Friday, June 13, 2008

Lunch at the Orangery and Touring in London

It continued to rain in London on Monday, May 26 so we did some "inside" touring. AJ requested a visit to the Museum of Natural History. I chose to tour of Kensington Palace with lunch at the Orangery. After shopping at Hamley's Toy Store and a nearby Whittard of Chelsea, we enjoyed cream tea at Fortnum and Mason. (I posted a photo of tea yesterday.) From there we walked back to our hotel, London Marriott Grosvenor Square.

Afternoon Tea At Claridge's, London

I looked forward to afternoon tea at Claridge’s since traveling with the
Tea in London 2007 tour.
Nancy, my roommate on the tour, and I had reservations at Claridge’s
and cancelled because there were just too many things we wanted to see and do on our one free day. Tea at Claridge’s was lovely, but Nancy and I made the right decision
at the time as we had already experienced several lovely hotel teas.
On Sunday, May 25 at 5:30 pm, GJ, AJ and I had afternoon tea at Claridge’s
a five-star hotel in Mayfair, just a block from our hotel.
Claridge's served their special event “Floral Afternoon Tea” in honor of the
2008 RHS Chelsea Flower Show and the 40th anniversary of Laurent-Perrier Rose’ Champagne. Afternoon Tea was served on their beautiful signature china in
The Foyer and the menu included: an optional glass of Laurent-Perrier Rose’,
a selection of sandwiches, raisin and apple scones with
Devonshire clotted cream and Marco Polo jelly, a selection of floral pastries, and tea.
The service was excellent, the atmosphere was lovely and we really enjoyed this tea experience.
 A piano and cello played during teatime.
The cost without the champagne was 34.50 GBP per person.
 (I hope you can double-click and read the lovely sandwich descriptions on the photo of the menu).

AfternoonTea at Grosvenor House in London

Our first London afternoon tea (Saturday, May 24) was at the five-star Grosvenor House in Mayfair, just a couple of blocks from our hotel. Tea was served in the Park Room with windows looking over Park Lane and Hyde Park. We each ordered “Anna’s Tea” named for Anna, the 7th Duchess of Bedford. Tea was served on the beautiful Grosvenor House signature china and included; a fruit compote, and on the three tier server, a selection of sandwiches, scones with cream and jam, pastries and tea. The servers brought more of everything to the tables as requested. We enjoyed music by a pianist. The cost was 25 GBP per person.

London in the Rain!

Where do I begin? Our fascination with England, Scotland and Wales began on our first trip in 1995 as chaperone's with our youngest daughter’s teenage folk dance group. We stayed in homes with various host families and we were hooked. We loved the people and the countryside. This was our sixth trip for GJ and I and our third time to take AJ. He celebrated his 9th birthday on May 31st in Scotland and England! We wanted him to see as much as possible so that he would have memories to cherish. He was only 3 and 4 years old during his last two trips.
We left home on Friday, May 23rd, the last day of AJ’s school year and departed Cincinnati at 8 pm via direct flight to London Gatwick arriving Saturday morning. We stayed the first 3 nights in London because I wanted AJ to see the places he would most likely hear about in school, Big Ben, Parliament, Buckingham Palace, Westminster Abbey and more. We bought a 2 day ticket for the open top double-deck bus with the hop-off and hop-on option and saw them all! GJ tolerated our London stay as he has been there too many times in recent years on business. I believe he enjoyed showing AJ the sights, especially the Tower of London and taking him on trains and taxis and having afternoon tea, even though it rained buckets during much of our 3 days.
Note: Between the 3 of us, we took over 700 photos. I promise I will not post all of them on this blog!!!

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