Check out the REDSTAR team’s top picks for afternoon tea in Hangzhou. Take the afternoon off, treat yourself to a little taste of high society and reward your hard work with a little indulgence!
Lenbach Restaurant & Bar, Joy City Mall 兰巴赫西餐啤酒坊(大悦城店)
The last time I had afternoon tea was a while back (years in fact), so it was only fitting that on a dreary, rainy Hangzhou day I found myself walking into Lenbach Restaurant & Bar looking for a nice hot ‘cuppa’ to cheer me up. Walking in, I was greeted by typical Germanic décor, with beautiful deer antler chandeliers providing the lighting, and, after racking my brain, realised Lenbach was probably named after the 19th-century German painter.
Germans aren’t exactly known for their tea, but to my pleasant surprise, a cheerful waiter gave me the pastry menu that had me salivating right away. After five minutes of indecision, I settled for a pot of rose tea and a chocolate sponge cake. My order promptly arrived, and I was not disappointed: The rose tea was refreshing and warmed me up immediately, and the cake was fresh and heavenly, which made up for the dreary weather outside. As I indulged myself, I took in a bit more of the restaurant. I had tucked myself away into a corner booth, but around me was ample seating for two or more people, and I even spotted a few kids’ chairs, making this place great for families also. There were a couple of big-screen TVs showing sports highlights dotted around the premises.
Glancing over to the bar, I was impressed by the extensive selection of liquor (I made a mental note to come back sometime for drinks). Overall, I found this place to be very charming and not too severe on the pocket. Most of the choices here are à la carte, with the sponge cake costing 48 RMB, and the mixed dessert platter, a mere 48 RMB.
Time: 13:30 – 17:00
Price: À la carte (afternoon dessert platter) 48 RMB Address: L1 Lot 12, Joy City, 1 Yinxiu Lu 隐秀路1号大悦城购物中心L1-12
Midtown Shangri-La 杭州城中香格里拉大 酒店
With edible flowers adorning their scrumptious fare, the aptly named ‘Bloom in the Sun’ afternoon tea at Midtown Shangri-La, Hangzhou is an indulgence that’s as delectable as it looks. Considered a more typical Hangzhou-style afternoon tea; this summer seasonal tea features sweet pastries and scones as well as hot and cold savoury dishes. Dessert enthusiasts will rejoice at both the exquisiteness and the taste of their pastry collection. The edible potted plant is a delicious mix of chocolate mousse, raspberry compote and edible flowers. The edible ‘secret garden’ is an appealing rose-flavoured tiramisu garnished with chocolate stones, edible flowers and micro greens. Even the less elaborately decorated pastries are tasty; most notably, the jasmine raspberry éclair and the lavender fresh berries tart.
The tea menu — to complement the cuisine — is vast and guests having afternoon tea at the Shangri-La, Hangzhou can choose to enjoy their set tea on their outside terrace or in The Great Lounge, underneath an impressive art installation representing the waves of the West Lake. From Wednesday to Sunday there is live piano music. Time: 14:30 – 17:30
Price: 300 RMB for two people Address: 6 Changshou Lu 长寿路6号
Marriott Executive Apartments Hangzhou 杭州万豪行政公寓
A little peace and tranquillity are essential to some when choosing a place to enjoy afternoon tea. The café at the Marriott Executive Apartments, an apartment complex aimed at attracting longer-term guests and residents, offers both. The premises here are quiet and calming with attentive staff. The afternoon tea set meal included a pleasant, eclectic mix of sweet and savoury treats. The savoury treats featured were tuna salad tapas and a smoked salmon sandwich, a cucumber sandwich and a ham salad wrap. All of which were easily capable of tiding over those who missed lunch earlier in the day. The set also includes a generous selection of sweet treats, such as the light matcha mousse cake, rich chocolate truffle cake, coffee and toffee macaron and fresh éclair. The two tiers of cakes and pastries were more than enough for two people to share – with ample left over. A large plate of fresh fruit is also supplied. The afternoon tea set includes two drinks from a selection of coffees and teas. Ordering à la carte is also available.
Time: 14:00 – 17:00 Price: 198 RMB for two people Address: 2F, Wecan Center, EFC Tower 3, Future Sci-Tech City, Yuhang District 未来科技城EFC欧美金融城3幢万创国际2号
InterContinental Hotel Hangzhou 杭州洲际 酒店
What do you do when you’ve already had lunch, but still feel peckish and have some time to kill before dinner time? Visit the Intercontinental Hotel, Hangzhou for their afternoon tea, of course! Tea is served daily in the hotel’s Connection Lobby Lounge on the 5th floor.
This season, the Intercontinental has put together a special afternoon tea set that has been inspired by the waxberry. Some of the waxberry-inspired foods include the almond and waxberry cake which, if I do say so myself, was delightful and like a little taste of heaven. Another favourite of mine would have to be the waxberry smoothie, also absolutely wonderful. These are but a few of the sweet pockets of heaven you can expect to have when you try their afternoon tea, so whether you are a fan of waxberries or not, make sure you don’t miss out.
Time: 14:30 – 17:00
Price: 288 RMB for two people Address: 2 Jiefangdong Lu 解放东路2号
Sheraton Grand Hangzhou Wetland Park Resort 杭州西溪喜来登度假大酒店
Easily one of the most creative afternoon teas in Hangzhou, the Sheraton Grand’s ‘Summer Fantasy’ tea set is a charming fare that is destined to convert new fans to Hangzhou’s afternoon tea scene. Completely atypical from a normal afternoon tea, the cuisine is served amongst an (almost) entirely edible ocean backdrop. The sweet jelly sea washes onto the cookie crumb shore where mousse shells and jelly sea creatures reside. Displayed like a message in a bottle, the savoury creations include crayfish, stewed conch, grilled avocado and roasted chicken in a cone.
In addition to the innovative presentation, the tranquil views of the Xixi Wetlands along with the option to choose prosecco or iced coffee (instead of tea), make this afternoon tea a memorable crowd-pleaser. The tea set can be enjoyed inside or on their outdoor terrace and each comes with a personalised message on the bottle, ours was “Bon Appetit” – a fitting message for a delightful afternoon tea. This seasonal afternoon tea is served daily in Sheraton Grand’s Lobby Bar until 31st August. Time: 13:00 – 17:00
Price: 298 RMB for two people
Address: 1 Westbrook Resort, Zijingang Lu 杭州西溪天堂 国际旅游综合体1号
JW Marriott Hotel Hangzhou 杭州JW万豪酒店
High tea at the JW Marriott is a tender moment of peace and leisure. Those who appreciate the finer things in life will find a delectable tea platter full of seasonal sweet and savoury delights that are all supported upon the quintessential foundation of a perfectly buttery English scone.
The tea lounge and service exude a hospitable luxury. With all the trivialities of life taken care of by impeccable waitstaff, you become mentally unencumbered and are free to focus on enjoying a tea set that excels in both taste and presentation.
This season’s tea consists of a series of matcha-flavoured chocolates, puddings and truffles. The scones are paired with an absolutely scrumptious apple jam, and the sweetness of the whole set is smoothed over by a delightful clotted cream. With the luscious setting, delicate platter and artistic presentation, tea at the JW Marriott, Hangzhou is not to be missed. Time: 14:00 – 17:00
Price: 268 RMB for two people
Address: 28 Hushu Nan Lu 湖墅南路28号
Hangzhou Marriott Hotel Qianjiang 杭州钱江新城万豪酒店
Sometimes we all just want to run away from busy weekdays and simply enjoy a cup of tea in a quiet place; relax on a soft, cosy sofa and stare at the fireplace or hide in a secret garden and listen to the sound of birds singing. You can find all of this and more in an afternoon at the Qianjiang Marriott. Take your lunchtime off and enjoy some pure relaxation. A large selection of teas beautifully served with sandwiches and European desserts from one of the best chefs in Hangzhou. The highlight for me was the amazing sweet osmanthus mousse cake. The Marriott’s award-winning sweet osmanthus chocolate mousse cake is directly inspired by its place of origin, Hangzhou. The osmanthus is widely regarded as a symbol of Hangzhou and can be instantly recognised by its sweet smell that covers the city around the month of October. Cutting the cake vertically from the top, the combination of the thick, flowing jam and the rich, black sesame mousse will leave you anxiously awaiting the next bite.
Time: 14:30 – 16:30
Price: 218 RMB for two people Address: 399 Juyuan Lu 剧院路399号
Grand Hyatt Hangzhou 杭州君悦酒店
The Grand Hyatt has decided to go all out on their summer afternoon tea. With a new seat designed with help from their executive chef Enzo from Napoli, Italy, this afternoon tea experience makes the most of seasonal ingredients and tries to promote a vibrant summer feeling in its taste as well as presentation. The set offers luxury from start to finish. Starting from the bottom, finger food featuring smooth salmon mousse, salmon and beetroot, Parma ham and avocado and cucumber, all with homemade freshly-cooked bread. Scones are infused with Hangzhou’s very own Longjing tea and osmanthus flower and come with generous helpings of clotted cream and sweet jam. No expense has been spared in the fresh fruit selection, with watermelon, an essential part of any fruit selection in China, grouped with the more luxurious blueberries, strawberries and yellow kiwi. The top tier, however, is where all the magic happens: three pairs of cakes that span a range of colours, flavours and textures, including durian, pink guava, lychee, and coconut. Centre-stage, with a remarkable resemblance to the colour, shape and texture of a lychee, is a chocolate treat for you to finish: white chocolate exterior, with champagne and lychee inside, a satisfying end to an extravagant afternoon.
Time: 14:00 – 17:00
Price: 298 RMB total for two people
Address: 28 Hubin Lu 湖滨路28号
Like what you see? REDSTAR Hangzhou is giving away afternoon teas to some of its readers! Follow our Wechat account by scanning the below QR, then send the message “I want afternoon tea!” to our official Wechat account to be with a chance to win! Be sure to include your name and telephone number. Winners will be selected at random on 21st June.