This Mother's Day, consider treating mom to an Eloise Tea at The Palm Court, The Plaza, in New York.
Tea time provides a rare opportunity to combine something kids love (sweets!) with something moms demand (good manners!). Treat mom to a tea party this Mother’s Day at one of these delightful locales.
Eloise Tea and Simply Charming Tea at The Plaza – New York, N.Y.
“Skibble” off to The Plaza for a tea named for the hotel’s precocious fictional guest, Eloise. The menu includes such “mahvelous” items as kid-friendly finger sandwiches, mini chocolate cupcakes, Eloise shortbread cookies, and chocolate-dipped strawberries. Guests can sip cold pink lemonade or hot peppermint tea. (Daily. $30 children, $50 adults.) Afterwards, be sure to stop by the pink, pink, pink Eloise Boutique to watch Eloise movie clips, take in park views and purchase all things Eloise.
If you’re worried your little darling doesn’t have the table manners to attend such a fancy affair, sign up for a Simply Charming Tea. Lisa Taylor Richey, creator of Manners To Go, teaches children and their adult companions tea-specific etiquette such as how to properly pour tea as well as everyday manners like how and why to make eye contact. (Offered quarterly. $150 for etiquette instruction, tea for one child and one adult, an Eloise keepsake and "The Golden Rules of Etiquette at The Plaza" book).
The Peninsula Chicago
Afternoon Tea at The Lobby with Peter Bear, the mascot of The Peninsula Chicago.
Afternoon Tea at The Lobby, The Peninsula Chicago – Chicago
Well-behaved girls and boys dine on ham-and-cheese finger sandwiches, mini burgers, crisped rice treats and Jell-O squares while sipping tea or hot chocolate at The Lobby. Peter Bear, the mascot of The Peninsula Chicago, stops by to greet young guests tableside. Adults are served more sophisticated fare, like salmon with dill cream cheese and roasted vegetable with hummus. (Daily. $18 children, $25 with souvenir teddy bear. $42 adults or $50 with glass of Champagne.)
Madeline’s Tea at Bemelmans Bar, The Carlyle, A Rosewood Hotel - New York, N.Y.
Inspired by the petite main character of the famous French book series, the Madeline Tea takes place in Bemelmans Bar, which is lined with murals painted by the author and illustrator himself, Ludwig Bemelmans. In addition to standard tea-time finger sandwiches, guests can choose from such buffet options as Teeny burgers and fries, Pipito’s crudités and dips, and an Eiffel Tower hot fudge sundae with a cherry on top. (Saturdays. $50 adults, $25 children.)
Nursery Tea at Crown & Crumpet Tea Salon - San Francisco
Decorated with an eclectic mix of playful flowered prints, this tea shop has a bright, modern feel different from many old-school tea houses. Children are presented with their own mini three-tiered stand stacked with small sandwiches, a house-made crumpet, and miniature sweet treats ($15). Tiny tea goers can wash down their nibbles with a pot of apple juice, hot chocolate or fruit tea served with heart-shaped sugar cubes. Adults can choose a similar tea-time menu ($28) or order quiches, salads and full-sized sandwiches from the lunch menu ($10-16). To ensure children are on their best behavior, you can order a princess-themed craft to keep young hands busy ($5).
Story Time Tea with Mrs. B at The Grill at Morrison House – Alexandria, Va.
Children are treated to a pot of hot chocolate and finger sandwiches, scones with jam, and bite-sized desserts at The Grill at Kimpton’s Morrison House. Grown-ups enjoy such dishes as curried chicken salad sandwiches, crab salad profiteroles, a sliver tray of sweets and organic teas. A Mother’s Day Tea on May 19 will include corsages and boutonnieres for “dress-up” and children will make cards and poems for their moms. (Monthly. $28 children, $38 adults.)
Manners instructor Rebecca Czarniecki (a.k.a. Mrs. B) hosts these Story Time Teas. Czarniecki recites a story or poem, oversees a craft project and visits with each table to give etiquette tips. She says, “Tea provides an environment where you can teach children and adults a variety of manners – how to hold silverware, use correct body language, and send thank-you notes to follow up after the event. And who doesn’t love a cup of tea?”
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