The 12 Best Spots for Afternoon Tea in NYC for a Delightful Treat

Make tea time a pastime in your relationship.
The Plaza New York, best spots for afternoon tea in NYC
Photo: The Plaza New York
J.Q. Louise
by J.Q. Louise
Updated Jan 05, 2024
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With so many things to do in NYC, from strolls in scenic Central Park, as well as the High Line and the Brooklyn Bridge, visitors and residents will also acknowledge that New York City restaurants are truly best in class. No matter how you spend your meals in the City That Never Sleeps, indulging in one of the best afternoon teas in NYC should be on your list. Whether you're on a bachelorette party or just a weekend getaway with your partner, it's easy to rest, refuel and luxuriate at one of these chic hotspots.

Mandarin Oriental New York, Columbus Circle

Mandarin Oriental New York best afternoon tea
Photo: Mandarin Oriental New York

Grandly positioned at the top of the Deutsche Bank Center, the Mandarin Oriental New York is centrally located and within walking distance of all the major attractions and sights. Chic, stylish and elegant, Mandarin Oriental's afternoon tea is available year-round at 2 p.m. daily and features an array of delicious treats. The perfect afternoon tea for those wanting to make an occasion of it, this one is a great place to start—anyone for black truffle and egg sandwiches?

80 Columbus Cir, New York City, NY 10023-5800

BG Restaurant at Bergdorf Goodman, Midtown

Featuring sophistication at its finest, afternoon tea at the seventh-floor BG at Bergdorf Goodman comes with views to match, inviting its guests to enjoy soaring sights of Central Park and all of its happenings. Driving aristocratic charm with a big pinch of sophistication, the bright rooms here create an inviting atmosphere for a relaxed and intimate treat during your getaway. If getting dressed up is your gig, then throw on your fanciest top and dig into some dainty macarons.

754 5th Ave, New York City, NY 10019-2503

The Carlyle, Upper East Side

The Carlyle, best afternoon tea in new york city
Photo: The Carlyle

If you're on the hunt for a special place to enjoy a true New York experience while in the city, then heading to The Carlyle off Madison Avenue should be at the top of your list. Surrounded by an array of galleries, high-end shops and museums, this is a location brimming with culture. Even better, The Carlyle's afternoon tea offering promises a strong selection of tea, sandwiches, cakes and pastries. We recommend trying the delicious apple cinnamon scones.

35 E 76th St, New York City, NY 10021-1827

The Russian Tea Room, Midtown West

This one's for the lovebirds looking for something a little out of the ordinary. A firm favorite on the New York scene, The Russian Tea Room is as elegant as it is grand—you'll enjoy an opulent afternoon tea experience boasting continental cuisine with a Russian twist. Interiors feature garishly cool colors paired with Art Deco design, including red leather banquettes. The Russian Tea Room has been popular with locals for many years, with its High Tea including rooibos chai and petit fours.

150 W 57th St, New York City, NY 10019-3301

The Grand Salon at Baccarat, Midtown

Baccarat Hotels, best afternoon tea in NYC
Photo: Baccarat Hotels

Indulgence, indulgence, indulgence—head over to The Grand Salon at Baccarat to enter food coma heaven. Fancy furniture, glistening crystal and an exquisite afternoon tea. Can you name a better way to spend time with your loved ones in the city? Best enjoyed unrushed over a number of hours, this afternoon tea has charming links to the Baccarat brand, with tea services all named after historical figures. This isn't just sandwiches and scones either—get ready for lobster caviar, honey lavender cake and even a children's tea for the smaller guests in your group.

28 W 53rd St Baccarat Hotel New York, New York City, NY 10019-6106

Blue Box Cafe, Midtown

New York is home to many an icon, including the likes of Carrie Bradshaw and her unquestionably dramatic love life. In line with this icon status comes the globally recognized and patented Tiffany blue, which smothers the walls of the Blue Box Cafe in striking fashion. With windows looking out over Central Park and Tiffany fine bone china on each and every table, this is a NY afternoon tea location that glistens as brightly as its diamond namesake.

727 5th Ave 6th Floor, New York City, NY 10022

The Palm Court at The Plaza, Midtown

The Palm Court at The Plaza, best afternoon tea in nyc
Photo: The Plaza New York

Featuring an already beloved restaurant, The Plaza goes one step further by offering a dreamy afternoon tea. Potted plants, stained glass, ceiling-high palm trees and custom furnishings in The Palm Court create a truly unique and memorable setting for special occasions. With an eclectic tea collection to choose from, you might find yourself drinking everything from Sencha Superior to lavender oolong—of course there's always the typical Earl Grey, too. The Eloise Tea is a tribute to the hotel's literary heroine and offers a selection of charming flavors for a taste of nostalgia.

768 5th Ave The Plaza Central Park South, New York City, NY 10019-1685

Cha-An Japanese Tea House, East Village

This time, we're adding a little bit of mystery to your NY afternoon tea experience. Climb a flight of stairs and bravely peek behind a curtain to find this afternoon tea paradise. If tranquility is on your menu, then Cha-An Japanese Tea House is the place to be. Once inside, sit back and enjoy a continuous serving of beautifully crafted plates paired with teas and sake. Beautiful and authentic Japanese flavors promise to offer a welcome change to the typical afternoon tea.

230 E 9th St, New York City, NY 10003-7503

Lady Mendl's Tea Salon, Gramercy Park

Lady Mendl's Tea Salon, best afternoon tea in new york
Photo: Lady Mendl's Tea Salon

Calling all New York elite—inspired by Elsie de Wolfe, famed socialite and former neighbor of 56 Irving Place, Lady Mendl's Tea Salon is a sight to behold, with rooms adorned with parlor pinks, soft greens and luscious florals. Antiques litter the space, and the afternoon tea is just as grand as its surroundings. With a whopping five courses, Lady Mendl's afternoon tea service lays on classic finger food of the cucumber-and-salmon-sandwich variety, followed by scones, cookies, cakes and petit fours. Accompanied not just by the classic pot of tea, this spot also offers cocktails aplenty.

56 Irving Pl, New York City, NY 10003-2314

Tea and Sympathy, Greenwich Village

If you love a traditional British afternoon tea, then Tea and Sympathy certainly won't disappoint. You'll feel like you're enjoying tea and cake in your grandma's floral living room. There are many things that make an afternoon tea a success—from the size of the finger foods to the quality of the tea leaves—and Tea and Sympathy hits every mark. Enjoy traditional cuppas poured from beautifully designed and ornate teapots.

108 Greenwich Ave, New York City, NY 10011-7741

King's Carriage House, Upper East Side

Here's one for the mums and their daughters. King's Carriage House is the perfect crowd-pleaser in the form of a two-story, European manor-style restaurant. With three dining rooms to choose from and various tea choices as well, there's something for everyone here. Unsurprisingly, the traditional offering is a plentiful choice. There's even the option to order a takeaway afternoon tea, which you can enjoy in Central Park instead.

251 E 82nd St, New York City, NY 10028-2701

Alice's Tea Cup, Upper West Side

Alice's Tea Cup, best afternoon tea in new york city
Photo: Alice's Tea Cup

Last but not least, we're bringing a little magic to the table in the form of Alice's Tea Cup, which promises to transport you to a mystical land inspired by Lewis Carroll. Your afternoon will begin with entry through the spot's charmingly quirky gift-boutique-slash-bakeshop—we challenge you not to purchase any number of knickknacks on your way to the dining area. Here, you'll enjoy sweet and savory in equal measure, with some afternoon teas even offering unlimited scones and sandwiches.

102 W 73rd St, New York City, NY 10023-3047

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