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The nearly two hundred year old British tradition of afternoon tea may not be widespread in the United States, but you can still enjoy it here in Washington D.C.

Here are a few spots to try afternoon tea. Typically, afternoon tea is a set price per person with a variety of finger sandwiches, desserts, and snacks; however, menus will vary.

We recommend making reservations in advance, especially around holidays, and that you check websites for hours, as they can vary.

Formal Tea

Peacock Alley in The Willard Hotel | 1401 Pennsylvania Avenue NW (near the White House)

One of the oldest and most luxurious hotels in Washington D.C., it’s no wonder the afternoon tea at Peacock Alley in The Willard Hotel is considered one of the best in the city. This is especially popular during the Christmas holidays.

St. Regis Hotel | 923 16th St NW (near the White House)

This historic hotel near the White House has a history of serving dignitaries and celebrities. Changing with the seasons, their afternoon tea is served in their opulent lobby.

The Tavern at Henley Park Hotel | 926 Massachusetts Ave NW (Mount Vernon Square)

With its English Tudor architecture, this is a marvelous spot to enjoy the atmosphere along with your afternoon tea. The Tavern also offers a range of tea menus at different price points.

Ladurée | 3060 M St NW (Georgetown)

Famous for their macarons, this Georgetown favorite is one to try. Enjoy the Parisian-inspired decor and make sure to take a few macarons home with you.

Salamander Hotel | 1330 Maryland Ave SW (Wharf)

This hotel was previously known as the Mandarin Oriental. This is a perfect place to enjoy afternoon tea if you’re exploring the Wharf neighborhood.

Casual Tea Options

If a formal afternoon tea isn’t quite your style, there are some less formal options where you can still enjoy a nice cuppa.

Teaism | Multiple Locations (Dupont Circle, Penn Quarter/Chinatown, near the White House)

While they don’t offer an official afternoon tea service, this local, woman-owned business with three locations around the city allows you to craft your own a la carte afternoon tea, including delicious scones.

Valley Brook Tea | 2015 Massachusetts Ave NW (Dupont Circle)

For something with an even older tradition, try some authentic Chinese tea at Valley Brook Tea. They also sell teaware for your home.

About The Author

Canden Arciniega

Canden is a historian and tour guide in Washington DC with 4 published books about the city. She has written for HuffPost Travel and has been featured in the Washington Post, WTOP, and numerous other DC papers. She's also been interviewed by the BBC, NPR, Travel Channel and Discovery Family Channel. Canden is the producer of the podcast, Tour Guide Tell All With a M.A. in History from University College London and a B.A. in History from Elon University, she is an authority on D.C. history, and has led tours in the city for over 10 years. She currently resides in DC, but has also lived in London and South Korea, and has travelled to over 28 countries and every US State but Hawaii. She homeschools her 2 children by exploring the plethora of museums in DC.
Updated: September 1st, 2023
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