Food & Wine
Sky High Tea at the Burj Al Arab Hotel
I wasn’t in Dubai very long, but there was one thing I made time for — afternoon tea at the Burj Al Arab hotel. I booked more than an month in advance, but it turns out you can usually get a reservation with just one or two days notice. Their email reservations team is very responsive.
Be sure to print out your reservation as you’ll need to show it to gain entry onto the hotel grounds. When we pulled up the entrance was quite busy, but we had no problem finding a bellhop to help us store our luggage during tea (we were transitioning hotels).
This also gave us time to look at the fancy cars I’d heard so much about. And we were a little early which gave us time to check out the lobby.
You can pick from 3 afternoon tea options, but for me there was only one — Sky Tea at the Skyview Bar 56 stories up.
To get to the Skyview Bar you want to go up the escalators in the lobby.
Past the fountain.
All the way to the back. Check in as soon as you can, even if you have time to kill.
They will seat you in order of check in, so once you have you can go back out and look at the lobby if you have time. We thought 15 minutes was too early to line up, but we should have gone straight back to let them know we had arrived.
A few minutes before the 1PM seating they started calling people to take the ear popping elevator ride up.
We were lucky and though about 5 couples were in front of us, my friend and I got the last table where both of us could have a front row view. 🙂
Actually there were 6 couples but the guy didn’t have a collared shirt so we sat before them while that go sorted out. If you don’t get one of the 6 or so tables on the side then at least one person in the party is going to have to face inward.
And you know when they offer rock crystal sugar stirrers, it’s probably going to be fun! 🙂
A waiter came over immediately with dates and glasses for our Roderer Estate sparkling wine. There was the option to upgrade to a glass of Dom Perignon 2004 for AED 260 (~$71) but that was a little too extravagant.
Refreshing towels followed soon after and our waiter apprised us of what was on the menu for tea that day.
First up was a strawberry vanilla parfaitish thing with a white chocolate topper.
Next was the special of the day, a duck confit pastry with ceps and foie gras drizzled with cranberry sauce.
And then the tower of finger sandwiches (shaped like the Burj al Arab) with a plate for each person.
There was a curry chicken, a tuna on berry bread, a roast beef, a smoked salmon, and a cucumber and cream cheese. I really liked the chicken, the others were so so though the bread was good. And they were also unlimited, with servers coming around to serve you more of anything you might like. I played it safe and didn’t even finish my initial serving.
After the duck confit it was time to order tea which arrived after the sandwiches. There was a lovely list to choose from. I went with Darjeeling 2nd Flush for the first pot, Ceylon and Rose for the second. First time trying either and it was fantastic!
Then a palate cleanser of lychee and rose sorbet topped with a sugar coated rose petal. Yum!
And then it was time for the scones and pastries. An overwhelming large selection! At this point you could also order other complimentary non alcholic beverages — fresh squeezed juices and sodas.
Homemade scones with Devonshire clotted cream, and a selection of jams — passion fruit, strawberry & rose and raspberry.
On the lower level there were little camel’s milk creme brulee, fanstastic carrot cake, a fruitcake, and something else we had no room to try.
And in the middle, a plate of 4 mini pastries. An apricot puff pastry, a peanut butter chocoate piece, a white chocolate cheese cake, and another chocolate dessert.
It was alot of fun, but waaaay too much food. But the show wasn’t over yet.
They brought us a souvenir to take home — a Burj al Arab pen and some chocolates.
And I got one of the famous cappuccinos sprinkled with gold dust.
Though I had been warned about the Burj Al Arab’s opulence, I wasn’t prepared for the funky decor of the restaurant which featured a computer memory board design, complete with flashing lights. So of course I had to stop for a picture in the lighted tunnel.
So should you spend the AED 620 (~$170) per person for tea at the Skyview Bar? If you’re really into afternoon tea and you love a good view, then yes. It’s worth doing once, but I probably don’t need to do it again.
If you’re not really a fancy tea person, there are other ways to enjoy the view, including grabbing drinks in the evening.
More from this trip
Etihad First Class Checkin & the New Etihad Lounge at JFK
Flying in the First Apartment on the Inaugural Etihad A380 JFK to Abu Dhabi
Thanksgiving Dinner 40,000 Feet Above the Atlantic
First Impressions of Dubai in Pictures
Sunset Camel Treks & Champagne Toasts
Riding Arabians and Dune Bashing in the Desert
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