Best festive afternoon teas in London 2023
Looking for a festive treat? We’ve found the best spots to take friends and family over the Christmas season, from traditional afternoon tea at The Ritz to a contemporary selection at Sketch
Treat loved ones and dine in style over the Christmas season with one of these festive afternoon teas. Take your pick from teas including the highly Instagram-mable Sketch Christmas afternoon tea, classic glamour at the Savoy Christmas afternoon tea or why not even treat yourself to The Ritz afternoon tea?
Classic afternoon tea menus of sandwiches, scones and perfect patisserie get a festive makeover at this time of year, from turkey sandwiches and spiced marmalade to go with scones, to carefully crafted yule logs, Christmas trees made of cake and many more magical discoveries. At one of our picks below, there's even an extra Christmas pudding course added to the feast. You're sure to leave full and with a wonderful new Christmas tradition to return to year after year.
If you're not after a Christmas theme, check out the best afternoon teas in London and the best across the UK, too.
Best festive afternoon teas in London
Pan Pacific London, The Orchid Lounge
Pan Pacific London is serving its Sugar Plum Fairy afternoon tea at the Orchid Lounge from 7 November - 2 January. Choose from the signature Kopi Tiam menu with a selection of Southeast Asian savouries or the traditional menu with classic sandwiches. Both menus feature snowy stollen scones with Cornish clotted cream, strawberry jam and marmalade. The selection of patisserie is outstanding with choux buns, mini macarons and more.
Price: £78pp Monday-Thursday, £85pp Friday-Sunday or £88/95pp with a glass of Nyetimber Classic Cuvee MV
Address: 80 Houndsditch, London EC3A 7AB
Book the Pan Pacific afternoon tea here.
Fortnum & Mason, The Diamond Jubilee Tea Salon, Piccadilly
Fortnum & Mason serves its seasonal afternoon tea in The Diamond Jubilee Tea Salon. For the Christmas tea, you can expect classic sandwiches such as coronation chicken, cucumber with mint cream cheese and ham with Fortnum's mustard. Still-warm scones are served with Somerset clotted cream and strawberry and champagne and wild blueberry preserve, while cakes and patisserie highlights include a festive-flavoured battenburg and a classic cranberry and orange Christmas cake.
Price: £75pp for traditional or vegetarian afternoon tea with a pot of Fortnum’s Tea plus £16.25 for a glass of Fortnum’s Blanc de Blancs.
Address: 181 Piccadilly, St James's, London W1A 1ER.
Book the Fortnum & Mason afternoon tea here.
The Crystal Moon Lounge, Corinthia Hotel
The Corinthia will be serving its festive afternoon tea in The Crystal Moon Lounge with a selection of festive treats from 11 November-4 January 2023. Relax in the stylish lobby under the glistening chandelier and listen to grand piano playing in the background while you feast on salmon and caviar crème fraîche sandwiches, scones with rhubarb jam and a milk chocolate and pecan bûche de Noël, to name just a few of the many treats on this classically luxurious menu.
Price: Festive afternoon tea £85pp, champagne afternoon tea from £95pp, caviar afternoon tea from £130pp.
Address: Whitehall Place, Westminster, London SW1A 2BD
Book festive afternoon tea at The Corinthia here.
The Ritz, Piccadilly
The Ritz will be serving its traditional afternoon tea with a fun festive twist from Saturday 19 November-Sunday 1 January 2023, with five sittings per day. Listen to the Ritz Choir singing carols while you feast on six different sandwiches (think classic cheddar and chutney, ham and mustard mayonnaise, and traditional smoked salmon sandwiches and more), Christmas-inspired British pastries and freshly baked mince pies; and choose from 18 teas including a bespoke Ritz Christmas spiced tea. The tea also includes a glass of champagne and, for children, a Ritz teddy bear. Click here to read our full review of the traditional afternoon tea at The Ritz.
Price: £102pp; £60 per child (up to 15 years old)
Address: 150 Piccadilly, London W1J 9BR
Book the Ritz Christmas afternoon tea here.
oblix at The Shard
Nothing starts off a festive afternoon tea like walking through a corridor lined floor to ceiling with sparkling fairy lights. Oblix, on the 32nd floor of The Shard, more than delivers that Christmas feeling. If you can tear your eyes away from panoramic views of London including Tower Bridge, the City and the Walkie Talkie building, then the Oblix tea has been given a Christmas makeover. Start with a plate of sandwiches including a decadent prawn and lobster roll (with a delicious touch of lime zest), egg mayo with generous amounts of truffle and delicate avocado and mozzarella tart. Warm madeleines with chocolate sauce are a luxurious addition to the scones section of the tea, whilst patisserie includes an adorable snowman macaron, mini mince pie and rich hazelnut rocher.
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Price: £58pp classic tea, £78pp rosé afternoon tea (bottomless rosé, selected cocktails), £105pp champagne afternoon tea (bottomless champagne, selected cocktails)
Address: oblix East, Level 32, The Shard, 31 St. Thomas Street, London SE1 9RY
Book the oblix festive afternoon tea here.
Thames Foyer at The Savoy, The Strand
The festive afternoon tea at The Thames Foyer is available now. You can expect classic sandwiches with a Christmas twist, such as oak-smoked cheddar with spiced pear chutney, coronation turkey on cranberry bread, and a beetroot gravadlax blini with yuzu. Traditional freshly baked plain and raisin scones come with winter marmalade, strawberry jam and clotted cream to accompany festive spiced teas.
To finish, enjoy a cluster of seasonal cakes and pastries such as the Santa's Hat (chestnut cream, yuzu, spiced sablé) and the Gift Box (Biscoff mousse, confit pears, shortbread). Click here to read our full review of traditional afternoon tea at The Savoy
Price: Afternoon tea starts at £75pp (£85pp on weekends) and £15 for a glass of Laurent-Perrier champagne.
Address: Strand, London WC2R 0EZ
Book The Savoy afternoon tea here.
The festive afternoon tea has returned to Claridge’s until 2 January 2023 between 2:45pm-5:30pm every day, serving a festive twist on the classic selection of pastries, classic scones and traditional sandwiches. Start with a selection of five sandwiches and a wild mushroom tartlette, before the bonus Christmas pudding course, served with brandy sauce. This is followed by scones and pastries, including a black forest Christmas tree and banana and kiwi festive bauble. On weekends, until Christmas Eve, the Southend Children's Choir will perform while you dine.
Price: £95pp (£100pp on weekends); £50 per child.
Address: Brook Street, Mayfair, London W1K 4HR
Book Claridge's afternoon tea here.
TĪNG Shangri-La, The Shard
TĪNG at the Shangri-La is serving a festive afternoon tea until 3t January 2023, from midday to 4:30pm every day. The first thing you'll notice are the striking views of London from the heights of The Shard. The stunning scenery makes this trip worth it alone.
You'll be greeted with the cinnamon-infused 'welcome tea' complete with a dazzling ceremony. Then choose from the extensive list of signature teas or add a festive cocktail or glass of champagne. The finger sandwiches include roast turkey with cranberry sauce and truffle egg mayo, while extra savouries continue the decadence with a foie gras profiterole. Finish with scones and pastries including a cinnamon plum tart and The Christmas Shard for two to share. A vegan tea is also available.
Price: £69pp, £79 with a glass of champagne or cocktail.
Address: 31 St Thomas Street, London SE1 9QU
Book the TĪNG festive afternoon tea here.
Two key features make the festive afternoon tea at Sketch stand out. Firstly, the undeniably eye-catching and Instagram-friendly baby pink venue. Secondly, the sheer quantity of the spread – unrivalled by others we’ve tried. This year, Sketch's festive afternoon tea will be returning from 16 November until 6 January 2023.
Tea is held in the fully pink Sketch gallery, with pink velvet banquettes and quirky David Shrigley art works lining the walls. Don’t miss a trip to one of London’s most quirky and famously designed bathrooms, too. If you can’t eat it all, you’re not alone. Most diners leave with a pink Sketch box to take the leftovers home. Click here to read two more reviews of traditional afternoon tea at Sketch (classic afternoon tea and caviar afternoon tea)
Price: from £85pp, £55 per child.
Address: Sketch, 9 Conduit Street, London W1S 2XG
Book festive afternoon tea at Sketch here.
The Carlton Tower Jumeirah, Knightsbridge
This festive afternoon tea served at The Carlton Tower Jumeirah from the 17th November 2022 – 5th January 2023, is inspired by the flora and botanicals of England. Billed as a tribute to nature by one the world’s best pastry chefs, Jessica Prealpato, it's perfect for a spot of indulgence after a shopping trip. Cosy up in their dedicated tearoom, complete with a warming fire and pastry counter. After a selection of decadent sandwiches, expect the unexpected with the scones, with inventive and interesting flavour combinations such as chamomile and honeycomb. The finale is a tower of festive delights ranging from a twist on a Christmas log to a King galette. The tea is accompanied by a selection of teas, chosen for flavour and wellness benefits, and a glass of champagne.
Price: from £75pp
Address: The Carlton Tower Jumeirah, 1 Cadogan Pl, London SW1X 9PY
Book festive afternoon tea at The Carlton tower here.
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