By Valerie Chinn,

Louisville, KY (WDRB-TV) Many local restaurants are bringing Christmas cheer by staying open on the holiday.

It's a chance for employees to make some extra cash. Restaurants are going all-out to make sure the Christmas meal is special.

At the Marriott Hotel Downtown, restaurants say it's about the Christmas experience. There's a life-sized gingerbread house with chocolate interior walls, and  Christmas trees and garlands are in the lobby.

Blu Italian Grill at the hotel will be open with a Christmas brunch which costs $35 a person.

Kelly Salat, the Blu and Champions General Manager, says there will be a pasta station, ham carving, and all the breakfast items. She says there is something for everyone.

Between Blu and Champions, which will also be open, about 200 people are expected to dine there. The majority of people are expected to be locals. 

Neal Ward, the Manager of The English Grill at the Brown Hotels says, "In this business, you realize this is what you do. You are here for the holiday." He says he tries to schedule people so they have time with their family as well.

The English Grill is getting ready for its Christmas buffet. The tables will be full because 200 people have made reservations and now the event is sold out.

Ward says, "I'm simply amazed at number of people who say it's easier to dine out than make food at their home. But it makes it nice for a lot of family members."

Ward says business has been good and it's an indication the economy is getting better. "It's a sign, we've seen it in hotel. Louisville has seen it, seen it in regular dining, seen resurgence of holiday parties as well."

Ward says it'll be a good mix of local residents and out of towners who plan to dine at the two seatings on Christmas. The cost is $59 a person. And he says if you want to eat at The English Grill next Christmas, you need to book early.

The next big day for the restaurants is on New Year's Eve.