It's Christmas time at OPERO Southkey


OPERO Hotel Southkey recently held its annual Christmas Lighting Ceremony, an event hosted with corporate guests and local social media influencers who gathered at the hotel lobby where the towering Christmas tree stood, ready to be lit up.


Facade of OPERO Hotel Southkey

Opened in March 2022, OPERO Hotel Southkey proudly hosts 238 meticulously designed rooms that range from Superior, Deluxe, Premier to Suite categories.


The hotel is located walking distance from one of Johor Baru’s leading shopping malls and for unparalleled convenience and accessibility, it situated strategically close to significant business hubs and the Second Link highway.


With the season’s monsoon rain pouring down mercilessly, I was pleased to park comfortably in the hotel’s indoor carpark and followed the signs to the lobby where guests were gathered, sipping drinks and enjoying snacks in a charming ambience of well-loved Christmas music.


I was warmly welcomed into the crowd where I saw familiar media friends and guests and met others who were there for the Lighting Up Ceremony and the unveiling of the hotel’s exquisite Christmas Buffet to kick off the holiday celebrations in the hotel.


Festive sweets to enjoy

Just as the MC called for the guests’ attention to the Christmas tree for the Lighting Up Ceremony, the loud clanging of bells signalled the arrival of the White bearded man in a Red costume – Santa – along with his Santa-Rina.


Then the festive feeling went up a few notches as guests joined in the countdown to the light-up led by Directors of OPERO Hotel Southkey, Nor Aisyah Mohamed Zaini and Datuk Mohamed Zaini Bin Amran, who turned the towering tree into a dazzling display of sparkling lights and tinsel.


The festive mood continued with live music as I joined the guests who were ushered into OLIVA Café, the hotel’s all-day dining café, for a preview of some of the highlights in the festive buffets served throughout December.


Executive Chef Zairul Effendi Mohd Nor at
the live station to serve roasted meats
The lineup this season includes a regal Christmas Eve Buffet Dinner, a cozy Christmas Day Buffet Hi-Tea and various festive lunch and dinner buffets that will showcase a blend of local and international flavours.


CIRCULO Members will enjoy a 20% discount with complimentary meals for children below six years old.


“This year’s Christmas Lighting Ceremony is more than an event – it is a celebration of warmth and joy that mirrors OPERO’s ethos,” said Acting General Manager of OPERO Hotel Southkey, Jalaludeen Ariff.


Chef Zairul serving slices of
Glazed Pommery Ham

“Our prime location near key hubs and attractions enhances the festive experience for our guests, especially those from Singapore.


We are proud to offer an experience that blends festive cheer with our unique Johor cultural and culinary offerings,” he added.


In the café, the culinary team led by Executive Chef Zairul Effendi Mohd Nor was putting the finishing touches to the buffet spread that featured a mouth-watering range of traditional hot dishes and roasted meats with an eye-catching festive display of gingerbread houses, gingerbread men, cakes, macaroons, puddings and pastries.


After Chef Zairul Effendi had carved and served the tender portions of traditional roasted meat for guests to savour with their choice of sauces, I later spotted him at another live station where he was serving slices of Glazed (Chicken) Pommery Ham, drizzled with Apple Sauce.


Festive flavours served from the hot buffet

Meat-lovers were at the hot buffet to pick their portions of Honey Orange Glazed Duck Breast with Brussel Sprouts, Roasted Lamb Noisette stuffed with Baby Carrots, Pan-Seared Salmon Fillet with Tri-Colour Peppers and Beef Cheek Bourguignon with Root Vegetables.


A range of pasta tossed in a choice of sauces was served from a live station and nearby, a tall tureen served a delicious Baked Pumpkin and Madras Curried Soup to savour with a variety of baked breads.


A live station that served freshly made pasta

I also observed diners helping themselves to a range of appetizers, salads, fruits and cream cakes from chillers with multi-shelves that were arranged along the walls.


Meanwhile, I made a beeline to help myself to one of my season favourites, the Roasted Butternut Squash and Brussel Sprouts with Pecan and Cranberries, that stood out among other vegetable dishes that balances out the meat items in the buffet.


OPERO Hotel Southkey Director
Aisyah Zaini at the roasted meat
station in OLIVA Cafe

In the Chinese section, there was Braised Assorted Mushrooms in Vegetarian Oyster Sauce, along with Salted Egg Tiger Prawns in Yam Ring and a serving of Stewed Hong Kong Noodles with Seafood and Vegetables.


It was interesting that in addition to the attractive festive sweets, some desserts were served in various sections of the café.


So be sure to walk around the café to discover a Caramelised Apple Crumble Tart with Jackfruit Salsa, slices of cream cakes and even soft-serve ice-cream from a dispenser that oozed swirls of Chocolate ice-cream.


This holiday season, the hotel is also hosting a photo contest giveaway that encourages guests to capture and share their festive experiences.


For reservations and contest details, please contact +607-336 7888 or visit


24 Dec 2023 | 6.30 pm - 10.00 pm

RM178 nett / adult | RM90 nett / child



25 Dec 2023 | 12.30 pm - 4.00 pm

RM138 nett / adult | RM70 nett / child



1 Dec - 31 Dec 2023 | 12.30 pm - 2.30 pm

RM108 nett / adult | RM60 nett / child

(Not available on 25 Dec 2023)



25 Dec 2023 - 2 Jan 2024 | 6.30 pm - 10.00 pm

RM158 nett / adult | RM80 nett / child

(Not available on 31 Dec 2023)



31 Dec 2023 | 6.30 pm - 10.00 pm

RM178 nett / adult | RM90 nett / child

#operochristmasmagic #JoyfulDelight #operohotelsouthkey #operohotel@operohotel.southkey

An attractive display of gingerbread houses, gingerbread men, cakes, macaroons, puddings and pastries

OPERO Hotel Southkey is at No. 2 Jalan Southkey 1/2, Kota Southkey, 80150 Johor Baru, Johor. For more info, visit website:

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