May 28, 2006

If There Was Only One...

Mariage Frères in the MaraisThe absolute reference in terms of tea shop is without a doubt Mariage Frères in Paris. They’re one of the oldest establishments in France and have done a lot to give tea it’s “lettres de noblesse”. They have, as only the French can do, made tea a luxury product. Their assortment is huge (600 varieties). They have published beautiful books on the subject. They have a range of perfumed candles and exquisite teaware. They even have a tea musem above their historic adress in the Marais (which is really worth a visit). They’re very expensive but you have the feeling of buying something precious. The staff, in colonial outfits, are very knowledgeable and one discovers something new every time. Mariage Frères is a bit the Hermès of tea : fabulous and very luxurious !!!

If you’re in Paris and you like tea, you MUST visit. The adress is : 30 rue du Bourg-Tibourg, Paris 4e Tél. : +33(0)1 42 72 28 11. I would advise not going on weekends as the Marais shop is quite small and it quickly gets very crowded (which detracts a lot from the experience).

May 13, 2006

High Tea at the Burj Al-Arab Hotel

The Burj Al-Arab Hotel in DubaïView of Dubaï from the Al-Muntaha restaurant

A new section debuts today : Great places for tea. And we start with one of the world's most stunning (and expensive) hotels. The Burj Al-Arab in Dubaï. I had the good fortune of having a High Tea there today in their top-of-the-world restaurant Al-Muntaha (which means "Ultimate"). The tea, sandwiches and pastries are all really good but I have to admit that my attention was much more absorbed by the incredible surroundings and the phenomenal view. You can find more info here about Burj Al-Arab but let's just say that this was one of the most incredible experiences I've ever had whilst savoring tea ;-)

The Al-Muntaha restaurant