High tea- it's an English tradition that conjures up images of women in gowns, delicately handling fragile tea cups with their pinkies positioned in the air.
Sydney is filled with lavish venues perfect for a budget-friendly three-tier sandwiches and scones high tea. Try one, try them all. We've tried quite a few (and we've included our deals and thoughts on them below, too!)
Sydney's Best High Teas
- The Langham
- Sofitel Sydney Wentworth
- The Gallery
- The Cortile, Intercontinental
- Gunners' Barracks
- Atura Hotel
- Gunners' Barracks
- Embellish Atelier
- Captain Cook Cruises
- The Westin
- The Tea Room
- Vaucluse House Tearooms
- Lobby Lounge
- Crossroad Bar
- Burnt Orange
Here’s a round-up of the best options.
Best for atmosphere: The Tea Room, QVB
This one's strictly for queens and princesses seeking a traditional high tea in the grandest of settings.
Located on the top floor of the Queen Victoria Building, The Tea Room offers one of Sydney's most established and esteemed high tea services and plates up its finger sandwiches and homemade scones on authentic Royal Albert china.
All its teas and tisanes are of the high-quality single-estate loose-leaf variety and are imported from China, India, Japan, Sri-Lanka, Taiwan and Africa. You've pages of options, so choose wisely.
Location: Level 3, North End, Queen Victoria Building, Sydney.
Price: Morning tea ($40pp), children's high tea ($40pp), traditional high tea ($55pp), sparkling high tea ($60pp), cocktail high tea ($70pp), champagne high tea ($80pp).
Tea times: Daily 10am-close.
What we love about this place: It feels as though we've stepped back in time and space to Elizabethan spaces in London where ladies of class dressed up and lunched for hours.
Best for a change of scenery: Vaucluse House Tearooms
How better to experience high tea than on the beautiful colonial estate of Vaucluse House? Its dedicated tea rooms boast views overlooking the 10 hectares of gardens that stretch all the way down to the banks of Sydney Harbour.
Dating back to the 1830s, this sandstone estate is a quiet oasis away from the busy city life. The Tea Rooms' High Tea is a tour through English dining history, offering scones with berry preserve and clotted cream and chicken and tarragon Harry's Bar sandwiches.
Location: Wentworth Rd, Vaucluse.
Price: High tea ($60pp).
Tea times: Wednesday to Friday 9am-4pm, Weekends 8am-4pm.
What we love about this place: It's the ultimate summer dining venue with well-groomed gardens you can sit in and while the day (or afternoon) away in.
Best for culture vultures: Sofitel Sydney Wentworth
Every visit to the Sofitel Sydney Wentworth is a unique one as its themes change according to the arts and entertainment scene. For example, during the Archibald Prize, bespoke high teas (2019's black and white offering is pictured) come complete with live performances by the Australian Youth Orchestra and ticket to the exhibition.
Location: 61-101 Phillip St, Sydney.
Price: Wentworth high tea ($65pp)
Tea times: Subject to availability. Contact the restaurant for details.
What we love about this place: It supports the arts, hosting exclusive Archibald Prize events as well as musical-themed menus to coincide with current productions.
Best for chocolate lovers: Lobby Lounge, Shangri-La
And finally: the high tea dark horse. The Shangri-La often gets overlooked as a high tea destination.
Perhaps it’s because it doesn’t always put its hand up for events such as Good Food Month’s Ultimate High Tea, but it should not be discounted – have you seen this hotel’s dessert bar?!
While high tea isn't on the list, afternoon tea is in a multitude of forms. There's your standard afternoon tea with live music offerings and then there's the Shangri-La’s signature Wickedly Sweet Chocolate Afternoon Tea experience. You know which one we're opting for.
Location: 176 Cumberland St, The Rocks.
Price: Afternoon high tea ($55pp).
Tea times: Daily 11:30am - 6pm.
What we love about this place: It has a chocolate high tea. Need we say more? Oh, and the desserts at Shangri-La are the genius of none other than Anna Polyviou.
Sydney high tea comparison
|Location||Prices from||Includes drinks||Where to book|
|Gunners' Barracks, Mosman||$40||Yes- one espresso coffee or one Ronnefeldt tea||RedBalloon|
|Captain Cook Cruises, Circular Quay||$69||Yes- glass of sparkling wine, tea and coffee||Experience Oz|
|The Tea Room, QVB||$40||Yes- tea and coffee||The Tea Room |
|Vaucluse House Tearooms||$60||Yes- glass of Morgan's Bay Sparkling cuvée and tea selection||Vaucluse House Tearooms |
|Sofitel Sydney Wentworth||$65||Yes- tea and coffee||Sofitel Sydney Wentworth |
|Lobby Lounge, Shangri-La||$55||Yes- tea, coffee and hot chocolate||Shangri-La |
Vegan and gluten-free options
Dietary requirements won't stop you from scoffing down scones and sandwiches. Just contact the venue at least 24 hours before your high tea to esnure they can make arrangements.
You can find vegan and gluten-free options at: Gunners' Barracks, The Westin, The Tea Room, Vaucluse House Tearooms and Sofitel Sydney Wentworth.
Current tea deals and offers
Popular Tourist Attractions & Experiences coupon codes
|27 May 2020
||Extra $10 off site-wide with code
|6 Jul 2020
||Extra USD$10 off activities with code
|6 Jul 2020
||Extra USD$25 off activities with code
|6 Jul 2020
||Extra USD$40 off activities with code
|2 Jul 2020
||Up to $30 off Australia tandem skydive