The decadent display of pastries, preserves, and well, tea served in dainty china at these spots will likely a) send your mind straight to the Victorian era; b) make you feel like a right gentleman; c) trigger a growl in your tummy; d) remind you of a visit to grandma’s; or e) all of the above.
Isn’t it funny how high tea was once considered a fussy and old-fashioned pastime? Today, high tea or afternoon tea is a much sought-after and popular activity the world over. Especially for those seeking to leave the mayhem of modernity behind for an hour or so.
Without further delay, here are the best high teas in Melbourne for your tea-sippin’ and pinky-raising pleasure.
The Conservatory at Crown Melbourne
Can’t go to Paris? The Conservatory at Crown Melbourne brings Paris straight to you in the form of a classic Parisian hotel tea room. If you’re looking to impress, you can’t go wrong with a booking at this opulent location. Situated in the heart of Melbourne’s Southbank, its stunning Yarra views, marble floors, lavish décor, hand-crafted chocolate desserts, and indulgent buffet spread will surely delight the senses. In fact, foodies have even dubbed Conservatory as one of the best buffet experiences in Melbourne.
Crown Towers, 8 Whiteman St, Southbank VIC 3006
Essence-0n-Exhibition at the Marriot
Whether it’s a relaxed afternoon with family or a special occasion, afternoon tea at Essence-on-Exhibition is one of the best high teas Melbourne has for petite scones, macaroons, and mini sandwiches piled three plates high. Available all week from $49 to $75 (with champers) per person, Marriot provides a wallet-friendly option to the uber-appealing pastime.
Exhibition St & Lonsdale St, Melbourne VIC 3000
Mansion Hotel at Werribee Park
A lavish spread of sweet and savoury delicacies welcomes you every Sunday afternoon at the Mansion Hotel & Spa. Presented by T2 and Mansion Hotel, High SocieTEA (as the weekly event is called) is held in the sublime hotel lobby, the historic Library during winter, or the majestic balcony during warmer months.
Gate 2, K Road, Werribee VIC 3030
The Melba Restaurant The Langham Hotel
The Melba Restaurant at The Langham Hotel is home to a variety of high tea options. Examples include Afternoon Tea With Wedgwood, Twilight Tea With Wedgwood, The Greatest Mother’s Day High Tea, and Spa And Afternoon Tea just to name a few. The Langham Afternoon Tea with Wedgwood in particular is a bespoke tea experience which teams a special menu created by the hotels’ pastry chefs with Wedgwood speciality teas served in tailor-made “Langham Rose” Wedgwood teaware.
1 Southgate Avenue, Southbank, Melbourne, Victoria
The Hotel Windsor
For authentic high tea (Melbourne style), head on over to The Hotel Windsor which has been serving over two million guests since its inception in 1883! In celebration of its 130 over years of afternoon tea, the hotel came up with a guide which highlights tea etiquette and the history of high tea. Some enticing treats on the menu include cauliflower and cheese pie, caramel log, mandarin mousse, and The Hotel Windsor’s Famous Scones. If you could only pick one of the best high teas in Melbourne CBD to try, you can’t go wrong with The Hotel Windsor.
111 Spring St, Melbourne VIC 3000
InterContinental Melbourne The Rialto
The Clarke Sisters’ High Tea is a degustation-style experience not to be missed. The Clarke Sisters were renowned for spending lavish afternoons having tea. They were also both (at different points in life) married to the same man who commissioned the original Rialto building. Here at the InterContinental Melbourne The Rialto you will find heavenly treats from Vue de Monde, Le Petit Gateau, and Merchant along with traditional sandwiches, scones, and a choice of main course served on Noritake China.
495 Collins St, Melbourne VIC 3000
Lounge at Park Hyatt
Park Hyatt is a five-star hotel provides a dining experience like no other. With world-class chefs and sommeliers utilising locally sourced ingredients, you are guaranteed a truly Melburnian culinary adventure. High tea here is served at the Lounge which overlooks the picturesque Trilogy Gardens and highlights include the finest estate leaf teas along with handmade petit desserts. Special menus can also be created in advance by their dedicated chefs for specific dietary needs.
1 Parliament Pl, East Melbourne VIC 3002
The Waiting Room at Crown Melbourne
The ambience of this luxurious lobby bar will likely transport you to the elegant 1940s thanks to its warm colour palette, custom-designed style, and tailor-made menu. The Waiting Room stays true to the timeless British tradition of afternoon tea by serving a delectable assortment of sandwiches, savouries, and sweets on a three-tiered stand paired with both Dilmah Tea and Vittoria Coffee.
Crown Towers, Crown Melbourne, 8 Whiteman Street, Southbank VIC 3006
What sets high tea at The Westin apart from other venues is the fact that it has partnered up with Jing Tea to present some of Asia’s rarest and most delicious herbal infusions. An exceptional selection of teas that are hand sourced from China, India, Japan, and Taiwan can be enjoyed with seasonal delicacies and traditional favourites.
205 Collins St, Melbourne VIC 3000
This place will likely give the madhatter a run for his money. Not a high tea venue per se but more of an all-year garden soiree is what Madame Brussels will be able to offer you and your tribe. For $55 per head, you’ll get an array of sweets and savouries, pots of tea, and French plunged coffee. Enough to send any man into a food induced coma.
59 Bourke St, Melbourne VIC 3000
Om Nom at Adelphi Hotel
There’s really no better place to treat your tastebuds than at the world’s first dessert-themed hotel. The hotel’s colours and textures are based off desserts. And it also features jars of lollies and sticky toffee apples that welcome you at the lobby and reception area. Other mouthwatering features include free sweets in the bar fridges of every room, a turn-down service that comes with homemade macaroons, and of course the 40-seat dessert resto-bar, Om Nom that spins out sweet treats which look like pieces of art. No wonder it made the list of the best high tea Melbourne has on offer!
187 Flinders Ln, Melbourne VIC 3000
NGV Tea Room
A team of talented pastry chefs are the masterminds behind the handcrafted maracons, éclairs, and other tantalising cakes and savouries found at the NGV Tea Room. High tea here comes with a modern twist i.e. it incorporates tradition with current trends. One fun example is that green tea and chai come served in pots with modern patterns. Best part is, thanks to the inclusive nature of the gallery, you needn’t come for the art to gain access to one of the best high teas Melbourne CBD has to date.
180 St Kilda Rd, Southbank VIC 3006
Mámor Chocolates & High Tea Szalón
Plush velvet furniture and fine antique china and silverware makes Mámor a lavish location for your next high tea hangout. Other than heavenly morsels of food made from the best produce in town, it’s also extremely familiar with helping to plan events. Mámor will be able to suggest a host of entertainment options such as tarot card reading, tea leaf reading, life drawing, burlesque, professional photography, topless waiters, and bonbonniere.
153 Johnston St, Collingwood VIC 3066
Mary Eats Cake
In the heart of Brunswick lies Mary Eats Cake, a two storey ‘industrial glam’ tea house that’s dedicated to spoil you with their version of fresh savoury items, sweet treats, and artisan teas served in fine bone china. In addition, add-ons such as French sparkling on arrival, tea blending workshop, wine pairing package, coffee, calligraphy workshop, blossoming tea, and cheese & fruit board are also available during bookings.
558 Sydney Rd, Brunswick VIC 3056
High Tea at Hopetoun Tea Rooms
This charming spot was originally a bulk grain store which was sold in 1837 but unfortunately burnt down in 1889. It was then erected by The City Property Company in 1893. Soon after it became one of the best high teas Melbourne CBD has today. Since then, Hopetoun Tea Rooms has continued the tradition of dishing out fine foods and beverages made with the utmost quality. Treats such as quiches, pinwheels, petit fours, and seasonal fruits generally decorate the three-tiered serving platter.
The Block Arcade, 1-2/282 Collins St, Melbourne VIC 3000
A laidback joint, Crafternoon Café is a child-friendly café that nurtures creativity while you nosh. The café also caters to kidults with the option of the Crafternoon High Teas. This may not be as posh as most of Melbourne’s other high teas that were mentioned; but what it lacks in luxury it makes up for in character! Not just for women who lunch. Bookings can be made by anyone looking for fun, crafty, messy, non-traditional, and group-related high teas. This is ultimately why Crafternoon Cafe was picked as one of the best high teas in Melbourne.
718 Sydney Rd, Brunswick VIC 3056
Nova Bar & Kitchen at Cinema Nova
Catch a movie and reward yourself after at the Nova Bar & Kitchen with freshly-made sandwiches, delectable cakes, pastries, and a tipple or two. Nova also boasts of an exceptional wine list that features a wide range of red, white, and sparkling varietals. All of which can be enjoyed while you watch your show.
380 Lygon St, Carlton VIC 3053
Tried one or more of Melbourne’s best high teas? It would be great to hear your thoughts. Please share your experiences with us. If we have missed out on a joint that’s worthy of this list of best high teas in Melbourne CBD, make sure to leave us a comment below.