In Quito New Years Eve is one of the largest celebrations of the year. I have told lots of people about the celebrations of the day, but I guess it’s too crazy to trust for many. Ecuador is usually quite a tranquil, even straight-laced country, so it’s great to be in Quito on New Years Eve 2017 to see everybody letting go.
One large part of the festivities for New Years Eve in Quito are los años viejos. People make big scarecrow like dolls often of the people they hate or of notable people from the past year. Some come full with signs detailing their sins. And then at mid-night every person lights them on fire. The symbolic meaning actually is the forgetting of the bad of the past year and expect that the coming year will be perfect.
To make their effigies, people fill old clothes with newspaper or sawdust and include a face with a mask. So a range of masks are for sale in days leading up to New Years.
Some are made to look like popular people, generally presidents or other political figures. Others are of domestics. Some are only fun… We saw Ferb and Phineas in the back of someone truck.
Another remarkable feature of Quito New Year Eve are the Viudas. They are widows because their 100s are ones being burned that evening, but the general reality is that a bunch of really brave – or truly stupid men dress as ladies to beg for beer money. Kids will dress up too.
No New Year Eve is complete without beer. And Quito is no exception. The Pilsener crates were making row in the streets this afternoon will be blank by morning.
Quito is a big party place, but New Year’s Celebration is an especially strong party. Most every neighborhood in town will have their own street dance and music. Every karaoke, bar and disco-tech will be open until early morning. Many will wear dresses, masks and fire jobs are a large part of most celebrations.
Current year, there were repeated commercials on Television warning of the fireworks dangers. It is simple to buy gun powder and fireworks. The commercials had testimonials largely from young men who had lost limbs from mishaps with fire jobs.
12 Grapes at Midnight
Eating twelve grapes at midnight is said to bring best luck for the coming year. People usually eat grapes and drink champagne with close family members and friends.
Suitcase around the Block
If you plan to tour in the coming year, you are supposed to run around the block with a suitcase at midnight to like victory during your travels.
Hotels for New Year
Some of best hotels in Quito are listed below:
- Swissotel Quito
- Casa Gangotena
- Hilton Colon Quito
- Hotel Patio Andaluz
- Stubel Suites and Cafe
- Hacienda Rumiloma
- Hotel Dann Carlton Quito
Remember to book your accommodations well in advance to avoid any last-moment problems.