Tag Archives: the queen mother

Around the World in 80 Tea Rooms No. 3 The Ritz Hotel, London

No self respecting guide to tea rooms or afternoon tea could really be complete without The Ritz.  Designed by architects Charles Mewès and Arthur Davis,  It opened in May 1906, and its roll call is rather impressive… Charlie Chaplin (who needed 40 policemen to escort him through an army of fans), Anna Pavlova, the Aga Khan, Paul Getty, Tallulah Bankhead (who famously sipped Champagne from her slipper during a press conference in the 50′s), Sir Winston Churchill, Charles de Gaulle (who used the hotel for summit meetings during the 2nd World War), Judy Garland, Evelyn Waugh & Noel Coward.

Like its french counterpart- The Ritz Paris, the interior (including the Palm Court – above – where afternoon tea is served) was designed throughout in a neo classical style of Louis XV1 .

Royals (for whom there was a special bell to warn staff of their arrival) included, King Edward VII, Queen Elizabeth, the Queen Mother and King Alfonso of Spain and Queen Amelie of Portugal who met at the hotel.

The hotel was immortalised by Irving Berlin’s song ‘Puttin on the Ritz’ – Most famously sung by Fred Astaire,- however check out these other versions – including a very young Michael Jackson (late teens maybe?) with sister La Toya, Judy Garland, Gene Wilder & Teri Garr Clarke Gabel, Rufus Wainright and  my fave version with cool animation.

THE MENU

As you would expect – an array of traditional English sandwiches and scones.

  • Smoked Salmon Sandwiches
  • Ham Sandwiches
  • Chicken Sandwiches
  • Cucumber Sandwiches
  • Mature Cheddar Cheese Sandwiches
  • Egg Mayonnaise Bridge Roll
  • Freshly Baked Raisin and Apple Scones with Cornish Clotted Cream and Strawberry Preserve
  • Assortment of Afternoon Tea Pastries
  • Ritz Chocolate Cake

The Ritz London,  150 Piccadilly, London W1J 9BR, Tel: +44 (0) 20 7493 8181,

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