From sports stars to local designers, here’s how some of Brisbane’s best exports celebrate the festive season at home.

Sarah Morrison – Mamma Mia

As she prepares to take to the stage for the production of Mamma Mia, former Brisbane girl Sarah Morrison has returned home just in time for the holiday season. Conveniently, Mamma Mia opens in Brisbane on Boxing Day, giving Sarah the opportunity to enjoy some much-needed quality time at home with her family.

While she now lives a self-declared ‘gypsy lifestyle’, often living out of a suitcase, Brisbane will always be home for the talented performer.

How will you spend your time here, when you’re not performing?
Just catching up with family and friends mostly. I spend a lot of time around Fish Lane in between shows.

How have you seen Brisbane change since moving away?
Every time I come home, I’m just so blown away by how much Brisbane has developed. I have a great group of girlfriend’s in Brisbane who really have their finger on the pulse of all the cool places.

Favourite local bar?
Gerard’s Bar.

How does it feel to be performing in such an iconic role?
It feels a little surreal. I remember seeing the production when I was 12 years old and thinking “this is what people do for a job.” Now, that’s my job. Sophie is a dreamer, we are similar in that regard, like many girls I guess.

Molly Goddard – Desmond & Dempsey

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The back story of luxury pyjama label, Desmond & Dempsey, is the stuff of Hollywood meet-cute dreams. Brisbane girl Molly Goddard met her British partner, Joel, in a pub in Whistler, Canada. The two hit it off instantly, but had to part ways soon after, with Molly returning home to finish her studies in Brisbane and Joel moving back to London for work. They kept in touch with regular Skype sessions until Molly later moved to London. She found herself sleeping in Joel’s shirts rather than her usual nighties. Unable to find anything that was as comfortable, the two set about designing their own. And so, Desmond & Dempsey was born.

The label has seen great success since launching in 2014, now being stocked by the likes of Selfridges and Bergdorf Goodman.

How do you spend Christmas in Brisbane?
Well, on both my Mum and Dads side I have lots of cousins, all of the same age, so the day is usually spent eating and drinking and dipping in the pool! We land on Christmas Day this year, so we will be getting off the plane and straight to lunch – I am very, very excited!

What do you miss about Brisbane when you’re living overseas?
Two big ones – my friends and the sun. I love all the Queenslanders in Brisbane, and how much space there is.

Any family traditions?
Funnily enough, my mum has always given us a pair of pyjamas on Christmas Eve to wake up in on Christmas morning.

Favourite Brisbane hangout over the Christmas/Summer period?
Not very original, but I do love James Street…

Fondest memory of Christmas in Brisbane?
My grandma doesn’t ever half do anything and one year she had a white Christmas. We all had to wear white and she rented furniture and the whole house was transformed. It was one of the few years we were all there together, and we ended up drinking and dancing till about three in the morning.

Favourite Christmas food?
Mangoes and Cherries.

What will you be wearing on Christmas day? Do you dress up or keep it casual?
Probably a little white or red dress and some big earrings.

Chris Lynn – Brisbane Heat

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How do you spend Christmas in Brisbane?
Christmas is generally really quiet for me as it’s a busy time of the year with the Big Bash. Last year I spent Christmas on a plane travelling to Perth to play on Boxing Day. Other than that, it’s a lunch at Dads place followed by dinner at Mums, with a nap in-between.

What do you miss about Brisbane when you’re away for work?
The weather! People come up from down south and say how good of a day it is. My response is always this happens every day in the Sunshine State. I also love the relaxed culture we have in Brisbane.

Favourite Brisbane hangout over the Christmas period?
Besides the Gabba, Riverbar is always a favourite of mine with the views of the Brisbane River.

Who do you spend Christmas with?
Christmas has always been a family day for me as Boxing Day always seems to be the bigger occasion with mates. My favourite thing about the festive season is everyone is on holidays which allows plenty of time to catch up, Big Bash, hitting sixes, drinking beer in the hot sun and backing winners!

When I come home, the first place I visit is…
I always go the Doomben racecourse. I love horseracing and actually grew up just behind Doomben racecourse. It’s always great to go there with friends and watch the races, it is always such a great vibe. Sixes and sevens normally gets a good run as well but more importantly, I always go the Breakfast Creek Hotel for a steak.

Favourite Christmas food?

What will you be wearing on Christmas day? Do you dress up or keep it casual?
Budgie Smugglers along with a YP Threads kit. It’s a very out-there kit but I love it and brings a great vibe.

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