The Ritz always does such a lovely job of Afternoon Tea and in these difficult times it proved itself once again with world class service, food and hospitality.
The Hotel had only recently reopened after closing doors for the first time in its 114 year history and it has implemented the changes seamlessly to adapt to the rules around social distancing and dining out .
I had recently watched the ITV Documentary on The Ritz, so when I got the chance to go for tea I couldn't say no. This was my first trip back into London since February, I was a bit apprehensive about travelling by public transport , but the train thankfully wasn't busy. All the people travelling on my train wore face masks and kept to the 2m rule.
I noticed immedialty I arrived into London that it had a very different atmosphere, so much quieter, and there seemed to be a lot of building work taking place . On my way to the hotel I passed tourists spots that would usually be packed in August but now were virtually empty .
I was a bit nervous about eating out but reassured immediately as my first sight of The Ritz was of the doorman wearing a face mask and his assistant cleaning the stair rail . I was given a friendly welcome and advised I could decide for myself to wear a face covering or not. Once in the lobby my temperature was taken and full contact details provided. Next I was then asked to use the hand sanitiser before heading into the restaurant area . All staff wore face coverings and the waiters also wore gloves whilst serving guests. There was a friendly and welcoming atmosphere. Everything the same as usual, but just very slightly different .
The Palm Court was as beautiful as I remembered. In 1906 Mr Ritz designed the restaurant "with women in mind" and insisted the glass ceilinged room was decorated with pastel colours and the most flattering lighting. He insisted on a peachy pink glow as he thought this would actually help women look more beautiful. It certainly is a very pretty room, and I bet that many men as women have appreciated his thoughtful attention to detail over the years. I noticed that plenty of the guests were taking advantage of the beautiful lighting to take photos of themselves .
Once we were seated we choose our tea from the eighteen on offer. The Ritz Royal Blend, Kenyan, Assam and Ceylon Orange Pekoe, very light and refreshing . Later we tried Sparkling Tea from Copenhagen Organic Sparkling Tea Company . It's a new non alcoholic alternative to champagne , truly delicious, a nice unexpected addition to the afternoon tea menu .
Cakes could not be brought out on an open trolley due to the current situation, so these arrived on a platter. The Victoria sponge with cherry jam was unforgettable ...
Finally time for the scones, jam and cream. My routine is the cream first, I always seem to end up asking for extra jam ! No problem with that here, they happily filled our pot with plenty more. I managed just one scone as I was so full of sandwiches, but no regrets as they were exceptionally good .
After going back on public transport, shopping and eating out I feel much more confident to return to London.
Afternoon Tea is served daily at The Ritz 11:30am, 1:30pm, 3:30pm, 5;30pm and 7:30pm .
I was invited to The Ritz by my friend Emma Little London Whispers as her plus one, but I was under no obligation to review or share anything from this experience.
All views are my own and unbiased .
For more information and bookings
The Copenhagen Sparkling Tea is available on line from
Emma Little London Whispers Monthly Super Seven list of things to do in London