This quintessential English ritual was first introduced in the early 19th century and still today it continues to be all the fashion. But which are the best hotels and afternoon tea venues? Put your feet up, pour yourself a cup of Earl Grey and grab yourself a cake as I reveal our favourite places that uphold this tradition.
The Milestone Hotel, Kensington
Located across from Kensington Palace, you will feel like royalty when enjoying afternoon tea at the Milestone. Its quality and service was recognised by the UK Tea Council when it received an Award of Excellence. The hotel also caters for younger guests with its Princes’ and Princesses’ Afternoon Tea menu.
Favourite indulgence: Freshly baked scones with Devonshire clotted cream
Available:1pm -5pm Monday – Sunday
Cost: Traditional Afternoon Tea £36.50 per person
Combe House, Devon
Soak up the magnificent views from this enchanting manor house in the heart of Devon’s lush countryside. Renowned for its faultless service and excellent food, you will adore afternoon tea at Combe House.
Favourite indulgence: Homemade buttery shortbread
Available: 3pm-5.30pm Monday – Saturday
Cost: £22.50 per person or £34.50 per person with a glass of Champagne
Dormy House, The Cotswolds
Whether you want to relax in The Potting Shed, on the lawn, in front of a roaring fire or even in bed, you will find several places to enjoy afternoon tea at Dormy House. As you tuck into scones, cakes, sandwiches and tarts, it would be easy to imagine yourself at Downton Abbey.
Favourite indulgence: Smoked salmon and cream cheese pinwheels
Available: 2.30pm-5.30pm Monday – Saturday and 4pm-5.30pm Sunday
Cost: Lazy Afternoon £16 per person or £25.50 with a glass of Veuve Clicquot
Hampton Manor, Solihull
Everything about this boutique hotel is impressive, including the afternoon tea. Immerse yourself in the vibrant ambience of Peel’s Restaurant as you sip on your tea and nibble on a sandwich.
Favourite indulgence: Homemade pastries
Available: 3pm-5pm Monday – Saturday and 4pm-6pm Sunday
Cost: The Traditional Full Afternoon Tea £18 per person or with Pimms £22.50
Linthwaite House, Lake District
Right on the edge of Lake Windermere looking out onto breathtaking scenes of mountains, trees and glossy water, Linthwaite House is one of the best hotels for afternoon tea. Choose to indulge on the terrace or in the lounge in front of the fire.
Favourite indulgence: Scones with local damson jam and clotted cream
Available: 2.30pm-5.30pm Monday to Sunday
Cost: Unstuffy Afternoon Tea £18.95 per person or £24 with a glass of Champagne
The Egerton House Hotel, Knightsbridge
Every detail is carefully considered at this 5 star London hotel. From the lavish décor and Italian antiques to the attentive concierge, you will feel utterly pampered when you take afternoon tea at The Egerton House Hotel.
Favourite indulgence: Blackberry macaroons
Available: 12pm-5pm Monday – Sunday
Cost: Traditional Afternoon tea £31.50 per person or £42.50 with a glass of Guy Cadel Champagne
The Kensington, South Kensington
Situated in one of London’s most stylish areas, The Kensington oozes class and serves up one of the most delicious afternoon teas in the suave setting of the Drawing Room.
Favourite indulgence: Carrot cake
Available: 12pm-6pm Monday – Sunday
Cost: Kensington Traditional Tea £25 per person or £30 with a glass of Moët & Chandon Champagne