The definitive guide to London dining & events

...Places for Afternoon Tea

Date: 26.11.10 Category:

“Quintessentially British, Afternoon Tea is a treat not to be missed. And if most places insist on offering Champagne as well as tea, so be it. ”

No one will deny that the nonpareil host of Afternoon Tea is The Ritz, where the tradition is an institution in itself. I don’t need to say more about this exquisite venue except that it’s not to be missed. Tea at The Berkeley is an unsurprising favourite; known as Prêt-à-Portea, it's for fashionistas and girls-about-town, with the cakes and pastries taking inspiration from the season's catwalk trends. Following closely behind, The Langham Hotel is considered the ‘Michelin Star’ of the tea world. In the luxurious and elegant ambience of the Palm Court, enjoy an excellent selection of nibbles and extremely knowledgeable, friendly service. If accolades are of importance to you, The Dorchester has been named London’s top Afternoon Tea venue by the Tea Council of Great Britain a record three times. Here, your warm scones will be made from a recipe unchanged for over half a century and served with glistening strawberry jam and Devonshire clotted cream.

Also scoring top marks, The Lanesborough, Knightsbridge, and The Landmark Hotel have both been awarded The Tea Guild Award of Excellence 2010 by the UK Tea Guild, in recognition of their achieving the very highest standards in the service of Afternoon Tea. The Landmark offers a variety of themed teas such as The Winter Garden Traditional Afternoon Tea, Chocolate Afternoon Tea and Glutenfree Afternoon Tea, promising something for everyone (to tantalize you, some include a glass of Taittinger Champagne).

Enjoy Le Tea en Rose in the Rose Lounge at the Sofitel Hotel, St James. Featuring a very feminine décor with a subtle colour scheme of pink and cream, deep wool rugs and a fifties chandelier, the Rose Lounge will see you enjoying your afternoon in a delicate and fresh ambience complemented by displays of fresh roses and the gentle plucking sounds of a harp.

At Brown’s Hotel, a Baby Grand Piano plays all day in The English Tea Room which served as the inspiration for Agatha Christie’s ‘At Bertram’s Hotel’. Choose the perfect tea for you from a selection of 17, with gentle guidance from two Tea Sommeliers. Succulent finger sandwiches and an assortment of delicate pastries round off the perfect Tea experience.

You may start to develop quite a large one, but your cup has no bottom at The Foyer at Claridge’s, and you can enjoy the endless flow of tea in a stunning room alongside the likes of princes, politicians and pop stars. Enjoy the gentle live music and the award-winning Afternoon Tea experience of pastries and savories, light, crusty scones and rich clotted cream. You can also rub elbows with royals in the Park Room and Library at Grosvenor House, Mayfair. Here there is something for everyone and children can enjoy their very own Afternoon Tea treat with Grover’s Tea Time (cuddly Grover available to take home).

If you are tired of tradition and looking to shake things up, Yauatcha walks on the wild side of Afternoon Tea. Alongside tea flavours like white and macaroon, this Michelin-starred restaurant also provides exquisite and unusual cakes for the full exotic experience. The Met Bar takes Afternoon Tea into the realm of the funky. Beautifully presented low-gluten scones and cupcakes, wheat-free macaroons and no-bread sandwich pots allow for a guilt-free yet infinitely delicious cream (without the cream) tea experience. Finally, Afternoon Tea at The Parlour at Sketch holds beautiful little cakes served in quirky style amongst the striking decor.

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The Berkeley

The Berkeley

Hotel

"A fantastic, traditionally chic hotel, when visiting or dining be sure to book ahead as it's strictly table service. How else..."

The Berkeley, Wilton Place, London SW1X 7RL

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The Langham

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The Langham

Hotel

"The Artesian Bar in The Langham was designed by The David Collins Studio - the name behind many of the most exquisite London..."

1c Portland Place, London W1B 1JA

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The Dorchester

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The Dorchester

Hotel

"Home to Alain Ducasse, China Tang, The Krug Room and other impeccable spaces for going out and holding events, The Dorchester has..."

Park Lane, London W1K 1QA

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The Lanesborough

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The Lanesborough

Hotel

"From Afternoon Tea by the fire or a sophisticated lunch, to a cocktail in the bar or a cigar in the Garden Room, The Lanesborough..."

Hyde Park Corner, London SW1X 7TA

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The Landmark

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The Landmark

Hotel

"Whether for business or pleasure, this five star hotel caters for your every need making it a landmark by name and by nature."

222 Marylebone Road, London NW1 6JQ

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The Rose Lounge, Sofitel Hotel St James  

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The Rose Lounge, Sofitel Hotel St James  

Hotel

"The Rose Room: rosey by name, rosey by nature. "

6 Waterloo Place, London SW1Y 4AN

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Brown's Hotel

Brown's Hotel

Hotel

"With a bar, spa, restaurant and a delicious traditional Afternoon Tea, Brown's is a home-from-home... though sadly, it is nothing..."

Brown’s Hotel, Albemarle Street, London W1S 4BP

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Claridge's

Claridge's

Hotel

"A name synonymous with style, glamour and exceptional service; Claridge's remains at the forefront of London's hotel scene."

Brook Street, London W1K 4HR

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Grosvenor House

Grosvenor House

Hotel

"Grosvenor House, complete with ballroom, JW Steakhouse, The Bourbon Bar and spectacular rooms, stands proud amongst London's..."

Park Lane, London W1K7TN

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Yauatcha

Yauatcha

Restaurant

"Sleek, funky, sophisticated and Michelin-starred. What other credentials do you require? "

15-17 Broadwick Street, London W1F 0DL

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The Met Bar

Met Bar
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The Met Bar

Private members' club

"The Met Bar has been popular since the 90s and still warrants its place amongst London's most desirable hotspots. "

19 Old Park Lane, London W1K 1LB

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Sketch

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Sketch

Restaurant with bar

"Both The Parlour at the front and the restaurant at the back are infused with art making for an intriguing warren of spaces."

9 Conduit Street, London W15 2XG

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