Tea for Two in London, England

There is probably no single thing considered more British than "Tea", and in London, it can be quite an experience.  Many places offer silver and fine china along with white gloves service and music in a gorgeous setting.

The Traditional "British Tea" or "High Tea" was considered a late lunch or early dinner for children and it is usually an affair in London. The food will usually include a mixture of small cakes, crust-less sandwiches, scones, crumpets and, of course, tea.  It's an ideal (although expensive) afternoon snack before a late dinner. So admit it, you're going to want to go...and everyone is going to ask you if you went.

Since tea isn't something you do every day, we've picked a few around town. This way you can plan that day's activities around tea.  Okay, now here's the bad news. Afternoon tea is going to average about 20-35 GBP (40-75) per person. So before we offer some suggestions for the best places around town for tea, here are two general suggestions for maximizing your funds.

1. Decide how important the whole "Tea" experience is for you. If it's low but still on your priority list, view our article "Top Three for Budget Tea" for a list of places that do a lighter version of afternoon tea for less than £20.

2.  If you want to enjoy the whole afternoon tea experience...stick with the tea. Many places now offer a Champagne tea, and we've even seen Chocolate teas, Strawberry teas, etc. This is a way to squeeze an extra $10-15 out of you for a $3-5 upgrade. Budget for tea and have cocktails elsewhere.

Favorite Places for High Tea

1. Capital Restaurant

The sitting room of the Capital Hotel with chandeliers, gold-trimmed mirrors, and flowers is probably one of the more elegant settings for tea in London. Afternoon Tea is served daily between 3.00pm and 5.30pm and includes pastries, sandwiches, and scones with jam for £18.50 per person.

Address: 22 Basil St, Capital Hotel, London, UK - England SW3 1AT · 20-7589-5171, Tube: Knightsbridge

2. St James Restaurant

Inside the famous Fortnum and Mason Department store is another good locationfor afternoon tea. St James Restaurant on the 4th floor offers a very good Afternoon Tea with live piano and a view of Piccadilly. The hearty afternoon tea includes a savory tart, fish terrine, scones, pastries, and tea. Afternoon tea is £28.

Address: 181 Piccadilly, Fortnum and Mason, London, UK - England W1 · 20-7734-8040, Tube: Piccadilly Circus

3. The Conservatory

With a location across from Hyde Park and close to the theatre, The Conservatory at the Lanesborough Hotel is an excellent choice for tea. The room is both elegant and soothing with muted colors and fresh flowers decorative glass roof that provides a lot of natural light. Afternoon tea is served to the sound of piano music and gurgling fountains. Sandwiches, teacakes, and scones with all the fixings are served with your choice of tea. Afternoon tea at the Conservatory costs £31.

Address: 1 Lanesborough Pl, The Lanesborough, A St Regis Hotel, London, UK - England SW1 X7TA · 20-7259-5599, Tube: Hyde Park Corner

Continue to Part Two

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