Find a luxury Edinburgh afternoon tea you’ll savour!
Edinburgh offers a plethora of locations in which to enjoy afternoon tea – that most British of ceremonies. We asked afternoon tea expert Alison Winn, owner of the fabulous ‘Girl’s Afternoon tea‘ website to be our guide. This guest blog highlights a few of her favourite Edinburgh afternoon tea venues.
What girl about town doesn’t enjoy catching up with friends and having a great gossip in sumptuous surrounds whilst devouring an indulgent afternoon tea? Scotland’s capital city boasts a plethora of gorgeous venues in which to sink into plush sofas, soak up ambience and tantalise the tastebuds with mouthwatering sweet treats, but which to choose? Get the low-down on these fantastic five for a gorgeous girl’s day out!
The Balmoral Hotel
A decadent Edinburgh afternoon tea experience awaits you in the beautiful surrounds of the Balmoral Hotel’s Palm Court. Set under a stunning glass dome and glittering chandelier afternoon tea is accompanied by the magical notes of its resident harpist. Traditional three tiered cake stands offer a selection of savoury treats, pastries and scones. Afternoon tea is served with a fine selection of loose leaf teas or freshly brewed coffee. Of course, a glass of sparkling champagne is always a welcome addition.
Known as the Grand Old Lady of Princes Street, the Balmoral Hotel sits to the East of Princes Street with its clock tower, allegedly set 2 minutes fast to help commuters catch their trains from nearby Waverley Station, and overlooks the city skyline. A red carpet and kilted Scottish footman ensure a five star welcome.
The Balmoral Hotel
1 Princes Street
Tel: 0131 556 2414
The Caledonian: A Waldorf Astoria Hotel
On the West side of Princes Street sits the Waldorf Hotel, a short distance from Edinburgh’s picturesque West End with its cobbled streets, boutiques, bars and restaurants. Affectionately known by the locals as “The Caley”, afternoon tea is served in the heart of the hotel in the magnificent Peacock Alley. Formerly Haymarket Station’s concourse and ticket office, Peacock Alley provides a relaxing atmosphere for people watching and taking time out of the hustle and bustle of Princes Street.
Pre-booking is always recommended and your table on arrival is exquisitely set with fine china, crisp white linen and sparkling glasses. Offering a diverse menu of loose leaf teas, fresh coffee or champagne, afternoon tea is presented on a three tiered cake stand. Finger sized sandwiches with traditional fillings is accompanied by a selection of miniature scones, sweet fruit preserves and tempting cakes and pastries.
The Waldorf Hotel
Tel: 0131 222 8888
The Sheraton Grand Hotel & Spa
With floor to ceiling windows and views across to Edinburgh Castle, One Square at the Sheraton Hotel and Spa is the perfect place to take in the city sights whilst relaxing in contemporary surrounds.
Afternoon tea at the Sheraton Hotel is undoubtedly one of the finest dining experiences Edinburgh has to offer. Enthusiastic chefs time and time again create innovative afternoon tea menus which change seasonally throughout the year. Always themed, they are a vision to behold and a feast for the eyes in addition to the palate. Creative menus have included Autumnal Orchard afternoon tea, an Afternoon Bee with vanilla cream and chocolate soil and a fun, festive treat at Christmas. Afternoon tea at the Sheraton ticks all the boxes – style, taste and luxury.
Sheraton Hotel and Spa
1 Festival Square
Tel: 0131 229 9131
Colonnades at The Signet Library
Situated just off the Royal Mile in Edinburgh’s Old Town, afternoon tea at the Signet Library is served in the impressive surrounds of Colonnades. This former library has, in recent years, undergone a major restoration to transform this magnificent room to its former glory. Lined with tall fluted Corinthian columns and surrounded by neo-classisical style balustrades, it’s the perfect setting for a genteel afternoon tea.
Operated by award winning Heritage Portfolio, caterers by Royal Warrant of Appointment to Her Majesty The Queen, afternoon tea is a stunning affair. Once again, their innovative chefs recreate delicious mouth-watering menus to capture the best of each season’s natural larder. Elegantly tiered glass cake stands, the finest silver cutlery and white crisp napkins provide a stylish setting. A diverse savoury selection is accompanied by bite sized, tastebud bursting sweet treats and a superb range of loose leaf teas and fresh coffees. One of Edinburgh’s hidden gems, this is an absolute must to add to your Little Black Book.
The Signet Library
Tel: 0131 226 1064
The Tower Restaurant
Boasting spectacular views of Edinburgh Castle and stretching across the cityscape of Scotland’s capital’s Old Town, the Tower Restaurant is one of the city’s finest rooftop restaurants situated above The National Museum of Scotland.
With a stylish and contemporary elegance, The Tower Restaurant is a fantastic Edinburgh afternoon tea venue to while away an afternoon. Their mouthwatering menu offers a range of fresh, seasonal sandwiches, warm savouries, freshly baked scones and home baking from the Tower’s talented pastry chefs. Afternoon tea is served with your choice of a selection of loose leaf teas or fresh coffee. Spoil yourself with a glass of champagne or why not try their renowned G & T cocktail, a fruity combination of tea infused gin, grenadine, cranberry and grapefruit juice. This is definitely one to check out.
The Tower Restaurant
National Museum of Scotland
Tel: 0131 225 3003
We hope you have enjoyed this tasty round-up of top afternoon teas in Scotland’s capital city. Why not tell us your favourites?