Afternoon Tea Around the World

Hanoi, Vietnam 
The Sofitel Legend Metropole is an award winning colonial style hotel regularly listed in top World hotel lists. The afternoon tea in the picturesque restaurant overlooking the courtyard area is always very popular and good as a stand alone event.  However the main attraction is the the chocolate buffet. For around $25 between 3:30 and 5:00 they offer all you can eat chocolate in every form you can imagine.  Truffles, chefs preparing made to order hot chocolates, eclairs, macaroons, gateaux and a whole host of heart attack inducing treats.

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Photo: Spoonfuls of Goodness

Victoria Falls, Zambia.
Whilst probably not the first place you’d think of when you hear ‘afternoon tea’, around Victoria Falls a number of places offer the full experience complete with cucumber sandwiches. With the backdrop of elephants grazing and impressive colonial lodges you’d be hard pushed to find a more impressive place to enjoy your cakes and tea.

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London
As virtually every hotel in London offers Afternoon Tea now, some have started to offer a more unusual take in order to stand out from the crowd. The Radisson Blu at Leicester Square offers a Pink Afternoon tea, complete with salmon, beetroot and ham sandwiches, rosewater jelly and pink macaroons.

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While over at 9 Conduit Street, Sketch serves up modern fayre like twisted pink marshmallows, finger sized cheese toasties and shot glasses of trifle. Expensive, but worth it for a special occasion and for the chance to see the 239 David Shrigley drawings that line the walls.

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Affordable dates in London

1. Take a walk on Clapham Common.
Clapham Common is a huge open space in SW London on the edge of zone 2. There’s 220 acres of green space, 3 ponds and Victorian bandstand. The bandstand area is popular with dogwalkers and there’s a cute little café where you can get a coffee & cake watch the world go by.

2. Grab some dinner at Pizza Pilgrims
Pizza Pilgrims does Napoli inspired street food at locations on Dean Street and Kingly Street. Their pizzas are baked in a couple of minutes in the custom built stone bake ovens and are all under £10, including the delicious Nduja (spicy sausage) pizza. Top tip – Finish your meal with a delicious order of limoncello.

3. Walk from Kings Cross to Camden Lock.
If you head towards Granary Square from Kings Cross you’ll find some green steps leading down towards the canal.
If you walk along towards Camden Lock you’ll have some lovely sights including canal boats, a number of functioning locks & quaint cottages. When you arrive at Camden make sure to head to the food markets and in particular try the Bún Bao from the world food stands.

4. Take in the view from One New Change
Opposite St Paul’s Cathedral is a shopping centre called One New Change which has a wonderful roof terrace. It’s open from 6am-midnight daily and offers magnificent views of the London skyline and particularly of the cathedral from an angle you’ve probably never seen before.

Take the lift up to the floor of Madison’s Restaurant and Bar, but then just head left onto the terrace instead of into the bar. They also host a number of outdoor events on the roof throughout the year, ranging including free screenings of Wimbledon.

5. Check out Colombia Road Flower Market
Every Sunday morning Colombia road turns into a multicoloured flower market complete with pleasingly Cockney sounding market-sellers shouting about their offers and trying to entice you to buy. The flowers themselves are very reasonably priced but if you’re just in the mood for browsing them make sure to check out the various trinket and antique shops lining the round.