Afternoon tea is one of my favourite things to do, just behind going on a spa day… so when I realised it was Afternoon Tea Week I knew I needed to put together a little guide to my favourites places to grab a cucumber sandwich and a cup of Earl Grey. I have pulled together a list of the Best Places for Afternoon Tea in the UK.
Afternoon Tea is a British institution so grab your friends, and head over to one of these 5* spots…
The Ritz, London
Afternoon tea has been served at the Ritz since its 1906 opening and that sense of heritage is partly why it remains so popular today. The Ritz offers decadence, luxury and incredible food in the hotel’s Palm Court and includes finger sandwiches with smoked salmon, roast ham et al, alongside fresh raisin scones and a variety of carefully decorated cakes on a tiered cake stand. I visited The Ritz last year and loved every moment – the service was flawless, and the seamless experience is one to be desired. Make sure you wear your Gladrags though, as they expect men in a suit jacket and ladies dressed formally.
Priced: £54pp – 150 Piccadilly, W1J 9BR
Hendricks G&Tea, Cardiff
Park Plaza Cardiff has teamed up with Hendrick’s Gin to offer a unique combination of two English classics: the afternoon tea and the classic gin and tonic. In a boozy twist on a traditional afternoon tea, the G&Tea includes a Hendrick’s Elderflower Collins served in a vintage Hendrick’s teapot and cup along with dainty finger sandwiches, light-as-air scones and sweet patisserie such as lime jellies with mint and cucumber, macaroons and chocolate opera gateau.
Priced: £21.95pp – Cardiff
If you love eccentricity, then Sketch is your dream destination. Decorated in the prettiest colours, and with every room offering you a different decade of decor, Sketch is brilliant as bringing alive the traditional British afternoon tea. Tea begins with a glass of champagne before the tea master appears offering you an array of brews. Prepare yourself for a feast with sandwiches, cakes and pastries with all different flavours, textures and looks.
Price: £58pp – 9 Conduit St, London W1S 2XG
Sopwell House Hotel, St Albans
Sopwell House Hotel is a hotel I love, and it’s simply a bonus that they do a great afternoon tea too! The afternoon tea here is traditional yet stylish, served in a large room, with marble-topped bar and roaring fireplace for the winter months. The food is incredible, where you can sit with your Twinnings, cream tea and elegant finger sandwiches.
Priced: £25.95 – Cottonmill Ln, St Albans AL1 2HQ
Ellenborough Park, Cheltenham
I stayed at Ellenborough Park last summer and fell in love with this sopisticated hotel, filled with nooks and crannies from a time gone by. Located in a busy Cotswolds’ spa town, but a world away from London. Afternoon tea, is taken in the tudor-inspired Great Hall filled with chandeliers and fireplaces. The food is delicious but here you are really paying for the experience in a historic building, with views across to Cheltenham Racecourse.
Priced: £25pp – Southam Road, Cheltenham, Gloucestershire, GL52 3NJ
This was a more recent visit when I was in Harrogate visiting Rudding Park last month. Theo treated me to a wonderful afternoon tea at the famous Betty’s tearoom. Treat yourself to a Lady Betty afternoon tea, taken in the elegant Imperial Room upstairs. Tea begins with a glass of champagne before being served an appetiser. The food, as expected is divine, and including some seasonal and local delicacies; Yorkshire pork and Bramley apple pie with golden pastry or a succulent roast Yorkshire ham and tomato pâté.
Priced: £32.95 – 1 Parliament Street, Harrogate, HG1 2QU
Treat yourself to an afternoon with buyagift where they have an array of options including a Smartbox, to a River Cruise & Bellini Afternoon Tea at Searcy’s 1847 Champagne Bar.