From ornately decorated Christmas trees to whimsically dressed shop windows, the festive season promises no end of seasonal delights, including that most quintessential of British pastimes – the afternoon tea. Celebrate Christmas around Bond Street in some of London’s most decadent settings, with delicate sandwiches, inspired sweet pastries and a glass of something sparkling. Read on to discover where you can find the very best festive afternoon teas.
The Biltmore Mayfair
Surrounded by gardens, The Biltmore Mayfair champions British heritage and fresh produce in its limited-edition afternoon tea curated by executive pastry chef Norihito Muranaka and served in the dedicated Tea Lounge. Mulled-wine-cured salmon and treacle honey gammon feature on a selection of artisan breads, while the experience is completed by freshly baked scones with clotted cream and raspberry and strawberry preserves, alongside perfectly crafted mini reindeer and Christmas wreath patisseries.
Price: Festive Afternoon Tea, £80pp. Festive Champagne Afternoon Tea, £90pp
When: 20 November to 24 December
44 Grosvenor Square, W1K 2HP
Set in Mayfair, The Connaught whisks you away on a sensational journey through taste and texture thanks to chef Jean-Georges Vongerichten’s passion for Southeast Asian flavours. Served in a light-filled room with stained-glass accents by French contemporary artist Jean-Michel Othoniel, the Festive Afternoon Tea includes Scottish smoked salmon paired with miso butter, and a vanilla log with coconut dacquoise. You can raise a toast to the season with a glass of Laurent-Perrier brut or rosé, Delamotte blanc de blanc or Dom Pérignon champagne.
Price: Festive Afternoon Tea with champagne or a festive cocktail and a treat to take home, from £95pp. Children’s Afternoon Tea with a festive mocktail and a treat to take home, £57 per child
When: 14 November 2023 to 1 January 2024
16 Carlos Place, W1K 2AL
In collaboration with Britain’s first luxury chocolatier, Charbonnel et Walker, Brown’s Hotel brings the spirit of the season to life with its festive afternoon tea, set in the wood-panelled Drawing Room. Partakers will be immersed in instrumental Christmas carols played by Brown’s resident pianist while they cosy up beside a log fire and enjoy a quintessentially British culinary experience. Roast bronze turkey and cranberry and roasted iberico ham, pear and quince chutney are followed by the hotel’s very own version of a chocolate orange, as well as its famed plain and golden raisin scones.
Price: Afternoon Tea with a glass of champagne, sparkling tea or mulled wine, £95pp (£105pp on Christmas Day)
When: 16 November 2023 to 5 January 2024
3 Albemarle Street, W1S 4BP
Served within decked halls, the limited-edition Afternoon Tea at Claridge’s is an ode to traditional understated elegance. Dorrington ham, orange and wholegrain mustard and English cucumber with sage and mint cream cheese are delicately served as finger sandwiches, while a selection of festive pastries are crafted under the guidance of Claridge’s executive pastry chef, Thibault Hauchard, including a banana and kiwi festive bauble and a black forest Christmas tree. That’s not forgetting the pièce de résistance: an indulgent Christmas pudding with brandy sauce. And when all this is paired with a glass of Laurent-Perrier ‘Grand Siècle’ #25, the season is certain to look merry and bright.
Price: £105pp on weekdays; £110pp on Saturday and Sunday. £55 per child
When: Till 1 January 2024
Brook Street, W1K 4HR
Inspired by The Beaumont’s 1926 origins, its Gatsby’s Room invites you in with Art Deco elegance and an intimate dining setting. Order the Festive Afternoon Tea and unexpected flavours await, such as sandwiches packed with devilled cacklebean farm egg with Brussels sprout kimchi, or English brie, pineapple and turmeric pickle. And what’s luxury without a little sweet treat? A pear and mulled wine mousse, or a cranberry and pistachio choux, is a must for those with a sweeter palate.
Price: £75pp; £30 per child (7-12 years)
When: 21 November 2023 to 8 January 2024
8 Balderton Street, Brown Hart Gardens, W1K 6TF