mine. My mum is an amazing cook, and I absolutely love food, so the Christmas lunch (which always lasts forever) is my must-do event of the year.

What gift are you hoping to receive in your stocking?
A navy blue convertible Ford Mustang from the 60’s. It’s on my list every year! I think I’ve been especially nice in 2018 so have a feeling this could be the year!

What is your favourite/family Christmas tradition?
For me, Christmas is all about family and doing the things that you love, with the people you love. For my wife and I, it’s travelling; so we never pass up the opportunity to share time abroad with our three children. We were in India last year, and this time we are going to St Petersburg which will be wonderful (if not extremely cold!).

Favourite festive film and song?
They say it’s all about timing and this is so true in this context! My favourite songs are completely dependent on where we are at in the evening. At first, it’s all about Nat King Cole and later in the evening, we all sing (loudly!) to Wonderwall from Oasis or any Robbie Williams song; not particularly festive but they certainly conjure that sense of homecoming that is so important at Christmas time.

Best place to enjoy the Christmas atmosphere?
Nothing beats a white Christmas. There is something so magical about snow at this festive time of year. Some of my greatest memories are from those spent in the countryside, in a cottage with a roaring fireplace where we keep nice and toasty before bundling up heading outside for a long walk in the snow.

Top tip for surviving the festive season in style?
Drinking responsibly of course, and good quality products. It’s no surprise that I recommend Royal Salute 21 Year Old. There’s no better dram to toast the festive season!