Last September I was invited by moroccanoil to cover Kristian Aadnevik SS14 backstage. The show was held in The Royal Horseguards grand ballroom. I mentioned in the post how impressed I was with the hotel and a couple of month later I was invited for afternoon tea… Bonus!
I met with Kristabel and first things first was some outfit photos. Typically when I arrived the road outside the hotel was empty – when we wanted to take photos the road was bustling with people. One man even came up to us and asked to get in the photo. After 3 years of blogging, I don’t think I am going to shift this ‘taking photos with an audience’ phobia.
Thanks to Kristabel for taking the photos of me. I definitely wanted to show off my new green midi skirt from Chicwish* . The Victorian looking blouse is from Sammy Dress. Both online stores based in Hong Kong.
Head chef Ben Purton met us in the lobby for a tour around the restaurant, bar and lounge areas. First port of call was the lounge where the afternoon tea options are served. Ben explained over the last couple of years how tea at the Horseguards has quadrupled in popularity. I loved the display of sweets and cakes by the serving area (bloggers love that shiz). We even spotted Christmas cake, which is still being requested apparently – it must be good!
We then walked through to the One Twenty One Two Restaurant. The head chef of this restaurant is from Jamaica who we later met in the kitchen. He brings in a slight spice infusion to the dishes, which is proving popular with guests. I will have to try that out for myself sometime in the near future, it sounds delicious.
We had a peak on the terrace which faces directly onto the Thames and the London Eye. Ben told us about the NYE parties they hold there and I don’t think you could get a better position for the fireworks. I want to go next (I mean this) year. In the summer guests will enjoy afternoon tea on the terrace and they even have heaters and blankets for the winter.
Then walked through the kitchen. Which is an experience in itself as I don’t even go into my own kitchen – unless its to make a coffee or slaughter some baked goods together. I tried to make macaroons recently…it didn’t go to plan lets say.
The last place and when my stomach couldn’t take anymore of this teasing was the newly refurbished Equus Bar. It’s very ‘old meets new’ with the contemporary lighting and gentlemen’s club furnishings and paintings. The signature cocktail features cuban cigar syrup for an aromatic experience. I didn’t try one unfortunately, but I am trying to imagine it… On paper it sounds a bit funky.
We settled down in the lounge as the harpist started her set for our afternoon tea. We had champagne to start and then a coffee each (neither of us are tea drinkers).
Out came the signature tea with a selection of finger sandwiches and savoury bites (which they will top up if you are feeling extra hungry). The top plate was filled with sweet goodness of handmade cakes and pastries – I am struggling here as I write and reminisce, sssshh stomach!
We were talked into having the strawberry & cream flavoured tea and I am so pleased I did…I am now a tea convert! I couldn’t resist the macaroon staring at me while we waited for the scones with cream and homemade jam.
After all that I was spent! We looked at the time and realised we had been eating, drinking and chatting away for 2 and a half hours. Even in the grandeur of the Royal Horseguards surroundings, it has a very laid-back relaxing atmosphere. There is not a sniff of pretentiousness and the waiting staff are extremely friendly.
The Royal Horseguards hotel include a mini tea (£12) for little people so I can’t wait to return with Eva.
Big thanks to The Royal Horseguards, Cult Content and especially Ben Purton for having us as their guests. You can find details of the Royal Horseguards afternoon tea, restaurant and bar on their website.