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Wellington Advent Calendar returns – with Mittens

The fame of Wellington’s favourite feline is about to grow with the fearless cat featuring in the 2018 edition of the popular online Wellington Advent Calendar, which launches tomorrow.

Mittens; photo by Sam Thacker

Mittens, the eight-year-old Turkish angora that has captured locals’ hearts with his tendency to roam the city visiting restaurants, shops and homes, is one of several well-known features dotted through this year’s calendar including double-decker buses, the Cuba Street rainbow crossing and Matariki, the Wellington whale.

The popular digital promotion offers Wellingtonians a new deal every day from 1 December to Christmas Eve from 24 local retail and hospitality businesses.

Behind each digital door hides a special free or discounted treat, starting with 2-for-1 slices of cake from Sweet Release on Willis Street. The deals are redeemable from the day the advent door opens until the end of February 2019, giving customers an extra month to grab their deal.

This year, Masterton-based artist Chris Davidson was tasked with illustrating the calendar, which is oriented to look out across the harbour towards Lower Hutt, with Wellington captured in Davidson’s graphic, detail-orientated style.

“It was an exciting project to be a part of and it was great to have the free license to create,” he said.

“I’ve grown up with Wellington and it’s a city I love so it was a chance to try and capture that in an illustration. I wanted to explore something that would resonate and speak of the vibrancy and sense of discovery within the city.”

Based on a traditional advent calendar, a new offer voucher becomes accessible somewhere on the digital artwork at every day from 1 to 24 December.

Once revealed, all offers remain accessible until 31 December 2018, with vouchers are redeemable at the associated Wellington retailers and hospitality businesses until 28 February 2019.

Last year 87,000 deal vouchers were claimed by locals and visitors via the website during the 24 days of the promotion.